Comcast suffers another Internet outage; History Channel, Sons of Confederate Vets battle over ads

> Maybe Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA) is suffering what electric utilities like to call "rolling blackouts." Whatever the case, the nation's top MSO and leading broadband provider suffered a four-state Internet outage over he weekend. Last week Comcast had a similar outage along the East Coast, including Boston and Washington, D.C. There's no early word on what caused the recent five-hour blackout which, if nothing else, should have cord-cutters chewing their fingernails. Story.

> As the 150th anniversary of the Civil War approaches, it's clear that some of the old wounds have never really healed, especially when it comes to the reasons behind the initial conflict. The Georgia Sons of Confederate Veterans claims the war was started over states' rights and has produced radio and TV ads promoting its stance. The History Channel, in the process of running a series on the conflict, is blocking the ads from its programs because it "does not sell time for advertising that presents a partisan position on a controversial issue," it said in a statement. Of course that policy doesn't include "ads from political candidates under the political-advertising rules." Story.

> In the matter of city rights, Burlington, Vt. might be offering a lesson for other municipalities that think they can do a better job than their local broadband providers. Eleven years ago, Burlington launched its own triple play service and built fiber optics to nearly every home in the city. Today it's $50 million in debt and its main creditor is planning to repossess equipment; it's also facing  state and federal criminal investigations. Story.

> We don't know what this means for broadband over powerline technology, but a pair of Bristol (U.K.) University researchers claim that global media consumption via the Internet will put a strain on energy infrastructure by 2030 and that the only way to avoid this is to apply "a sustainable eco-conscious approach to computing." Story.

And finally... add Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC-WI) to the list of MSOs raising rates--at least in the Mount Airy, N.C. area. Following the old industry rule, Time Warner Cable has cited "continuing rising costs" as the reason for the latest increases with "sports and broadcast programming costs ... by far the largest contributor." Story.

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