More of us need to think like this. Question what is assumed. Consider whether doing it ourselves we can do a better job. This applies to Internet service, food, entertainment, energy, all sorts of things. Notice that this network was built because Orcas Island was probably an area Century Link didn’t really want to service anyway. If it was prime territory any attempt to DIY the Internet would likely have been fought by local regulators, but service likely would have been better too.
When you live somewhere with slow and unreliable Internet access, it usually seems like there’s nothing to do but complain. And that’s exactly what residents of Orcas Island, one of the San Juan Islands in Washington state, were doing in late 2013. Faced with CenturyLink service that was slow and outage-prone, residents gathered at a community potluck and lamented their current connectivity.
“Everyone was asking, ‘what can we do?’” resident Chris Brems recalls. “Then [Chris] Sutton stands up and says, ‘Well, we can do it ourselves.’”
Doe Bay is a rural environment. It’s a place where people judge others by “what you can do,” according to Brems. The area’s residents, many farmers or ranchers, are largely accustomed to doing things for themselves. Sutton’s idea struck a chord. “A bunch of us finally just got fed up with waiting for CenturyLink or anybody else to come to our rescue,” Sutton told Ars.