Global Metro What?

4:30 PM -- I attended the MEF Carrier Ethernet for Business event in New York City yesterday and was pleased to be able to talk with speaker Don Tapscott, MEF Chairman Mike Tighe, and MEF President Nan Chen about the importance of business collaboration. (More on that later...)

But before I got the chance to speak with them, I had the opportunity to chat with the fellow sitting next to me, a mild-mannered network admin at a very large financial services firm. He was there to learn more about carrier Ethernet, the services it helps to enable, the potential cost savings of deploying it, etc., etc.

But he was a bit perplexed by the name of the sponsor.

"Why is the organization the Metro Ethernet Forum, if they keep talking about enabling these services across global networks?

And for that matter, the name of the event.

"And why would a business need carrier Ethernet?"

While I tried to explain to him that the name of the organization came before the acceptance of "carrier Ethernet," and that the specific qualities that made that technology carrier-grade existed before they were targeted toward the enterprise, and that global availability of carrier Ethernet services are a relatively recent phenomenon -- like, long after the "Metro" Ethernet Forum was born -- the point wasn't lost on me.

Maybe the MEF needs a new naming scheme if it hopes to make sense to anyone outside the immediate telecom industry.

Just a thought.

— Ryan Lawler, Passive Observer, Light Reading

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