Posted by: jacinto08 | 11 December, 2010

Citizen’s right to broadband Internet Access

Hi mates,

As many of you know, I am doing a master at University of Valencia. Last week, one of our teachers proposed us, as homework, to find out if there is a citizen’s right to broadband Internet Access. I started surfing on the Internet and finally I got this piece of news:

According to the text, after 2011 Spanish citizens will have the legal right to buy broadband internet access, which means that every person of every place in our country will be connected to the world. Is Spain prepared to face this technological revolution? In the next lines, I want to expose some thinkings.

First and foremost, I think that it´s not necessary to discuss the importance of internet. Some years ago, internet was related with luxury (a way of enjoying), but nowadays it is a work tool. So I think that is very positive that broadband Internet Access will get into a right. Apparently we can appeal for a round of applause for our Government. Let’s start with the “bad points”

This legal action has had a big success in the population, but it makes me wonder, who is going to pay the costs of setting up the infrastructures? According to the information given by the government, it is required by law that telecommunications companies take care of these expenses.  It´s hard to believe it. I´m sure this cost will be paid by citizens, because in the end, this will alter  invoice payment. All that glitters is not gold.

On other hand (and I hope to be wrong), I don´t think that the Government will keep his own word. The reason why I don´t trust them is because they promise us a lot of things and then they don’t do anything. Supposedly,there are other constitutionally protected rights: the right of having a job (art. 35 CE), the right of education (art. 27 CE) and the right of a decent home (art. 47 CE), but then, we find people without a job, or living under a bridge, and a lot of children in the streets that don´t go to school. Mister politicians, don´t make promises that you will never be able to fulfill.

To conclude, just a couple of question: Do you think 1 MB conexion is enough for surfing comfortably?  Don’t you think it´s better to connect with a USB modem than to invest a lot of money in these structures?



  1. Hi Jacinto,

    I’m not sure if you know but I work in a Telco and precisely last week I had a meeting with modernization general manager from Generalitat. We were talking of this matter because last friday was the last day to telecomunication operators to present projects to public susidies for network developing in rural and industry arear.

    The main problem is that there is money from european community, but with good criterion, Europe requires that the project have a minimum porcentage of the investment being provided for both: enterprises and spanish administration (central and local)… and there is no money in enterprises nor administration.

    Besides this kind of subsidies are thought as one-off: money for developing networks in those areas, but what about providing the service for years when it’s economical not profitable? I think a model similar to electricity is more suitable. In this model the cost of giving service in this area is distributed joinly among all internet users. So the state could force to Telefonica or Ono to extend their networks to those areas paying to this company the cost of implementing and operating this networks.

    You must think that without this model, people from Canarias o Baleares couldn’t afford their electricity bill. It’s not popular this proposal but i think is the most suitable


  2. Once more the money is at the end of the road. It seems that everything it measures regarding how much it cost, how profitable it is and so on. It is the cost of living in a consume society like this.
    How far the citizens rights are when facing money issues, moreover in recession times like these.
    Answering to Jacinto I still have some faith in political actions, also in politicians as well. But unfortunately the rules that guide the world are not only in their hands. I mean that some enterprises are powerfull than some goverments.
    Regarding his questions , I think that 1Mb conecction is obiously not enough. Minimum it should be a 3Mb conection.
    And thinking of the money, maybe conecting with an USB would be cheaper even it needs also a network that gives coverage to this acces.

  3. I think the system implemented in France goes in this way and it’s really practical: when you contract internet acces with a telecomunication operator, they give you a password that allows you to connect with WIFI from anywhere all over the country.

    For this, I suppose the government had contributed, but the enterprises had pay the main costs of the wifi antennas, since the profits are for them also. And I suppose too that “Wifi in all te country” is the theory, it will be rural zones without acces to this Wifi, but at least in my city it worked very well.

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