[nycbug-talk] The Fiber-to-Home Ghost

Isaac Levy ike at lesmuug.org
Sat Jul 26 15:19:02 EDT 2008

Wow Charles,

On Jul 26, 2008, at 12:58 AM, Charles Sprickman wrote:

> On Fri, 25 Jul 2008, Isaac Levy wrote:
>> - 1983, Verizon founded under the name 'Bell Atlantic Corporation',
>> spawn of AT&T Corporation as one of seven Baby Bells that were formed
>> due to the anti-trust judgement against them.  (I guess they got the
>> fiber plans).
> Which later gobbled up that NYC monster NYNEX...  You can't leave  
> that gem out of the equation.  If you think VZ is bad, when they  
> merged, Bell Atlantic was the GOOD guy (in relative terms) as far as  
> technical competence and service quality.  There are still some from  
> the early ISP days that can go into shock if you mention "NYNEX" and  
> "ISDN" in the same sentence.
> ...
>> So, the saga, (but not perhaps this email), will be continued...   
>> (and
>> even as it does, we still may never seem to see the fiber).
> I think you'll see it.  Over a year ago I saw some of the shittiest  
> parts of Newark, NJ being wired up.  When I lived in Montclair, I  
> saw their cute little ghetto where quasi gang-bangers bump elbows  
> with the limousine liberals get wired up first.  And like in Newark,  
> the take rate is obvious from looking at the poles.
> My brief thoughts on this are this:
> -Other than the backup power situation,

What is the 'backup power situation'?  Curious...

> the whole thing is genius and someone at VZ with more of a data  
> network background beat the bejeezus out of some cranky old bellhead  
> who likely wanted to do some bizarre copper/fiber hybrid like T's  
> clusterf*ck.  It is a really well-engineered system and is very  
> forward thinking for an ILEC.
> -I do believe they've seen the light (ha ha) and will eventually  
> push this into every territory they've got that is moderately  
> dense.  They will eventually get the MDU thing straight, and NYC  
> will see many beta-quality rollouts until they figure out what works  
> in older and large buildings.
> -I think the dark side of all this is that after promising FTTH for  
> so long (ask Pennsylvania how much they gave away in tax revenue  
> years ago for 45Mb/s symmetric service to the home that never showed  
> up) they have finally figured out that the tool to turn every state  
> PUC into their own sniveling, beat-down bitch is to roll out FIOS.   
> It's their ticket to deregulation.  Note how fast most statewide  
> CATV franchises were rolled out.  Note how the rate hikes where FIOS  
> is available keep in wonderful duopoly lockstep with cable.  But the  
> real prize, the cherry on top is that this is the ticket to just  
> having two pipes to our homes - your cable company or VZ.  No  
> unbundling of the last mile to CLECs is required, no wholesale  
> access to the networks for ISPs wanting to provide whatever VZ won't  
> be it IPv6 before VZ figures that out, access without port blocking,  
> affordable "business" connections for the SOHO market, basically  
> you'll get VZ or your cableco and you'll like it.  Say goodbye to  
> your friendly local ISP offering DSL via CLECs or VZ, that train is  
> pulling out of the station and some guy's leg is hanging out the door.
> My bread and butter since '96 has been ISP work.  I have zero  
> interest in doing the same thing at some mega-ISP, so that's my  
> personal rant on all this.

This is indeed very important.
Not just for you Charles, (I mean, everyone here likes you), but even  
bigger picture...

WTF will happen to the local ISP's?!  This scenario makes me feel very  
uneasy.  They are carrying a great deal of the last-mile load right  
now, (including the surprisingly reliable DSL lines these emails are  
carried across).
Based on FIOS rollout timing realities, local CLECs will do so for  
some time to come (in a diminishing market of DSL).

Could BLECs be the new independent ISP business?  I don't know...   
(but I sure have seen some terrible cesspools of BLEC deployments in  
high-end Manhattan condos...)

To everyone, an open question:
We all know the churn of technology cycles, but what will guys like  
Charles do?  Or Alex?  Or anyone else here who runs an ISP at some  
capacity?  I'm not just speaking on some idea of compassion, (though  
it is in my sentiment); I'm seriously speaking to a displacement of  
all the talented people who run our networks- as everyone rushes back  
to the monopoly of FIOS FTTH in NYC.

What happens to quality when Verizon scales FIOS all alone?  Do they  
have the experienced staf, and ability to scale?  Money and numbers of  
people do sqat once something starts growing- it takes experienced,  
creative, dedicated people in the right places to make things work.

I can't provide ideas for answers to this today, but now I'm really  
thinking about it...

> I think that the state PUCs totally screwed up by not requiring 3rd  
> party wholesale access to this stuff - even if only the internet  
> portion. Those dreams of picking your own provider, getting cool  
> IPTV stuff and VOIP from that provider - *poof*.  This FTTH  
> connection will not be a marketplace for content, it will eventually  
> be a crappy, ad-supported walled garden.  And if you don't like it,  
> you can get the same from your one other choice, your cable company.
> Charles

Charles, as usual, you've given me more to chew on (and look up) than  
I could have imagined.  Thanks for the post!


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