A tech website just published the NBN rollout plan the company tried to keep secret

The NBN rollout. Photo: file

Tech website Delimiter got a hold of the National Broadband Network’s three-year rollout plan, which ALP senator Stephen Conroy attempted to table in committee last night, only to be knocked back.

NBN CEO Bill Morrow opposed its release on the basis that it might cause customer confusion and said it was commercial-in-confidence.

Delimiter adds that Morrow also argued it would damage the NBN brand and send some customers to rivals due to delays.

The fascinating thing is that it’s far more detailed than the NBN Co’s official three-year rollout plan and Delimiter mounts a strong defence of public interest for publishing the Excel document, which you can download here.

It includes build and ready for service dates for the various regions and Conroy, who was the minister who began NBN project, claimed last night that there are significant delays between rollout and availability in some areas.

Here’s some of what Delimiter says about deciding to publish the document in the public interest:

The National Broadband Network is public infrastructure being constructed with taxpayer money. Australians deserve as much transparency as possible from the NBN company in terms of its rollout plans. This will aid the public in being able to plan for house purchases, for example, or for the location of commercial office space.

Furthermore, this information was previously issued by the NBN company in the form of regular reports under the previous Labor Government. Thus, the release of this information today merely represents a return to the levels of transparency which the NBN company was previously conducting with respect to the public. This mitigates against the argument that the release of the information would damage the NBN company’s brand.

Read the rest here.

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