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Telstra boss to front Gungahlin meeting on poor broadband

By Gungahlin Al - 1 July 2010 23

Telstra Countrywide General Manager Chris Taylor has confirmed his attendance at the Gungahlin Community Council meeting on 14 July to respond to widespread community disgust with years of inadequate broadband services in our area.

We are aware that other areas around Canberra are suffering similar problems, so all are welcome to attend and put your concerns or questions directly to the guy most likely to be able to do something about it.

As was stated on the Dunlop broadband thread, some people are suddenly getting better speeds in the last week or two, due to RIM upgrades happening finally. A week ago my own 8Mb service jumped up from evening speeds of 0.5Mb to 5-6Mb. But it really is a lucky dip which RIM you are on it seems.

Telstra Countrywide’s Chris Taylor rang me this week to see if my service had improved. So he is clearly watching it closely in the lead-up to him attending the meeting.

“the expected date when DSLAM will undergo a software upgrade that will allow removal of shaping from 8Mb/s DSL-L2IG Services.”

This is admission (confirmed by Mr Taylor) that Telstra deliberately ‘shaped’ our 8Mb services without telling us during high congestion periods – i.e. when we all want to use them, but while still charging us full rate for a service standard they could not deliver.

I told him I feel that warrants a refund for everyone so affected. He told me he could consider that on a case-by-case basis, but that sounded to me like ‘we’ll consider refunds for people who arc up’. I told him that I believe case by case was not good enough and that they should admit to charging full price for a service they could not deliver and therefore give everyone a pro rata refund. I said ‘shaping for exceeding one’s download limit is something inside our control as users and something we accept, but shaping because Telstra can’t plan adequately to handle projected growth is not our problem as customers and is outside our control.”

He said affected people should have been advised by email of the shaping – we weren’t – at least I wasn’t. He said he’d check that out. I await his reply. But irrespective of notice, it is something I will continue to push on behalf of everyone, and something I’d suggest people raise at the meeting.

As a comparison, I think this would be like Sanitarium using a shortage in wheat to mean that their Weet Bix boxes are only half full, but the price will remain the same.

I should note also that we all pay the same amount for that 8Mbps service as someone in Sydney pays for a 20Mbps ADSL2+ service – another sore point.

Mr Taylor’s appearance at our meeting was triggered by a complaint from him about the accuracy of claims made by campaigner for better ACT broadband service Russ Gillon in an article in Gungahlin News. Mr Taylor wrote that he was “bemused” at the claims made, so we invited him to come to our meeting to explain where it was that we’ve all got it wrong…It’s a credit to him that he accepted the invite.

As usual, our meeting is at the Palmerston Community Centre (behind the shops) from 7.30pm. Please let everyone know so there is a strong turn-out and a very clear message for Telstra.

What’s Your opinion?


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23 Responses to
Telstra boss to front Gungahlin meeting on poor broadband
Jim Jones 4:27 pm 02 Jul 10

sexynotsmart said :

Telstra is NOT the only telco in Australia.

They’re the only telco in Australia who own all the infrastructure though, aren’t they?

Gungahlin Al 2:24 pm 02 Jul 10

Grrrr said :

Gungahlin Al – Yes, the situation in Gungahlin is bad. There’s dozens of backhaul links from CMUX to exchange that are often congested and need upgrading – everyone knows that, Telstra admit it. It was criminal of Telstra not to do so years ago.

However, Telstra shaping on your line is a non-issue. It wasn’t the shaping preventing you getting full use of your DSL tail, it was the congestion from your CMUX back to the exchange. The shaping is aimed at improving the traffic flow.
quote]

I can’t follow your logic sorry. And I’m sure many of the other people who for several months have been paying full price for a service that barely crawled every single evening couldn’t either.

Of course it was the congestion that is the problem. In the same way as ACT Education should have seen from the land sales that Harrison School wouldn’t be big enough for the population (and therefore avoiding having to put demountables into a brand new school), Telstra should have ramped up their Gungahlin infrastructure in line with or prior to the exspected population growth.

Had they done so, there would have been no congestion and no shaping required. Oh – and lots of people would have been happy to sign up with them rather than having a try of other ISPs. After all I thought Telstra was supposed to be thinking more business-like since privatisation?

I’m pretty sure there’d be a moral (if not a legal) argument to be mounted with Fair Trading too.

Holden Caulfield 11:25 am 02 Jul 10

Can someone please ask him why ADSL2+ services in Fyshwick cannot be on sold to other ISPs.

Grrrr 10:28 am 02 Jul 10

Gungahlin Al – Yes, the situation in Gungahlin is bad. There’s dozens of backhaul links from CMUX to exchange that are often congested and need upgrading – everyone knows that, Telstra admit it. It was criminal of Telstra not to do so years ago.

However, Telstra shaping on your line is a non-issue. It wasn’t the shaping preventing you getting full use of your DSL tail, it was the congestion from your CMUX back to the exchange. The shaping is aimed at improving the traffic flow.

yoyo – just to be precise, you mean you’re getting an ADSL1 service instead of ADSL2+, not “8mbit instead of 20mbit.” If you’re getting 8mbit sync speed now, you mightn’t get any faster speeds after transposition onto a longer piece of copper back to an exchange offering ADSL2+. Also, if you can get transposed then switch straight to Internode! Good luck.

Gungahlin Al 10:27 am 02 Jul 10

Perhaps we’ll need to see if we can get someone from the other ISPs to the meeting to address some of these questions if they can’t be answerred by Telstra?

ProudTenant 10:18 am 02 Jul 10

yoyo23 said :

Thanks for taking up the fight!

ProudTenant, you are on an Internode DSLAM? Lucky you. I applied to Internode for Naked ADSL2+ but got regected because of “Fibre to the RIM”.

Ooooh, what a shame. How long ago was that? Is it on their fix list? I would seriously think twice about signing up with BigPond. Please report back after 14th – would love to hear about it.

ConanOfCooma 10:17 am 02 Jul 10

“Oh noes, my 8mb connection is only connecting at 0.5, oh the HUGE MANATEE!”

Get a grip, do you know how many people out there still have to put up with dial up?!?

I myself was only able to get ADSL1 4 years ago, and 256 was fantastic. Stop whining because your torrents take too long to download. And don’t even dare use “overseas calls with Skype” as an excuse, as my grandmother uses it on dial up all day to talk to her deranged relatives in the Netherlands!

ProudTenant 10:14 am 02 Jul 10

Harves said :

Being on an Internode DSLAM will not help you if you are on a RIM!

If I was you, I would give Internode a call on 13 NODE and ask tonnes of questions. You will get a local (Adelaide) person within a few minutes. Gee, you may even get to speak to the same person over and over again – unlike the other ISPs.

The Internode link I posted above shows Gungahlin exchange as being active on their DSLAM. Not sure how being on a RIM affects that, but then, I’m no tech guru, so forgive me. They just seem to be the leader in the field, and are clearly far more technolgocally advanced than most.They must be doing something right if they are rated as best ISP for years running.

Good luck, and I do feel for those who have to deal with ISPs who give them a different answer every time they call, or have sub-standard speeds. Very frustrating.

Harves 9:51 pm 01 Jul 10

Being on an Internode DSLAM will not help you if you are on a RIM!

bd84 9:14 pm 01 Jul 10

Telstra have to be the laziest company going around, they have absolutely no interest in serving their customers unless it will make them a large amount of money for services they aren’t providing or if they are embarrassed into fixing problems.

It’s good to see they have been embarrassed into doing something in Gungahlin. The only reason I have broadband today is due to a letter in the CT a number of years ago, it’s amazing how they can magically fix something they had been refusing to fix for years in less than a week.

sexynotsmart 8:30 pm 01 Jul 10

Where’s the tirade against Optus? And Vodafone?

Telstra is NOT the only telco in Australia. The others could build their own network. One suspects they haven’t because it’s not economic.

yoyo23 7:09 pm 01 Jul 10

Thanks for taking up the fight!

ProudTenant, you are on an Internode DSLAM? Lucky you. I applied to Internode for Naked ADSL2+ but got regected because of “Fibre to the RIM”.

I have taken up Bigpond’s Pure DSL trial, getting only an 8Mb service even though I pay the same as someone getting a 20Mb service. I called them up on June 3 and the Rapid-Transfer finally took place on June 26 after about 6 calls to Bigpond. Every call resulted in a different reply as to when I could expect the service to be operating. I was even told they couldn’t configure ADSL on my line because I had an existing ADSL provider and I should cancel it first. The Bigpond guy refused to believe there was such a thing as Rapid-Transfer so he put me on hold for 45 minutes and then hung up on me 🙁

There is rumor that I can call Telstra now and ask for a transposition. That will convert my phone line to bypass the RIM and have copper all the way to the Gungahlin exchange. Then that will give me ADSL2+ speeds. Apparently they only have so many copper lines from the RIM to do this for customers so I’m doubtful I can get it.

I’m planning on attending the meeting on 14 July.

welkin31 6:55 pm 01 Jul 10

Is there an online map anywhere that grades the best and worst Gungahlin areas ?

ProudTenant 6:00 pm 01 Jul 10

I’m with Internode, and they have their own DSLAMs – is that a good thing? I think it is.

https://secure.internode.on.net/webtools/dsl-coverage-table

rosscoact 5:53 pm 01 Jul 10

When i asked them in 2007 when the service was going to be upgraded and they said 2011. I laughed thinking you must be joking. Apparently this was their plan all along.

I’m suppose to be able to get 1.5MBS but I’m lucky to get half that at any time. Telstra sucks is the message

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