Labour pledges universal broadband and nationwide fibre, will renationalise the farcical, terrible BT Openreach

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would love to see that happen here


Wasn’t 5G going to rid the Earth of poor wifi? I was told there’d be 5G…


I really hope they’ve briefed their volunteers in places like the West Country and Scotland to hammer on this point, because I think there are a lot of even Tory voters who’d vote Labour on the strength of this alone. (And more generally, renationalising utilities is wildly popular with everyone who isn’t directly employed by the Conservative Party or, equivalently, any national news outlet).

In fact, if they did manage to get this message across, I wonder if it might not get them so many votes in that sort of place that it could backfire by cutting into the Lib Dem vote and therefore letting Tories win.

I’m no road-digger-upologist, but this sounds operationally improbable, for obvious reasons.

However, given that the overall proposal is in earnest, and Tories routinely get elected on the back of deliberate, spiteful, outrageous lies, I’m not going to pull on that thread.


BT has had its time to invest and never has, BT says o no, but no will wil invest privately if its a nationally company, no shit, its national company so the nation Will invest, BT on radio 4 doing their best to scare monger this morning…

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That’s how they did the NBN rollout in Australia; it went to regional communities first, then the major cities.

My small fishing village in rural Tasmania has much better internet than I had in the middle of Sydney.


Can you imagine if Trump was suggesting state control of US broadband? @doctorow would be the first to protest. He was outraged at the risk of the UK state potentially knowing who used porn a few weeks back, but is fine with them owning everyone’s entire browsing history.

I also can’t see how this is remotely legal under EU law, which explicitly prohibits state aid in situations where there’s competition. In the UK previously, that meant government could help pay for fibre rollout in rural areas, but not in urban ones. Particularly when this would see the state using tax money to out compete Virgin etc in urban areas, and the (all Europe wide) 5G companies, I can’t see how it can be legal.

That would be fine if Labour were campaigning to leave the EU, but they pretty much aren’t, as far as anyone can tell.


Ironically, my experience of the Tories during the last nine years has been “Everything is horribly, brutally possible”. Ukip/Brexit party only exist to say “hold my beer”.

I’ll file Iain Martin’s argument under projection.


Add Cumbria to that list. Carlisle has had at least two abortive attempts to get cable internet, some streets only have high speed internet on on side of the road. My parents are twenty metres away from getting it in their house but no private company is interested in expanding.



Putting aside the Tories’ usual “slippery slope when it’s convenient for us” BS scaremongering, it sounds like Labour’s goal here is to treat BT like a public utility, with all the common-carrier regulation and roll-outs to regions underserved by the for-profit company.

It’s not going to solve all problems associated with BT’s bureaucracy or technology (despite the usual Tory “Nirvana fallacy” demands), but at least it will provide a little more public accountability and (executed with reasonable competence) perhaps provide a model to other Western nation-states.

A more honest Conservative party would have made that its official aspirational motto decades ago.


A more honest Conservative Party wouldn’t really be the Conservative Party though, would it?


Very true. A bunch of scorpions. One really have to wonder about the mentality of a person (at least, the kind of person who isn’t wealthy or over age 55) who’d vote for them again in December.


before the turn of the millennium we had freeserve offered by the now
defunked dixons photomarkets…

but not three d

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It (and the multitude of others based on the same idea) weren’t free they used and 0845 number which meant they got paid by the telco for each minute that someone was connected.
It just shifted the way people paid from being a monthly fee (as Demon internet and others did at the time) to a phone call cost.


Labour are not campaigning to remain in the EU either. Corbyn wants to leave, but with a better withdrawal agreement that a Labour government will negotiate. He also wants to re-nationalise passenger train services, which will be incompatible with EU law once the Fourth Railway Package comes into force.

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If we could get internet from the Postal Service, Cory would freak out?


Nobody here seems to be old enough to remember when British Telecom was part of the General Post Office, and was a Government owned communications monopoly.
Their customer service was appalling, it took weeks, sometimes months to get a phone line installed, same with getting an engineer to fix a problem, and frequently homes had to share party lines, where it was possible to eavesdrop on a neighbouring home’s calls.
I am old enough to remember this, along with a state-owned car industry and railway network.
Their services and products were universally crap, because there was little to no incentive to offer a better service or product, because there was no other option on offer.
Anyone wishing for the dead-hand of state interference is welcome to move to North Korea.