Wednesday, 21 March 2007

Telstractivism

Monthly phone bill just arrived, and with it came a wee leaflet telling us a few home truths about the parlous state of our nation. Home truths like this one: "Australia is being left behind the world in high-speed broadband." Quelle horreur! No, really, says my leaflet, we are lagging, abysmally, in Broadband Penetration. I'm not entirely sure who is penetrating whom here, but I can see from the graph that, of thirty developed countries, Australia is only seventeenth in broadband penetration. Yes, we do happen to be out-penetrating Germany, Spain, Italy, Portugal, New Zealand, the Czech Republic, Ireland, Hungary, Poland, Turkey, the Slovac Republic, Mexico and Greece, but is that good enough? Is it really satisfactory to be less penetrative, broadband-wise, than that poky little Scandinavian backwater, Denmark?

No, it's not, says spokesactivist, Rupert Murdoch, for the Telstra Broadband Australia campaign; "In Australia we only have a couple of million people on broadband and they don't even get 1Mb. I think it's a disgrace."

Damn straight, Rupes. I used to think that keeping refugees imprisoned in the desert was a disgrace, and I suspected a spot of disgrace over in the indefinite and illegal detention of David Hicks department, and I had my suspicions about the disgraciousness of slurping up to the US in its invasions of Vietnam and Afghanistan and Iraq, but this is where real disgrace resides. I feel sullied just thinking about it. I will be joining what Telstra calls its grass-roots campaign (to demand that "government and regulators ... give Telstra a fair go") forthwith. Seventeenth, I tells you. It shames me as an Australian.

12 comments:

TimT said...

Labor just had a press conference today talking about this very issue. Could be there's been a little backdoor dealing between Rupes, the Ruddster and Telstra.

alexis said...

That's interesting; thank you. Only I do not care. One little bit. And it's ridiculous that Telstra has tried to beat this up into a cause for national indignation.

Karen said...

This probably explains everything. I particularly like the phrase "broadband drought"- it really puts things in perspective, I think.
One would hope that they'd try to get the basics right first, but, alas, they don't govern for you or me, you know.

(The last article is hilarious)

alexis said...

This - about the removal of public phones - makes me very grr. Did anyone seriously believe that privatising the provider of essential and unprofitable services would be a good idea? (Right. Obviously this government and the previous Labor one did, but anyone could have seen this coming.) I know what's going to happen next: the government is going to have to start paying money to Telstra to subsidise unprofitable essential services. Telecom used to be a source of continuous public revenue, and it provided a more than adequate public service. Now it's been sold (to allow populist tax cuts or something) and it's either going to be an ongoing source of public expenditure or essential services just won't happen. And we cannot resocialise it because those shares are now worth three times more than they were sold for. This would never have happened under Trotsky.

Karen said...

You're preaching to the choir! I find it outrageous that any government would even contemplate privatising an essential service. I also come from the perspective of having had a father who worked for Telstra/Telecom for 26 years (as an electrical engineer) and witnessing firsthand the very nasty things that were done in an effort to retrench people without paying them the very large entitlements they had built up. I won't go into the details, but I'll observe that shedding a third of your workforce (especially the most technically qualified portion of it) seems to be the surefire way to achieve record profits, as they did that year.

blue_haired_jennifer said...

...Australia only HAS a couple of million people. What is Rupert planning to do, give broadband to the dingoes so that they can send smug emails to deprived Italian wolverines?

Yes, I realise that doesn't address the issue, but addressing the issue would require caring.

emmy said...

Broadband- a kind of chastity belt.

emmy said...

... for the ladies of course. and not to be penetrated!

alexis said...

Speaking of broadband, the chastity belt version, as Simon R once remarked, Australia is the only country where "I could go a broad" sounds more like a declaration of sexual intent than a holiday plan. (But we don't actually say such things, not where I come from.)

Karen, I'm glad to hear you're the choir. I'm the choir too.

JahTeh said...

I like the way that no mention of lowering the broadband connection fee was made. I'll stick with dial-up, it stops me using those annoying youtube videos.

prude said...

emmy, broadband has nothing to do with the proud chastity belt!!! You has insulted chastity belt wearers everywhere, well me anyhows and I think I is the one who matters. Read my proud history of the chastity belt on the link I provided and become informed before you link it with Telstra and become informed!

(I has being trying for years to convince someone to make a Teechno-millenium-chastity belt which can check SMS and email for you but to no avail. No one has provided a connection. This is proof Telstra is not involved!!! Or perhaps it is not proof. Anyhows take it for me it is not involved!)

If you wish to ask my chastity belta question that is not answered on my article, press 1, or wait on hold and listen to muzak til Mr Jumbles the operator answer it. He will be with you shortly. In the meantime my blog is www.prudesmission.blogspot.com, please read it very closely, your queries may be answered and you may not need to stay on hold.

Thank you for taking an interest in chastity belts.

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