Thursday, August 07, 2008

Arts Advocacy Update LIII

The content below is from Americans for the Arts' Cultural Policy Listserv, email blast of August 6, 2008:

These two stories together earn a single comment:

F.C.C. Vote Sets Precedent on Unfettered Web Usage
New York Times, 8/2/2008

"The Federal Communications Commission formally voted Friday to uphold the complaint against Comcast, the nation’s largest cable company, saying that it had illegally inhibited users of its high-speed Internet service from using popular file-sharing software. The decision, which imposes no fine, requires Comcast to end such blocking this year. Kevin J. Martin, the commission’s chairman, said the order was meant to set a precedent that Internet providers, and indeed all communications companies, could not keep customers from using their networks the way they see fit unless there is a good reason. . . . The case also highlights the broader issue of whether new legislation is needed to force Internet providers to treat all uses of their networks equally, a concept called network neutrality."

FCC decision against Comcast lays blueprint for Internet battle
The Hill (DC), 8/5/2008

"The decision by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to punish Comcast for limiting Web traffic to its consumers is likely to reignite a torrid battle between America’s tech giants and cable providers next Congress. The agency’s move was the first time it waded into the complex 'net neutrality' debate — the push for open, unrestricted access to broadband networks — by directly acting against a cable provider. It could set a precedent for future penalties and provide the legal framework for legislation from Capitol Hill."
God, the cable people really are evil, aren't they? They'll stop at nothing. That's why we have to elect progressives.

Budget cuts loom for arts, parks
Indianapolis Business Journal, 8/2/2008
"After Mayor Greg Ballard’s upset victory at the polls last November, [Indianapolis] arts leaders were in a panic. They worried the no-nonsense former Marine would put public safety on a pedestal and slash Indianapolis’ funding for cultural groups. Now, they say their worst suspicions are being confirmed. Late last month, City-County Council President Bob Cockrum, who, like Ballard, is a Republican, warned the Indianapolis Consortium of Arts Administrators that the mayor intends to phase out the entire $1.5 million in funding it provides for cultural education and outreach."
Another stupid anti-arts Republican.

Film studio neighbors come around
Boston Globe, 8/3/2008

"Even without the promise of a generous tax credit, Plymouth Rock Studios is pressing ahead with plans to create its Hollywood East film studio in Plymouth - and once-wary neighbors of the ambitious project now appear to embrace it."
I continue to be shocked at how it's news that Massachusetts folks are even warming to this idea. The whole idea that they would be "wary" is just silly. It's called an economic driver, people.

Cultural Trust pays out $1.65 million
The Oregonian, 8/2/2008

"There's a credit crisis right now, but that hasn't stopped Oregonians from giving to the Oregon Cultural Trust, which, in turn, is dispersing its funds in record amounts, according to three simultaneous news conferences held Friday in Portland, Eugene and Salem. The trust announced $1.65 million in grants for 2009, an increase of about 21 percent, say trust officials."
Nice bit of good news, this.

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