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Blog // Connect Michigan

Going Social on Small Business Saturday

By Eric Frederick

Since 2010, local businesses have urged customers to “shop small” on the Saturday after Thanksgiving and the event continues to grow, thanks in large part to an active annual social media campaign. American Express launched Small Business Saturday in 2010 with a viral multi-media campaign highlighting rare finds at small stores. In 2011, the U.S. government officially supported Small Business Saturday and it is now the largest shopping holiday in support of small business. Every year the movement grows and an increasing number of businesses utilize the buzz online to reach out to new and existing customers. On Small Business Saturday, during...

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Community Change Through Facebook

By Eric Frederick

With more than 1.7 billion active users logging onto Facebook each month, it now represents the largest connected network in the world. Besides its massive global scale, Facebook also connects community groups including schools, universities, police departments, economic councils, and many others. To gauge the broadband infrastructure of Arenac County, Michigan, Connect Michigan (CM) asked key community members to share important messages on the site and share with their friends and neighbors. Within a few hours, the power of this community yielded impressive results. In order to improve broadband infrastructure of any area, a full...

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FCC Using Form 477 Data to Close the Mobile Broadband Gap in Rural America

By Matt Diaz

Last month, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced improved analysis of coverage data that will help the FCC realize its ambitious goal of universal broadband and advanced mobile coverage across the United States. In order to achieve this goal, the FCC created the Mobility Fund as a part of the Connect America Fund. The Mobility Fund is a universal service support mechanism dedicated exclusively to mobile service. However, in order for the Mobility Fund to improve coverage in underserved wireless mobile service areas, the FCC needs detailed coverage data. Largely due to access to more reliable data from provider-filed Forms...

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Cutting the Cable

By Eric Frederick

Video on demand (VOD) and streaming services are changing the way that viewers watch TV. Users no longer have to wait until nine o’clock to watch their favorite shows, and many are skipping commercials. New movies don’t have to be rented from a store, ordered via cable TV or even seen in a theater. Affordable online subscription services are expanding TV options and, in some cases, replacing cable.  With the average cost of a cable TV bill in the U.S. at $99—results of a steady 8% rise since 2010—many viewers are cutting the cord simply due to costs. As costs rise, so have VOD subscribers and the number of services available. In 2010...

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