...build-outs, particularly where highly-sought customers can be served in isolation (see the 1980s computer magazines @natecull posted earlier today, featuring ... zarrow people of colour) means early entrepreneurs can achieve high returns on investment. For both electrical and telephone grids, it wasn't until the US government established rural cooperatives for each that rural services were established in much of the country. So much for the free market.
Over a longer span, postal ...
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