A Community's Response to Free-Nets

The Great Plains Free-Net (GPFN) was formed in May 1994 with the objective of forming a community-based, non-profit, telecommunity for those areas of Saskatchewan not currently serviced by such a service. The model at its inception was that espoused by the National Public Telecomputing Network (NPTN) in the United States.

At its inaugural meeting, the founding members of the Great Plains Free-Net had the foresight and vision to commission a Needs-Assessment Committee to "perform community surveys, studies, etc. to define the services that the Regina [sic] freenet will provide upon initiation in the future..."[1]

To date, we know of no other Free-Net or telecommunity that sought to conduct a survey prior to start-up. This committee met on June 2, 1994 to begin the task set before it.

The methodology of a randomized phone survey was finally implemented in May 1995 with 457 surveys of Regina area residents.

[1]Draft agenda for the June 13, 1994 meeting of the then Regina Free-net dated May 30, 1994.