The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

24 March 2006

Where there's a manger, there's a dog

Difficult times call for innovative solutions, which is why, in the wake of Katrina, New Orleans Chief Information Officer Greg Meffert opened up the citywide 512k Wi-Fi network, originally designed to service the city's network of surveillance cameras, to all comers.

With about half the city's wired infrastructure still teetering on the edge of the bit bucket, about 15,000 people a day are using the New Orleans network, and corporate sponsors were being sought to expand it.

This did not sit well with Ma Bell's minions, who swarmed Baton Rouge, and when the buzzing was over, the legislature was ready to order New Orleans to shut down public access to the network, or at least cut it back to 128k, lest they compete with the private sector — despite the fact that about half the city's wired infrastructure is still teetering on the edge of the bit bucket. (Note to BellSouth: If you're going to complain about the city cutting into your service area, it would be nice if you were actually providing the service.)

(Via The Consumerist.)

Posted at 7:46 AM to PEBKAC