HB 789

We interrupt the SXSW-mania for a little PSA…

For those of you that aren’t aware, there’s a bill on its way to the Texas House floor that would make municipal wireless networks illegal. It’s a bill clearly pushed by the telecommunications companies who greedily want the business for themselves. The problem is, and I know this is shocker, they don’t always do what’s best for the community.

I could go into more detail, but Chip and Adina have already put a lot of work into a very useful and informative site that says way more than I possibly could. Take a look at the site and pay special attention if your rep is on the committee considering the bill. Now is the time to tell them what you think of the bill and Chip’s site gives you everything you need to do so.

For those outside Austin, this has already happened in Pennsylvania and is on the agenda in many other states. There are many places where the telecom companies don’t provide access and the muncipalities are stepping up to cover the gap. This bill would make it illegal to do so. Lawrence Lessig has an article in Wired this month on this very issue. Charles Kuffner, an excellent blogger from Houston links that article and has much more than that.

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