Squiz Today / 23 October 2017
Squiz Today – Monday, 23 October
“It was funny. I was in a meeting and my desk phone started to ring and it doesn’t ring much so I went over and I saw it was an international number and I just picked up.”
New Kiwi PM Jacinda Ardern was happy to hear from ABC Language researcher Tim Webb. He rang to confirm the correct pronunciation of ‘Ardern’. Webb’s colleague Alex McClintock later tweeted; “…Tiges finished the call by saying; ‘Thank you Jacinda, and may I just say: congratulations.’” Polite and efficient!
NBN SINKING INTO THE RED
As the $49 billion National Broadband Network hits the mid-way mark of its rollout, and ahead of the ABC’s Four Corners focus on it tonight, there are a lot of questions being asked about its performance and cost to date. The company has released figures showing the most expensive connections under their initial method, the more costly fibre-to-the-home installations. While they've changed tack to deliver fibre-to-the-node, boss Bill Morrow is still worried it won't turn a profit.
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?
You mean besides it costing $91,196 to wire one home and $86,533 to wire a bowling club in Tassie? Not surprisingly, the NBN is losing money on each suburb it connects. "We collect about $43 per month from retail service providers for each home they sell into. In order to recover costs we need $52," Morrow told Fairfax Media. He also concedes that mobile broadband in some areas provides a better service than the NBN can. And customers choosing low cost, low-speed plans have been very unhappy with the NBN, something Morrow has previously said is a problem at the retailers' end, but the NBN is copping flack for.
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
No doubt many policy-makers, telco types and interweb users will be watching Four Corners tonight. But ahead of that, the NBN has announced the rollout will change tack again to deliver fibre-to-the-curb (instead of fibre-to-the-node) in the first half of 2018 to bring costs down further. But it seems we're some way off getting Australia-wide, reliable, good speed, low-cost internet access. Pfft.
LEVELLING THE PLAYING FIELD
PRESENTED BY COMMONWEALTH BANK
Thing to know: The Australian Women's Cricket Team have started their battle against our old foe England for the Women's Ashes.
Other thing to know: The Commonwealth Bank and Cricket Australia have teamed up to change the way we see women's cricket. In fact, the Commonwealth Bank feel so strongly about it that it's switched its sponsorship focus to Australian women's cricket to better champion diversity and inclusion in the sport. Which is pretty cool.
Click here to see how the Commonwealth Bank is levelling the playing field (note there's a great 30 sec video...).
SQUIZ THE REST
NEW ANTI-TERROR MEASURES AIMED AT AIRPORT WORKERS
About 140,000 ground staff working ‘airside’ at Aussie airports - baggage handlers, caterers, maintenance workers, engineers – will be subject to new anti-terror security measures. After July’s scare, reports said the government was considering new airport security measures. Senator Nick Xenophon called the announcement “a joke” saying that screening should be mandatory. And look, if old rockers have to suffer through it, surely everyone can…
BODIES FOUND IN SUNKEN TRAWLER
Two of the six men missing off the central Queensland coast were recovered from their sunken trawler on Saturday. Police divers’ efforts were hampered by rough conditions and a lot of debris inside the boat. By the end of yesterday, they had cleared the boat but did not find the remaining four men. Police say they will continue with patrols along the coastline to find them.
COCAINE CASSIE GETS ANOTHER RUN AT A PLEA DEAL
Accused drug mule Cassie Sainsbury faced court in Colombia on Friday where a new plea deal was put to the judge for approval. Under the deal, she would serve six years in jail, and if all goes well, she could be out in two years. The judge will rule on 1 November. She’s already had one go at the deal, but mucked it up by introducing new evidence when she told the judge she attempted to smuggle 5.8kg of cocaine out of Colombia after threats had been made against her and her family. If only she could remember how to unlock her phone…
QUICK WORLD NEWS WRAP
JAPAN VOTES – After calling a very early election, PM Shinzo Abe seems on track to win another term. He’s not that popular, but voters’ concerns about North Korea has been quoted as a reason to stick with him. They’ll want to get the votes counted before they blow away. One interesting factlet – Japan sucks at female parliamentary representation. They are 165th out of 193 countries (Australia is 50th).
CATALONIA CRISIS – The saga deepens… Spanish PM Mariano Rajoy wants to impose direct rule over the region, which includes Barcelona, which could include the removal of Catalonia's leaders and curbs on its parliament. Catalan leaders said it is an attack on democracy.
JFK ASSASSINATION FILES TO BE RELEASED – US President Donald Trump tweeted on Sunday that he won’t stand in the way of the planned release on Thursday of a final batch of classified government documents on the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy. There were reports that Trump might prevent at least some of the documents from being released due to national security interests. Whatever that means…
MUGABE APPOINTMENT QUESTIONED - Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director general of the World Health Organisation, says he’s decided to rescind his offer to appoint Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe as a goodwill ambassador. Probably a good move…
WOMEN’S ASHES OFF TO A WINNING START
The summer of international cricket got underway yesterday with the opening match of the Women's Ashes. Australia beat England with just five balls to spare in a see-sawing match thanks to 67 not out from Alex Blackwell and a strong all-round performance from Ash Gardner in front of a sell-out crowd in Brisbane. The series now moves on to Coffs Harbour for a one-day game at their loftily named ‘International Stadium’. Reminds us of the Canberra International Airport. As John Steinbeck wrote; “Perhaps the less we have, the more we are required to brag.”
And while we have you… Saturday night saw the Wallabies crack their first win over New Zealand’s All Blacks for two years.
HAWAII IN A SPAM JAM
Hawaii’s love of Spam is one of those regional quirks that’s hard for outsiders to understand. No, we’re not talking about junk mail, it’s the processed and tinned pork product we refer to. Seriously. Made popular during WWII, Hawaiians continue to eat more Spam than any other state of the US. And reports say retailers are now putting it in locked cases due to high levels of theft. The theory is thieves are targeting the tins of meaty grossness not because they want to get a gob full, but because it’s an easy product to on-sell to make a quick couple of bucks. Who woulda thought…
SQUIZ THE DAY
ABS Data Releases - Additional Census Census of Population and Housing information
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