Broadband Pledge

I was rather surprised that the NZ Herald made Labour’s “aim” of cheap fast broadband their front page story, because in reality it is a non-story.

Firstly to be fair I should add that generally I have been supportive of changes made by Labour in the telco and IT areas. The introduction of the Telco Commissioner has had some benefits for example. And I think David Cunliffe is a very campable and committed Minister.

However it is a matter of record that Labour refused to unbundle the local loop, despite their own Comms/IT Minister (then Paul Swain) recommending that they do unbundle. He got rolled at Cabinet.

The article is careful to avoid any spoecific pledge or promise. It says:

* aims for $1-a-day access
* pledges to get tough on Telecom
* a regulatory review of Telecom’s wholesale broadband business
* suggested that a “Chinese wall” arrangement could result through amendments to the Telecommunications Act.
* we are saying that we’re going to seriously look at how far we will go
* policy did not specifically include reopening the unbundling issue

As one can see it talks about aims, reviews, suggestions, looking at issues etc. Not a single actual specific. A masterpeice of spin.

Now absolutely fair effort of Labour to repackage work in progress, and make it sound like something new. That is what parties do. I am somewhat amazed however that the NZ Herald treats this as front page news.

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