Wi-Fi Wars On Campus


The University of Texas-Dallas recently banned its students from setting up their own Wi-Fi networks, arguing that independent networks clashed with the school's own free wireless network. On-campus students received a flyer that ordered them to cease all use of "rogue access points." Worse, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) ruled that colleges can prohibit students housed on school property from building their own Wi-Fi networks, according to news reports. Interestingly enough, more than 100 students had opted to forgo the free campus network and build their own systems, according to UT-Dallas. A large number of students protested the school's ban, and the issue soon spread like wildfire.

But just a few days after the university announced the ban, it reversed its order. Turns out, the school discovered another regulation under the FCC that prevents landlords from restricting their tenants' wireless access points. Still, some issues regarding the UT-Dallas controversy remain unresolved. For example, the ban at UT-Dallas involved on-campus apartments, not dorms. In addition, while students at UT-Dallas allege the school's network interference claims were a smokescreen, colleges with large student populations could be faced with bandwidth issues as more and more students adopt Wi-Fi. While a truce has been called with the UT-Dallas battle, the Wi-Fi wars will no doubt continue.

Sponsored post