Paul Allen, the co-founder of Microsoft and a prominent leader of both business and philanthropy in the Seattle area, stamped his mark on the city’s economy and culture as well as its skyline as he pursued a wide range of passions from science to sports.
The battle for network neutrality (aka the open internet) is back. It’s something that should have been instituted years ago. In fact, it actually was on the books—until then-President Donald Trump’s Federal Communications Commission Chairman, Ajit Pai, ditched the rules, largely at the behest of the big internet service providers like Verizon, AT&T and Comcast. Net neutrality rules were not only on the books, but were also court-approved. That should have been the end of the matter.
Seattle residents don’t have to be at a Seattle Public Library (SPL) branch to use the internet.
Living here in many tribal and rural parts of Washington state, even on the fringes of cities including Seattle, Spokane and Leavenworth, means it’s often difficult or impossible to connect to the online world. When the pandemic largely turned the online world into the world for many urbanites, hundreds of thousands of people in Washington were shut out. The federal government has spent billions trying to solve the digital divide — a project many say is as big and necessary as it once was to get electricity into every home — and is on the verge of spending more than ever.
Media coverage of the 2020 Democratic presidential campaigns began in earnest well over a year ago — but it is not providing citizens with the news and information we need in order to cast informed ballots. We are two former Federal Communications Commission chairmen who believe one critical issue the media is avoiding is … the media itself. The high level of consolidation and corporatization that exists in the industry today speaks to media’s lack of interest in addressing the current shortfall in our news and information.