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Susan Crawford

  • Race is on for global 5G dominance — and Trump is cheering from the sidelines

    February 22, 2019

    President Donald Trump on Thursday brought renewed national attention to what has emerged as one of the most hotly debated technological and geopolitical challenges — the race to build a next-generation 5G wireless internet network. ...  While major U.S. telecommunications companies have touted their investments in 5G technology, China's firms are by some measures a step ahead, causing concern that the U.S. could fall behind in building new technology off the next-generation networks. “The implication is that new industries of the future, the new ways of making a living, will be in China and not here. They’ll have this huge sandbox to play with and a lot of control over the market,” said Susan Crawford, author of “Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution — and Why America Might Miss It" and a professor at Harvard Law School focusing on technology policy.

  • Is America Missing The Future Of The Internet?

    February 13, 2019

    The world of fiber optics is expanding the reach and power of the internet — and has the potential to revolutionize our homes and businesses. Fiber optics carry virtually unlimited amounts of data and will radically transform health care, education, stores and the way our cities and town are run. But, Harvard Law School Professor Susan Crawford argues it's a tech revolution that America is at risk of missing.

  • Trump pledges investment, but is silent on key tech issues

    February 6, 2019

    In his State of the Union address Tuesday, President Trump promised legislation to invest in "the cutting edge industries of the future." But the speech was characteristically backward-looking. Trump talked up gains in manufacturing jobs and oil and gas exports, but didn't once mention the word "technology," nor any other tech policy issue, such as privacy, broadband, or antitrust. ...Last year, leaked documents revealed a proposal for the government to build a 5G network to complement commercial networks. The idea was widely panned across the political spectrum, and the White House denied that the idea was ever seriously considered. But, as Harvard Law professor Susan Crawford wrote for WIRED last year, a national program to build more fiber optic networks isn't a crazy idea.

  • The Price Of America’s Poor Internet Connection

    February 5, 2019

    The United States prides itself on being a country of innovation. But in the land that built the internet, our ability to get access to high speed quality service is not on par with other countries in Europe and Asia. Harvard law professor Susan Crawford says as the country slips further behind, we jeopardize our place as a leader in the tech revolution. Susan Crawford’s new book is called “Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution―And Why America Might Miss It.” GUESTS Susan Crawford, Professor, Harvard Law School; author of “Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution—and Why America Might Miss It” and “Captive Audience: The Telecom Industry and Monopoly Power in the New Gilded”

  • How America’s internet connectivity issues are holding the country back

    January 31, 2019

    Harvard Law School professor Susan Crawford explains how America’s internet connectivity issues and corrosive infrastructure are holding the country back and how we can rally to fix it. She and Verge editor-in-chief Nilay Patel also discuss the Huawei scandal, politicians’ roles in improving broadband internet, and her new book Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution—and Why America Might Miss It.

  • The Future Is Fiber – And The U.S. Is Falling Behind

    January 30, 2019

    The expanded use of fiber-optic connections has opened up new possibilities to health care, education, retail and other fields. Harvard Law professor Susan Crawford joins host Krys Boyd to explain why we need to approach fiber with an increased urgency or risk falling behind other developed nations.

  • America Is Lagging In The 5G Race: Harvard’s Crawford (Podcast)

    January 28, 2019

    Susan Crawford, Harvard Law professor and former Special Asst. for Science, Technology, and Innovation Policy during the Obama administration, discusses her new book, "FIBER: The Coming Tech Revolution—And Why America Might Miss It." Bill Barker, Portfolio Manager of the Motley Fool Small Mid-Cap Growth Fund, on why it’s a good time for both growth and value investors in mid-caps.

  • Susan Crawford On How The US Is Already Behind On The Fiber Optic Movement

    January 16, 2019

    The internet revolution changed American political, social and cultural life. But as Harvard Law School professor and author Susan Crawford argues, the United States is still far behind other countries in taking that change to the next level, with a nationwide fiber optic network similar to other public utilities. As a result, she writes, we are missing out on upgrades in our education system, civic life and economy that we need to truly compete in the 21st century.

  • ‘Fiber’ Is a Wakeup Call to our Digital Learning Community

    January 14, 2019

    Our digital learning community needs a cause. Some fight that strikes an optimal balance between self-interest and doing the right thing. Reading Susan Crawford's deeply reported and passionately argued Fiber, I think the battle for universal fiber broadband might be the fight we need.

  • America desperately needs fiber internet, and the tech giants won’t save us

    January 10, 2019

    On the latest episode of Recode Media with Peter Kafka, Recode’s Peter Kafka spoke with Harvard Law School professor Susan Crawford about her new book, Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution—And Why America Might Miss It. On the podcast, Crawford explained why nationwide access to high-speed fiber internet — already standard in parts of Asia and Europe — is important for everything from the future of work to the successful deployment of 5G wireless networks. She also talked about why Google’s ambitious attempt to compete with the telecom giants, Google Fiber, is all but dead. “They’re like Verizon, which did exactly the same thing, backed off from installing fiber,” Crawford said. “Their shareholders are impatient with the long-term capital needs involved in making sure that there’s great last-mile access in America.”

  • 5G will be the next revolution in global communications, but the U.S. may be left behind

    January 9, 2019

    In late 2017, Susan Crawford was visiting Seoul, South Korea, about six months before it hosted the 2018 Winter Olympics. Although she’s an expert in telecommunications policy, Crawford was stunned at what she witnessed in Korea, which she describes as “the most wired nation on the planet” — flawless cellphone coverage even in rural areas, real-time data transmission, driverless buses using the latest communications technology to smoothly avoid pedestrians and evade obstructions. “I’ve never been embarrassed to be American before,” Crawford told me recently. “But when Korean people tell you that going to America is like taking a rural vacation, it really makes you stop and worry about what we’re up to.”

  • Can America Really Have High Speed Internet for All?

    January 8, 2019

    If this country really has ambitions of having a 5G revolution like the one being talked about the Consumer Electronics Show this week, we need something else first. Fiber optic connections that reach everyone. "What it is is synthetic glass, in which the manufactured process is so carefully controlled that light can travel through that glass for many dozens of miles without using any of the signal that it's carrying," says Susan Crawford, a professor at Harvard Law School and the author of “Fiber: The Coming Tech Revolution - and Why America Might Miss it.” ... Susan Crawford says fiber technology is the biggest tech story the United States should be paying attention to in 2019.

  • Paving the way for self-driving cars

    January 3, 2019

    Two Harvard efforts are helping craft policy before the shift gains speed. ... There is broad understanding that many pivotal issues facing the world—such as climate change, immigration, and labor shortages—are intertwined, and changes in one can affect another. The shifts don’t develop in isolation. Harvard Law School Professor Susan Crawford understands that the rise of autonomous vehicles will be no different. To properly prepare the students who will not only have to adapt to these technologies but someday help shape them, their education cannot happen in isolation either. So when Crawford, the John A. Reilly Clinical Professor of Law, designed her class “Autonomous Vehicles and Local Government Lab,” she made sure that its 80 students would be exposed to an interdisciplinary effort from a range of Schools, ensuring students would learn from each other.

  • Paving the way for self-driving cars 2

    Paving the way for self-driving cars

    January 3, 2019

    Two Harvard efforts, including Professor Susan Crawford's Autonomous Vehicles and Local Government Lab, are helping cities and towns craft AV policies while the technology is still emerging.

  • The Sneaky Fight to Give Cable Lines Free Speech Rights

    December 7, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. When you make a phone call, I'm willing to bet you don't think of the phone line as having free speech rights of its own. That phone line has one job: getting the sound of your voice to the place you want it to go. It isn't planning to deliver a speech or getting ready to go on Broadway. Although life may be boring for the phone line as a result, it is actually getting a great deal: The phone line can't get blamed for whatever lousy thing you say during your call. But if the cable industry gets its way, internet access—today's basic utility—will be treated just like the press for First Amendment purposes, giving it a free pass in perpetuity from any governmental oversight.

  • Nearsighted Neoliberalism Helped Mobilize Today’s Far Right

    November 26, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. I recently took a trip to Berlin that sharpened my view of America. It turned out that the blandly named conference I'd been invited to—something about digital markets—was actually a giant collective hand-wringing about the state of German politics. The far-right, populist Alternative for Germany party recently gained substantial strength, accounting for nearly 15 percent of voters nationwide (up from about 3 percent in 2015), and reshaping the political landscape as it spews malicious anti-immigrant rhetoric. The center-right and center-left parties are losing power and spinning with anxiety, trying to figure out how to win back hearts and minds.

  • Regulatory Hackers Aren’t Fixing Society. They’re Getting Rich

    October 26, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. By temperament and by training, I am optimistic most of the time. In that room, though, I sensed the assumptions of our age operating in high, silent gear: Business is the most important agent of change in society; government exists to "cooperate" and is mostly incapable and toothless (while simultaneously, if ineptly, threatening); nothing is going to be done about the harrowing, multiple, structural unfairnesses of our time; women who want to survive and be invited to future panel discussions need to be appropriately deferential; and our destiny as a society is being charted by people who never use public transportation. Or fly commercial. I did speak up, politely, that afternoon. I said many things are profoundly wrong with the way we live in America, and that what we really need to do is make sure government has the capacity and resources to ensure—using technology as a tool, but mostly through sound policy—that everyone with a belly button can lead a thriving life.

  • How Tech Swagger Triggered the Era of Distrust in Government

    October 12, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford: Last month, I heard Jill Lepore give a talk about These Truths, her single-volume history of America from the 15th century through the 2016 presidential election. She got her biggest laugh when she made fun of WIRED for predicting in 2000 that the internet would both lead to the end of political division and be a place where government interference would be senseless.

  • Cities Are Teaming Up to Offer Broadband, and the FCC is Mad

    October 2, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. This is a story that defies two strongly held beliefs. The first—embraced fervently by today's FCC—is that the private marketplace is delivering world-class internet access infrastructure at low prices to all Americans, particularly in urban areas. The second is that cities are so busy competing that they are incapable of cooperating with one another, particularly when they have little in common save proximity. These two beliefs aren’t necessarily true.

  • Why an Army of Small Companies Is Defending The Sprint/T-Mobile Merger

    September 11, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. Last month, Reuters reported that T-Mobile was asking the small operators that resell T-Mobile's excess network capacity to write letters and opinion pieces in support of the company's proposed $36 billion merger with Sprint. T-Mobile's request wasn't unusual. Trumping up support for deals that aren't actually in the public interest is common practice in the swamp we know as U.S. telecom policy. When Comcast was working on its merger with NBCU at the beginning of this decade, supportive comments poured into the FCC from companies across the country who had an interest in keeping Comcast happy. By helpfully suggesting talking points to resellers—or MVNOs, for Mobile Virtual Network Operators—including Mint Mobile, Republic Wireless, and Ting, all of which lease access from the Big Four network operators (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile) in order to sell phone and data services to customers, T-Mobile is following the usual "air of inevitability" merger playbook.

  • How Curbs Became the New Urban Battleground

    August 29, 2018

    An op-ed by Susan Crawford. It's common knowledge that city curbs are fiercely contested places, what with Ubers and Lyfts hovering inconveniently and blocking traffic; piles of shared bikes and scooters being dropped off and picked up; rapidly climbing numbers of deliveries being made by double-parked trucks; and buses and taxis pulling up—not to mention all the private-car parking going on. These daily dramas will only get more boisterous and difficult in the years to come, when fleets of city-licensed driverless cars join the fray.