Does Australia Really Want The NBN?

I love local newspapers. In many many cases, they are lovingly created by people who just want the best for their communities, and want to make sure they are informed as to the issues in their local community.

The issues that the big metropolitan newspapers don’t give a damn about; issues that are presented without the political agendas of the Fairfax’s and News Limited’s of the world.

Take for example the three-year rollout plan for the NBN, and the disappointment many communities are feeling, since finding out they aren’t in the initial plan.

No political “white elephant” rhetoric, or “biggest infrastructure project in Australia’s history” whining. Just people calling out for what they really want for their suburbs and towns.

Let see some examples of what local communities are saying about the NBN:

Moe, Victoria:

“Mr Buckley said in an interconnected municipality like Latrobe, Moe’s omission would ‘disadvantage’ the area, with ‘integrated institutions’ like Latrobe Community Health Service and the education sector unable to effectively utilise the technology across its services.”

Esperance, Western Australia:

“The Esperance Chamber of Commerce and Industry is complaining to the Prime Minister over being left out of the initial roll out of the National Broadband Network.”

Bendigo, Victoria:

“I wish to register my dismay at the federal government and its decision to exclude Eaglehawk from the NBN fibre network roll-out in Bendigo. The education and health sectors have been used in their promotion as examples of how beneficial the NBN would be. Why is my secondary college the only one to miss out?”

Berrigan/Jeriderie, New South Wales:

“‘For the Berrigan residents and business owners there were concerns that Berrigan had been left of the map – similar to what had occurred when natural gas was installed in the towns of Finley, Tocumwal and Barooga.”

Drysdale/Clifton Springs, Victoria:

“Drysdale and Clifton Springs will submit a formal request to be included in the next rollout of the national broadband network, according to a community group.”

Orange, New South Wales:

“The long wait for the National Broadband Network (NBN) in Orange may be a hurdle for establishing Charles Sturt University’s (CSU) medical school.”

Sunbury/Macedon Ranges, Victoria:

“Mayor Henry McLaughlin said he was disappointed that the shire was overlooked.”

Port Douglas, Queensland:

“Council officers have been in discussions with NBN Co. with regard to rollout in the Douglas area. While these discussions have been positive, we can’t speculate on any impending announcement by NBN Co.”

Mildura, Victoria:

“It’s extremely disappointing. I would have thought Mildura, as a major inland centre, and at a major crossroads for transport, communication and other services would have been included in this first stage.”

Heathcote/Axedale, Victoria:

“Heathcote Tourism and Development president Wayne McKay said while Heathcote and surrounding communities welcomed the news of the rollout, it was disappointing the local region would not be included.”

Dunkeld, Victoria:

“Dunkeld Primary School principal Pat Gleeson said the lack of a roll out would affect his students in the long term.”

Kimberley, Western Australia:

“I don’t know whether we’re in the mix for later, but it’s disgusting that we’ve been left off. They need to revisit what they’re doing. In our Shire, there’d be over 10,000 people and that’s Derby and Fitzroy Crossing and surrounds. It was supposed to make things faster and better.”

Casey/Cardinia, Victoria:

“I want the ministers to come and hear for themselves about what residents in Berwick, Narre Warren and right across my electorate need. Our area is one of the fastest-growing parts of Melbourne.”

So, does Australia really want the NBN?

From this cross sections of articles – (which were gathered together over only about 30 minutes of searching) – the message is loud and clear.


When you subtract all the “tasty soundbites” from each of the government, the opposition, and the various slants of the major news outlets, and actually listen to Australians, it is wanted and it is needed.

And listening to what people want sounds like a reasonable idea to me.