In May Harvard residents learned that a pending agreement between cable operators Charter Communications and Comcast will result in Comcast becoming the Internet service provider for most homes in Harvard. Since then, the Press has received several letters complaining of what the writers say is Comcast’s poor service record and high cost elsewhere in Massachusetts and urging Harvard officials to seek alternatives. Pursuit of Verizon and its FiOS service has been encouraged by some, while others have proposed that Harvard string its own cable and connect to a nearby Internet backbone. The selectmen and town administration have yet to respond, though BOS Chairman Stu Sklar told the Press this week that he expects the board to discuss the matter in August.
In this week’s Press yet another letter writer says that it’s time for the concerned and tech savvy among us to begin a more serious discussion. The Press will be on vacation for four weeks after publication of our July 11 issue, but our website will remain active and offers a perfect spot to hold such a forum.
Here’s what we propose: Because the ability to comment on the articles and opinion pieces published by the Press is open to subscribers and nonsubscribers alike, the best way to begin and continue a discussion of Internet alternatives is by commenting on this article. Simply go to the "For Discussion!" section of the Press website, then click on the headline “A forum for considering the town’s Internet options” (or just click HERE) and scroll to its end, where you’ll find a place to enter comments. No login is required. You can enter your own thoughts on the issue or comment on those of others. Over time, several threads and perhaps even a consensus will emerge that can lead to concrete actions by the town.
The Press is happy to host this forum as a service to the community. We invite you to join the discussion of Harvard’s Internet future by contributing your thoughts to the conversation.