Alize Way-Heffner, 7, uses a smartphone on August 14, 2016 in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania.  The small Northeastern Pennsylvania town of 5,000 residents has a rich coal mining history.  The majority of nearby coal mines have closed and 20.1% of the population now exists below the poverty line, with a median household income of $18,714.

Alize Way-Heffner, 7, uses a smartphone on August 14, 2016 in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. The small Northeastern Pennsylvania town of 5,000 residents has a rich coal mining history. The majority of nearby coal mines have closed and 20.1% of the population now exists below the poverty line, with a median household income of $18,714.

Broadband access for more than 23 million rural Americans is lousy. Microsoft says it wants to change that. The tech giant calls it an effort to serve communities who feel left behind. But what’s behind this latest push? Politics or economics?

Guests

  • Christopher Mitchell Director of the Community Broadband Networks Initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance
  • Jennifer Levitz U.S. news reporter, The Wall Street Journal
  • Matt Larsen Founder and CEO of Vistabeam, a rural fixed-wireless internet service provider

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