Regional Broadband Forums: Improving Internet Access in Ohio
Public Asked to Provide Input on Broadband Maps
Jackson OH (February 3, 2020) - Connected Nation Ohio’s (CN Ohio) staff hosted seven broadband forums across the state to review recently updated broadband coverage maps. CN Ohio is looking for feedback on the maps, broadband availability issues, FCC mapping data, survey results, and much more.
If you did not get to attend one of the broadband forums, you can view the latest maps on the CN Ohio website at this address: https://connectednation.org/ohio/mapping-analysis/. You can also provide feedback on the maps at https://connectednation.org/ohio/feedback. Input and feedback on the maps are being accepted through February 2020.
The forums spanned from Central to Southeast Ohio. Each of these sessions had around 40 attendees including community leaders, internet providers, and broadband stakeholders.
“It’s great to get such a variety of organizations and communities represented in the same room to discuss one topic that impacts all of them,” said Dan Manning, Connected Nation Community Technology Advisor. “It’s not often that leaders of such different roles and backgrounds get together and share common goals, ideas and frustrations. Broadband is that kind of topic.”
Alongside Manning, CN Ohio State Program Director Tina Lyden helped facilitate. Together, they provided information and resources to help Ohio communities get better access to broadband.
During each session, Manning shared their revised Ohio broadband availability maps. These maps have details on each Ohio county's broadband speeds—available at 10, 25, 50, and 100 Mbps. He also provided attendees with a link to the CN Ohio interactive map, which is available to everyone at http://map.connectohio.org/.
“One of the things that has impressed me throughout these forums is that the attendees are genuinely interested and focused on the issue of accurate broadband availability mapping,” said Manning. “They get it. They understand that without accurate maps, some of their communities may get overlooked as areas truly in need of service.”
But these forums did not just center around broadband mapping, they also discussed the 2019 Ohio broadband survey results. The focus of this survey was on access, adoption barriers, service satisfaction, and how broadband is being used throughout the state. By the end, Connected Nation Ohio provided general guidelines for pursuing broadband improvements within Ohio communities.
“My hope is that these forums provide an impetus for communities and organizations to identify their passionate broadband advocates/champions,” said Manning. “Then give them the opportunity to start a local broadband initiative.”
You can watch an unedited video from the January 21 session held in Newark, Ohio, by scrolling below the photo slideshow. If you were not able to attend one of these forums, please review our maps online here and provide your feedback via our Feedback Form at https://connectednation.org/ohio/feedback.
Learn more about Connected Nation Ohio by visiting the website connectednation.org/ohio/.