The IIA is the perfect example of an astroturf trade group funded by and for the ILECs. The IIA put together a study to show that copper maintenance is eating up funds that could be used to deploy fiber-based broadband networks.
Fact: Windstream has penetrated 71 percent of its access lines with broadband and is making revenue from copper based broadband. In rural America, copper based broadband is still gold. Ask Fairpoint, Frontier, HT, C-Link or any rural LEC about how much revenue they make from copper in the form of POTS, T1, EoC, PRI, DSL and DS3.
Why should Agents be pro-copper? Without copper, many CLEC's will have little access to business locations. CLEC's access to fiber is unregulated since 2005. In fact, the carriers do not even have to lease it to them. There are already squabbles going on between CLECs and cablecos over fiber loops.
Think about how well the RBOC channel program has run. Go ahead. I'll wait.
Every quarter the commission schedule changes. Can you shift your business and customers every quarter?
Without CLECs, the marketplace would become a true Duopoly of just cable and ILEC. It wouldn't leave much choice for the customer or the channel partner.
Without competition, what happens to pricing, innovation and commissions?
Agents should be pro-copper. They should write to the FCC about Verizon's decisions in NY and NJ to remove copper. Agents should be commenting on the IIA comments to the FCC about the "study".
ILECs have plenty of motivation to build out fiber networks. One big reason is that they don't have to share access to fiber with CLECs. The RBOCs - VZ & ATT - have used this strategy effectively over the years to minimize the impact of CLECs.
The other reason to build out fiber is that if they don't FTTx and cablecos will eat their lunch. It's future proofing the network.
And we already see where Google Fiber has made ATT, TWC, and C-Link all jump on the FTTx bandwagon of Gigabit access in Kansas City, Utah and Austin.
While I understand that there atre costs to maintain the copper plant and costs to the current FCC regulations for copper, retiring the copper plant is not a smart option for the telecom industry or the American economy. Spin the copper plant off or sell it off - but we need copper for EoC, all flavors of DSL, T1 and even POTS lines. If the ILECs don't want it, sell it. If there was a buyer for VZ's crappy assets in Eastern KY and New England, certainly there would be a buyer for the rest of the copper plant.
Agens: for competition and commissions let the FCC know that we still want copper. Unfortuantely, we can't comment until the government shutdown is over.