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FROM THIS EPISODE

If Comcast merges with Time Warner Cable, it will be America's dominant broadband provider. Netflix has already agreed to pay to get better service. Is Comcast getting too much power? Is broadband a national resource that should be regulated like a public utility? Also, turmoil in Ukraine, and a real-life discovery of buried treasure.

Banner image: Titanas

Producers:
Andrea Brody
Gideon Brower
Caitlin Shamberg

Fast Moving Events in Ukraine 7 MIN, 44 SEC

In the Ukrainian province of Crimea, Russian supporters seized a government building today. Russia will grant protection to ousted President Viktor Yanukovych and Russian troops are conducting exercises on the Ukrainian border. After a meeting of NATO ministers in Brussels today, US Defense Secretary Hagel issued a warning. "I expect Russia to be transparent about these activities, and I urge them not to take any steps that could be misinterpreted, or lead to miscalculation during a … time with great tension." Andrew Wood is Associate Fellow with the Russia and Eurasia Program at Chatham House in London. He was British Ambassador to Moscow from 1995 until 2000.

Guests:
Andrew Wood, Chatham House (@ChathamHouse)

Comcast and the Internet's Future 35 MIN, 55 SEC

New deals involving Comcast and other companies could have an impact on the quality, content and price of your Internet service. If its merger with Time Warner Cable goes through, Comcast will be the dominant provider of broadband in the United States. The powerhouse content provider Netflix, so popular that it consumes something like 30% of all broadband action during evening hours, has already agreed to pay Comcast to guarantee quality service, and nobody knows who might be next. It's a deal that's being called a major game changer when it comes to Internet service, content and cost to consumers. Will Comcast be able to dictate what finally reaches millions of users?  Will creative competitors have a chance? Will consumers pay more and get less? 

Guests:
Glenn Fleishman, Economist magazine (@glennf)
Michael Weinberg, Public Knowledge (@mweinbergPK)
Andrew Blum, journalist and author (@ajblum)
Kevin Werbach, University of Pennsylvania (@kwerb)

More:
Blum's 'Tubes; A Journey to the Center of the Internet'
Decision on Verizon v. the FCC ('TtP' feature)
Economist on Comcast and Time Warner Cable
Economist on Netflix-Comcast deal
Public Knowledge concerns over Netflix/Comcast agreement
Public Knowledge on net neutrality
The Fight over Net Neutrality ('TtP' discussion)

Tubes

Andrew Blum

Saddle Ridge Hoard and the Allure of Treasure 7 MIN, 24 SEC

"I thought any second an old miner with a mule was going to appear." That was the reaction of a California man who dug up $10 million worth of gold coins he and his wife found while they were walking their dog. It's a story of discovering buried treasure, an idea hard wired in the human psyche. There were 1427 coins — worth $5, $10 and $20 apiece — dated from 1847 to 1894 and minted in San Francisco. The couple that found them has not been identified, but David McCarthy is the numismatist, or coin expert, they consulted after realizing the dream of virtually every human being. He works for the coin dealer Kagin's in Tiburon, California.

Guests:
David McCarthy, Kagin's (@KaginsInc)

More:
The Saddle Ridge Treasure of US Gold Coins

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