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Rupert Murdoch Wants To Destroy Australia's National Broadband Network

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the with-his-fully-operational-battlestation dept.

Australia 327

pcritter writes "With the Australian Federal Election looming, Rupert Murdoch, the owner of Australia's biggest newspapers, is looking to unseat the incumbent Labor government over its centerpiece National Broadband Network policy. The media mogul sees the NBN as a threat to his media empire and has ordered newspapers to attack the project at every opportunity. The NBN seeks to bring 100Mbps Fibre-To-The-Premises internet to 93% of the country with wireless and satellite for the remainder. It currently reaches 4% of the population and is slated to complete in 2021. The conservative opposition has promised to dramatically scale back the project."

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Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (5, Insightful)

bartron (772079) | about a year ago | (#44469415)

Honestly, I'm sick of technological advances being blocked because it hurts someones bottom line. Something something stock whip makers.

If the NBN affects his business then his business is archaic and newscorp can adjust or die...preferably the latter

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (5, Insightful)

Nichotin (794369) | about a year ago | (#44469457)

It is both funny and tragic how these people, who can build such large conglomerates, fail to see the business opportunities that arise when 93% of the population has 100Mbit fiber...

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (5, Insightful)

Carewolf (581105) | about a year ago | (#44469501)

Well, he probably sees the opportunities, but also realize he is not the best person to take advantage of them, so he must destroy it to avoid his betters from getting an advantage there, since they might use that to bring light to the places his media empire currently rules.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (4, Interesting)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#44469649)

I was watching a Werner Herzog documentary about trappers in the Siberian taiga and, long story short, one trapper was complaining about trappers who will trap before some kind of critter's coat was really ready, on the basis that a few coins in his pocket now is better than someone else getting full price for the pelt later if they trap it instead of him. It's universal, and it's the reason why I'm a liberal and not an anarchist; without adequate restrictions on commerce it rapidly becomes first and foremost an instrument of tyranny. Kind of like now.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (5, Interesting)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#44469887)

The success of anarchy depends on self discipline and voluntary cooperation. It is possible that such a thing is unattainable in this physical universe, but it would be nice to make the effort. It would mean we are becoming human. What you described is not anarchy.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469947)

We'll never have a worthwhile society until the average human is significantly more intelligent and ethical. Everyone is just too dumb and destructive on average to hope for much better right now.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

Ocker3 (1232550) | about a year ago | (#44469699)

Don't forget he makes a Lot of money from Foxtel, which people wouldn't pay as much money for if they can get content from a provider like NetFlix, which they'll be able to do if the majority of the country have Fibre instead of the crap Copper lines. He's got a monopoly atm, he doesn't want competitors.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (2)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#44469767)

Well, he probably sees the opportunities, but also realize he is not the best person to take advantage of them...

I don't think so. Murdoch might be an asswipe (except with the reservation that such an item is actually useful), but from his point of view, the NBN is a threat to his Poxtel network. There's no way he can abandon that, so he'll just swing his wrecking ball wherever it'll work. But let's face it, he's 80-something years old, and he has been solidly on the most extreme right-wing side of the fence for decades, so really there's nothing new to see here.

He has unlimited access to advertising space, which will probably work in his favour with the so-called "swinging" voters - i.e. those who are so brain-dead, they should be disqualified from voting at all.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (4, Insightful)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44469831)

There's almost more general competition. He controls a media empire: Television production, broadcast networks, newspapers. Maintaining an empire like that depends to some extent on barrier to entry and economy of scale considerations - no new startup channel is going to appear to compete with his own because they would be unable to afford to set up studios or license content, and even if they could they don't own huge cable networks or geostationary broadcast satellites, and even renting some capacity on his own networks costs a lot of money - there's a reason all those religious channels, shopping channels and very niche-interests live up in the 900s on the episode guide.

The internet changes that. Anyone with a little skill and some very affordable equipment can set up like That Guy With The Glasses or SF Debris did - all the time people spend watching videos off of such websites is time they might otherwise be spending watching television.

What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469739)

What great new applications does a household 100 megabit connection permit? I am genuinely curious. The best I can think of is widespread piracy. As for video, people are willing to tolerate a few megabit, 360p video. Even blu ray only needs 36 megabit. Verizon Fios has been offering 50 and 100 megabit connections, for at least a few years. At least of few million people in America have access to such connections. If there was an obvious economic use of >100 megabit internet connection, some people would be aware of it by now.

Re: What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469861)

Hi Murdoch shill. Welcome to the discussion, we appreciate your remind us of one of the talking points for trying to block technological advances that are good for individuals and our country.
While we understand that you are paid to try to derail this discussion and obfuscate the issue, we would all appreciate if you could find a line of work that had less potential harm on the rest of us. Thank you.

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (1, Flamebait)

etash (1907284) | about a year ago | (#44469895)

just because you are dumb enough to imagine of a future where 100mbit is less than necessary, doesn't mean there are or there can be no new applications. I guess you still have just 640k of ram in your computer eh?

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469951)

I guess you still have just 640k of ram in your computer eh?

I'm not sure even GNU/Linux can run in 640 KB RAM anymore. Okay, it has been decades since my computer had less than 2 MB RAM while my current computers have respectively 8 GB RAM (notebook), 2 GB RAM (smartphone), and 1 GB RAM (tablet). For the record, I miss programming the mere 3.5 KB RAM (user available) of the Commodore VIC-20 as well as its 128-byte cassette buffer which could be used for a terminate-and-stay-resident type utility provided the cassette was not being used. ;-)

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (5, Insightful)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#44469907)

I know you're trolling (especially on the 'piracy' thing), but why does 100 megabit internet have to be of economic use?

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469981)

Because fuck culture, education, and advancement of humanity. If it doesn't put more gold in my pocket I don't want to hear about it.

Said everyone ever. And that's how nothing ever got done, and the world fell apart.

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (2)

asaul (98023) | about a year ago | (#44469911)

Why have more than 8Mhz and 640k memory - all it does is drive people to use graphical based pr0n. Won't someone think of the ascii pr0n industry.

Think what a home with say two adults and two teenagers might consume in parallel - each possibly watching their own content - thats just video/streaming. Then you have other applications that benefit from low latency and low jitter connections that can be offered with such fast stable networks (better conferencing, gaming etc). The increased upload capacity can open up options for remote monitoring for medical or security purposes.

Sure, it will take time for the current use of such bandwidth to be consumed but you don't have the use for it until you build it. Go back 15 years and imagine those networks with modern YouTube and Netflix load on them.

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469971)

For me, personally?

As a freelance website developer, I can invest maybe $5-10k in getting a good server, a backup scheme and a UPS. Instead of setting all my clients up with external hosting plans and earning nothing for it, I could host at my office (aka home) and keep making money off my clients for as long as they keep their website.

"What great new applications does a household ADSL connection permit? I am genuinely curious. The best I can think of is widespread piracy. As for audio, people are willing to tolerate a few kilobit, 128k audio. Even flac only needs 1000 kilobit. Verizon Fios has been offering 512k and 1 megabit connections, for at least a few years. At least of few million people in America have access to such connections. If there was an obvious economic use of ADSL internet connection, some people would be aware of it by now."

Re:What is a 100Mbit connection good for? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44470001)

I know one, if all 7 billion people on world had cheap 100mbit connection i would make website with P2P video chat that is free so nobody would use phones anymore (except to access internet) and i would be rich on advertising on side of video call

unfortunately that idea and million other ideas that would make everyone life easier is not possible with current infrastructure

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (0, Troll)

aurispector (530273) | about a year ago | (#44469463)

If you're not making money, you're losing money. But only a government can simply tax you for more or worse borrow it and let your kids pay it back.

Put the government in charge of the Sahara desert and in five years it will run out of sand. Any organization tends toward inefficiency. A free and open competitive market tends to put pressure on participants to be efficient.

Governments have no idea how to run a tech (or any) business except to make it late, over budget and under spec. Every decision is made for political rather than economic reasons. The only people who think that's a good idea are fools that thing government is always good, or wolves that want the power.

Which are you?

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (2)

bartron (772079) | about a year ago | (#44469491)

I don't trust the government as far as I could spit but the advantages afforded by 100mbit fibre to the home is worth picking the lesser of two evils (or incompetents as the case may be. BTW, my election preferences go way beyond fast internet, although it is a consideration)

Also, even though a government may be inefficient it takes a government with no expectation (or requirement) to make a profit to implement a scheme such as this. A private company needs to make money to survive and can't bear the debt an initial rollout requires to implement (case in point, the fibre rollout in the ACT by TransACT). Once the infrastructure is in place then it, or portions thereof, can be privatised if needed.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (3, Insightful)

Ocker3 (1232550) | about a year ago | (#44469705)

Exactly, things like water, power, roads, internet access, these are infrastructure that is necessary for commerce, you'd think any politician who wants business to flourish would Want a Labor-style NBN as it increases the chances for Australians to do business tasks better than other countries!

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (2)

polar red (215081) | about a year ago | (#44469495)

at's a good idea are fools that thing government is always good

also fools : people who think the government is always wrong, or after them. you generalise too much.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469529)

This would be the reason there are no public libraries anymore.

They could have been saved if our only "government" was a bunch of out-for-themselves captains of industry. The unfettered free market would surely have found a way of providing enormous utility to citizens who couldn't afford to pay.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#44469787)

This would be the reason there are no public libraries anymore.

Actually, in Australia, the public library systems are often quite good. (For now, at least.)

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469543)

Put the government in charge of the Sahara desert and in five years it will run out of sand.

And this is a problem because? Are you a naturalist who doesn't want to disturb the pristine Sahara desert?

The idea that government running the Sahara desert out of sand would be a problem is somehow based on the premise that we want it to have sand, which is a sentiment I'm not quite following. Would you be upset if the government were to reverse the desertification of the Sahara, flooding it with water from the ocean or the Mediterranean, or just finding a way to change the sand into fertile soil instead?

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (5, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | about a year ago | (#44469581)

Government does, on the other hand, understand infrastructure needs. Matters such as minimum standards, right of way and others help to prevent cherry-picking businesses from servicing and improving only the most profitable areas which leads to all manner of growth and development problems not the least of which are population densities in small and concentrated areas (which leads to high real estate/housing, high violent crime and many other problems) and extremely underdeveloped areas where the population cannot participate in modern life.

At first basic needs included roads, then sewage, then public water (not so sure that's as much of a great thing these days), then electricity, then telephone. We all agree these things are not just good, but necessary for a civilized area to exist today. And the internet? I think we've gone far beyond it being considered a novelty and no one uses FAX machines any more... (okay, almost no one) As far as I'm concerned, it's as much of an infrastructure/utility need as the rest and internet needs to replace the telephone and it cannot do that without first having efficient and usable broadband. Also, we need some open standards for internet telephony that doesn't mean paying someone or something like Skype or other commercial entities.

Anyway... I have too much to say on the subject, but while I agree we can expect waste and mismanagement from government, you have to understand it goes back to the motives of government. Ideally, government should not be for profit. (Invariably it is because business people help get government into office which supports their business interests... a whole other discussion)

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469589)

I'm not sure exactly what your point is, however part of a (good) Governments responsibility is to invest in long term infrastructure that wont see immediate benefits.

That anti-government bullshit is not relevant (2)

dbIII (701233) | about a year ago | (#44469611)

The government's role here is basicly to put up the money and get the thing built. To use a vehicle analogy they are contracting out to get highways built but have no role in the trucking companies that are going to use it later.

The entire thing is being done to repair an earlier government mistake anyway - of giving a communications monopoly away with not strings attached so the best way for that monopoly to make money was just sit on it and patch bits that broke since 1996.

Re:That anti-government bullshit is not relevant (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about a year ago | (#44469657)

I live in former Pacific Bell territory, and in the boonies to boot. I can't get DSL because they're still patching bits that broke since the 1980s in my neighborhood.

Re:That anti-government bullshit is not relevant (1)

fche (36607) | about a year ago | (#44469807)

"The entire thing is being done to repair an earlier government mistake anyway ..."

So taxpayers are on the hook twice for governmental error? Count yourself lucky it's only two so far.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (-1)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#44469785)

The Young Liberal invasion of Slashdot has begun.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (4, Insightful)

geoskd (321194) | about a year ago | (#44469909)

If you're not making money, you're losing money. But only a government can simply tax you for more or worse borrow it and let your kids pay it back.

Put the government in charge of the Sahara desert and in five years it will run out of sand. Any organization tends toward inefficiency. A free and open competitive market tends to put pressure on participants to be efficient.

Governments have no idea how to run a tech (or any) business except to make it late, over budget and under spec. Every decision is made for political rather than economic reasons. The only people who think that's a good idea are fools that thing government is always good, or wolves that want the power.

Which are you?

Inefficient organizations are not the worst things that can happen to society. Far from it in fact. Tyranny and monopoly abuse are by far the greater evils. In the so called land of the free, we have millions of workers being squeezed for every penny in the name of efficiency, so that the tyrants on top can have more and more. Meanwhile, they use their powers to control access to resources that should cost almost nothing so that those in the middle and on the bottom can have less and less even though the availability of resources continues to grow.

The simple fact is that efficiency of markets under capitalism only benefits the already wealthy. It does practically nothing for the middle class, and actively hurts the poor. The phrase a "rising tide lifts all ships" is not true with our broken economic system. What we need is a new economic system that severely limits how far ahead of the curve any individual can get. We used to have such a system, it was called progressive taxation. What we have now is a shambles.

The solution is relatively simple. Wipe out corporations the way they stand now. The socialists got the problem right, just botched the solution. You cant take the power away from one group of greedy scuzzballs, and give it to another group of greedy scuzzballs and expect everything to get better. A better suggestion I have heard is to give ownership of all corporations to the workers who are employed by the company. Each employee gets 1 vote in selecting those that run the company. Limit companies to a maximum number of employees to keep super-conglomerates from swamping individuals with raw numbers. To be sure, some economies of scale would be lost. The wealthy would never permit it if they have any say in the matter. Our current system of government will not allow it to happen because the wealthy have too much power and there is no way to get it back from them.

Our government has been completely and wholly pwned by the wealthy. Unless they are willing to give up the power permanently and in ways that can be enforced, the peoples of the democratic nations of the world may have no alternative than to replace capitalism at the point of a gun.

That is the reason that gun control is so dangerous to the average person. Once you have no ability to do violence, you have very little power to enforce your authority, and authority that cant be enforced isn't real. Remember that the next time you vote to "make our streets safer". Its not us they're making the streets safer for...

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469931)

Governments have no idea how to run a tech (or any) business except to make it late, over budget and under spec

Not really... There are many things that, at least some, governments are great at and that is infrastructure.
Roads - Sure some can be worn down a bit, but at least everyone has a functional one leading to their home.
Electricity - Most people have electricity at home. Most of the power-grids where built up either by the government or together with the government.
Water - Most people have running water at home. Most of the water-systems where build up either by the government or together with the government.
Taxes - Try and find a single government that is inefficient in collecting them..

A free and open competitive market tends to put pressure on participants to be efficient.

I would actually say no to that... An open competitive market will make money efficient for it's owners, but the actual company will not be efficient in terms of resources unless it will make them more money. Also companies do fear change because it requires them to change and take risks on new development..
Example: It's efficient for a company to install 100Mbit to 50% of the residents in a community. 20 other companies will not be able to make money in the community without having at least 80% of all residents. Residents in the community do not see the benefit of the 100Mbit connection after a while and goes with the 20Mbit ADSL that is half the price of the 100Mbit connection.
The thing is that a single company only cares about itself, they do not care about the global picture and what is more efficient and beneficial to the whole.
This is why there are many smaller towns have decided to build their own networks and finance it via tax to allow for better development of the town as a whole, and why some companies have blocked them because that company could have made a small profit on maybe 50% of the town. Break even for the town with 100% or private company making some profit on 50% while the town loses money on the other 50%.. What do you think is better?

Basically all organizations are inefficient. But what can be done is that the government can regulate and then the open market will have to conform. Problem is that currently the companies in the open market buys the government so the actual regulating part is lost.

Actually... The only truly efficient and fair society would be with a dictator-ship where the dictator would be completely fair and equal against all... But try finding a person that would be like that, probably even [pick your favorite] would fail at that..

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

bkmoore (1910118) | about a year ago | (#44469987)

Infrastructure in and of itself doesn't necessarily make a direct profit. But having good universal infrastructure, from clean water, sewage, roads, etc. is necessary to having a decent standard of living and a solid economic foundation. Yes, private enterprise can do infrastructure. But generally private infrastructure takes over the profitable segments of the country and leaves the government (by extension, the tax payers) with the cost of doing the unprofitable areas, if they're served at all. Then when the government inevitably loses money, because the most profitable markets have been privatized, the magical-market-political-types stomp on how inefficient the government is and how government can only squander resources. It's like having Fed-Ex trash talking the USPS, even though Fed-Ex doesn't do universal mail delivery.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

khallow (566160) | about a year ago | (#44469469)

What is the "technological advance" that is being obstructed here? Looks to me like a standard fight over a government program with the side that is getting teh short end of the deal trying to cripple it by attacking some of the main backers.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

Ocker3 (1232550) | about a year ago | (#44469719)

If by short end of the deal you mean 'losing his monopoly on providing premium television/movie content' then I agree with you. Because you won't need a special box or line to get high-end content, Murdoch's monopoly will fall.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (2)

asaul (98023) | about a year ago | (#44469827)

Some history. Until around 1991 Australian telecommunications was provided by a single government owned business - Telecom (formerly Post Master General, then later Telstra). Telstra practically owned all the in ground infrastructure including the last mile copper to practically every phone in the country. Any hint of competition was crushed with obstruction, anti-competitive wholesale practices etc. Other players came in and grew some of their own infrastructure, extra long haul fibre mostly, but still practically any Telco wanting to provide services to a customer had to lease a Telstra tail line, generally at prices that made it impossible to offer anything cheaper than Telstra offered. During this period technology that the US long forget (such as ISDN) was as premium as you could get here, and technology like DSL was limited by being only possible where Telstra decided to offer it or where Telstra were forced to provide space in exchanges.

The old copper network crippled any sort of improvement to Australian internet technology - the copper lines were Telstra's cash cow and doing anything modern with them would also mean they would have to share it with the competition, so nothing much changed.

Then a previous conservative government came up with the idea of doing a "National Broadband Network" initiative. It was basically WiMax everywhere, except new places that might get some fibre over time - most likely FTTN (fibre to the node). The problem was to do anything more required buying the copper back from Telstra, and the conservatives screwed the pooch on that because they sold off Telstra as one entity - retail, wholesale and the copper network. As a new deregulated entity with some more gung ho leadership, Telstra were even more anti-competitive and not willing to give up their network. The conservatives also naively believe the free market will bring in the new technology, despite 20 years of proof that Telstra won't let that happen.

When the government they got voted out, the new more socialist government (read that as centre left) plan for the NBN was researched, and the proposal was Fibre to the Premises (FTTP). To do this they gave Telstra the option of selling its copper/access for $11B, or having it bought by compulsory acquisition (a constitutional right of the government) and a long legal fight. A deal was reached (most likely because Telstra delayed long enough and now had a new 4G network that was now its prime market) and the copper was sold, allowing the NBN project to kick off and start rolling out fibre across the country. The basic plan is the NBN Company (NBNCo) build a national fibre network and run it, and service providers sell services on it to customers.

As is natural of opposition government, they say no to everything, and think their way is better. The argument boils down to this:

a). Spend $36B and provide 96% of the population with 100M or 1GB internet over fibre. Most of that cost is covered by selling investment bonds and the eventual income from providing services on this network, so the cost is not necessarily on the taxpayer as much as the opposition would like to go on. Obvious benefit, its long term scalable infrastructure, but is more costly and slower to deploy. This is the socialist (Labour Party) plan.
b) Spend $28B and provide most of the population with 24MB VDSL using FTTN, leaving the copper as the last mile to the premises. Similar business plan, just slightly less cost. Benefit is it is slightly cheaper, and meets current internet needs. This is the conservative (Liberal Party) plan.

So - Murdoch is quite definitely a friend of the Liberals (ironic naming for conservatives), and is using his weight in the media to lay into the NBN plan every chance he gets to attack Labour. Any minor delay, problem, cost increase or simply propaganda he can find to rubbish the Labour government using the NBN is headlines. Also because if the Liberals get their way they will basically stop rolling out the current NBN and go to the lower specification one, just on the basis of slightly cheaper cost at the expense of building actual real infrastructure for the country - and that would be ideal for Murdoch too.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#44469953)

...the Liberals (ironic naming for conservatives)...

Not really. What many people call 'conservative' are actually neo-liberals, the most famous of which being Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher... and would include Rupert Murdoch.

Re:Rupert Murdoch can die in a hole already. (4, Insightful)

WOOFYGOOFY (1334993) | about a year ago | (#44470005)

Accurate and widely available information about reality is a mortal threat to your business model.

  What does that say about what you do for a living?

Sheesh! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469429)

I thought they did things "upside down" not "backwards" in Australia.

Re:Sheesh! (1)

dintech (998802) | about a year ago | (#44469515)

Why not both at once?

Re:Sheesh! (3, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44469573)

Australians can do both at once if you apply the [[-1, 0], [0, -1]] transformation matrix to them.

must be a slow news day (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469431)

Capitialist robber baron wants to restrict comeptition , hardly news is it

I should start a newspaper... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469435)

I should start a newspaper with tons of pro-NBN stories. Either it will balance the media conversation, or I'll get bought out for a handsome sum. Or I guess potentially beat up by the mob...

Labor Lie (-1, Flamebait)

normalbloke (1994834) | about a year ago | (#44469441)

This is straight from the labour party's lie book, i.e discredit anyone who scrutinises, questions or opposes you. The coalition's NBN policy is realistic and more affordable than the labour fantasy which is completely unaffordable.

Re:Labor Lie (4, Insightful)

The1stImmortal (1990110) | about a year ago | (#44469511)

Seriously? The coalition's plan is "Let's take the Labor Party's plan, and shave a couple percent off the price by dropping the most important bit of the project!" (ie, converting from FTTH to FTTN and leaving everyone stuck with telstra's awful ancient copper system connecting to a large and unsightly roadside active cabinet)

If the NBN is going to get done, lets get it done properly, instead of doing some half-hearted poor job of it.

Re:Labor Lie (2)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469523)

What's a lie, that the Labour NBN policy is a good idea, or that Murdoch uses his media empire to oppose a policy that he thinks will hurt his business?

As an American, I don't know enough about the NBN program to say. If Labour sucks then let Australian voters throw them out.

Murdoch is another story. Excessive media consolidation is a major problem, and Murdoch's tentacles are not confined to your continent. The US used to have regulations that limited the extent of media consolidation, and ensured greater freedom and diversity of the press, but they were thrown in the trash. No one person or organization should control so much of the news that people get.

Re: Labor Lie (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469553)

The problem we have here in Australia is that both choices in party suck, it's like choosing between syphallis and herpes. You don't want either of them, but once you've got em, they don't go away.

Re: Labor Lie (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469559)

The problem we have here in Australia is that both choices in party suck, it's like choosing between syphallis and herpes. You don't want either of them, but once you've got em, they don't go away.

Australia. You mean the country/continent in the Southern Hemisphere, right? Because it really sounds like you're talking about America.

Re: Labor Lie (2)

drsmithy (35869) | about a year ago | (#44469865)

Australia. You mean the country/continent in the Southern Hemisphere, right? Because it really sounds like you're talking about America.
For nearly twenty years Australian political leaders have looked to America and thought "that's awesome, we need some of that over here".

Re:Labor Lie (1)

dbIII (701233) | about a year ago | (#44469637)

The US used to have regulations that limited the extent of media consolidation

They were mostly designed to prevent foreign ownership which is why Murdoch is now a US citizen. The corporation itself is still technically foreign and based in Bermuda or somewhere to avoid US tax but that doesn't matter if a US citizen is in charge.

Re:Labor Lie (1)

Ocker3 (1232550) | about a year ago | (#44469733)

And Australia (under a conservative Gov) made a special provision so Murdoch could keep his 70% of national newspaper ownership (yes, 70%) while no longer being an Australian Citizen!!!

Re:Labor Lie (4, Interesting)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469929)

If you're trying to outdo us Yanks in corruption, forget it. Murdoch became a naturalized US citizen by an act of congress, rather than following the path that tens of millions of people who don't have lots of money to bribe congress have followed over the last few centuries. He became a citizen (in name only obviously) because there is/was a law that only a US citizen could own a US TV station.

Re:Labor Lie (5, Insightful)

drsmithy (35869) | about a year ago | (#44469857)

As an American, I don't know enough about the NBN program to say.
In a nutshell, the NBN is a plan to deliver fibre-optic telecommunications infrastructure to most of the country. It will build (and own) the physical infrastructure upon which retail ISPs will deliver their products.
If Labour sucks then let Australian voters throw them out.
Labor does, indeed, suck, and Australian voters are probably going to throw them out. The problem is if they do they're going to replace them with a party that takes everything that sucks about Labor, and says: "You boys are just playin'. Let's crank this shit up to 11!".

Re:Labor Lie (1)

dbIII (701233) | about a year ago | (#44469621)

Look at it again, it's a list of hopes and not a policy. The major hope is that Telstra will give away a lot of stuff for free - as if that's going to happen.

Re:Labor Lie (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about a year ago | (#44469693)

Lets do the math:
FTTN will need power and optical rolled out into suburbia.
Each node will be ejecting fancy new vectoring or better tech into existing final very old copper runs of 200~2000m.
Australia will have have to look hard at each adsl user. That long run of existing adsl copper from the 500m-4 km exchange/rim (~digital loop carrier) will have fight with the new nodes.
What will a new 300m-2km run of vectoring copper do to existing adel 1/2 users?
Hint - every user will have to get a node connection for internet if vectoring is used near existing adsl connections:)
Thats a lot of nodes to build out in suburbia per 500-2000m suburban copper loops.
The short runs of copper are corroded, crushed or have a few too many joins and will need ongoing care.
Australia did over provision copper, but that was a long time ago ~100% redundancy (~2.5 pairs per home) is now very low.
What is left is over used or of unknown quality re low number of working pairs.
http://www.abc.net.au/technology/articles/2012/11/27/3642266.htm [abc.net.au]
Our solder joints are old, oxidisation is ongoing, alien crosstalk (ATX)....copper diameter (in Australia 0.4mm is common)... the list of copper issues in the ground is Australia is not like some 'new' lab network.
http://www.ti.com/sc/docs/products/network/vdslwp.pdf [ti.com] has some numbers over longer runs on page 32.
http://delimiter.com.au/2012/04/30/fttn-a-huge-mistake-says-ex-bt-cto/ [delimiter.com.au]

Re:Labor Lie (0)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#44469789)

Why is this douche nozzle getting rated Insightful?

If anybody is lying, it's that insane right-wing psychopath and habitual liar, Tony Abbott, and his soggy-biscuit Coalition chums. That freak will destroy Australia in a single term, and there are plenty of dupes who'll vote for that nutter.

Re:Labor Lie (1)

drsmithy (35869) | about a year ago | (#44469835)

The coalition's NBN policy is realistic and more affordable than the labour fantasy which is completely unaffordable.
The Coalitions NBN policy is to deliver yesterday's solution, tomorrow, for marginally less than it would cost to do it properly.

Actually that describes most of their "policies" (such as they are).

"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (5, Insightful)

asifyoucare (302582) | about a year ago | (#44469449)

The link that purports to lead to a link showing that Murdoch ordered his papers to attack the project at every opportunity shows no such thing. Instead it shows that the press council expressed concern about one of Murdoch's papers' coverage of NBN. I'm no great fan of Murdoch but such exaggeration damages the submitter's case.

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (1)

I'm New Around Here (1154723) | about a year ago | (#44469489)

Well, from what I just read, it shows the press council got three complaints in 2011, about three articles during June and July. The complaint was that the articles were inaccurate and misleading.

The press council agreed the articles were inaccurate and misleading, although the articles were full of verifiable facts. So now, stating facts in a news article is misleading. Using the latest published numbers is misleading. Quoting a customer, who when asked agrees with the tone of the usage of his words, is misleading.

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469587)

So if *some* of the claims in an article are true it cannot be inaccurate or misleading. Got it.

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469597)

Properly chosen "facts" can be misleading and untruthful. For example, take Mitt Romney's comments about the size of the US Navy having fewer ships in service under Obama than anytime since the first World War.

True, but irrelevant information with no particular meaning or worth in the discussion. The needs and composition of the US Navy has changed in the almost century since that figure was pulled out of the air, and even the counting of ships.

Yet Romney parroted the line till his face turned blue. And so did Murdoch's networks in the US.

So you know what? Murdoch has a history in America of using facts in a way that is misleading and inaccurate, so why would any of us expect it to be different in Australia? A man doesn't change his conduct when crossing the ocean.

 

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (2)

Immerman (2627577) | about a year ago | (#44469819)

Selectively telling the truth is one of the most time-tested effective ways to tell a lie - just spin a good narrative and leave out the parts of the truth that prove your position to be false.

So no, "having lots of facts" does not even come close to showing that something is not inaccurate and misleading. (Discalimer: I have no idea what the truth of the matter in this instance was, just stating a general trend)

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (2)

BrokenHalo (565198) | about a year ago | (#44469821)

Well, from what I just read, it shows the press council got three complaints in 2011, about three articles during June and July.

OK, well here's some much more recent and relevant food for thought:

Murdoch sends trusted general 'Col Pot' to bring down Rudd over NBN [theage.com.au]

Is that specific enough for you?

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44469949)

Quoting customers can be misleading.

For example, there is a propaganda piece called 180 made in 2011 which has, as a central premise, the idea that people today are already forgetting who Hitler was. Soon after it opens there is a montage of interviews, as person after person is asked and claims no knowledge of the name or the events of world war 2.

Misleading, of course - because what the producer actually did was interview many, many, many people and only show those interviews which agree with his point. For every person he could find who had never heard of Hitler, there may have been a hundred who had - and he just didn't show them. At no point did he misquote anyone, yet he was still able to give a false impression about historical knowledge in the casual US population.

Fair & Balanced (1)

mrspoonsi (2955715) | about a year ago | (#44469651)

For the guy who owns Fox News, Karma works in weird and wonderful ways.

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (4, Insightful)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about a year ago | (#44469741)

Oh c'mon, don't let boring reality get in your way! It's Murdoch! slashmind says must hate!

Re:"Attack the project" unsubstantiated (0)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#44469797)

Concern troll is /concerned/....

The only correct response to this... (3, Funny)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44469461)

Scream bloody Murdoch.

Re:The only correct response to this... (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year ago | (#44469497)

Is that the title of an Australian folk song?

A nice idea (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469467)

NBN's 93% FTTH is like a bridge to Tasmania - expensive, practically unnecessary, and a harbinger of eye watering tolls... Who wouldn't poke fun at it?

Just a shame I'm not in a marginal enough electorate to get in on the early rollout.

Re:A nice idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469571)

Support newspapers, they are needed by pet bird owners. I never read the shit they print but works great on the bottom of bird cages to attract more shit.

why bother? (1)

stenvar (2789879) | about a year ago | (#44469475)

The whole thing is likely going to collapse under its own weight anyway.

Democracy or policy set by Murdoch? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469481)

Democracy or policy set by Murdoch? The conservatives are all for it because they know, if Murdoch really wants it he'll give them every media opportunity they need while denying everyone else except maybe unfavourable attention.

Welcome to Australia the Italy of the East. I'm waiting with amusement for the australian variant of "tutti frutti".

Re:Democracy or policy set by Murdoch? (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469551)

Democracy or policy set by Murdoch? The conservatives are all for it because they know, if Murdoch really wants it he'll give them every media opportunity they need while denying everyone else except maybe unfavourable attention.

Welcome to Australia the Italy of the East. I'm waiting with amusement for the australian variant of "tutti frutti".

To me, as an American, that's the real issue. I don't know, and frankly am not terribly concerned, about Australian NBN. Murdoch as the latter day Hearst [wikipedia.org] is another story.

Australian federal election announced today (5, Informative)

bigmadwolf (1411635) | about a year ago | (#44469507)

The timing of this post on the front page is a little too timely. The prime minister Kevin Rudd today announced the date the federal election is to be held. It will be September 7th. Me thinks the poster is quite possibly a card carrying Australian Labor Party (ALP) member.

There seems to be a lot of scaremongering going on in regards to the Liberal National coalition's NBN policy. The ALP is promising fibre to the building in all cases except for where it is completely infeasible (e.g. remote towns out in the desert etc.). Sounds great but it will be expensive. Probably somewhere well over $50 billion. The coalition is promising fibre to the node with fibre to the building available at cost to the user for those that need it. Coalition's will be a fair bit cheaper as it won't be funding fibre to every building.

The ALP's NBN policy page [howfastisthenbn.com.au]

The Liberal National coalition's NBN policy page [liberal.org.au]

Debate over which of the two policies is superior is healthy but blatant biased scaremongering is not.

That's only a Sydney solution (3, Interesting)

dbIII (701233) | about a year ago | (#44469695)

One is a policy, another is a bit of a wish list before the policy is fully thought out. If you look hard enough there's bound to still be a podcast of the ABC radio interview with Malcolm Turnbull on the morning it was released, where the answer to nearly every question was along the lines of "we'll get to that later". If the Libs, Nats and LNP win and form a government I'd give it about a year before they have a plan. Whether it's better or worse depends on circumstances and how much pressure the Nats who want broadband in their electorates apply and what numbers they have. The preview we've seen is only going to work in areas with a lot of evenly spread telephone exchanges not far apart so is really only a Sydney solution.

The main purpose of the NBN as far as I see it is to do an end run around Telstra who is just happy to sit on infrastructure that hasn't changed much since 1996 and not let anyone else do anything better. Most of the vast cost of the NBN is about buying off Telstra. It's about fixing a mess that was dumped on the country in a desire for short term gain with a fire sale in times when the government didn't really need the cash. If Telstra had a board of better quality than a politician's wife, a failed historian and a union busting failed farmer things may have been different, but it's about sitting on stuff and not letting anyone else in instead of competing on the basis of improvements or service.

slightly off topic (1, Interesting)

Presto Vivace (882157) | about a year ago | (#44469513)

Murdoch's Pirates [amazon.com] . It is useful to keep in mind News Corps' very sleazy business culture.

He will no doubt enlist the help of the country's (4, Insightful)

mark_reh (2015546) | about a year ago | (#44469519)

religious fanatics by pointing out that a high speed broad-band network will be primarily used to speed the delivery of pornography to children.

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469537)

The UK has fixed that. If we had such a program in America we could ensure that at least 50% of Internet content was evangelical preaching.

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (4, Insightful)

mark_reh (2015546) | about a year ago | (#44469647)

In the US we have at least 50% of TV and radio broadcast time and bandwidth dedicated to preaching (some of which is presented in the form of right-wing political propaganda), the remainder is divided between singing contests and "news" about the Kardashians.

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (1)

Hentes (2461350) | about a year ago | (#44469555)

They already have an internet filter so that argument won't work.

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (1)

Immerman (2627577) | about a year ago | (#44469837)

Ah, but we know full well that such filtering doesn't actually work and never has.

What, then why do we have it? That's not the topic under discussion here, next question please.

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469569)

religious fanatics by pointing out that a high speed broad-band network will be primarily used to speed the delivery of child pornography.

FTFY

captcha: bowels

Re:He will no doubt enlist the help of the country (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44469955)

Until the religious fanatics realise that it is far easier to pass a law imposing mandatory filtering on a government network than it would be to impose the same filter on a private network. I imagine "No tax money for porn!" would be a good rallying cry.

the news corp vine (1)

trillion (246465) | about a year ago | (#44469541)

i will light up your dark fibre heart.

Of course he hates it. (4, Insightful)

DMJC (682799) | about a year ago | (#44469595)

Of course Murdoch hates the NBN, he owns the largest Cable TV network in Australia! Who would be paying to watch shows over the cable network when they can download them over fibre? Or worse yet, pay money to netflix to stream them to their houses directly. It's a massive threat to FOXTEL.

Re:Of course he hates it. (1)

asaul (98023) | about a year ago | (#44469859)

There is nothing stopping Foxtel being offered over the NBN - what he hates is the hint of competition that it would bring compared to the current cable/satellite monopoly.

That's nothing (2, Insightful)

mbone (558574) | about a year ago | (#44469615)

Here in the USA he is trying to destroy the entire country.

Re:That's nothing (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469667)

Your foreign policy did that many years ago, as well a pricing higher education out of the majority's financial means, and then some for health care.

Re:That's nothing (1)

ebno-10db (1459097) | about a year ago | (#44469975)

Your foreign policy did that many years ago, as well a pricing higher education out of the majority's financial means, and then some for health care.

At least two out of those three were aided and abetted by Murdoch's American "news" operations.

Re:That's nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469783)

Got hyperbole? Sheesh.

Re:That's nothing (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469913)

That is the Kenyan you are thinking of not the former Australian.

Fuck (1, Insightful)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#44469701)

I hate that evil old rightwing cunt. I hope he dies of cancer.

Re:Fuck (1)

trillion (246465) | about a year ago | (#44469731)

wow that is harsh, I hope he lives to see that cure for cancer be found.

Re:Fuck (1)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about a year ago | (#44469991)

I hope he dies of cancer....

Insightful...

I find that fascinating.

O RLY? (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | about a year ago | (#44469777)

What does he think he is? Australian or something? Foreigners should not meddle in Australian internal politics.

More proof 'hardcopy' news can't be trusted (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469871)

I find it weird that with most of the public able to gain access to so many news sources that papers under the Murdoch banner would dare to publish the rubbish they have been. It's rather easy to loose a consumer and extremely difficult to attain one, publishing false information in a news source is the best way to create a situation where the populous decides at whole to boycott the publications and to even go further and mock those around them until they follow suit. Being scared of loosing market share and doing the actions they are would seem to me a reason for them to loose it.

Can we just start killing all the pigs now? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44469933)

Before they finish ruining our planet?

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