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

Friday, June 19

Today in Censorship

By Brad

China continues to “protect” its citizens from Internet content deemed unhealthy. Reports Ars Technica:

An impatient Chinese government has begun blocking some results from Google China Friday, just one day after the country’s Internet watchdog group criticized Google for “disseminating pornographic and vulgar information.” The blocks were instituted by China’s national office for Internet pornography crackdown and targeted at search results that contained unsavory content. The office also apparently asked Google to stop searching foreign sites.

Oddly, only Chinese language sites were affected by government blocking.

Thursday, June 18

Tweets from the Symposium

By Brad

Here are some of the many twitter updates made during yesterday’s Broadband Symposium using the #iia hash:

You too can follow IIA on twitter at

Symposium Coverage Roundup


Yesterday’s Broadband Symposium —featuring such speakers as West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin, NBA All-Star Chris Bosh, and rural broadband success story Becky Collins (aka “Granny B”)—was a big success. Many thanks to everyone involved, from planning to participating to Twittering during the event.

If you missed the Symposium, video is available here. And here’s some of the media coverage of the event:

From Network World

The broadband forum came as two U.S. agencies, the U.S. National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) and the Rural Utilities Service (RUS), get ready to distribute US$7.2 billion for broadband deployment beginning later this year. The IIA pushes for broadband to continue to be a top priority in the U.S. government.

Several speakers at the broadband forum, including professional basketball player Chris Bosh and West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin, made their cases for why universal broadband availability is important in the U.S.

From the West Virginia Gazette:

As money from the federal economic stimulus package arrives in West Virginia, Gov. Joe Manchin is making high-speed Internet access a priority across the state.

“If you come to me for water and sewer money, you better be putting wire in that ditch,” Manchin said Wednesday in Washington after accepting an award from the Internet Innovation Alliance, a group that seeks to increase broadband Internet access in the U.S. “I’m not going to be digging that ditch up twice.”

From Broadband Census:

The effort to increase broadband adoption has mainly focused on increasing broadband access and availability to drive demand, this may not be enough to increase broadband adoption.

That was the message that non-profit representatives and a consulting firm agreed upon in a panel discussion, titled “Making Broadband Affordable for All Americans,” and hosted by the Internet Innovation Alliance at the Washington Newseum on Wednesday.

Broadband Growing, But a Digital Divide Remains

By Brad

A new report from the Pew Research Center finds that despite the current economic environment, broadband adoption is still growing:

Some 63% of adult Americans have broadband internet connections at home, according to the April 2009 survey conducted by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project. This figure compares with 55% recorded a year earlier and the eight percentage point increase translates into a 15% growth rate from May 2008 to May 2009. The growth rate is comparable to those recorded in the past three years.

Good news, as is the report’s findings that broadband adoption increased among seniors and low-income households. Unfortunately, among African Americans, the report also finds that broadband adoption remained nearly stagnant for the second year in a row.


IIA in the News


Two items to report. First up is an op-ed from IIA Co-Chairmen Bruce Mehlman and Larry Irving on Roll Call. It’s titled “Making Broadband Dollars Count: Maximizing Our Return on the Feds’ High-Speed Internet Investments,” and here’s a taste:

An effective national broadband strategy will enable the government to partner with the private sector to extend broadband service to every corner of the country, while at the same time raising awareness of its benefits. A national broadband strategy should also evolve as technologies improve and as we learn more from broadband mapping and from the return on initial stimulus investments. The best strategy will start by examining where we stand today and then identify policies to get us where we want to be.

Read the whole thing.

Elsewhere, Bruce Mehlman was interviewed by the Las Cruces Sun-News about the federal broadband stimulus:

The stimulus money will be doled out in the form of competitive grants and loans. The overseeing agencies are expected to release application guidelines by the end of June.
“I think you’ll see applications by private competitors, by public interest nonprofits, and by government agencies at the state and local level
,” said Bruce Mehlman, co-chairman of the Internet Innovation Alliance.

The alliance, an organization that advocates the expansion of broadband connections, believes the majority of the money should go toward unserved areas rather than underserved.

“It’s more of a triage than a like of one and dislike of the other. If you have limited stimulus dollars, someone with no connection at all has a clear problem, and an understandable solution,” Mehlman said.

Fixing issues in unserved regions is simpler than defining and troubleshooting problems in underserved regions, the alliance asserts.

What’s underserved is subject to a debate that hasn’t yet happened,” Mehlman said.

Again, read the whole thing.

Stream Me Out to the Ball Game

By Brad

Mobile broadband is leading to an explosion of innovations and new services. Case in point: Major League Baseball’s official iPhone app, which is now streaming entire games directly to phones.

While traditional TV still rules when it comes to viewers, MLB’s major play in the mobile space further demonstrates that the future of video is online, be it through a cable to your computer or the air to your phone.

Tuesday, June 16

IIA Broadband Symposium—Live from the Newseum in Washington D.C.


IIA Broadband Symposium

Video Broadcast Archive

Watch the IIA Broadband Symposium video from 5/17/09

Real Time Twitter Posts

This event is now concluded, archived Twitter posts are available below, and on the National Broadband Strategy Symposium page.

 IIA Twitter MicroblogSymposium Twitterers using #IIA

Speaking of Twitter…

By Brad

IIA now has a Twitter feed!

You can follow us at

IIA Broadband Symposium is Tomorrow!


The Internet Innovation Alliance presents its Biannual Symposium:

Developing a National Broadband Strategy: Deployment, Adoption and the Stimulus

Wednesday, June 17, 2009
8:45 a.m. - 2 p.m.
The Newseum, 8th Floor

Breakfast and lunch will be served
Please RSVP to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

The Symposium will:

Examine the steps necessary to bring broadband access to unserved and rural communities
Address issues of broadband demand and how content can be a driver of broadband adoption
Discuss the future of broadband Internet, deployment of stimulus funds and impacts on minority and underserved communities


West Virginia Governor Joe Manchin III

With panelists:

Sylvia Aguilera, Director, Hispanic Technology and Telecommunications Partnership
Becky Collins, Small Business Owner
Howie Hodges, SVP of Government Affairs, One Economy Corporation
John Horrigan, Associate Director, Research, Pew Internet and American Life Project
Craig Settles, Industry Analyst, President of
Scott Wallsten, Senior Policy Fellow, Vice President for Research & Senior Fellow, Technology Policy Institute

For those who can’t attend, we’ll be live streaming the symposium right here. Check in tomorrow.

Tweeting Dissent

By Brad

With Iran plunged into post-election turmoil, and the Iranian government cracking down on reporting from within the nation, Twitter has emerged as the go-to source for news from the streets. As the New York Times reports:

On Twitter, reports and links to photos from a peaceful mass march through Tehran on Monday, along with accounts of street fighting and casualties around the country, have become the most popular topic on the service worldwide, according to Twitter’s published statistics.

In fact, the Twitter traffic has become so large that Twitter itself was forced to change the date of a scheduled downtime for maintenance. And according to Reuters, it was the U.S. State Department that encouraged them to do so.

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