WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 14, 2015): Comcast recently announced plans to roll out Gigabit Pro, a 2 Gbps service that will bring the fastest Internet speeds in the nation to the entire Atlanta metropolitan area, covering 1.5 million people. The Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council (MMTC) applauds this full market rollout as an example that innovative broadband service can be expanded without engaging in “redlining,” which is the practicing of selectively serving what companies perceive to be the “best” or most lucrative neighborhoods.
MMTC has long criticized carriers who refuse to build and serve lower-income communities on the same terms as wealthier communities. Some companies have rolled out gigabit-speed service in major metropolitan areas but cut out or postponed service to low-income communities that are heavily comprised of minorities.
Comcast’s new Gigabit Pro service will serve as a model for other urban service providers by proving the economic viability and moral imperative of rolling out to all neighborhoods, without excluding the communities that need it most. Super-fast broadband is essential to the growth and enhancement of communities because entrepreneurs seek to place their businesses in areas that can support their heavy broadband needs.
Doug Guthrie, SVP of Comcast Cable’s South Region, indirectly addressed the practice of redlining, as well as the importance of access to fast broadband speeds, in a recent statement. “Our approach is to offer the most comprehensive rollout of multi-gigabit service to the most homes as quickly as possible, not just to certain neighborhoods,” he said. “We already provide the fastest speeds to the most homes and businesses in Atlanta, and access to Gigabit Pro will give our customers all the broadband capacity they need to stay ahead of future technologies and innovations.”
Comcast’s Gigabit Pro service will provide communities with access to a wealth of new avenues for economic growth and empowerment. MMTC looks forward to seeing Gigabit Pro service extend across the nation and serve as an incentive and model for other companies to do the same without redlining.
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The Multicultural Media, Telecom and Internet Council (MMTC) is a non-partisan, national nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and preserving equal opportunity and civil rights in the mass media, telecommunications and broadband industries, and closing the digital divide. MMTC is generally recognized as the nation’s leading advocate for minority advancement in communications.