Real eyes, realize, real lies
In 2008, in an agreement with the city of New York, Verizon pledged availing high-speed FiOS service by “passing” their fiber optics cables near each and every household of New York City.
On Monday, the city sued Verizon for failing to keep that pledge.
Concrete jungle where there’s no internet
Mayor de Blasio said in a statement, that Verizon has failed 8.5 million New Yorkers by not completing its pledge of installing “its fiber-optic FiOS service by 2014. It’s 2017 and we’re done waiting.”
In the complaint filed with the New York State Supreme Court in Manhattan, the City alleges that “tens of thousands” of prospective customers have not been served in direct default of the 2008 agreement.
It also accuses the Internet service provider of refusing to accept service requests from citizens without FiOS coverage.
They should have seen it coming
This is not a sudden move.
For at least two years, the City has been trying to negotiate with Verizon to deliver on its promised obligations.
The city warned the company two years back when an audit report by its Department of Information Technology and Communications (DoITT) found Verizon was refusing fast service to many households despite being within the agreed-upon area (i.e. within the five boroughs).
Between a rock and hard place
The hope was to avoid a messy litigation. But the two sides were increasingly at odds as Verizon steadfastly refused the City’s interpretation of the 2008 agreement.
Last winter the two sides reached an impasse, and the courts were the only step forward for the City.
“No corporation — no matter how large or powerful — can break a promise to New Yorkers and get away with it,” said Mayor de Blasio.
Verizon claims it has met its obligation of running fiber optics past every city home, like the agreement stipulates.
City residents are within seven to 14 days of receiving service, the company states.
The contract never obligated Verizon, the company states, to actually provide connection to every household and apartment building.
The blame shift
In a letter to the City, Verizon stressed the impracticality of the City’s demand. “Digging up City streets and sidewalks on the scale that you are demanding would cause enormous and unnecessary disruptions to vehicle and pedestrian traffic, and would impose immeasurable inconvenience and hardship on countless residents and businesses”, the company argued.
The communications company seems to acknowledge the complaints of NYC residents for not receiving fast speed Internet and television services.
The fault, Verizon says, lies entirely with the landlords who refuse to let Verizon run cables through its premises.
He said, he said
Raymond McConville, a Verizon spokesman said, “”Mayor de Blasio should read our agreement”, adding, “We have lived up to our obligation 100%.”
“The de Blasio administration is disingenuously attempting to rewrite the terms of an agreement made with its predecessor (Michael Bloomberg) and is acting in its own political self-interests that are completely at odds with what’s best for New Yorkers,” Verizon said in a statement. “We plan to vigorously fight the city’s allegations.”
Hurry up and wait
Independent analysts praised the City officials for pursuing Verizon to make good on their promise. They reject Verizon’s claim of delivering on the contract.
Susan Lerner, executive director of Common Cause New York, a good-government advocacy group said, “People continue to be very frustrated because it appears that Verizon is motivated by what will be most profitable for them — what buildings to wire and what buildings to ignore.”
While the courts will decide, who will ultimately win, for now, more than 1 million of New York residents would have to do without fast internet.