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The Telecom Digest for Fri, 18 Mar 2022
Volume 41 : Issue 44 : "text" format

table of contents
Mother Bell is putting her hand on your wallet again
CWA: Bargaining Wins and Updates
Key Tribal Takeaways From The FCC's Final Rule Governing The Affordable Connectivity Program
Re: August 2nd, 2022 – The Decommissioning of Copper Gets Real

Message-ID: <20220317235735.GA316@telecom.csail.mit.edu> Date: Thu, 17 Mar 2022 23:57:35 +0000 From: Bill Horne <malQRMassimilation@gmail.com> Subject: Mother Bell is putting her hand on your wallet again Along with the usual cruise come-ons and life-insurance offers, my daily mail brought a letter from Megacorp. They got right to the point: big, 26 point type - 3G CDMA network retirement. The time to upgrade is now. Thank you for being a loyal Megacorp customer. We have been actively decommissioning our 3G CDMA network, and expect this to be completed no later than December 31, 2022. On Januar 1, 2023, Megacorp 3G CDMA devices and 4G devices that do not support HD Voice (Non-VoLTE) will not be able to send or receive calls, send or receive text messages, or use data services. Some of the popular impacted devices include: * 3G CDMA basic phones and smartphones * 4G LTE smartphones that do not support HD Voice * 3G CDMA-connected devices * 3G CDMA tablets and mobile broadband/Hotspot devices * 3G DCMA network extenders And then, in case we backwoods hicks didn't get the point, this oh-so-sincere sales pitch follows ... We want you to stay connected and have the best experience possible. Your mobile numbere(s) ending in the following four digits will be impacted: xxxx. Please upgrade your device(s) before December 31, 2022. To get started, sign in to your My Megacorp account, visit a local Megacorp store or contact us at 800-xxx-xxxx to discuss your new device options. Or view special upgrade offers at www.website.invalid/upgrade3g. [snip] We will continue to remind you until you upgrade to a compatible 4G LTE/5G device. (Do not attempt to adjust your attitude. Do not attempt to raise your expectations. *WE* will control your attitude! *WE* will tell you what your expectations are to be!) So, there we have it: buy a new cellular phone or do without the "benefits" it brings - such as seeing your insurance rates skyrocket as the copper-based POTS lines that made U.S. phone service the envy of the rest of the world are replaced by maybe-on, maybe-not cellular phones. Benefits such as having multinational corporations aware of your movements second-by-second, or which store display you paused at for the longest time, or which web site you visit most often and when. The list continues: the sell-u-lar salesmen are drooling at the thought of being able to sell your life's habits, your religious beliefs, your club memberships, and (above all) the names of your friends. Their greed extends to forcing you to see your children made fun of for not having "the" new device that a professonal "influencer" touted during school hours and on school grounds, and they are determined, with lots of help from the best Congress money can buy, to convince you that you are expected to fork over hundreds of dollars every year, forever, to enrich a group of people who think that not being caught in a lie is the same thing as telling the truth. I swam in the belly of that beast for twenty-five years. I had the privilege of seeing - indeed, of being a part of - the end of the electromechical age in American industry. I'm not going to claim that the Panel or #5 Crossbar or #1ESS switches that I worked around were the ne plus ultra of the telephone world - but they worked, reliably, year after year, without needing hype to convince their users that they could rely on them, without needing PR to tell us how great they were, and without forcing customers to buy a new telephone instrument every time the executives' stock options started to drop in value. This used to be the only country in the world where ordinary citizens would pick up the handset of an ordinary phone, and dial without bothering to listen for a dial tone. It was always there: it always worked. No longer. The cellular network in Boston, Massachusetts, stopped working for three hours or more after the bombing at the Boston marathon. It wasn't broken - just overloaded. Now, we see what those in power think of our safety and our opinions - so little that what used to be a reliable, always-on government and government-oversight communications network is allowed to fail after Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs) killed, wounded, and maimed those attending a public gathering in the city which was the political heart of our revolution. Don't be concerned about emergency communications, by the way: the reliable POTS phone lines are being replaced by special-purpose "shadow" cellular networks that substitute massive expenditures and complexity for the reliability we used to get by using simpler, less expensive, and longer-lasting designs that didn't make enough money for the new, improved, virtual ruling class. You might have to wait an hour or two for an ambulance, while you or your family lie bleeding and helpless, but rest assured that those in the upper crust will always be able to reschedule their appointments with their mistresses in order to spend time comforting the common herd. There is a solution other than opening our wallets and letting that old whore Mother Bell take whatever she wants: it's easy to do, takes less than an hour, and can have an amazine effect during an election year. Pick up a pen, and some paper, and write a letter to your Congressman (and to your Senator if (s)he is up for reelection). Tell them this electronic land grab is wrong, and that your vote will follow the candidate who promises to actually do something to stop this theft-via-fountain-pen. Bill P.S. N.B.: It *MUST* be a hand-written letter! My Grandfather served in the Massachusetts Legislature for most of his life, and he told me again and again that the only letters he or the other Representatives ever paid attention to were written by hand and mailed the same way. If you haven't mailed a letter in a while, the post office still sells pre-stamped envelopes in both personal and business sizes, for a few cents more than the cost of the postage. You can copy your Representative's address from your letter and write it on the envelope while still in the post office. -- Bill Horne Telecom Digest Moderator (Remove QRM from my email address to write to me directly)
Message-ID: <20220318023331.78849766@telecom2018.csail.mit.edu> Date: Fri, 18 Mar 2022 02:33:31 +0000 (UTC) From: Bill Horne <malQRMassimilation@gmail.com> Subject: CWA: Bargaining Wins and Updates AT&T Mobility The contract fight at AT&T Mobility is heating up across the country, and CWAers are getting the word out to the public about union-busting "authorized retail" stores that are not staffed by trained, experienced CWA members. CWAers in 36 states, plus the District of Columbia, that are covered by the Orange contract have been handing out flyers and talking with AT&T customers about the contract fight and the differences between authorized retail and union-staffed stores - and why authorized retail stores are bad for workers and for customers. The flyers also direct customers to visit cwa.org/attstore to locate a union-staffed store. https://cwad1.org/press-releases/bargaining-wins-and-updates -- (Please remove QRM from my email address to write to me directly)
Message-ID: <20220318025307.3E218766@telecom2018.csail.mit.edu> Date: Fri, 18 Mar 2022 02:53:07 +0000 (UTC) From: Bill Horne <malQRMassimilation@gmail.com> Subject: Key Tribal Takeaways From The FCC's Final Rule Governing The Affordable Connectivity Program by Kayla Gebeck Carroll and Kenneth Parsons Highlights * The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) authorized a new long-term Affordable Connectivity Fund (ACF) to replace the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB). The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published the ACF Final Rule, which largely becomes effective on March 16, 2022. * The maximum monthly benefit will change from $50 per month to $30 per month for households not located on qualifying tribal lands. The monthly benefit will remain at $75 for households on qualifying tribal lands. In addition, eligible households can receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a laptop, desktop computer or a tablet. * This Holland & Knight alert provides an overview for tribes to use when helping educate members of the opportunity. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) published its Final Rule on Feb. 14, 2022, governing the Affordable Connectivity Fund (ACF), formerly known as the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB), a new long-term program aimed at increasing access to critical broadband infrastructure by focusing on affordability. The program provides benefits directly to eligible tribal members. https://tinyurl.com/3v9fpxtk -- (Please remove QRM from my email address to write to me directly)
Message-ID: <2eb1662c-6e60-3816-17b5-1db3482beb70@panix.com> Date: 17 Mar 2022 22:00:56 -0400 From: "David" <wb8foz@panix.com> Subject: Re: August 2nd, 2022 - The Decommissioning of Copper Gets Real On 3/15/22 1:58 AM, Fred Atkinson wrote: > Networks are aging, parts are unavailable, and technicians are > retiring. If your organization uses copper-based services, make a > plan to eliminate them quickly. It's not just copper Outside Plant being chopped. It's what it feeds: Line cards on ESS/DMS switches. At least for the 5E, the software licenses cost the LEC MANY dollars per month. And with many ports no longer used vs. cellular, it's a big hit. If instead of POTS you have FTTH {"FIOS"} where it's now Just Bits, it's far cheaper. I've been told that all FIOS phone bits in the extended DC region are hauled to Reston VA where a few U's of rack space takes care of them. There are services that don't easily convert. One is fire alarms, another elevator emergency phones. NFPA has approved cellular replacements for fire circuits, with some requirements. In theory, there is a "POTS Replacement" market for cellular boxes that the existing elevator POTS phone plugs into directly. But I've found actual LTE/5G hardware to purchase as plentiful as polar bears in the Gobi desert; there are, however, hoards of companies wanting to rent you a "service" every month.

End of telecom Digest Fri, 18 Mar 2022

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