Campaign for fibre NBN comes to Malcolm Turnbull's front door
The advertisement argues Mr Turnbull hasn’t been listening to thousands of Australians asking for a fibre-to-the-premises NBN. Photo: Supplied
Supporters of fibre-to-the-premises broadband are taking their campaign to Malcolm Turnbull's electorate on Wednesday, having raised enough money to begin an advertising campaign in his local newspaper.
An advertisement featuring a close up of a man's ear will appear in the Wentworth Courier on Wednesday morning calling on the Communications Minister to listen to Australians and keep rolling out fibre-to-the-premises broadband connections.
The ad was written by a group of young people who used crowdfunding to raise money for the pro-fibre NBN campaign. It grew out of an online petition on change.org calling on Mr Turnbull to reconsider the Coalition's fibre-to-the-node plan for the "superior" fibre-to-the-premises network. It has gathered more than 267,000 signatures since the election.
The new ad features a giant picture of a middle-aged man's ear, but not Malcolm Turnbull's actual ear, with a tag line calling on Mr Turnbull to "increase the share of FTTP for a more equal broadband network".
"We have done the numbers, and when it comes to investing in Australia's future, fibre-to-the-premises is the clear choice: it's 20 times faster, costs just 1/3 more than fibre to the node and is supported by a strong majority," the ad reads.
It was approved by Sydney-based university student Alex Stewart. Mr Stewart said the group wrote the ad themselves and placed it for about $7,000.
"The message that we are trying to get across is 'Malcolm, start listening to the community'," Mr Stewart said.
The crowdfunding campaign to target Mr Turnbull's electorate of Wentworth has raised $58,594 so far and the rest of the money would be used for advertising in marginal seats won by Coalition MPs in the last election.
"We intend on doing a lot of other things. We have got plans developing and are going to start running with a marginal seat campaign," Mr Stewart said.
Mr Turnbull's office declined to comment. Earlier this month he told Fairfax Media: "While I always welcome more advertising in our local paper, Australians are looking for facts, not spin or rhetoric, on the NBN."
Mr Turnbull responded to the earlier petition with a blog post saying he would not ignore the election result or walk away from one of the Coalition's "most well debated, well understood and prominent policies".