Because every American
should have access
to broadband Internet.

The Internet Innovation Alliance is a broad-based coalition of business and non-profit organizations that aim to ensure every American, regardless of race, income or geography, has access to the critical tool that is broadband Internet. The IIA seeks to promote public policies that support equal opportunity for universal broadband availability and adoption so that everyone, everywhere can seize the benefits of the Internet - from education to health care, employment to community building, civic engagement and beyond.

The Podium

Tuesday, January 19

Watch What You Tweet

By Brad

Via the UK Independent comes the story of a weather delay, a frustrated traveler, and a misguided Twitter post that led to an arrest and a lifelong ban from an airport.

A Change in Rules

By Brad

As the NTIA and RUS continue to sift through a mountain of broadband grant applications, they’re seeking to simplify the rules for applying in the future. Reports Wireless Week:

According to a statement by RUS Administrator Jonathan Adelstein, the application process has been streamlined to “make the process easier for applicants and target our resources toward ‘last-mile’ broadband connections to homes and businesses.” Both the NTIA and RUS received widespread complaints about the application process after the first round of funding when businesses became frustrated with a lack of transparency and the complexity and length of the application.

The Price of Net Neutrality

By Bruce Mehlman

At the Huffington Post, Navarrow Wright, President of Maximum Leverage Solutions, has a must-read post breaking down the negative effects net neutrality could very well have on minorities and the urban poor:

The FCC is playing a dangerous game here, and the people who have the most to lose are already the socially and economically disenfranchised members of our national community - low-income, rural, urban, non-English speaking, tribal, minority, underserved and underserved populations. Neither the Commission nor the American people can rightly afford to preoccupy themselves with corporate interests over the greater priority interests of people. As responsible citizens, we have an obligation to speak out for and protect the interests of those who are not already digitally connected. I applaud the minority elected officials, the civil rights leaders and the consumer groups who are making their voices heard. I encourage the FCC to listen to the people.

Monday, January 18

Broadband Fact of the Week


Fact of the Week

More than one-fourth of 150 internships posted on, a site that connects small businesses with part-time workers, are labeled virtual, where the work typically involves researching, sales, marketing and social-media development.

Jonnelle Marte, “An Internship From Your Couch,” Wall Street Journal. September 29, 2009.

More facts about broadband.

Friday, January 15

IIA Video: Derek Douglas


Derek Douglas, Special Assistant to the President for Urban Affairs, discusses how the White House is implementing broadband into its urban development plans.

Cyber Cold War

By Brad

Earlier this week, Google announced it and other companies had been victims of a major cyber attack from China. Today the LA Times looks at what has become a major problem:

The attacks against the U.S. are ramping up, according to the congressional U.S.-China commission, which noted in October that Chinese espionage was “straining the U.S. capacity to respond.”

The report focused on an attack on one company, concluding that it was supported and possibly choreographed by the Chinese government. The report also alleged that China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army, is responsible for aspects of cyber spying and has created cyber warfare units.

Watch Out for Online Scammers

By Brad

Following the devastating earthquake in Haiti earlier this week, there as has been an outpouring of aide from America and other countries (Americans have so far contributed over $8 million via text message contributions alone).

Sadly, the overwhelming scale of the tragedy hasn’t stopped some evil souls from attempting to make a profit. Enter online scammers who, as Ars Technica reports, are setting up fake charity sites in an attempt to line their wallets.

As always, the best way to avoid online scams is to donate to trustworthy sites such as the Red Cross and ignore any pitches you receive via email.

Connecting More People

By Brad

IiA Co-Chairman Bruce Mehlman has a new column in Fierce Wireless on digital literacy and closing the digital divide. Check it out and join the discussion, which is already underway.

Spectrum & Broadcasters

By Brad

When the FCC announced that America is facing a dire shortage of available spectrum, the nation’s broadcasters worried that the government would demand they give up some of their spectrum. But as Broadcasting & Cable reports, those worries may have been unwarranted:

Phil Bellaria, a former cable executive with Charter Communications, has been working on the broadband team as director of scenario planning. He says the plan currently being prepared for vetting by the FCC commissioners would be voluntary and would not require any broadcaster to sell its spectrum to the government or give up the ability to transmit in HD, multicast or mobile, at least initially. However, the commission might have to look at the spectrum issue again later, depending on demand.

With new devices demanding — and heavily using — spectrum arriving every day, it will be interesting to see if this voluntary plan works out.

Thursday, January 14

Surveying CES

By Brad

At CES last week, we conducted an informal survey asking attendees how the government should ensure universal broadband availability and adoption. The results offered an interesting snapshot of how tech-savvy crowd viewed the issue.

Of the 259 people who took the survey, 31% picked “Minimize regulation, taxation and government oversight of innovators, entrepreneurs, and private companies” as most important. 19% picked “Reduce taxes on telecom services that are naked into consumers’ broadband bills.” And “Reform Universal Service rules to start subsidizing broadband and stop subsidizing plain old telephone service” was chosen by 15%.

Rounding out the survey, 8% of survey takers felt it was most important that the government should pass net neutrality regulations, while just 6% supported digital literacy for the poor and communities of color.

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