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COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET Home

COMMUNET  February 1994, Week 4

COMMUNET February 1994, Week 4

Subject:

Re: Palo Alto (CA) City Network

From:

"Jim Frame ([log in to unmask])" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Communet: Community and Civic Network Discussion List

Date:

Fri, 25 Feb 1994 19:33:02 -0800

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (34 lines)

On Fri, 25 Feb 1994, I. Scott Campbell wrote:
 
> > I think this would be an unfortunate trend, unless the "profit" were used
> > to subsidize access for lower-income residents. Assuming that a
>
> > revenue-producing business, as the profit would be coming out of the
> > pockets of the citizenry as a whole.
>
> I am not sure I see the problem here. The money either comes from profit
> on something like this or taxes (possibly increased taxes) to do the same
> thing. At least the profit would come from those that use the system.
> Taxes definitely come from everyone.
 
I see two (potential) problems:
 
1. In order to show a profit, services may have to be priced beyond the
means of lower-income residents, effectively denying them access to
communications tools of increasing importance.
 
2. In a for-profit environment, it is easy for the emphasis to shift from
providing service to chasing profits -- the promise of increased revenues
often serves to rationalize inflated salaries, lavish perks and bloated
staffs. This tendency is especially dangerous in a monopoly (which most
public utilities are), as the limiting effects of competition are absent.
 
Both of the above problems can be avoided in a for-profit model with
sufficient oversight, but I believe the nonprofit approach is less likely
to be troublesome in this regard.
 
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Jim Frame [log in to unmask] (916) 756-8584 (916) 756-8201 (FAX)
Frame Surveying & Mapping 2038 East 8th Street Davis, CA 95616
----------------------------------------------------------------------

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