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UK Broadband Plan Set To Clear EU Approval 37

judgecorp writes "The British government's plan to subsidize rural broadband in the UK is about to get approval from the European Union, even though every contract so far has been awarded to BT, according to sources. The Broadband Delivery UK (BDUK) project has been examined under EU state aid rules, but apparently has passed despite all the money going to one dominant telecom operator"
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UK Broadband Plan Set To Clear EU Approval

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  • The seem to be all fine and dandy with it ... as if there's nobody else out there who would dream of having extremely poor business practices.

    Actually, BT is probably in bed with the current government

  • Let's say you live on a block. You have crack. You would like to sell this crack to people who really want to buy crack. If nobody is selling crack, and you have crack willing to sell, why would this be a problem?
    • It would be a problem because it is morally wrong and if you ignored your morals telling you not to sell crack please know it is illegal and if I knew you had crack I would rat on you so you would be punished.
      What is happening here is wrong these people have no morals and they should be punished.
      You sir have no point to make other than a silly one for fools such as yourself. But its probably not your fault 'cause all the crack you smoked made you do it.
    • Let's say you live on a block and you are a crack distributor. You've got a bunch of dealers working for you around town. You make sure to not supply too much crack to your 'customers' in order to keep prices up.

      Now, you know that you've got the major cities covered by your network of dealers, but how to get all the customers in the boondocks, say hamlets of only 10 or 20 thousand people. It's too much trouble for a dealer to keep commuting back and forth, so the obvious solution is:

      1) all the dealers ge

  • Important (Score:5, Insightful)

    by busyqth ( 2566075 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @12:24AM (#41593405)
    I think it's very important to spread the dosh around, because everywhere else that this has been done, governments have relied on robust competition between scrappy telecoms companies to provide rural broadband service...

    Well except in Korea, where it was all done by Korea Telecom, but then again, they finished their 100 Mbps rollout 5 years ago and are now providing 1000 Mbps service to rural areas, so what do they know about this stuff?
  • Terrible summary (Score:5, Informative)

    by byornski ( 1022169 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @12:42AM (#41593485)
    The real story here is that the UK govt isnt giving money to communal rural broadband programs. That is what this story is about. BT(wholesale) owns the vast majority of the UK's phone lines and internet access(with the exception of cable where you can get it). The systems in place only seem to acknowledge broadband extension programmes from big companies so as apparently to avoid communities setting up their own broadband networks etc. This is pretty disgraceful (but old) news from the British govt. It was on radio 4 about a month ago...
  • by luvirini ( 753157 ) on Tuesday October 09, 2012 @02:12AM (#41593777)

    As I understand the situation, the councils that want to get part of the rural broadband money have to use "approved suppliers" and there are only two of them.

    There is really not that much competition with only two companies available, though I am sure other companies could also do some of the projects.

    The problem is thus that because it is a national program with only central authorization of suppliers with pretty high barrier of entry given the types of documentation and other things required to "prove" that you are capable to doing such on national level, this leads to companies that have only a regional presence not really being able to be suppliers...

    • by Inda ( 580031 )
      The real problem is the rural community thinking the British population owes them a broadband connection.

      I have a big fat pipe. 30mbit, soon to be 60mbit.

      I grew up in a lovely rural farmland village.

      After leaving school, there was no work in the area, and the house prices were inflated by high-earning commuters, so I moved to the concrete jungle with its vast infrastructure. I sacrificed the green fields, smell of cow shit and huge gardens for the chance to work and live in a house. I also gained a big fat
      • Replace "broadband" with "telephony", move the year back around 50 units, does your view still seem reasonable? This is progress, and progress should be possible by all.
  • Sovereignty? (Score:2, Interesting)

    If I were British, I would be annoyed that my country doesn't have the sovereignty to handle its own internal affairs, but that's just me.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      The EU are providing funding for this. It's only fair they get a say.

    • This isn't a case of gaining the EU's permission simply for show, it's all about keeping the European Union's inner market open and competitive. This is the core mission of the EU(!) Free and unhindered trade amongst the members. It's a two-way street.

      If the British government(s) want to spend their money on rural broadband, that's just great, but they can't simply hand the money to their own preferred partners (BT). That would be illegal state subsidies. There has to be free and open competition for the co

    • by N1AK ( 864906 )
      If I were American there's a lot of things I'd be annoyed about; if the UN offered to help fund decent rural broadband, but on the condition that the provider needed to be selected fairly and openly, and the government said yes it certainly wouldn't be added to the list.
    • You know that we get to vote for our European MPs, right?

      • by Ash-Fox ( 726320 )

        You know that we get to vote for our European MPs, right?

        But we don't get to vote in or out Herman Van Rompuy, Jose Manuel Barroso or Martin Schulz - Who happen to be the European presidents.

        • Technically people in the US don't get to vote for Obama or Romney either. They vote for people who meet to decide who the next president should be. It works the same way in the EU, except that they really do meet to consider who the best candidate is.

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