A Quincy mom has disconnected her support for striking Verizon workers yesterday after a group of mouthy picketers surrounded non-union repairmen and turned a phone-line fix at her home into what she is calling a “ridiculous” protest scene.
“I looked in the street and there are picketers, 10 of them or more, doing a circle around the Verizon truck,” said Karen Austin, 64, a mother of five who lives on Forest Avenue. “Every time (the repairmen) would walk up to my house they would follow them. I couldn’t believe my eyes. This is ridiculous. Why are they picketing my house?”
With tensions rising in a work-stoppage now in its fifth day, Verizon filed lawsuits in five states, including Massachusetts, yesterday to limit picketing by the 45,000 striking workers.
All I can say is, if that band of union members started trudging up my front porch two things would happen. The first is they would hear a shotgun blast. The second is the barrels being lowered on them as I call 911 for backup.
You want to picket, fine. But your rights to do so end at my front curb. Go find yourself a nice little VZ store front to picket. They are all over the place.
Talks in Philadelphia and New York stalled after Verizon demanded more than 100 concessions from workers regarding health care, pensions and work rules, said the Communications Workers of America.
CWA workers picketed at Verizon headquarters in New York City, some holding signs that read: ‘CWA on strike for middle-class jobs.’
Verizon has reportedly demanded more than 100 concessions from workers regarding health care, pensions and work rules
Verizon has reportedly demanded more than 100 concessions from workers regarding health care, pensions and work rules
Mark C. Reed, Verizon’s executive VP of human resources, called the outcome of the unions’ actions ‘regrettable’ for customers and employees.
Reed said: ‘We will continue to do our part to reach a new contract that reflects today’s economic realities in our wireline business and addresses the needs of all parties.’
Workers affected by the expired contract include 10,000 under the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, who serve as phone and repair technicians, customer service representatives, operators and more.
Contract negotiations began on June 22.
‘Even at the 11th hour, as contracts were set to expire, Verizon continued to seek to strip away 50 years of collective bargaining gains for middle-class workers and their families,’ CWA said in a statement.
This is the old Bell Atlantic.NYNEX side of the house that is walking. So it is principally focused in the NE Bosh-Wash corridor. Management has already called in staff from other parts of the country to fill these positions.
In this economy, I really don’t know if it would be wise to strike right about now. Especially since we maybe facing a double dip.
When the `C` block auction was issued back in 2007/08 there were handset free use rules attached. That is a buyer was free to purchase a set and use as they see fit so long as it did not interfere with network use of other users. Well those FCC requirements are going to be put to the test –
As wireless broadband achieves faster speeds and greater ubiquity, more and more Americans now use their mobile phones as wireless hotspots. This practice, known as tethering,
allows a user to connect multiple devices such as a laptop, digital camera, or GPS system to the Internet via a mobile phone’s broadband service. In essence, the consumer uses
the phone in the same way that he might rely on a wireless router at home tethering allows him to use one data connection with multiple devices. The practice is user-friendly. It boosts productivity. It encourages innovation in the market for wireless applications and devices. In particular, it provides a low-cost way for users to try new devices because they may use those devices without having to purchase a separate Internet connection.
Nevertheless, most major wireless carriers, including Verizon Wireless,1 AT&T, and T-Mobile, limit access to third-party tethering applications. If users wish tether their phones, they
are forced to subscribe to the carriers’ own tethering service at rates of up to $30 per month. This practice restricts consumer choice and hinders innovation regardless of which carrier adopts such policies, but when Verizon Wireless employs these restrictions in connection with its LTE network, it also violates the Federal Communications Commission’s rules. In Verizon’s case, limiting access to tethering applications is not just a bad business practice and a bad policy choice; it also deliberately flouts the openness conditions imposed on Verizon’s LTE spectrum.
FreePress is a activist group. Their claim is that the tethering restrictions by requiring a uplift in your service plan is a violation of the `C` block rules. It will be an interesting outcome. I can see the stance both ways. However I would err that tethering is a unfettered `C` principle. Otherwise you open the door that the carriers will say anything that hangs off the primary phone is tethering.
For the lucky few Verizon customers who have fiber connections, the pipes are getting a good bit bigger and will only be affordable to the affluent.
The carrier has begun to roll out the service to consumers in the 12 U.S. states, plus the District of Columbia, where FiOS is available. Small businesses will be able to get it by the end of the year, Verizon said on Monday. The fastest service offered so far on FiOS has been 50Mbps downstream and 20Mbps upstream.
The service will be available to a majority of households that are eligible for FiOS. It will be available as a stand-alone service at the $195-per-month price when purchased with a one-year service agreement and Verizon wireline voice service. (Mac World)
With the cable guy’s big bandwidth tiers selling briskly even at Skybox prices, I’m surprised it took big V this long to take notice and jump in. I’m doubtful that this will include a roll out of any new infrastructure, but more a way of bringing more revenue from the photonic plant that Verizon already has in place.
With fixed line voice and pay TV as walled garden services on the decline, I expect to see more ultra premium service tiers offered. In this arena, the clear winner could be cable. Even in my under served working class neighborhood, the cable guy is rolling out a 50/15 service tier. With no fiber in the ground, the telcos could see their most profitable customers flee en mass. While we could be getting better pipes, we’ll end up paying more than double what the French or Brits do for comparable service, and we will have even less competitive pressure on the horizon.
Remember the coveted 700 MHz band that was auctioned by the FCC with the requirement that the network be open, and work on devices other than those sold exclusive by the winner of the auction? It also required competitors access to the network at a fair price. It appears that Verizon has forgotten. It’s representatives have been talking up the network and devices, but no mention of anything from outsiders. Who is willing to bet the FCC will also forget?
“Our goal is that in about 18 months from today we’ll have 200 million pops [points of presence] covered,” McAdams said on Wednesday. That would serve about two thirds of the United States population. “And by the end of 2013, we’ll have virtually the same coverage that we have on 3G today.”
The plan is for the network to support 5-12Mbps on the download, and 2-5Mbps on the upload, Verizon CTO Anthony Malone told the audience. These new phones will move data via the carriers’ new 4G LTE wireless system. Voice will still transmit over 3G.
But for pricing, it looks like consumers should expect some changes over the next few years.
“We think there’s a place for unlimited plans,” McAdam noted, “but we think that over time, because we have finite resources, our customers are going to have to shift to a pay-as-you-use” mode. “I would say that clearly over time we will be migrating to a bucket-of-megabytes” approach. (Ars Technica)+
There was no mention of third party devices or open access for competitive service. At the risk of sounding like a looped recording, let me remind you that the telcos never keep their promises. They make promises to get a concession, and then get concessions to avoid fulfilling them.
Here’s how I think this one will play out: Verizon will ask the FCC to declare a competitive market in 4g access because Clear holds enough license and also plans to build coast to coast coverage. If you think this sounds crazy, it’s the same argument the telcos made about telco / cable broadband duopoly constituting a competitive market. The FCC agreed and the telcos were able to ditch their prior promises including providing competitive access to last mile lines and to cover 2/3 of the country with fiber to curb by the year 2000.
The buffoons in Washington have made such a mess of the economy that no one is likely to force the issue before Verizon undoes all of the promised open wireless rules. Unfortunately, the continuing stagnation in broadband access is also stifling economic growth. If we can learn anything thing from this, it is that big government acting in concert with big telecom and cable never acts in the public’s interest. Going forward, we need a strong law that will end any exclusive licensing of spectrum. Spectrum is public property, and should be open exclusively for public use. Technology can enable commercial use of open bands without exclusive licenses. Open bands will insure a competitive market.
My solution goes like this: Present an ultimatum to telcos and cable ops. Either divest from IP based content and services or open access to networks at a depreciation schedule based price. Cable operators will need to discontinue analog channel delivery and reserve those channels for lease to competitive access providers, again for a depreciation schedule based fee. If telcos and cable ops don’t like that deal they can always spin off voice and video and live on as providers of dumb pipe. As draconian as this may sound, I an certain that this will actually refocus telcos and cable ops on their core businesses, increasing profit and shareholder value. It would also provide enough alternative access options to make the network neutrality debate irrelevant
If you are a Time Warner Cable subscriber eager to get Epix, the pay-TV channel from Viacom, Lions Gate and MGM, you may be in for a long wait.
Time Warner Cable Chief Financial Officer Rob Marcus said Epix didn’t do itself any favors when it struck a deal with Netflix that made movies from the pay channel’s parent studios available for Internet streaming just 90 days after their debut on Epix.
Speaking at the Bank of America/Merrill Lynch Media, Communications & Entertainment Conference, Marcus said that Epix’s deal with Netflix devalued the channel.
When Epix struck its deal with Netflix last month, it hoped that a three-month window between when a movie appeared on the pay cable channel and when it was available for streaming would placate distributors such as Time Warner Cable.
Tho I think what the Boss has advocated has a reasonable basis in the realities of the Telcom industry, the Cable Cos probably want none of it. That evidenced by the decision of TWC not to license Epix services as they cut a deal with NetFlix. Seems to me to be a unusual version of redlining, only its not the customers its done to but their choice of entertainment supplier. An interesting test of this would be for a TWC broadband user announces he uses NetFlix for all his viewing pleasure.
The sad thing is the Suits are holding on to a dream that is almost dead. They can’t control the content access anymore using threats against the channel partners. They already have NetFlix. Hulu is ramping up online. RedBox is cleaning up in the JIT delivery of movies via kiosk BestBuy and I am sure WalMart will soon enter the fray on IP based pay per view. (Though that is a dead one unless the price is right.) So the fact is content providers have alternate avenues to display their wares. The Cable Cos like the AT&T and VZ folk have to adjust to the fact they are being relegated to a data only world anyway.
Can they compete in the content delivery arena? Sure. Fact I welcome it, more the merrier. But both players have to get their legacy costs down or they will be/ or are eclipsed by the new entrants.
Moves like TWC’s are like a scene out of a John Ford western. Lying behind the dead horse taking shots at individual providers while the whole tribe of other suppliers over run your position. Futile.