back to article Turnbull says big telcos should subsidise bush comms

It looks like the federal government is getting its feet in a tangle, trying to reconcile the public good of the National Broadband Network with free-market doctrine. Communications minister Malcolm Turnbull has floated his ideas of how to create a transparent mechanism to subsidise rural telecommunications, and it seems to …

  1. Tim99 Silver badge

    Command and Control?

    If only Australia had a publicly owned communication structure then the Government could mandate what was built...

    1. Fluffy Bunny

      Re: Command and Control?

      "If only Australia had a publicly owned communication structure" - we did, it was called Telecom Australia and it was such an abomination. But you couldn't bypass it because any communications that crossed a road had to be provided by Telecom.

      It was an apalling mess that was only abolished at great cost. And don't say the Gov't can mandate what it does - Telecom responded to nobody's needs. For a long time, it wasn't even legal to plug in a modem.

  2. aberglas

    Tax and subsidize

    Given the idiot decision to sell Telstra, then a tax and subsidize might be appropriate. Much better than just "encouraging" and "hoping". Or even allow consumers to pay for it.

    Personally, I just want broadband. I do not care how fast, or who pays, or how much it will cost me (within reason). But dial up lines are not acceptable in the 2010s.

    Incidentally, Telstra's market cap was only about $30bn a couple of years ago. Labor would have done well to simply buy it back, and then sell of the mobile and retail. Cheaper than the NBN deal and no need to argue with anybody. (Liberals could not do that ideologically.)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    from everything you read, you would come to the conclusion that there is only poor broadband in country area's, however I live in Sydney's south where the only option is ADSL2 at around 400kb/s or 3Mbps as I live so far away from the exchange.

    1. Michael Xion

      Oddly enough, the NBN is the cause of your problem

      bear with me, this is a bit long...

      I live in a rural area and about 10 years ago all we could get was 56k dialup. The government of the day introduced a program to provide fixed wireless in rural areas to make up for the deficiency of the network. We got an antenna on the roof and moved up to a 512k download speed. Unfortunately, the system was line of sight and trees grew in the way of the signal path, so it stopped working after a couple of years. In the meantime, Telstra upgraded the exchange to allow ADSL2+. Meaning I could then get 9mbps downlink (which is what I have to this day).

      Back then, Telstra would upgrade exchanges on a rolling plan to ensure the service provided grew with the community. Once the NBN was mooted, this pretty much stopped. Nether Telstra, nor anyone else, was much concerned with upgrading the network when It might all get replaced or commandeered by the govt.

      The upshot of this is that even though I live in a rural area, my internet speeds are better than many people I know who live in inner Brisbane (if they can even get ADSL) due to the poor state of the infrastructure and lack of upgrades over the last few years.

      I should also point out that I live more than 3km from our exchange, so distance isn't the limiting factor. The limiting factor is the fucking government (of both political persuasions) stuffing around with the NBN rollout to the extent that if you don't have NBN, you're basically screwed.


      NBN rollout has basically stopped any ADSL upgrades and everything is now getting congested.

      My guess is that you are suffering from something akin to that, where your local exchange is at capacity and no more capacity will be added because of the NBN.

    2. Giraffe67

      My god I hope that's sarcasm....

      I live near Bendigo (11km's from a city of 110,000) and the only option is to..... Go somewhere else!

      Really crappy satellite that is unreliable and slow as s..t.

      Or wireless where your only choice is Bigpond (no optus or other service here) and expect it to drop out unless you have the high gain antenna's.

      And Bigpond want to send you a 4G modem.... ROFL, what for?

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

  4. kneedragon

    Public Mischief.

    It might pay to be a bit nicer to this man. Perhaps he doesn't know what TCP/IP stands for, but he might just be the new PM. I bet he knows what that stands for. ... Pubic Mustering?

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