Community Forum 11.17.15

On November 17, 2015, AKNA attended the FiOS Rollout Forum conducted by Common Cause NY led by Susan Lerner, and the Consumers Union led by Charles Bell.

Public forums are one way to hold Verizon NY (VNY) and Verizon Communications, Inc. accountable to their franchise agreement with NYC in compliance with FCC regulations. This session made it quite clear that Verizon policies and practices mislead thousands of families regarding the availability of FiOS and the repair and retention of traditional landline services essential to many families.  It is also obvious that pressure on Verizon from the public (us) through our elected representatives will help. 

The forum highlighted how Verizon officials are telling many organized community groups and individual households that “your area has one delay on the block entrance” and “when this is secured, the cable will have a clear path to your area.”  Then nothing happens. One building owner stated she contacted Verizon for service. Still, following her request, she received a letter stating Verizon was in negotiations with the owner of the building and said but, “I am the owner, and they haven’t contacted me.”

Common Cause and Consumers Union are national organizations with millions of members. They will continue to gather information and educate the public on this important issue.  They recommend that AKNA take actions to help keep our communication costs down and get higher quality service are as follows:

  • Sign and send the Certificate of Proposed Work to Lourdes and then let AKNA with any questions, or if you have not received it.
  • Sign the petition and receive campaign updates
  • Email your name, address, and phone number to receive details on their progress

Say or write the following to our representatives 

“Verizon is failing our community. Please find out what is going now in current negotiations between DoITT and Verizon. Please respond with your findings for publication to the AKNA web-log

City Council TERM ENDS 2021
Mathieu Eugene (District 40) mathieu.eugene@council.nyc.gov  or call 718-287-8762 
State Senate and Assembly
Sen. Kevin S. Parker (District21) parker@nysenate.gov
Rodneyse Bichotte (42nd AD) bichotter@assembly.state.ny.us or call 718-940-0428
United States Congress TERM IS APPARENTLY NEVER ENDING
Yvette D. Clark Brooklyn Office  https://clarke.house.gov  or call (718) 287-1142

#WAITING4FIOS

In 2008, Verizon promised New York City people that it would wire all corners of the city with high-speed fiber optic cable, bringing competition to internet, video, and phone service in New York City to improve service and bring down prices. Verizon promised to make high-speed, reliable, and affordable internet available to any New Yorker who wants it. Now, 7 years later, too many New Yorkers are waiting.

Common Cause/NY, Consumers Union, and Borough President Eric Adams sponsored a FiOS public forum on Tuesday, November 17th at 7 PM at Brooklyn Borough Hall.  Obtaining Verizon FiOS and the impediments to obtaining that service.

AKNA Will Be Attending

Please join Eric Adams, Common Cause/NY and the Consumers Union
Tuesday, November 17th. All are welcome to attend and be heard. Click here to RSVP

More Information:
Brooklyn Borough Hall |askeric@brooklynbp.nyc.gov | www.brooklyn-usa.org
209 Joralemon Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201

Verizon FiOS request for Right of Way

Verizon FiOS has heard the AKNA internet group’s pleas and is surveying our street for possible installation! You might be receiving a letter in the mail asking for Right of Way or Access to your home to commence with the installation. Here are some answers to common questions:

1. Granting Right of Way or Access does not require you to subscribe to FiOS service once it is installed. Rather, it gives you (and any future residents) the option to do so at any time in the future. You do not have to pay unless you choose to subscribe.

2. What is FiOS? FiOS is Verizon’s brand of fiber internet, which offers speeds up to 1000 Mbps. For comparison, if you have Verizon DSL now, you’re getting between 3 – 15 Mbps, which is 0.3% – 1.5% of fiber speeds. In real-world terms, this means streaming video won’t stutter, websites will load almost instantaneously, and your internet connection will be more reliable. FiOS also offers TV service and land-line as part of a bundle, but it routes all three services over one data line.

3. We won’t know how they will run the fiber and get it into our homes, but Verizon requires Right of Way before its engineers can assess the site for installation strategies. Yes, this uncertainty is troublesome, but it will be less invasive than the gas-line installations of last year.

4. We’re not certain that we need unanimity, but it’s safe to assume so. For example, if I were to refuse ROW, and the fiber was running West to East (Flatbush to E 21st), I would be foreclosing access to all houses East of me. There’s also the chance that if not enough people grant ROW/Access, Verizon passes us over. If that is the case, THERE WILL NOT BE A SECOND CHANCE for a long time.

5. Internet speed affects property value. Multiple articles and studies have been published to that effect:

  • Gigabit Internet Connections Make Property Values Rise
  • The Impact of High-speed Broadband Availability on Real Estate Values: Evidence from the United States Property Markets

6. Verizon will not be changing the existing telephone or cable wiring in your home. This merely puts a fiber terminal (a small metal box) in your house. If you choose Fiber service, it’s up to you to figure out how you want to send the signal around your home (Ethernet, WiFi, or over existing copper).

Please email Rex and/or Ian with any more questions you might have, look for updates on this site, and crossed fingers that the terraces enter the 21st century this year!