Stories from Abroad

Since 2010, the Benton Foundation and the New America Foundation have partnered to highlight telecommunications debates from countries outside the U.S.

Broadband market inequalities test Westminster’s hopes of levelling up

The UK has nearly 5 million houses with more than three choices of ultrafast fibre-optic broadband, while 10 million homes do not have a single option, according to analysis that points to the inequality in internet infrastructure across Britain. While some parts of the country are benefiting from high internet speeds, others have been left behind, according to research conducted by data group Point Topic with the Financial Times. The government has pledged to bridge the digital divide and level up the economy by extending fast broadband to all homes.

Russia Is Taking Over Ukraine’s Internet

Since the end of May 2022, the 280,000 people living in Kherson, Ukraine and its surrounding areas have faced constant online disruptions as internet service providers are forced to reroute their connections throu

BT executive says Brexit is slowing superfast broadband rollout

Britain’s ability to roll out superfast broadband across the country is being slowed by the “tortuous” process of recruiting workers from the EU following Brexit, the head of BT’s networking business has warned. Clive Selley, chief executive of BT’s Openreach, the division leading the rollout of fibre optic networks to homes, said countries such as Portugal and Spain have plenty of people with the necessary skills to accelerate the delivery of superfast broadband. “They want the work, we want the skills and the Home Office have a process that is tortuous,” Selley said in an interview.

UkraineX: How Elon Musk’s space satellites changed the war on the ground

The United States, European Union and other NATO countries have donated billions of dollars in military equipment to Ukraine since the war began in late February. But Elon Musk’s Starlink—based on a cluster of table-sized satellites flying as low as 130 miles above Ukraine and beaming down high-speed internet access—has become an unexpected lifeline to the country: both on the battlefield and in the war for public opinion. Ukrainian drones have relied on Starlink to drop bombs on Russian forward positions.

VPN provider pulls out of India over push to ‘limit internet freedom’

An order by Indian regulators requiring Internet companies to store their users’ real names and track their usage history has alarmed digital privacy advocates and virtual private network providers, which have begun to pull out of the country in protest. ExpressVPN, a leading virtual private network firm based in the British Virgin Islands, said that it would shut down its servers in India.

Levelling up push sees more than 5,000 public buildings plugged into high-speed broadband

More than 5,000 public buildings–including schools, hospitals and libraries–have been connected to high-speed broadband thanks to a United Kingdom Government scheme to level up public services. 1,200 schools, 340 libraries and 50 hospitals across UK are among those connected to gigabit-speed broadband.

Google and Meta’s subsea cables mark a tectonic shift in how the internet works and who controls it.

For more than a decade, US tech giants have had designs on building Africa’s internet. Alphabet is now at work on Project Taara, a “moonshot” project to connect rural Africa and other locations to the internet, using balloons floating in the stratosphere. Project Taara aims to repurpose Alphabet's previous Loon project's balloons’ airborne lasers.

Facebook Deliberately Caused Havoc in Australia to Influence New Law

Last year when Facebook blocked news in Australia in response to potential legislation making platforms pay publishers for content, it also took down the pages of Australian hospitals, emergency services and charities. It publicly called the resulting chaos “inadvertent.” Internally, the pre-emptive strike was hailed as a strategic masterstroke.

Private participation in government-led backbone network projects

This study presents an ex-post comparative assessment of the relative performance of three Latin American broadband network emblematic projects implemented through public-private projects (PPP). Results show that the relative performance of these projects is extremely sensitive to differences in contractual design and regulatory approaches applied in each case. The detailed examination and comparative analysis of these experiences allowed us to extract important lessons in terms of design and implementation of PPP in the telecommunications sector.