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ST. CHARLES, MO. -- The Champaign-Urbana Community Wireless Network (CUWiN), Free Press and Mid-Rivers Community Wireless Network will host the second National Summit for Community Wireless Networks from March 31 to April 2 at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo.

The summit is the largest gathering of wireless network developers, technology and policy experts, and community organizers working to build universal, low-cost broadband networks around the world.

"The National Summit for Community Wireless Networks will explore the opportunities and challenges facing the growing movement to build nonprofit, open-source broadband networks," said Sascha Meinrath, co-founder and project coordination of CUWiN. "The event will showcase cutting-edge technologies and develop political strategies to bridge the digital divide."

Since the first National Summit for Community Wireless Networks in 2004, nearly 400 Community Internet and municipal broadband projects have sprung up in the United States alone. The summit will discuss how the networks can better serve their target populations, the policies needed to support broader deployment of community wireless systems, and the latest technological and software innovations.

Presenters at the summit will include Annie Collins of Fiber for Our Future, Mark Cooper of the Consumer Federation of America, Harold Feld of Media Access Project, Robert W. McChesney of Free Press and the University of Illinois, Matt Rantanen of Tribal Digital Village, Greg Richardson of Civitium LLC, Paul Smith of the Center for Neighborhood Technologies, Jim Snider of the New America Foundation, Dana Spiegel of NYC Wireless and Esme Vos of

"High-speed broadband access is the electricity of the 21st century, yet many rural and poorer urban communities are being left off the grid," said Ben Scott, policy director of Free Press, the national, nonpartisan media reform organization. "The innovators and organizers at the National Summit for Community Wireless Networks are blazing the trail to make broadband affordable and available to everyone."

For more information on the summit, or to register, please visit

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