The Washington Times - July 13, 2008, 05:16PM

DENVER — About two months ago, I wrote about the free high-speed Internet work area in Terminal B of Denver International Airport, also known as DIA. The timing of a return flight from the same city on July 13 (a different trip) has allowed me the chance to stop by and see whether the Internet service was still there.

It is, along with work areas and somewhat comfortable chairs in which to sit. Gone, though, is the Qwest employee who was at the front desk 60 days earlier. The Internet connection still works, though, and I’m grateful for it. The apparent reason for the devolution here: Qwest used to rent out these spaces and the high-speed broadband connection (803 kps download and 1.2 megabits upload) until someone else came to DIA with “free” Wi-Fi throughout the terminals. (For that service, you have to endure a 30-second commercial in your Web browser.)


Once the profit motive apparently evaporated, Qwest decided to pull back. I know they’ve had their problems, and I know this is more PR than anything else. But with a Democratic majority in Congress — you know, the folks who have a big say in telecom regulation — and with many of those Democrats coming here for their national convention, it might have made sense for Qwest to have held back, or even rolled out the (fiber-optic) red carpet for the conventioneers.

Gee, I wonder what Qwest has in place in Minneapolis, another of its cities? Isn’t there another political convention due there?

— Mark A. Kellner