(social) Meeting - June 2 2016

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Pizza with the President

This was a "social" meeting of ISOC-NY held on June 2, 2016, 6-7:30 PM at Bravo Pizza, 257 Park Avenue South. Being "social," no decisions were made.

Attending were Joly, Stuart, Joseph, Tom, Richard, Jane, and Bruce.

Joly - The new North American Manager of the global Internet Society would like to schedule an event in New York City. ISOC-NY VP Shuli Hallak would like to hold an event focusing on privacy issues. Joly thinks our sponsoring a "State-of-the-Wire" event might bare fruit. He noted that a NYNOG (New York Network Operators Group) was newly formed and that they might join us in such an event. Bruce saw potential in this as well.

Bruce Kushnick - Showered the attendees with wisdom about the state of the wired city - or lack thereof. CLECS in New York will be put out of business as a result of a recent FCC decison. Answering a question from Tom, concerning the likelihood of his home getting wired for FIOS, Bruce said the Verizon-NYC contract would seem structured to make that a reality. Follow Bruce's telecom writings on the Huntington Post.

Jean L - Spoke in favor of sponsoring a privacy event [ed. note - perhaps to be named I HAVE NOTHING TO HIDE]. She believes young people would be interested in such an event and that it might attract new members. In a related note, the RTBF (right to be forgotten) issue was noted as a related issue.

Joly - Governance of moderation is another possible event topic.

Bruce - Suggested we sponsor a Congress of Public Advocacy Groups event. These would be for 501(c)(3) organizations. As a first step a survey could be sent to the 20-50 info and telecom advocacy organizations operating in the city to discern possible topics for the event. OWASP was mentioned as one possible participant that had an all important beer budget. Joly commented that Fred Wilson has initiated a tech collaboration, but that no such initiative exists for tech advocacy groups. Bruce and Tom hypothesized about using a 4 or 7 layer model showing where all these organizations exist within the model. Richard supported the idea of a gathering of such groups, suggesting that the annual July 10 Wiknic (a picnic in wikispeak) scheduled Central Park offered an early possibility to continue the planning.

NEDAS and its thoughts on LTU was touched upon. Wifi access as provided in public housing, Link, and the subway systems was another topic. Tom noted that Link was now majority owned by Google (perhaps Alphabet) via Sidewalk Labs holding a 30 year contract.

Ed. note - See this ArsTechnica piece on the workings of the fiber optic segment of the Net.

Richard - Noted that Jim H. of Wikimedia-NY is a resource for Verizon activities. Also, that he's seeking access to the Third Monday's mailing list (an event sponsored by New America Foundation's OTI. It has 1K + names.

Joly - He stated Kushnick's Law - "Telecom companies will promise the moon but will not deliver." an approach they seeming learned by studying Wimpy's promise that "I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today."

Joly - Allied Fiber needs $56 million. Next Century Cities was mentioned?

Joseph - Noted that we have slightly over 1K in the treasury.

Stuart - Noted that his organization, Digital Divide Partners, has been working to improve wireless access to residents of the Bronx, Harlem, and Central Brooklyn for more than a decade. He also works with WHCR radio 90.3 out of City College. A regular Community in Technology program is presented on Wednesdays at 5 PM.

All agreed that the event was a success and that regular meeting should take place, informal a Pizza with the President or more formal.

Dave Burstein (Editor, Fast Net News, Net Policy News and DSL Prime) provided the following thoughts via email:


I'm all in support of education and outreach, but I think ISOC-NY should also take strong policy positions.

So at the F2F tonight around 6:30, I'm going to ask anyone comfortable to suggest the issues most important to them personally. No obligation to answer, but I think if we understand what are the key issues we can focus more directly.

I think we should have two guidelines:

We concentrate where a small group might be heard and make a difference.

We should have weighed in on a better program for the poor in Time Warner Charter, the kind of detail regulators might have listened to. General comments pro or con the merger would be lost. Details people are missing can make a difference, e.g. Charter's program for the poor should work well with the FCC Lifeline broadband $9.25. Similarly, we would be lost in the crowd with a general net neutrality of free speech comment.

We should concentrate on what we know, starting with New York area issues and continuing with advocating sensible ISOC actions.

We have an expert on reaching the unserved in upper New York State who tells me the current NYS broadband subsidy is designed to fail. He suggests the program should be more open to small companies actually reaching the unserved. The heads of the program would certainly listen to us and probably take a thoughtful meeting (if they aren't A_______).

My main concern is getting a great Internet to everyone, especially the poor.

We can make a point of getting deployment details on NYC WiFi and if we don't like the pattern say something. The subway WiFi ended at 96th Street.

Verizon is the great outlier in offering broadband for the poor. Comcast, Time Warner, AT&T and just about everyone else except Verizon has an offering for $10-15. Verizon's cheapest broadband in Fios areas is $60 & more. I would put this at every New York/New Jersey regulatory proceeding and in opeds.