We moved to Goulburn in 1982. Just a few years after our arrival we began to have problems with our telephone.
A Telstra technician did various tests and said the line in the street was very old and getting water into it. The line needed to be replaced so the best he could do would be to put a request in to have that work done.
To our knowledge, the line was never replaced and several times over the years we had problems and we were given the same diagnosis.
Originally proposed in about 2009, the country was moving toward a National Broadband Network (NBN). There were two options, fibre to the home or, a supposedly cheaper option, fibre to the node connected to the end-of-life copper lines in the street.
At the time, I thought the latter was a bad idea as it was like having a very fast train from Melbourne to Campbelltown and then catching a horse and coach into Sydney. The government chose this latter option at a 2013 estimate of $29.5 billion but by late 2018, the estimated final cost was $51bn.
Our home NBN drops out on a regular basis in the middle of phone calls, internet searches, transactions, downloads and uploads. This has necessitated several hours on the mobile phone to our provider who spends a lot of time testing (remotely) before they put in a work order to NBN.
We have stayed home on several occasions to allow technicians access and we are given the same story about the old line affected by water. An analysis of our modem shows that up to 11am on June 21 there were 31 dropouts, 64 dropouts the day before and 62 on June 19.
Over seven days, there were 230 dropouts and 500 over 30 days. Naturally I am not happy with the inconvenience this causes. After $51bn or more of taxpayers' money, we have a system that is far less reliable than our previous ADSL.
The government is pushing us to "jump on line" to use their services and to look for better energy and banking deals etc but they have not provided us with the facilities to do this.
If Australia is to realise its full potential, it has to get rid of this dim-witted bottleneck in our communications.
Bill Young, Goulburn
Lightning strikes communication
I have suffered the same outage problem as others due to the lightning strike (several weeks ago)
The NBN is useless when run on old copper wire and now my provider, Southern Phone, tells me it needs permission (from a manager) to replace my modem that the NBN technician (it took two goes to arrive) tells me it is deceased.
Kathy Gaul, Goulburn
Act now on orphanage
(Re Saint John's orphanage), get rid of this unsafe disgusting mess and stop wasting fire resources on fires that are not necessary.
Geoff Smith, Goulburn.
Dry July offers perfect opportunity
As many Aussies face the prospect of spending more time at home due to COVID-19, we know it can be tempting to reach for alcohol.
In fact, new research from Dry July Foundation has revealed that the number of Australians who said they were drinking more in the average week has doubled in the last 12 months, indicating that a difficult year did affect our drinking habits.
However, the research also found that 86 per cent of Australians believe they'd benefit from less alcohol in their lives and 67pc of Aussies admit to being 'sober curious'.
If you've been thinking about taking a break from the booze, Dry July is the perfect opportunity to kick-start a healthier lifestyle.
The Dry July campaign is run by the Dry July Foundation to support cancer charities, including Cancer Council. By going dry this July and fundraising on behalf of Cancer Council, you'll help us continue to provide our vital 13 11 20 Cancer Information and Support Line for all Australians affected by the disease.
There's also a host of health benefits to quitting drinking for a month, including reducing your cancer risk. In fact, it's estimated that around three per cent of all cancers diagnosed in Australia each year are due to alcohol use.
To register, visit dryjuly.com/cancercouncil.
And please remember, if you're impacted by cancer and need emotional or practical support, you can reach out to us by calling our 13 11 20 Information and Support line.
Jennifer Birks, campaigns unit manager, Cancer Council NSW.
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