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Google WiFi At Risk Over Petty Politics, Davis Says  (View post)

Travis Harris [PersonRank 10]

Thursday, October 19, 2006
17 years ago4,703 views

Okay, I see this from your perspective. Seems just dumb not to allow such a great free service, but there must be a reason that people are against it? Isn't there?

Travis Harris [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

Okay, from what I understand (read more) people are claiming that there will be increased electricity usage because people are going to use their computers more. But really, I think that people think that if Google is involved then there is money there, and they just want some of it.


/pd [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

Actually its just petty politics.. where theres money..everyone of those darn policticains want a cut for themselves.. A-holes!! :)-

"included a “requirement” for every San Francisco renter to sign a lease addendum with their landlords before being allowed to install a WiFi card in their PC"

Eric Cranston [PersonRank 3]

17 years ago #

Google's free WiFi melted my brain.

We should go protest on the streets...that always works.

Chris [PersonRank 0]

17 years ago #

He listed some of the 'crazier' demands. But I would imagine that there may be some legitimate reasons that people are worried, even if he disagrees with them. For example, there may be legitimate privacy issues. Does anybody know what the real complaints are?

CJ Millisock [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

You said it /pd. For those of you who didn't read the link in the article, a town hall meeting was called in San Francisco, and Google's Chris Sacca had to withstand a bunch of demands from local activists. From that article:

"At the meeting, Sacca did an excellent job or remaining calm and explaining the technology in language that anyone could understand, still these local political gadflies seemed to feel that EarthLink and Google providing free WiFi to the citizens was akin to killing kittens because, they attacked Sacca with a venom that was absolutely shocking.

Some of the crazier demands that were suggested at the meeting included a “requirement” for every San Francisco renter to sign a lease addendum with their landlords before being allowed to install a WiFi card in their PC..."

Sheer craziness!

Where I'm confused is:

There are three "groups" of people, from what I can tell.

1. Activists at the town hall meeting who wanted a cut of the profits.
2. Ron Vinson, the chief administrator for this project, and his cohorts.
3. Those who were in charge of choosing which company won the bid to provide the WiFi.

So, are two (or all?) of these groups the same? If not, how are they related?

Chris, what complaints are you referring to? Demands similar to, but not as far-fetched & crazy as, the demand for residents to sign an addendum before installing a WiFi card?

Stu [PersonRank 2]

17 years ago #

People like that are why San Francisco is a hellhole. You watch, they'll probably get some activist group demanding that the companies have to buy laptops for all the bums on the street so that they won't be discriminated out of using the free wifi.

Tadeusz Szewczyk [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

I think the WiFi is not really free as far as I remember and it's just securing a market and would be paid by ads.
In Germany and elsewehre in Europe we have citizens initiatives coming together for building non-Megacorporation really "free networks":

Peter [PersonRank 0]

17 years ago #

a couple of things:

1) this blog post is near-worthless. we're given no information except that someone doesn't like something. better excerpt, please. p.s. i don't like something, too.

2) it's always cool to bash activists, even in san fran, but i, for one, am smart enough to know that these 'freaks' are often the only people standing between us and a police state. i mean, it's not like these activists are terrorizing citizens in order to prevent justice from being served ( y'all need to get a grip. activists of all stripes deserve an _extreme_ amount of leeway. they're already terrorized by the government – they don't need it from you, too.

and as for Google-provided internet access somehow being good for the citizens of San Francisco, as compared to the costs we'll pay in privacy and other for this 'benevolence', i'd like someone to point out how, exactly, this Google good will could possibly be a good thing. in my world – the reality-based one – i rely on evidence to make decisions, not arrogance.

as for Google being this knight in shining armour, electing to save SF from the horrors of actually paying for internet access, i would have to suggest that folks get a grip. Google is not in the benevolence business – they're in the business of making gatrillions of dollars in profit, in any way imaginable. if you fantasize that Google is in the pie-making business or any other business, you should wiki 'corporation' and think some pure thoughts before posting nonsensical comments on this blog, again. Google doesn't operate for the benefit of the citizens of San Francisco or the citizens of Uranus – it operates for the benefit of its shareholders.


...Democrats suck!

Stu [PersonRank 2]

17 years ago #

Give me a break about those activist freaks, especially the one in the story you linked to. She filed a freaking government complaint because she said a cop hissed at her. Pathetic.

You want to know exactly how this Google good will could possibly be a good thing? I'm a little embarrassed for you that you couldn't figure it out on your own, but here it is: FREE WIRELESS INTERNET SERVICE, as opposed to paying 20 or 40 bucks per month or whatever. Not to mention that you'd be able to access it citywide instead of just at your crib.

Who said Google is doing it out of the goodness of their hearts? For the most part, they're doing it for the positive PR, but I for one would happily let them enjoy their good PR in exchange for giving me free wireless access to the internet. You don't want it? Fine, you keep paying someone else for it, don't ruin it for everybody else.

Let me guess, you don't want them giving it away for free because you'd rather raise the taxes on the wealthy citizens there and make *them* pay for everyone's access, right?

Chris [PersonRank 0]

17 years ago #


I don't know what other demands I am referring to. My point was that the post seemed to provide insufficient information to decide that everyone who was against it was a loony. The only examples he provided were the "crazy" ones, which would seem to indicate that there may be more sane reasons to be concerned.

I'm not saying that the Google Wi-Fi is bad. My first impression is that it is good. But the blog post did not provide enough information for me to reach the conclusion he was trying to draw: Those against the wi-fi are foolish and self-interested.

I don't live in SF, and I am not knowledgeable about politics there. But I am always wary when someone seems to characterize all of those who disagree with them as oddballs based on the actions/opinions of a few.

Richard L. Brandt [PersonRank 3]

17 years ago #

I live in San Francisco and I think the delays are crazy. Mountain View got a similar deal from google and had no problem approving it.

As to the question of what Google gets out of it: The more people online, the more money Google makes. If you're not online, you don't Google. It's worth the cost to the company. And it is designed to inspire other cities to set up similar services. Plus, believe it or not, Google really is dedicated to serving the public good at the expense of the elite--such as the phone companies.

My question: One sysadmin I talked to said it will cause a lot of interference with other wi-fi services. Does anyone know if that is true?

/pd [PersonRank 10]

17 years ago #

=="said it will cause a lot of interference with other wi-fi services."

wifi is wifi --the protocal set is not changing. I belive goog's will enable the community to use thier Google UserID to access the GNet. Thats the authentication schematics at hand..

Not sure why there will be interference ?? Once the protocol socket is formed --its formed like as if you were literally plugged in.. albiet to could be slower to on the wire....:)-

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