Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone and FCS launch “Fix Britain’s Internet” campaign
27 July 2016 | Jason McGee-Abe
A coalition of broadband providers - Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone - and the Federation of Communication Services (FCS) have launched the “Fix Britain’s Internet” campaign to take a stand on the future of UK connectivity.
The nationwide campaign, in the wake of yesterday’s Ofcom public consultation launch into the future of the national broadband network, Openreach, seeks to encourage businesses to make their voices heard about the future of Openreach’s ownership by BT to give “Britain the internet that we deserve”.
“For too long, UK businesses have been let down by the nation’s broadband infrastructure, receiving poor speeds and even poorer service,” said Dido Harding, CEO of TalkTalk.
“How is the UK economy supposed to grow and compete with the rest of the world with one hand tied behind its back by failing broadband? Ofcom’s proposals simply don’t go far enough, and we know many people up and down the country feel the same way. This is a once-in-a-decade opportunity for them to tell the regulator directly they don’t want a halfway house for another decade, they want truly radical change now.”
Ofcom itself has acknowledged that BT’s current management of Openreach is unacceptable, with delayed installations and under-investment in the network holding up new business growth and stifling the speed at which UK companies can operate against the rest of the world.
Fix Britain’s Internet aims to “fight for the best possible internet for Britain’s communities” and put an end to the dependency of most British broadband providers on the national network Openreach.
The campaign’s website highlights five things you need to know:
- - BT is paid to maintain the national network but even the regulator says it’s not good enough;
- - BT spends more buying the rights for televised football than it invests in Britain’s infrastructure;
- - Through taxpayer money and part of your bill. BT is paid billions to maintain the network. But in parts of the UK, two thirds of people can’t get the speeds BT is paid to deliver;
- - BT has kept Openreach reliant on copper rather than investing in state-of-the-art pure fibre like other countries. Copper is up to 100 times slower and far less reliable; and
- - Writing to Ofcom could help give Britain the internet that we deserve.
Businesses that want to support the campaign can do so by visiting www.fixbritainsinternet.co.uk.
Ofcom’s “Strengthening Openreach’s Independence” consultation closes on October 4, 2016, and you can send responses to Ofcom’s web form.
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