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FCC Diversity Officer Speaks on Promoting Broadband

Mark Lloyd discussed media regulation and how broadband is changing the media landscape to Penn State students at an event sponsored by the Telecommunications Department on Tuesday in the HUB Auditorium.

The Federal Communication Commission’s Chief Diversity Officer and Associate General Counsel mostly covered how the FCC plans to move forward in increasing broadband substantially for the general public.

His lecture, “Promoting Media Diversity and Competition in the Digital Age” mainly focused on the National Broadband Plan, a plan placed by the FCC in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 to improve the broadband Internet access throughout the United State.

Lloyd stressed the importance of broadband, saying that based on one study, many citizens do not have broadband access, and according to the Social Science Research Council, broadband access in increasingly a requirement of social and economic inclusion.

Proposed more than a year ago, the plan’s main goal is to have a 1 gigabit connection in every community and affordable and 100 megabits broadband to 100 million households by 2020, raising adaptation from 65% to 90% and making the internet as much as 20 times faster.

The goals of the plan also include:

  • high–speed service for emergency service workers
  • Making children “digitally literate”
  • Building energy demand and supply management, which could reduce greenhouse gas consumption by 12%

Lloyd said the reasons for the Broadband Plan have to do with the 2 major criticisms of United States broadband, a digital divide and international ranking.

Lloyd described how there is a significant percent of citizens who have limited or no access to the digital world. He feels that this plan would eventually raise the percent of digitally-educated Americans. In addition, the plan would help Americans catch up and further develop the power grid. Apparently, the United States have fallen behind Japan, the European Union, and South Korea (like anyone is really surprised). By 2020, giving 100 million people 100 megabits of service and communities 1 gigabit of communication would push the United States ahead of other countries in the digital world (pending that the European Union isn’t already planning on advancing their connections).

 

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