Tag: "transcript"

Posted March 3, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for our special bonus episode of Community Broadband Bits series, Why NC Broadband Matters. In this episode, Christopher talks with Dr. Jeff Cox and Zach Barricklow from Wilkes Community College about improving economic mobility in rural places of North Carolina. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

Zach Barricklow: Reliable transportation and cost of transportation becomes a barrier to education, and internet is a great avenue to connect to courses online.

Lisa Gonzalez: This is another bonus episode in our special Community Broadband Bits podcast series, Why NC Broadband Matters. I'm Lisa Gonzalez with the Institute for Local Self Reliance in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NC Broadband Matters is a North Carolina nonprofit. Their mission is to attract, support and champion the universal availability of affordable, reliable, high-capacity internet access, which is necessary for thriving local communities, including local businesses and a local workforce, so each can compete in the global economy.

Lisa Gonzalez: The group has created the North Carolina Chapter of Click, the coalition for local internet choice. We're working with NZ Broadband Matters to produce this series, which focuses on issues affecting people in North Carolina, and those issues also impact people in other regions. While Christopher was in North Carolina for the Reconnect Forum, which was organized by the Institute for Emerging Issues at North Carolina state university, he had the chance to interview Dr. Jeff Cox and Zach Barricklow from Wilkes Community College. In this interview, they discuss how community college and distance learning are playing a key role in improving economic mobility in the state, especially in rural areas. We want to thank organizers of the forum at the Institute for Emerging Issues for setting up an event that offered a great chance for advocates, experts and scholars to connect. Now here's Christopher with Dr. Jeff Cox and Zach Barricklow.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. I'm Chris Mitchell with the Institute for Local Self Reliance. Today I'm coming to you from NC State, North Carolina State, where the...

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Posted March 2, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for episode 396 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher speaks with Travis Thies, General Manager of Southwest Minnesota Broadband Service (SMBS) about their collaborative effort to connect eight communities in Southwestern rural Minnesota. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

Travis Thies: Seems like the first question that gets asked when somebody is contemplating moving into town is, "What's available for Internet?"

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 396 of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzales. For eight communities in Southwestern rural Minnesota, high quality Internet access isn't a problem as it is in other small towns. That's because Southwest Minnesota Broadband Services or SMBS is providing fast, affordable, reliable connectivity to residents and businesses.

Lisa Gonzalez: This week, Christopher visits with General Manager, Travis Thies, who shares the story of the network and tells us more about some of their challenges and solutions. Travis describes the communities that SMBS serves and recounts the collaborative effort that resulted in the regional network. Now, here's Christopher talking with Travis Thies from Southwest Minnesota Broadband Services.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits Podcasts. I'm Christopher Mitchell with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance in Saint Paul. And for the second week in a row, talking to another guest from lovely Minnesota. This week we have Travis Thies on the show, who is the general manager for Southwest Minnesota Broadband Services. Welcome to the show.

Travis Thies: Thanks Chris. It's a pleasure to be here.

Christopher Mitchell: I'm excited to catch up on the network. I've been meaning to reach out to you. I don't know, ever since the network started. In some ways, I feel like I just cheated and asked Dan Olsen how things were going and he would sort of give me the lay of the land. But it's been many years since I've even checked in.

Christopher Mitchell: So I'm really excited to get a better sense of everything that's...

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Posted February 21, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for our special bonus episode of Community Broadband Bits series, Why NC Broadband Matters. In this episode, Christopher sits down with Roberto Gallardo to discuss about the complex issue of digital divide and how it impacts socio-economic development. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below. 

 

 

Roberto Gallardo: The number one threat to community development today is digital exclusion. So, if you do not address that, it's going to be really hard for you to not only catch up, but just starting getting some traction in this digital age.

Lisa Gonzalez: This is a bonus episode, in our special Community Broadband Bits podcast series, Why NC Broadband Matters. I'm Lisa Gonzalez, with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NC Broadband Matters is a North Carolina non-profit. Their mission is to attract, support, and champion the universal availability of affordable, reliable, high capacity Internet access, necessary for thriving local communities, including local businesses, and a local workforce, so each can compete in the global economy. The group has created the North Carolina chapter of CLIC, the Coalition for Local Internet Choice. The Institute is working with NC Broadband matters, to produce this series focusing on issues affecting people in North Carolina, but also impact folks in other regions.

Lisa Gonzalez: This week, we have a bonus episode. Recently, Christopher traveled down to Raleigh, North Carolina, to attend the Reconnect Farm, organized by the Institute for Emerging Issues, at North Carolina State University. We want to thank organizers for all their dedication in setting up an event that was so well put together, and offered a great opportunity for advocates, experts, and scholars to connect. While Christopher was there, he connected with Robert Gallardo, from Purdue University. Roberto is a digital inclusion expert, who has studied the intersections between infrastructure development and digital inclusion. He and Christopher discuss a range of topics, including how communities can use data to tailor digital inclusion plans specific to their needs. They talk about the importance of digital inclusion in making infrastructure development sustainable,...

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Posted February 20, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for episode 395 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher speaks with Matt Schmit, Deputy Director at the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity about moving the rural broadband discussion forward in Minnesota and determining the best way to deploy broadband in Illinois. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

Matt Schmit: That fiber. It's in the ground. It's going to stay there. It's going to be doing a lot of really good work on the communications for a long, long time.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 395 of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. When Matt Schmit was a Minnesota state Senator, he was one of the lawmakers instrumental in developing the state border to border broadband program. Other states that have since developed similar programs use the Minnesota program as a model. Now, Matt has moved on to Illinois where he's planning on continuing his work to bring broadband to more people in more regions of the state. Last year, Illinois firmed up plans to fund broadband infrastructure as part of their statewide infrastructure plans. Matt will be working diligently on implementing the program.

Lisa Gonzalez: In this conversation, Matt and Christopher sat down to talk about what the process was like for Matt and Minnesota, and what drove him to pursue better broadband for rural areas. They discussed some of the challenges he faced and what challenges he may contend with in Illinois. Christopher and Matt also talk about Illinois new funding approach and compare the program to Matt's work in Minnesota. Now here's Christopher talking with Matt Schmit, former Minnesota state Senator, who's now working to expand broadband in Illinois.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the community Broadband Bits Podcast. This is Christopher Mitchell with the Institute for local self-reliance, coming to you from Sunny St. Paul, Minnesota, and the first ever interview that I'm doing in my own personal studio slash dining room. Welcome to the show Matt Schmit.

Matt Schmit: Christopher. It's great to join you.

Christopher...

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Posted February 12, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for episode 394 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher speaks with Chris Schweitzer from Auburn Essential Service (AES) about their innovative approach to expanding fiber optic network. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

Chris Schweitzer: For us, given our smaller footprint, where we're postured, how we're planning to do our build, which is steady, just trying to really be intentional about it and look back in 20 years and have built several hundred miles of lines that have served several thousand more customers, that we didn't think was maybe possible in 2020.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 394 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast, from the Institute for Local Self Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. Auburn Essential Services in Indiana has been offering fiber for connectivity for around 15 years now. On today's podcast, general manager Chris Schweitzer talks with Christopher about the network and the way the utility's steady approach has paid off over the years. The guys discuss Auburn Essential Services refresh in order to replace the original infrastructure and the new innovations they've integrated as part of their new offerings. They also talk about the utility's transparent pricing and efforts to keep account straightforward, a subscriber preference. We also learn about the utility's exciting new partnership with nearby Garrett, Indiana, where Auburn Essential Services is working with the town's electric utility to provide broadband. Now, here's Christopher talking with Chris Schweitzer from Indiana's Auburn Essential Services.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits podcasts. I'm Christopher Mitchell with the Institute for Local Self Reliance in Saint Paul, Minnesota. Well, office is in Minneapolis, but Saint Paul is where I live and it's where I love to be. So local rivalry across the river. But today, more importantly, I'm speaking with Chris Schweitzer, the general manager of Auburn Essential Services in Indiana. Welcome back to the show, Chris.

Chris Schweitzer: Thanks Chris. Glad to be here.

Christopher Mitchell: We talked a long time ago when you described what Auburn...

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Posted February 11, 2020 by shrestha

This is the transcript for episode 5 of the Why NC Broadband Matters series on the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher speaks with Susan Cashion and Greg Coltrain about how cooperatives have been bringing high-quality Internet access to people living in rural communities. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

Susan Cashion: We have got 144 strands. We're not going to need all those strands of fiber. And so we've got this asset sitting there and when you couple it with the seven cooperative principles, you realize you've got something that you can use, you can leverage it to improve the communities you serve.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to our fifth episode of our special Community Broadband Bits podcast series, Why NC Broadband Matters. I'm Lisa Gonzalez with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance in Minneapolis, Minnesota. NC Broadband Matters is a North Carolina non-profit. Their mission is to attract, support, and champion the universal availability of affordable, reliable, high-capacity internet access, which is necessary for thriving local communities, including local businesses and the local workforce so each can compete in the global economy. The group has created the North Carolina chapter of CLIC, the Coalition for Local Internet Choice. We're collaborating with NC Broadband Matters to present this series that touches on issues that affect folks in North Carolina, but also impact people in other states.

Lisa Gonzalez: This episode is titled How Cooperatives are Changing North Carolina's Broadband Future. We have two guests, Susan Cashion from Piedmont Electric Membership Corporation, and Greg Coltrain, who's representing RiverStreet Networks from Wilkes Telephone Cooperative. They sat down to talk while in North Carolina at an event in Raleigh. Wilkes, through RiverStreet, is expanding broadband connectivity all across the state of North Carolina. One of the ways they're accomplishing their goal is by partnering with electric cooperatives like Piedmont. In this conversation we learn more about both entities, the partnership to bring better connectivity to people in Piedmont's service territory and more about the Wilkes RiverStreet plan to connect rural areas in North...

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Posted February 5, 2020 by Katie Kienbaum

This is the transcript for episode 393 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher speaks with Mariel Triggs and Edyael Casaperalta from MuralNet about tribal connectivity and wireless spectrum. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

Legal Disclaimer: MuralNet employees and contractors are not attorneys. Services offered and statements from MuralNet in this podcast are not legal advice or opinion.

 

 

Edyael Casaperalta: I know that your work, Chris, is always about supporting communities that want to connect themselves on their own terms and I see the Tribal Priority Window as providing that opportunity for tribes.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 393 of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. On February 3rd, 2020 the FCC opened the Rural Tribal Priority Window to allow rural tribes the opportunity to directly access unassigned spectrum over their tribal lands. This is a unique and empowering opportunity. On native lands, Internet access companies rarely deploy the necessary Internet access infrastructure. Our guests this week, Mariel Triggs and Edyael Casaperalta from MuralNet, have been helping to spread the word to tribal communities to make sure they know that the window will be open until August 3rd, 2020. In this conversation, we learn more about the history of 2.5 GHz spectrum over tribal lands and why the spectrum is a good solution for communities living there. We learn about leases and licenses for fixed wireless spectrum and find out more about who controls them. These are some of the factors that have negatively impacted the ability for tribes to have Internet access.

Lisa Gonzalez: Our guests also offer valuable information about the basic criteria that tribes need to meet to take advantage of this opportunity and some of the possible uses of the spectrum. Even if a tribal community isn't interested in building a community network, obtaining access to spectrum over their land will allow them to control the airwaves. Learn more about the Tribal Priority Window by going to fcc.gov and searching for tribal window. Now here's Christopher talking with Mariel Triggs and Edyael Casaperalta from...

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Posted January 29, 2020 by Katie Kienbaum

This is the transcript for episode 392 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this interview, Christopher speaks with Valerie Dodd, Director of Longmont, Colorado's NextLight network about their successes with marketing, customer services, and digital inclusion. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

 

Valerie Dodd: Really it was rolled out to serve the community. You ask the community and they're just delighted.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to Episode 392 of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. Longmont, Colorado's NextLight Fiber-to-the-Home network has often been in the spotlight as an example of what a local community can accomplish with publicly owned Internet network infrastructure. This week, director Valerie Dodd visits with Christopher. Christopher and Valerie look back at the decisions the city made that have paid off and how they've dealt with specific challenges. They discuss accomplishments including an incredible take rate and how putting subscribers first has helped them achieve glowing reviews. They also talk about the city's digital inclusion efforts and what's next in expanding access. Now here's Christopher talking with Valerie Dodd from NextLight in Longmont, Colorado.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast. I'm Chris Mitchell for the Institute for Local Self-Reliance in St Paul recording from home today where I just have to brag about this. We're about to get six to 10 inches of snow and I am just so excited, and I'm talking to someone who knows that same feeling, Valerie Dodd, the director of NextLight in Longmont, Colorado. Welcome to the show.

Valerie Dodd: Thank you so much, Chris. I'm super happy to be here. Are you suggesting that we may be getting six inches of snow tonight?

Christopher Mitchell: No, but in the time between I'm recording this and the time in which it airs, it's possible that you'll get a foot of snow. You never know what's going to happen.

Valerie Dodd: Well I sure hope so, because I've got a three-day weekend and the snow mountains near me and I'm excited about it.

...

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Posted January 23, 2020 by Katie Kienbaum

This is the transcript for episode 391 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher interviews Director of Technology Services Dave Williams about Ponca City, Oklahoma's new fiber network. Read the transcript below, or listen to the episode.

 

 

Dave Williams: So as we become more competitive when it comes to attracting businesses, we stand a chance of surviving into the future that way.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 391 of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast, from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez.

Lisa Gonzalez: For a long time now, Christopher has wanted to bring a representative from Ponca City, Oklahoma on the podcast. Dave Williams, Director of Technology Services joins him today. Known as a pioneer in city Wi-Fi, the community has recently launched a fiber network utility for residents. Dave shares some historical perspective, discusses the utility and describes how it fits in and collaborates with the city's other utilities.

Lisa Gonzalez: He talks about Ponca City's free city-wide Wi-Fi, including successes and challenges that have arisen. Christopher and Dave discuss the community's decision to expand Fiber-to-the-Home, marketing the new service and going the extra mile to make the service subscriber friendly. Now here's Christopher talking with Dave Williams from Ponca City, Oklahoma.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits Podcast. I'm Chris Mitchell at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance up in Minneapolis. Today I'm speaking with Dave Williams, the Director of Technology Services in Ponca City, Oklahoma. Welcome to the show.

Dave Williams: No, thank you. Thanks for having me.

Christopher Mitchell: Oh, I was just telling you before we started the interview. I'm quite excited. I think what you've done in Ponca City is fascinating. We're going to talk about wireless. We're going to talk about fiber optics. We're going to talk about things more than 20 years ago, and it's wonderful. But let's start off by getting a sense of what Ponca City's like.

Dave Williams: Ponca City's in North Central Oklahoma. We're about 20...

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Posted January 16, 2020 by Katie Kienbaum

This is episode 390 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Christopher interviews Bear Prairie from Idaho Falls Power and Fiber and Kim McKinley from UTOPIA Fiber about the utilities' cross-state fiber partnership. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.

 

 

Bear Prairie: It's one of those things of if you build it, create the awareness and understanding, it starts to snowball.

Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 390 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast from the Institute for Local Self Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. In October 2019, Idaho Falls city leaders decided to move ahead with a plan to expand the municipal fiber network to residents citywide. They've enlisted UTOPIA Fiber to help them with the process in order to ensure the success of their open access approach. In this interview, Christopher talks with Bear Prairie from Idaho Falls Power and Fiber, and Kim McKinley who's representing UTOPIA Fiber. They discuss the partnership, the pilot project, and the decision to expand the use of the fiber that has served Idaho Falls for years. We learn more about the process community leaders pursued to be sure residents were interested in fiber to the home service, a little about how they select ISPs to operate on the publicly owned infrastructure, and the advantages the network has brought to the electric utility. Now here's Christopher talking with Kim McKinley and Bear Prairie.

Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. We're back in 2020. We're talking today to Bear Prairie, the general manager of Idaho Falls Power and Fiber. Welcome to the show.

Bear Prairie: Thank you Chris.

Christopher Mitchell: We also have a returning guest, Kim McKinley, the Chief Marketing Officer for UTOPIA in Utah. Welcome back, Kim.

Kim McKinley: Thanks. I'm excited to be here.

Christopher Mitchell: Bear, let's start with you, and tell us a little bit about the Idaho Falls area. I've actually flown into it twice, once on a very small plane, and I've driven through it and out through, I suppose that's Wyoming. And just a beautiful, lovely area. So tell us more about it....

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