The day is coming in which internet access will be included in a building’s utilities, and that has a lot to do with the FCC’s ruling on Net Neutrality, says Jon Anderson.
By Jon Anderson
Much has been written and said about the argument that internet access, like electricity, is a utility and should be regulated as such. It forms the basis of the argument for “net-neutrality” that the FCC has been contemplating and approved rules to stop internet providers from messing up the status quo. Admittedly “net neutrality” is an odd phrase that means the internet should stay as it has always been, unhindered by sponsorship with every site being carried with equal “best-speed” – like the electricity in your home where you don’t pay more for freezing food than you do to dry your hair.
I’ve sat in rooms and listened to global telecom company leadership read from the same PR hymnal about how they’re NOT a utility … and it’s obvious even they don’t believe it. But they’re (surprise!) greedy and not happy providing “plumbing” without skimming more off the top. The 97 percent profit margins reportedly generated aren’t enough.
What’s all this to do with real estate? Because just as homes are expected to have water, electricity, phone and television services, there is an expectation for quality internet access, too. Not that long ago, I remember evaluating homes based on their proximity to an AT&T/SBC central office location, because the closer you were, the faster the DSL.