01 October 2009

Can't rural women pay for their own broadband?

The call by Rural Women New Zealand to force taxpayers to pay for them to be able to watch Youtube more easily, listen to foreign radio broadcasts, swap holiday photos and play multiplayer computer games (and no doubt some looking at porn) is outrageous.

There is no right to high speed broadband services. Just as there is no right to free car parking next to your job, or no right to have paddocks to keep horses on.

If Rural Women New Zealand want fast broadband access, nothing is stopping them paying for it, signing long term contracts with prospective suppliers and seeing who will provide it. If no one will, nothing is stopping them entering the market themselves and providing these services which they claim are in demand.

Nothing except, they don’t want to pay the cost of providing it.

If they don’t like how much it costs, they can always move into one of the main centres where such broadband services are available. You see, if you live in remote areas why should you not be surprised that you don’t get everything that is economic to provide in cities?

In the meantime, they might contemplate why, if taxpayers are forced to subsidise their choice to live remote from telecommunications infrastructure, why they shouldn’t pay for car parking for people at work in cities (which rural people “unfairly” get for free at their jobs), pay for city home owners to acquire an acre of land each upon which their kids can play and they can keep multiple pets including ponies, and pay for increases in road capacity so city dwellers can enjoy uncongested trips, like country dwellers do. After all school children in cities miss out on having open spaces to play in, and the opportunities to interact with nature, and it is “unfair” that they don’t.

Instead, you might just accept that where you live has advantages and disadvantages, and if you live in remote areas, you get cheap land, wide open spaces, empty roads, in exchange for being remote.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I could not agree more. I am rural, work from home and pay through the nose for satelite broadband. However I don't expect anyone to subsidise me as it was my choice to live where I do.

The thing that concerns me with this call for broadband for all is the fact that the Kiwi Share (I think ity is called) looks like it is going to be scrapped. I for one rely on my phone and would rather have that maintained.