Is the Coalition’s Quigley obsession
a ‘McCarthyist witch hunt’?


blog Looks like not all elements of the media agree with the premise that NBN Co chief Mike Quigley has something to hide with regard to his Alcatel-Lucent days and that the Opposition’s obsession with the issue is on the level. Writing in today’s Financial Review, the newspaper’s chief political correspondent David Crowe sheds light on the farce that was last night’s Senate Estimates hearings:

“There was a definite whiff of McCarthyism in the air … the bribery was real, but nobody suggests Quigley was involved in it. So why keep digging? At some point the exercise stops being a valid line of questioning and turns into a witch-hunt. There’s a good argument that the point has already passed. In any case, it makes sense for the Coalition to stop.”

We couldn’t agree more. It’s time to let this issue lie … before the Coalition MPs and senators involved disgrace their own names any further (Simon Birmingham, we’re thinking of you here), and Australia’s parliament starts earning itself an international reputation that it will become increasingly ashamed of.

Image credit: mullica, Creative Commons


  1. Parliamentary privilege has a lot to answer for, this kind of rubbish will continue until politician are held liable for the accusation they make.

    • I think parliamentary privilege is important, but I think there should be a limit on what questions you can ask with it … as in … they have to be actually relevant to the topic being discussed.

    • What we saw last night can be described in no other way but “farce”.

      To see Abetz, Birmingham, and to a lesser extent Foley and MacDonald wasting time by asking the same questions over and over again, even after they’d been answered, and then complain to the chair that they didn’t have enough time to ask all of their questions is just………ridiculous.

      Birmingham in particular was either just deliberately wasting time, or out of his depth – (which I don’t really believe anyway).

      Abetz was just being obtuse for the sake of it.

      There was little or nothing to do with the estimates process at all.

      When Ludlam said “I’d like to actually ask a question about the NBN”, and Kelly said “I am going ask a question about the NBN, I think that’s what we are here for” it was like “hoo-bloody-ray”.

      Though Abetz advising Conroy to “not let his mother give him red cordial after dinner” was hilarious.

      Is it a witch hunt against Quigley? I don’t think it is specifically. I think it’s a witch hunt against the NBN in general, and Quigley is the default target.

      • To be honest, I stopped watching it after a while to get some useful work done. It was just a waste of time … there was no sense in reporting the obvious bullcrap which the Coalition was trying to spin. And I’m glad David Crowe has called them on it.

      • I’m betting you weren’t listening last night, but Conroy was at it again.

        His assertion that Senator MacDonald was “a moron” saw a brief adjournment called. But I would have called them all morons if I was in the room – whether I was an NBN supporter or not, because the Coalition senators were making a mockery of the parliamentary process to try and score points.

        The chair pulled them up on numerous occasions.

        This was an estimates hearing, not a “why was Mike Quigley hired” meeting – they abused the estimates process to make some noise – (and The Australian duly came through for them this morning) – and asked the same questions – (many of which had already been answered last night, or in previous estimates hearings) – over and over and over again.

        Then got upset that they didn’t have time to ask all their questions. It’s not “technically” possible to filibuster an estimates hearing, but they did a pretty fair imitation of it last night.

        • You guys should probably do something about newspapers like The Australian. News networks like Fox News here in America started out as a minor infection, but have now spread and completely destroyed the rationality of our political process. Some stronger “truth in journalism” laws are a must for a proper democracy to function.

          • What’s The Australian got to do with outcomes from a Senate estimates hearing which is what this particular blog is all about?

          • Did you actually read what I said! – what has that got to do with this Senate estimates hearing we are discussing?

          • The Australian have been posting a lot of anti-Quigley articles lately, about once per day (check the link below, and the RELATED COVERAGE box on the side).


            Quigley has not helped himself by changing his story a few times. Admittedly many of the points are quite minor, but really you would think he should have known whether Costa Rica fell within his domain of responsibility. That’s pretty basic stuff for a CEO to at least know what he is supervising. The ALP have not helped their position by being lazy about their research on day one, and consistently getting caught flat-footed by Turnbull who seems to have the amazing ability to read and comprehend public domain documents (maybe Turnbull has mastered the art of hiring a research assistant, imagine that).

            So now that Quigley has a scratch or two, and there is the merest scent of blood in the air, all the dogs are barking and squabbling for their share of the kill. It’s a really sad game, and I can’t say anyone is impressed by it, but that’s the way the game is played. Nice guys simply don’t win. Smart nice guys don’t play at all. Nothing is going to change, might as well get used to it.

            I’ve never believed that the NBN can work, not as advertised anyhow. But it would at least be better to see it sink or swim on its own merits rather than going down to political head kickers.

          • Indeed Tel…

            I pretty much agree with everything you said (apart from the NBN not working)…!

            One could cheekily suggest however, that perhaps Mal doesn’t need a research assistant as he knows exactly where to look, having been embroiled in scandal himself on more than one occasion…LOL!

          • How you can see equivalence in some random scandal, as against some random other scandal is beyond me. Presumably you are referring to the business with Goldman Sachs and I believe if you want to check, the whole thing did go before a court, and it turned out that Goldman Sachs had correctly followed the law at the time.

            Maybe you should just accept that when it comes to these sort of manouvers, Turnbull has a pretty good idea of what he is doing.

          • @ Tel

            Gee even when I agree with you, you still wanna argue…LOL! Whatever, some people eh!

            Anyway if you can’t see any similarities in that Quigley has been found to have played no part and so too Turnbull, in relation to the two scandals, well I understand why the NBN is waaaay beyond you…

            But frankly, whilst your first comment came across as conciliatory, you once again went back to your old tricks and then showed your “true allegiances” in the second…!

            Ooh, don’t forget Godwin Grech!

          • I really should not ask, because I know the answer is be so out there that braincells will die just glancing at it, but I need something to laugh at…

            What does Godwin Grech have to do with any of this? Is this another of your secret brotherhoods being uncovered?

          • Dear Tel… you’d best be careful then, as you obviously… don’t have too many left to spare, do you?

            But since you asked…

            You do know this was your hero’s warm up for Quigley, by trying to create a scandal that simply wasn’t there… In fact this is more akin to the Quigley circus Turnbull is current ringmaster to, than even the GS scandal…imo!

            That’s cool though, it’s simply politics and I DGAF when a politician attacks one of their own, as was the case with Utegate, as they all deserve a little touch up from time to time…! But when they attack someone like Quigley, well…

            Feel free to shut your eyes and pretend not to see the equivalence herein and believe your hero Mal, is pure as driven snow, as you seem to. However, even your likeminded brethren at “Menzies House”, curiously can see and seem to agree with me …Refer headlines “…Turnbull – he just wants his balls back”…


  2. As I said before, actually trying to address the flaws of the policy means you push it towards a better policy you can agree with.

    It pisses me off that the opposition aren’t doing their job in this respect, they only serve to screw Australia over.

    Let’s face it, if the Liberals get into power next election, a very real possibly, and Turnbulls fabled “NBN review” turns out to end up halting construction and doing everyone else with FTTN via subsides, with the tender process, the political game playing, and everything, it’ll take at least 2 terms to complete.

  3. Let us not forget Mr Abbott is a zealous Christian with heavy pharasee type inclinations. He would’nt want to burn him. He’d prefer Mr Quiggley nailed to a cross. Thats more his style. to prolong the victims pain.

    • Christianity and Pharisaism are divergent strains of the Judaic tradition. Christians don’t burn or nail people to the cross. crucifixion was a Roman tradition.

    • Well the NBN in its present form anyway, and its effect upon Coalition popularity? – zilch, zero, nada.

      It always amuses me the level of frenetic discussion on the NBN in this and other tech blogs like Whirlpool, ZDNet, iTWire etc, but in the real world the voting electorate at large doesn’t give a a toss,and if a election was held this week the Coalition would get in at a canter without even formulating a Communications policy.

  4. @ alain, LOL… the old back-flips (contradictions) are rife now… IN IT’S PRESENT FORM, priceless…

    Before it was stop, halt, zero, zilch, nada NBN. Now it’s all of the above…. IN IT’S PRESENT FORM… so in other words NO – stop, halt, zero, zilch, nada NBN… thank you for admitting it!

    But for me, as someone who isn’t a political puppet or in IT/ICT, I tend to agree with you somewhat alain (gee you now, Tel last night – even though he still wanted to argue because he saw the reply was from me…sigh). That comms is only part of the bigger picture to all Australians.

    We as people who are either enthusiasts/or who work in ICT, have more of an idea as to what the NBN can offer (which is why a lot of those who are politically opposed to the government, even professionals in IT who know better, overlook their professional ethics and bag the NBN politically, imo). Shame really!

    But let’s not forget, the Coalition have done a splendid job at baselessly criticising and FUDding the NBN, via their media mates (print and radio) and Labor a woeful job at selling it. So it may even be that the anti-NBN sentiment is winning out, not so much that the NBN isn’t really being factored by the average Aussie. So keep up the good work alain, your masters are proud!

    However, I heard yesterday (on the wireless – pun intended) about the latest polls and it seems Labor are on the nose well and truly.

    So It looks as though the only thing that may stop the Coalition winning is Abbott…

    Unless I heard incorrectly, Labor’s popularity is at their lowest ever. But in saying that Gillard for all the anti-Labor sentiment, is still above Abbott as preferred PM…! WTF???

    So… how will that equate come voting time? Surely the Coalition can’t chance it and need a more popular leader. Abbott’s party is in an apparent unbeatable position and Labor is looking beaten already, yet Abbott is “even more disliked, than Labor and Gillard”!

    Frankly I DGAF, I will vote for whoever offers Australia the best deal. But the exception, I will never vote for Abbott, regardless… and the polls show that seems to be a lot of people’s thoughts (no I don’t have evidence Mr. Pedantic, just add 2+2 and see if you can obtain 4, ffs). I consider Abbott an educated moron and as such he and his blind ideology, is a danger to Australia’s future prosperity, imo!

    However, if Turnbull can mount a challenge and give assurances that the NBN will not be scrapped (a`la alain’s back-flipping contradictions…A G A I N) and that a lame FTTN impostor won’t be put in it’s place (and of course stop the lynch mob mentality on Quigley, which does him no favours as an aspiring PM/Statesman) he may get the nod from those like me who don’t trust Abbott and those in ICT too…and romp home!

    • The term National Broadband Network is just a generic description, it’s not copyrighted with the Labor political party and therefore must always be 100% FTTH 100% funded by the taxpayer and requires 100% of the copper and HFC to be pulled down.

      You could call Telstra NextG and ADSL the National Broadband Network, because it is more ‘national’ than the NBN Co FTTH will ever be.

      Besides this lot could produce a ‘National’ Broadband Network. :)

      • So what? When we refer to the NBN we are referring to the 93% GPON FTTH with LTE based fixed wireless and Sat for the last 7% as proposed by the Labor government.

        Everything is just a generic label until we associate a specific meaning with it. You’re just being overly petty.

        • “Everything is just a generic label until we associate a specific meaning with it. You’re just being overly petty”

          Yes I didn’t think you would like the current Telstra fixed line and wireless networks being defined as a ‘National Broadband Network’.

          I think the the current FTTH rollout should be redefined as the Limited Free Broadband Pilot, then named National and Network when it actually is one – maybe somewhere around 2035.


          • It’s not that I don’t like it, it’s that you’re just being an arse.

            Seriously, the NBN is a name, get over it. In the same way a Laptop is called that when in general it isn’t actually used on one’s lap, or a mouse which doesn’t look anything like it’s namesake.

            The only reason I can think of you for saying this is because you just want to piss us off with trolling since you have run out of arguments to utilise on this particular article. Bravo, it’s working. Normally I’d just roll my eyes but for once you’ve actually made a point so needlessly pedantic that I actually feel like wasting my time forming a response.

            You know what I usually do when I run out arguments? I just shut up and move on, having said my piece, in the hope that people have listened, or having learned something new which I didn’t think of before which may or may not change my opinion on the issue.

            You should try it sometime.

          • Sorry I am off looking at The Tudors on ABC iView, you can get it on the Telstra National Broadband Network.

          • Telstra have a National Broadband Network? You mean every premise in Australia can sign up to Broadband services? Wow. Things have changed. They must have dealt with the CMUXs without enough ports, or the fact the NextG service only covers 99% of the population and doesn’t provide data services everywhere it happens to cover? Unless they happen to have a Satellite Service I don’t know about…?

            See the problem with trying to take pedantic arguments just to get a rise is that you’ll find your opposition can be petty too.

          • Honestly who the hell cares, Labor has like a 99% chance of getting voted out, which means that we will get a FTTN along with a split Telstra, probably taking a few years

          • Well that was a bit of a non-sequitur there deteego, tell me, what has Labor’s demising popularity got to do with my petty argument with Alain over naming?

          • @ Yes I agree deteego, they do have the same relevance… both are in fact, totally irrelevant…!

            You say, “Honestly who the hell cares, Labor has like a 99% chance of getting voted out”…

            Yes I agree with the 2nd half, it appears that this government will go. But that’s currently, irrelevant…

            Do you think they or any government should stop governing and stop implementing policy, simply because the polls suggest they look destined to lose the next election, due some 2 years away? You same people who call the NBN business plan “assumptions”, want to assume the result of the next election and have the current government stop governing? Did your hero John Howard stop governing when the polls were dour?

            But who would ever have thunk it, eh…? Well me for one…

            You few vocal anti-NBNers “don’t care”, as long as the other political party get in. Exactly as I have been saying all along, it’s just politics to you. Again imo, you aren’t anti-NBN/pro-alternative; you are simply anti-Labor/pro-Coalition, which makes you completely anti-NBN by default. And this proves it! I reiterate, if the NBN (“current NBN”, for alain the only person in Oz who pointlessly needs to argue over the term NBN…LOL) was Coalition policy, I would still be here lauding it and ironically, imo, you lot would be here agreeing with me!

            Look that’s cool, but just be honest and upfront and say, even though you are in IT and know a FTTP NBN is the best option; you are unable to support it, because of your political allegiances and be done with it…!

            As I pointed out above, the Coalition seems to be sitting pretty. However, Tony Abbott is no more popular than the most unpopular Labor government/PM ever (according to a radio report I heard). As such I would suggest that until the Coalition bites the bullet and replaces him and then comes up with clear policy alternatives, rather than forever relying simply upon, vote for us because this government sux… then those sucks don’t deserve to govern any more than the present sucks!

          • @NightKhaos

            Telstra have a National Broadband Network?

            Well until about 2020 or thereabouts, notwithstanding Labor lasting until then, the practical answer is yes.

            At the current rate of NBN sign-ups on a ISP Plan it is hard to say what year the NBN will equal the Telstra FTTH customer base in Greenfield estates.

          • @alain…

            Telstra have a PSTN (refer last two letters – look it up since you may not know) not a broadband network…!

          • Is that really anywhere to being close to a serious comment – keeping in mind all the millions who use ADSL/ADSL2+ BB on the Telstra PSTN network?

          • It’s just a name Alain. Names allow us to unambiguously refer to an object, entity or concept. That’s all it is. Take or leave it.

            And deteego, that doesn’t excuse you bringing up a unrelated point, of questionable origins (not denying it looks bleak for ALP, just, 99%? Seriously? Making up statistics much?), you’re better than that.

          • WAA…wrong again alain… at least you are consistent.

            Sadly for you, once again, your trolling nonsense has simply come back to bite you!

            Telstra own a national Public Switched TELEPHONE NETWORK, not a national broadband network… got it?

            You wanna be pedantic…well! Say what you want about ADSLor whatever, but the network is a PSTN!

            Here’s an analogy to confuse you further – just because people **ss in swimming pools doesn’t make them toilets!

          • The Telstra PSTN is the current National Broadband Network.

            The NBN FTTH network is a selected few postcodes only pilot network waiting on Telstra and Optus to be paid billions by the taxpayer to close down their networks so they can get the majority of their customers forcibly migrated cross to help justify its existence.

            Calling it anywhere being ‘National’ at this stage is the best example of BS misnaming in the history of BS misnaming.

          • @Nightkhaos

            “Seriously? Making up statistics much?), you’re better than that.”

            Perhaps he has been looking at your interpretive ‘stats’ re fixed line connections vs disconnections and getting too many ideas!

          • Alain, you’re right, absolutely correct, I mean I see it now, the error in my ways. How could I not?

            Naming a network National when it isn’t. I mean how dear they. This is obviously a great outrage. Doesn’t matter about the rest of the project, the CVC charges making it expensive for end users, or the batteries they are giving to end users when very few of them will actually need them, the name, it is the greatest outrage of them all!

            Obviously I cannot be seen supporting a project that takes a fast and lose approach to naming can I?

            Oh yes, and my lying on the statistics, I apologise for that. I obviously could not possibly, I mean, I know I said that I did but, well, that would be just, wrong of me… to use the statistics to indicate the a fall in fixed-line telephony subscriptions does not indicate a fall in demand for fixed-line broadband and there is an increasing demand for Broadband. Surely not, a hypothesis like that, although supported, is not at all relevant is it? Not to building a network designed to deliver Broadband services. I mean yes, obviously deetego saw past my subterfuge here and dedicated to emulate my behaviour!

          • to recap –

            3 SIMPLE FACTS:

            1. overall fixed-line connections (net of ULLs) are declining at 2-3% annual rate

            2. fixed-line internet subscriptions are pretty much flat at 1% growth (or “stall”) rate

            3. wireless internet subscriptions are exploding at 49% growth rate from a high base

            irrefutable conclusion:

            there’s a MASSIVE ongoing SUBSTITUTION of WIRELESS internet services for fixed-line internet.

            this MIRRORS exactly overseas trends – we’re no different!

            stop deluding yourselves.

          • WAA (wrong again alain) … that consistency shines through yet again…

            Please post a URL to the official documentation showing that the PSTN is in fact known as the Telstra Broadband Network….

            Well, go on! Walk the walk, don’t just talk the talk…

            You can call it Telstra’s Broadband Network, TBN or Betty if YOU wish… but for us rational humans, living in reality, it has been, is and will (until the NBN is rolled out and it is decommissioned) alway be a PSTN.

            You know why…? BECAUSE THAT’S EXACTLY WHAT IT IS…LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            But please keep displaying your need to never to argue, even when 100% wrong..AGAIN..alain! Because all it does is entrenches every comment you ever make as absolute bias!

            Thank you

          • Tosh, all three points are true, except the following things you seem to miss in your analysis almost constantly, and why companies across the world are not predicting the doom of the fixed line and continue to invest in fixed line solutions across the world.

            1) Wireless is not a perfect substitute for fixed-line broadband. It is possible and common to purchase more than one wireless subscription per household, or even per person, unlike fixed-line broadband, where it is difficult to do, and economically discouraged. How much will it cost you to install another line for the purpose of installing another ADSL2+ service? Would Telstra or Optus allow you to install another internet HFC connection in your home? Compare this to the cost of getting a pre-paid dongle or hotspot.

            2) The market for fixed-line broadband is saturated. New subscriptions are hard to come by. New houses must be built, customers have to be taken from competitors, or customers need to be convinced to get a service that in some cases they otherwise have decided they have no need for.

            3) The demand for wireless services is often artificially reduced by increasing of pricing or other means (low quotas) due to the highly contended nature of the service, at the moment this means that if the a wireless and wired service are used in a niche where they are substitutes, the cost of deploying the wireless solution will be more expensive because of the higher cost associated with it. In current circumstances the price differential can get as high as 10:1. In other words there is passive discouragement of usage.

            So this statement:

            there’s a MASSIVE ongoing SUBSTITUTION of WIRELESS internet services for fixed-line internet.

            Is unfortunately false. The growth in the fixed-line service is contravening to this statement, even if it is marginal growth. Let me break that down further, if this statement were true:

            1) There would be a decline in fixed-broadband services (as there is in telephony (PSTN)) services because there would be limited demand for fixed line services as people migrate to mobile wireless solutions.

            2) There would be encouragement for customers to migrate away from fixed-line services because the companies, especially the likes of Telstra and Optus, who run both products, would not want to continue operation of the older, legacy, products where they get a lower ARPU.

            3) Investment in technologies to improve fixed-line technologies will be discouraged as the market is clearly moving away from this product.

            I know it’s hard for you to look past the numbers sometimes, and your own personal bias, but the fact of the matter is we need fixed-line Broadband, and not only that consumers want fixed-line Broadband. I know that given that PSTN services and Broadband services are complimentary goods, you’d think that seeing a decline in one would indicate a decline in the other, but unfortunately that doesn’t seem to be the case.

            I stand by my assessment: broadband users (note I am talking about Broadband users in isolation) are not subsisting their fixed-line connections for wireless. There is no “exodus” from fixed-line, the market for these services isn’t even in decline, and further more companies who provide wireless services want customers to use fixed line alternatives where possible and enforce this by investing in improved fixed-line technologies where they exist in both markets and/or passive discouragement of wireless broadband usage.

          • imagine if the major car manufacturers started selling electric cars in Australia tomorrow…

            then the ABS reports that registration of gasoline vehicles is showing flat to no growth…

            but registrations of electric cars are shooting through the roof…

            in this case, drivers are clearly substituting electric cars for gasoline cars even though the # of gasoline vehicles is still increasing ever so slightly…

            replace “gasoline” with “fixed-line internet”.

            replace “electric” with “wireless internet”.

            hopefully, you’ll finally see through the fog of your fibre-obsession-fuelled delusion.

            the ongoing “wireless-for-fixed” SUBSTITUTION is betrayed by the COMPOSITION of the INCREMENTAL GROWTH in total internet subscriptions – i.e. it’s totally dominated by wireless take-up with fixed-line barely registering a pulse.

          • # of fixed-line internet subscriptions do NOT have to decrease in absolute terms for substitution to occur.

            substitution is ALREADY occuring when the explosive growth in wireless internet subscriptions is DISPLACING potential growth in fixed-line subscriptions.

          • Tosh. What part of not a direct substitute do you not understand? Using your example there are direct two flaws with your analogy:

            1) An electric car sale directly eats into the sales of a gasoline powered vehicle. You are precluded from purchasing another vehicle of any type because the function has already been fulfilled. Not true for Broadband, if you buy a wireless service you are not precluded from purchasing a wired service as well, the wired service can be used to augment the wireless service by offloading some of the heavier usage. And in fact people tend to do exactly this, especially those pesky geeks and “early adopters”.

            2) A wireless service is not directly comparable to a wired service as you need a wireless connection for every device, be a handset, a WiFi hotspot, a USB dongle, etc. When you decide to go Electric you don’t need to buy 2 or 3 Electric cars to substitute the functions of a single Gasoline car.

            These flaws mean that you can’t look at the stangent growth of fixed line without considering the factors I mentioned like market saturation. Let me give you an example, if you could buy a shoe that lasted about 200 years of usage, changed to changing body shapes, would you ever need to buy another shoe again? No. So the shoe makers would only see growth in line with population growth. As more people are born they can sell more shoes. This problem applies in Broadband, or any utility for that matter. The fact that we have 1.7% (your figures) growth is actually rather impressive when you consider this. This is compared to socks that run out after a few years, and you want multiple pairs of (Wireless) for different purpose, where you’d expect growth to be huge.

            And the indirect flaw, which you completely ignored, so let me spell it out for you:

            It doesn’t matter what the market wants. We still need to invest in fixed line solutions. We do not have the resources (spectrum) to support the growth of mobile devices at this rate, so we need to ensure that any traffic that can be offloaded is. Now, the designers (Labor) of the NBN might not understand this and have hence priced their product too high, but the people selling the products (the Telecoms) do.

            So try and convince the people out there that the growth in wireless means we don’t need fixed line networks to work in tandem, you’ll likely convince a few people. Hell you might even cause the NBN to get thrown out, which is what you want. You’ll be happy. The government didn’t waste a lot of money. But don’t come crying to me when your short-sightedness, and quite frankly, limited marco-economic analysis, and lack of social concern, blows up in your face.

            Or maybe that’s what you want, because Telecoms do stand to profit from this. Especially as they can start to charge even more for wireless networks in the name of “reducing network contention” and “encouraging fair and acceptable usage”.

          • clearly, some portion of those ppl ditching the fixed-line are resorting to mobile internet and fixed-line broadband would grow faster in the absence of the wireless alternative.

            with only 62% of Australians subscribing to broadband (incl. wireless!), clearly, it’s not an issue with physical availability or supply constraints, but an issue of choice (driven by factors such as affordability and personal need).

            hence, wireless-for-fixed internet substitution is well and truly happening!

          • Finally you seem to understand, or at least begrudging accept and offer somewhat tangential extra commentary, my point of view. I never said that the substitution isn’t happening, that is a foolish notion, I’m saying that despite this there is still growth in the fixed-line sector, will continue to be because of market forces and physical limitations (spectrum), and that the explosive growth of wireless does not effect if we need to invest in a fixed-line network. Capice?

          • complimenti! finalmente d’accordo con me

            che ha richiesto molto tempo….

            wireless-for-fixed substitution is happening! nessun arresto che…

          • “No capice” would suffice there Tosh. But celebrate your hollow victory if you must. It must be such a burden off your shoulders.

          • it’s been slow and labourious…. but i’m glad we’re finally getting it through to you…

            (i) fixed-line connections are declining

            (i) there’s ongoing substitution of wireless for fixed internet

            *phew*… sure has been hard work ;)

          • You seem to be under some sort of delusion that I didn’t know these two pieces of information and that, once you proved to me that these two pieces of information that they in fact change my position.

            Further, you seem to be on a far greater delusion that my arguments directly contradict this information and that by getting me to admit them it somehow invalidates my argument.

            Both are, unfortunately false. As I said, hollow victory. I do hope you take the time to read my responses and better understand my position here. Or would you rather accuse me of forum lawyerism and back tracking?

          • @Nightkhaos

            “I’m saying that despite this there is still growth in the fixed-line sector,”

            That’s not what you said here in your opening post.

            “This is why government investment or at the very least incentives are the only way a fixeds Telecoms can possibly hope to expand. The market is just to static, revenues just to low, and there is little to no repeat buyers”


            So when you are referring to ‘the market is just static’ it is not wireless BB because it is booming with SIO’s going through the roof every month, it is the fixed line market.

            It is interesting you blindly support a taxpayer funded multi billion fixed line rollout with a extremely dubious ROI into what is a static market.
            The BB market trend is such that the highest ARPU’s are from wireless data not fixed line, you admitted that yourself with ‘ revenues just to low, and there is little to no repeat buyers’.

            The market is certainly static in terms of NEW fixed line connections, the fixed line disconnections are not static, which is inversely tracking the trend to wireless.

            No one other than a Australian political party bankrolled by the sucker Australian taxpayer would touch a expensive FTTH rollout of such magnitude into a market that is moving away from fixed line BB with a bargepole.

            No one else in the world is doing it on this planned scale funded 100% from the public purse – jeez I wonder why?

          • You guys are very good at not actually getting my point at all are you?

            That’s not what you said here in your opening post.

            “This is why government investment or at the very least incentives are the only way a fixeds Telecoms can possibly hope to expand. The market is just to static, revenues just to low, and there is little to no repeat buyers”

            Now Alain, a static market (with marginal growth) is not a bad thing, it just means, when push comes to shove, if you’re going to invest, and you’re a private entity, where exactly do you think you’ll put that investment? The answer to anyone is obvious: Wireless.

            Now, as Tosh here rightly points out, the growth is marginal (at about 1.7%), which he is correct in saying the market is somewhat static, which I acknowledged and pointed out because the market has been saturated, making it hard for new customers to fixed-line Broadband to be found. But surprising, despite this, it is still growing.

            Given that wireless is such an awesome alternative, with freedom to use it anywhere, why would anyway want a fixed line connection at all? Why would private enterprise continue to operate such a expensive to run, low ARPU, infrastructure such as fixed-wireless? Why is Verzion in the US investing in FiOS when they just released LTE?

            So when you are referring to ‘the market is just static’ it is not wireless BB because it is booming with SIO’s going through the roof every month, it is the fixed line market.

            Exactly. The fixed-line market’s growth is becoming more and more dependent on actually finding new people to subscribe. You have low and causal users, where the benefits of extra quota, low latency aren’t going to convince them to get fixed-line. You have users who don’t have a connection to the internet in the first place. This is the pool of users you have to worth with, everyone else already has a fixed-line connection. So your growth is dependent on finding new people. That is what I meant by the market being saturated.

            It is interesting you blindly support a taxpayer funded multi billion fixed line rollout with a extremely dubious ROI into what is a static market. The BB market trend is such that the highest ARPU’s are from wireless data not fixed line, you admitted that yourself with ‘ revenues just to low, and there is little to no repeat buyers’.

            It is interesting that you didn’t read my post in full. Which is a classic case of cherry picking data. In that post I also said:

            The service is also considered an essential commodity to an increasing sector of the market. However it much easier to commoditise this with wireless based technology which, if this trend continues, will put ever increasing strain on (finite) spectrum.

            In other words, it doesn’t matter that fixed-line network is still growing, it doesn’t matter that we need a fixed line network to offload traffic, when push comes to shove, companies will invest in wireless. The market is just to static when compared to the wireless market. I should have qualified that in my original post, but I thought people were intelligent enough to at least read the second paragraph. Apparently not.

            In short we can’t trust the market to deliver this commodity under its own power, in the same way the market refuses to install power in many homes in Africa and Asia because they cannot raise their prices in order to find money to invest in expanding their footprint (There was a good TED talk about Charter Cities on this very problem).

            That is why I support the NBN. Is that not hard to understand? I do not believe the private market will do anything when it comes to fixed line. They will keep prices low, they will continue to invest in new infrastructure under the USO, they will continue to encourage usage by “bundling”. But will they spend billions of dollars to upgrade the network? No.

            We’re stuck with what we’ve got unless the government intervenes, and this is bad, because it’ll end up point to much strain on the wireless network, especially when we reach the point where wireless networks out perform deployed technology which is getting increasingly closer to reality.

            If we shunted all that traffic we currently offload onto fixed-line onto wireless we would cripple the networks. They are even struggling right now with just one tenth of the data. New technology and tower deployments will reduce this struggle, but ultimately wireless carriers are not going to be able to acquire spectrum resources fast enough, they are not going to be able to build new towers fast enough, they are not going to be able to upgrade their network fast enough.

            The market is certainly static in terms of NEW fixed line connections, the fixed line disconnections are not static, which is inversely tracking the trend to wireless.

            When it comes to Telephony.

            Here is exactly the reason we got into this whole argument in the first place Alain: There is not a decline in fixed-line Broadband. Which means it is not “inversely tracking the trend”. Inversely tracking the trend is what occurs when people upgrade from various technologies. Like an upgrade from 2G to 3G. The sales of 2G handsets go down as the sale of 3G handsets go up. The number of active 2G handsets go down while the number of 3G handsets go up. The fact that the fixed-line Broadband network is still growing, albeit it marginal, means that this is not occurring. Yes the growth is marginal, yes there are people who are ditching their fixed-line Broadband connections. But overall their is still marginal growth.

            No one other than a Australian political party bankrolled by the sucker Australian taxpayer would touch a expensive FTTH rollout of such magnitude into a market that is moving away from fixed line BB with a bargepole.

            You might want to check exactly which parties are in support of the NBN, because you may find it’s surprising. Governments are not meant to make decisions based upon the market, they make them based upon social responsibility. If the market is what governs the decisions of the government, then there is no point to government investment and subsides at all. The NBN is a project built out of social responsibility. Clearly if the market backed fixed-line Broadband there would be no point for the government to step in at all.

            No one else in the world is doing it on this planned scale funded 100% from the public purse – jeez I wonder why?

            No one else in the world can afford it. No one else in the world has our particular brand of topology. No one else in the world has Telecoms who have explicitly stated they won’t do a rollout without government support.

            In the UK VirginMedia continues to upgrade the HFC network, providing faster and faster speeds (at higher and higher contention ratios, however), in the same country there is BT Infinite, that was done by private enterprise in response to VirginMedia. In America we have FiOS and now Comcast is invested in improvements to their HFC network, there are also various start-ups rolling out fibre all over the place. In New Zealand we have VDSL2+ roll-outs already occurring, and with a little bit of government investment in the from of Crown Fibre Holdings they will getting FTTN and FTTH in due course. In South Korea the FTTB networks are being upgraded to FTTH.

            And in the same time period in Australia, what did we have, two failed government projects, and ADSL2+, not to mention a tantrum by Telstra. Yes. I really do trust the the private enterprise here. Why wouldn’t I?

          • NK, the replies you are receiving are identical to the insular responses I also received above, from one of the same contradictory individuals. Replies which are typically imo, of an equally ridiculous, pig-headed nature!

            It doesn’t matter how often you say to these guys, “yes ok” (as you have done many times above)… “but please don’t just hone in on one particular small aspect within a topic, which suits you, factor everything”. But no!

            For example, in my running battle, Telstra do sell ADSL via the PSTN ((OBVIOUSLY))… but they are selling ADSL via their PSTN, NOT via some imaginary Telstra National Broadband Network, strangely invented for no other reason but for my correspondent to desperately try to excuse his own obvious inadequacies!

            He simply finds a quirk, then ignores the big picture (especially the info which actually started the correspondences) and then beats his chests, claiming some odd, equally imaginary victory… Que?

            You’re in the same boat, presenting a complete set of figures and trying to explain them to those who are only interested in the part thereof which suits them. Because if they agreed, it would prove them wrong and shatter both their agendas and egos! Explains why such people are unable to comprehend the NBN!

            Unfortunately imo, for them to admit anyone but themselves know anything about anything, or heaven forbid, that they may actually be wrong (even when they are factually wrong) is impossible for them… So it’s not that they don’t get your point, they don’t want to/cant get your point, without backing down and thus denting their egos!

            So while these “legends in their own minds”, sit back now basking in their own imaginary glory/win, taking selective pot-shots, the rest of us know better.

            Please keep the informative, rational comments coming NK, cheers!

          • Wow a endorsement from the chief member of the rag tag jury pro-NBN Glee club, that’s just diluted your argument 100% without you doing anything Nightkhaos.

            Pity about that, and you put so much effort into your massive back pedal post as well.

          • Copy/paste…

            So while these “legends in their own minds”, sit back now basking in their own imaginary glory/win, taking selective pot-shots, the rest of us know better.


          • You and the rag tag biased one eyed jury does not in anyway define ‘the rest of us know better’

      • LOL… alain, your continued and ever more lamer excuses to hide your own inadequacies, in relation to simply admitting you err, is laughable.

        “The term National Broadband Network is just a generic description” you say…

        So when you say the NBN is a white elephant and wasteful… you are actually referring to the oppositions NBN too… ok, thanks for that!

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