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Think Mega

Written By: - Date published: 10:33 am, November 4th, 2012 - 138 comments
Categories: infrastructure, internet, leadership, telecommunications - Tags: ,

Kim Dotcom has some ambitious ideas for NZ:

Dotcom trumpets free fibre

Controversial internet tycoon Kim Dotcom is promising free broadband for all New Zealanders, possibly alongside Trade Me founder Sam Morgan. Dotcom yesterday tweeted: “I will relaunch Pacific Fibre. Free broadband for all Kiwi’s [sic].”

The Herald has more concrete details. Not quite free – but close:

He would provide New Zealand internet service providers such as Telecom and Vodafone with free access for individual customers and charge a fee to business and central government.

Kiwis would still be charged a fee by the internet companies, but it would be as low as one-fifth of current bandwidth plans and three to five times faster with no transfer limits.

Ultra-cheap broadband? That would be handy. If he pulls it off, Dotcom is going to put our local entrepreneurs to shame – not to mention our government. He’s also going to make himself rather popular with NZ. Interesting times.

[Post updated with Herald details.]

138 comments on “Think Mega”

  1. Bill 1

    Erm. How is that free broadband? We might be hooked up to the cables or whatever for free as is currently the case for ultra fast broadband connections within 200m of an existing road. But that doesn’t mean the service will be free.

    • r0b 1.1

      Hmmm – The Herald has more concrete details. Not quite free – but close:

      He would provide New Zealand internet service providers such as Telecom and Vodafone with free access for individual customers and charge a fee to business and central government.

      Kiwis would still be charged a fee by the internet companies, but it would be as low as one-fifth of current bandwidth plans and three to five times faster with no transfer limits.

      Will update post.

      • weka 1.1.1

        Not free then. ‘Cheaper broadband’ would be the right term. I wonder why the MSM just accept a term like that, presumably from a press release.

  2. weka 2

    What does ‘free’ mean exactly? Someone has to pay for it somewhere along the line.
    Having said that, internet access provision in NZ is a disgrace, so it will be interesting to see what they come up with.

    • Smart Alek 2.1

      I guess it will mean ‘free’ in the way water is ‘free’ from your tap. There’s still a cost for providing the infrastructure behind the tap, and that infrastructure – and hence cost – will set the upper limit for the amount of water you can draw through it. However once that infrastructure is paid for you can draw as much water/data through the tap as you want up to that maximum for no further charge.

      • weka 2.1.1

        We pay for water through our rates.
        I wasn’t clear whether the end home user would be charged a fee or not. It said free, then it said the ISP’s would still charge a fee.

    • David H 2.2

      Why is it people automatically think that the word ‘free’ means they are going to get something for nought. First I say read the article, and second think of FREEVIEW that’s free, to use, what they did’nt do was make the equipment FREE. And thats what it looks like here Free to the Telco’s and then sent out to us, on their lines (rental) to our houses and Modem/Routers (a lot are Rental (tied in with contract)) FFS why are some people so pedantic?

      • weka 2.2.1

        Not sure what your point is David. I just think it should be clarified who would pay for what. Is that unreasonable?
        (and yes, free does usually mean no cost. If my ISP rang me and said I could have free internet, I would think that meant no monthly bill).

    • Fortran 2.3

      Has sombody found a Free Lunch – at last

  3. AsleepWhileWalking 3

    THAT’S IT!!! THROW OUT THE CASE. Let’s take the bribe because he is a much better ally than the stinky, QE to infinity, not a real friend if they ask more from us than they would ever offer USA.

    Edit: Oh, just read the article. Still it’s a great idea : ) Thanks Megacom.

  4. Colonial Viper 4

    Dotcom is going to put our local CORPORATIONS to shame

    Just thought I’d fix that, since it appears that Dotcom would likely work with NZ entrepreneurs like Morgan to help relaunch Pacific Fibre.

    • deuto 4.1

      From activity on Dotcom’s Twitter account in the last hour, Morgan, Breslen and Dotcom appear to be arranging to get together next week.

      Some discussion re crowd sourcing investment, with Breslen commenting that they had been thinking of setting up a public fund/trust to raise cash (presumably in the earlier attempt to get Pacific Fibre going). He seems to think there is enough demand.

      One hiccup suggested is that US agreement to Pacific Fibre will be needed.

  5. PlanetOrphan 5

    Bloody awesome, it was gonna cost $500+ to get fibre to my door.

  6. Chalupa Batman 6

    Um is this really a guy you think you can trust?

    • PlanetOrphan 6.1

      “Off the record” bud ? 🙂 …… Yup

    • David H 6.2

      I’d trust him more, than the lot running this bloody country. And you can stick that ON the record 🙂

      • The Gormless Fool formerly known as Oleolebiscuitbarrell 6.2.1

        He is a convicted fraudster. Maybe we could get Rod Petrecevic and Conrad Black to give him a hand.

      • weka 6.2.2

        As good as the entertainment value is in Dotcom sticking it to the man, we have to remember he is the man too. Wouldn’t want him running the country either.

  7. Colonial Viper 7

    He’s a smart self made businessman who is very wealthy. Thought you would be all over him for a job.

  8. RedBaron 8

    Given that our current broadband service is about 10 years out of date and the current lot of telco’s ship truckloads of profit offshore there has to be a business case for Pacific Fibre and cheaper broadband. I’ll chuck in a bit if they want to crowd source.

    Does anybody trust the current Telco’s ?

    More mega upload to you Kim. Candidate for Helensville perhaps?

  9. MrSmith 9

    Great news, Kim for Prime minister!

    Shit Im still waiting for any kind of broad-band, it must be coming tho as that nice man Mr Key promised.

  10. WiredUp 10

    It is not about broadband.  

    It is not about free broadband.

    It is about Dotcom beating the US deportation rap and remaining free.

    It is all part of his PR campaign. 

    Don’t be taken-in.

    • MrSmith 10.1

      Better the devil you know than some swanky back-room hollywood puppet.

    • Jackal 10.2

      How exactly would Dotcom helping to provide better broadband to New Zealand stop any extradition order if he loses in a court of law? Perhaps you’re trying to say the Judge will be corrupt and make a decision not purely based on the case at hand. Being that much of the police evidence has been attained through illegal means, it’s unlikely Dotcom will be extradited, because the case against him is looking decidedly shoddy!

      I think what Kim Dotcom has proposed is a great idea. Not only will it help his fledgling business Mega, it will ensure New Zealanders can compete properly within cyberspace. Having better connectivity is imperative to our commercial viability and ensuring more people can use the Internet through better pricing will help our economy and increase innovation.

      However there’s another aspect to Dotcom wanting faster connectivity… Online gaming is the fastest growing entertainment industry in the world. While New Zealand has some of the best creative minds around, we’re currently at a huge disadvantage because of our isolation. As an avid fan of competitive gaming, Dotcom has a personal interest in faster broadband in that it’s virtually impossible to compete at the highest levels with a slow connection. It’s also impossible to collaborate properly on any large-scale projects, which means without better broadband, New Zealand will not attain the growth it could.

      If New Zealand wants to capitalise on our talent, we must have the infrastructure available to ensure we can compete on an equal technological basis with other countries. The government is failing to deliver what the country needs, and it has been left up to a German businessman. Instead of badmouthing Dotcom and pouring water on his ideas, detractors should be thankful that the entrepreneur is still willing to help New Zealand prosper. This is remarkable of Dotcom if you ask me, considering the way he’s been treated so far.

  11. seanm 11

    Good call on the embarrassment to the NZ government. [Deleted. One month ban for being a terminal dickhead … RL]

  12. Lanthanide 12

    I don’t really see how Dotcom is going to do this. Sam Morgan says they needed $400m in extra funding and I don’t think Kim has that kind of money himself. I don’t know what international companies would be interested in stumping the cash up either, especially if there’s going to be little monetary return from the venture.

    • Flying Kiwi 12.1

      According to the Guardian* the cash will come from compensation received by KD by sueing the NZ and US Governments for their litany of illegalities around his case – ie the damage to his business from shutting down Megaupload, illegal surveillance &tc.

      Even if he is successful I can’t imagine he would be awarded anything like $400m – in the NZ courts, anyway – but I have to applaud the principle.


  13. burt 13

    Dotcom…. NZ’s latest Owen Glenn using his wealth to charm us… how lovely… lets forget all our principles and elevate him to saint hood … for a while….

    • PlanetOrphan 13.1

      Civilised means you take the first hit for free bud, eyes open and all that ….

      • burt 13.1.1

        Civilised Sold out means you take the first hit for free bud, eyes open and all that ….

        But hey if there is ‘free bud’ with that broadband…. I’ll take the first hit 🙂

        • PlanetOrphan

          Ae, hear ya 😀 , learn from our mistakes …… please 🙂
          Say “No” to free broadband, it desocializes and ostracizes you, scientifically proven M8! 🙂
          Free yourself!

          • burt

            When Dotcom starts making secret donations to Winston we know we’re in trouble …. Meet your new Technology Minister…..

            • felix

              lol burt.

              So concerned about a hypothetical future secret donation that you just invented, narry a mention of the actual real world secret donations to John Banks, currently ACT party leader.

              Didn’t you vote for Banks and ACT in 2011, burt?

              • burt


                No, I didn’t vote for Banks and ACT in 2011.

                OK, so you think what Banks did was wrong… and it was much the same as Winston who you defend – how’s that working out for you felix ?

                • felix

                  That’s very interesting burt. I knew you went right off Rodney after his various disgraces, but I thought you’d have been dead keen on seeing Dr Brash lead the party to its glorious triumph.

                  Who did you vote for, if you don’t mind me asking?

  14. Shorts 14

    From reading the articles it seems dotcoms playing a very astute political and economic game – he wants to base servers here, thus needs the extra capacity… As do and would others if anyone follows his lead in using NZ as a base. Not only does his needs require the added capacity but for it to be economically viable he needs cheap power, something NZ can provide, he also needs to get off his charges and have local politicians and business onside to enable everything he wants/needs – thus an attractive offer to the people whilst attacking the current govt, who’ve shown they care little for him

    We talk about the knowledge economy and changing the way we do stuff…. Well here is someone who seems to want to so rather than rattle off a speech filled with catch phrases.

    We want NZ to be a modern forward thinking country – being a data hub could just be it, all run off sustainable power sources….

    I say good on him and I hope we see some action across business and politics to see this idea get more than poo-pooing and character assassinations. He’s no saint but he sure as shit seems more open and honest than most whom ‘command’ our respect

    • Lanthanide 14.1

      I don’t really think that stacks up.

      If he wants to host servers in NZ, he can do so right now and it will cost him much less (even with the current bandwidth charges) than it would to start his own international cable company…

      Of course said company would generate profits, whereas hosting using existing bandwidth would be a business cost.

      “he needs cheap power”

      Many other countries in the world, for example the US, have much cheaper electricity than we do. Most of Europe does as well. Anyway, he would be leasing servers from a server farm somewhere – he doesn’t care what the price of electricity is because that’s just built into the cost of leasing the servers. If the price is competitive with overseas server farms then it doesn’t matter what the individual input costs are.

      • Shorts 14.1.1

        Cant comment on costs now as i wouldnt have a clue – but futurewise, we are nicely located away from potential political and economic storms peak oil, financial breakdowns could bring, plus as weve seen its not very expensive to ‘buy’ favours in nz or get allies…

        If his new venture was largely based here it will need massive capacity… And there is good reason to be based away from the USA (obviously) and Europe too I’d suggest, though I too doubt he wants to own or head a cable company… Motivate and restimulate one possibly

        This is either a solid plan that could help him and NZ or just another strategic play – I hope the latter.

        • Draco T Bastard

          Cant comment on costs now as i wouldnt have a clue

          Hosting in NZ is incredibly expensive compared to other places in the world. Often several times the price while getting less service.

  15. Treetop 15

    How many jobs would Pacific Fibre broadband create compared to the government’s broadband?

    Are both sustainable?

    • Lanthanide 15.1

      “How many jobs would Pacific Fibre broadband create compared to the government’s broadband?

      Are both sustainable?”

      Hardly any.

    • Draco T Bastard 15.2

      Pacific Fibre is a possible cable connecting NZ to the US. Nothing more.

  16. infused 16

    You also have no idea how it works. It will never happen.

    Also, we won’t base servers here. He’s just talking shit to get back in to the news. If you connect the UFB under water to the US, you still need links to the EU etc. That’s where the bottlenecks are. You cannot do anything about that.

    Southern Cross will just lower their price making pacific fibre a non-investment – which is what happens.

    Wholesale international data is already cheap. Back in 2008 when I was trying to buy it wholesale, it was $400 per megabit. Now it’s ~$90. ISPs have plenty of bandwidth available. The international pipe is not the problem.

    Dotcom is playing a good game imo. But it’s all shit.

    • Colonial Viper 16.1

      Nah your analysis is wrong. After all, Dotcom didn’t come up with the blueprint for the Pacific Fibre cable, Sam Morgan’s group did.

      Are you now saying that the Pacific Fibre concept was a technical failure from the start?

      • infused 16.1.1

        Yes, and it was stated right from the very beginning. Exactly what I said, was said right at the start and they ignored it and overstated their case. That’s why they got no investment.

      • Lanthanide 16.1.2

        “Are you now saying that the Pacific Fibre concept was a technical failure from the start?”

        I think he’s saying that Dotcom is just saying shit to get on the news and although he might like to be involved with the cable, it’ll never happen in practice.

        Just heard Rod Drury (one of the founders of the Pacific Fibre company) on the 5pm bulletin on National Radio saying he thinks the legal action from the US will make it difficult if Dotcom wants to be directly involved (the US government can just nix the connection), and apparently Dotcom was going to raise money by suing the US government?

        • infused

          I’m saying that as well, but the fibre is a dead duck. It’s not financially viable in any sense.

          You can’t just plug in to china and be ‘connected’. you have to pay for the interconnects. It’s expensive.

          Ever tried downloading from the UK or Germany? Our connections there are rubbish.

          • Colonial Viper

            You’re making shit up now. The Southern Cross Cable is very profitable.

            • infused

              I meant pacific fibre.

              • Colonial Viper

                Why should the big telecoms corporates be gifted all the profit? Especially when they have stationed themselves in a tax haven.

                • infused

                  Then they can build their own fibre. Easy eh?

                  • Colonial Viper


                    • infused

                      But it won’t happen, because it won’t make enough money. Unless someone wants to fund the entire thing.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Just tax the existing infrastructure to build the new one then.

                    • infused

                      And how is that fair?

                    • Colonial Viper

                      What’s fair got to do with it? The corporates are making $80M pa off the cable, we want some of it to build commons for NZ, so there it goes.

                    • Mickey Mouse

                      How so? What did you contribute, in order to justify your claim?

                    • RedLogix

                      Well unlike the Pacific Fibre consortium, Dotcom has a different business model. He doesn’t need the cable to make money. His cash flow comes from the me.ga business (which needs the cable, not the other way around.)

                      He can afford to give away the bandwidth to New Zealand and beat Southern Cross at their own game.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      How so? What did you contribute, in order to justify your claim?

                      You want to operate in our nation and make money from our people, then you have to follow a few simple Government set rules. It’s not rocket science mate.

                  • infused

                    Cool, so because I can’t compete on making a NZ cloud model, I want the govt to tax someone elses service so we can build our own.

                    It’s fucking retarded. So what if they are making 80m pa off it (Where are you getting that figure from?). They stumped up the 1.3 billion us to build it.

                    Like I said before, dot.com’s whole business model is flawed, he’d never run his servers here because of the interconnect. You’re all being taken for a ride.

            • Lanthanide

              He never said it wasn’t? In fact he said that the southern cross cable could just reduce their bandwidth prices (easily and cheaply) to a level to make the pacific fibre not worth the investment.

              Which they did actually do. All of these ‘unlimited broadband’ and doubled data-caps being offered by all of the ISPs aren’t just a coincidence you know.

              • Colonial Viper

                I’d threaten even more serious proposals in that case, and then force a lock-in of the gains from the Southern Cross operators.

      • Colonial Viper 16.1.3

        Southern Cross will just lower their price making pacific fibre a non-investment – which is what happens.

        Yeah, this kind of infrastructure needs to be publicly owned and operated.

        • infused


          Next step, great firewall of New Zealand.

          • Colonial Viper

            Why? Because its stops NZD from being offshored to corporate shareholders, for one.

            • infused

              Then go start your own… or invest in pacific fibre/dot.com

              • Colonial Viper

                Give me $400M and I will.

                Alternatively, we’ll just get the government to tax the profits off the Southern Cross cable to do it, that’s what its there for 😉

                • Jackal

                  Apparently there was a lot of interest by private investors in the initial project. There wouldn’t be any interest in the current government helping to undercut Telecom by ensuring competition… Not to mention the fact that a few government MPs aren’t exactly enthused about Dotcom at the moment. They’re unlikely to put what’s good for the country ahead of their private interests. In fact they’re unlikely to publicly respond to Dotcom’s proposal at all.

          • Draco T Bastard

            To get the connection we actually need.


            All you reasons for the Pacific Fibre cable not being commercially viable are correct but there’s a difference between commercially viable and needs to happen. It’s a difference that the commercial world doesn’t understand and why, by going with the neo-liberal economic BS, we’re presently destroying our society.

            • infused

              It actually doesn’t *need* to happen. Southern Cross Cable can easily expand to 2x of it’s current capacity.

              You can get the current connection you actually need, now.

              • Draco T Bastard

                When we get to 100mbps to homes then we will need the extra bandwidth. We can put it in now when we don’t need it or later after we’ve needed it for 5+ years which will be about when the market gets round to doing it. Personally, I prefer planning for the future rather than the reactive approach that we get from the market.

                • Mickey Mouse

                  Hillarious – and who would you trust to do this planning on your behalf? The MSD IT dept? It’ll be the same bunch of incompetents taking care of the detail (or not taking care of the detail) regardless of who is the govt of the day.

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Its a simple matter of building up competency in the public sector mate. Certainly you don’t want the incompetents at the private telcos running this (did you see the mess Telecom and Alcatel made of XT?)

                    • Mickey Mouse

                      “Its a simple matter of building up competency in the public sector mate.”

                      Yeah, real simple to talk about and virtually impossible to do – good luck with that

                    • RedLogix

                      (did you see the mess Telecom and Alcatel made of XT?)

                      The mess was primarily Telecom’s. Inside info from two independent first-hand sources very close to the action.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      NZers are good people mate and our public service was amongst the best.

                      The Government got Manapouri built, one of the world’s best crude oil refineries too, specified out our ferries and both designed and built our schools, hospitals, roads and rail.

                      Both our public healthcare and public education system were envisioned by NZers dedicated to serve, and brought into realisation by our public service, and again world leading even now.

                      Our system of conservation land and National Parks is second to none, and we were amongst the first countries to electrify, that latter part driven by provincial governments as much as by central.

                      Yeah, real simple to talk about and virtually impossible to do – good luck with that

                      I think we’ll do OK.

                      (thanks for that insight RL)

                    • Mickey Mouse

                      Nah, those days are long gone – we’re not living on the sheep’s back any more mate.

                    • Draco T Bastard

                      And that statement made absolutely no sense whatsoever. Not that I’m surprised, Mickey Mouse is obviously a RWNJ living on slogans.

                      Hint: The most competent people are almost always the people working in the public sector for the public good simply because they a) don’t have to feed their egos and b) don’t have the heads stuck up their arse.

                    • infused

                      “The mess was primarily Telecom’s. Inside info from two independent first-hand sources very close to the action.”

                      No it wasn’t. It was Acatels poor design with one single point of failure. Hence why Telecom got paid out. Your sources are crap.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      Thanks for repeating Telecom management/PR spin, infused.

                    • infused

                      Wasn’t spin. I don’t even think that was mentioned publicly cv.

                    • felix

                      The fact that we used to have a top class public service with the proven capability to carry out the sort of infrastructure building CV mentioned and much, much more has nothing to do with “living off the sheep’s back”.

                      It was because governments used to understand that they are supposed to be more than middle-management for their corporate bosses.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    Not the private corporates who will, for some strange reason, believe that all of us will owe them infinite amounts of money for doing so and do things as cheaply as possible to maximise profit.

                • infused

                  You can get 100mbit now.

                  Most ISPs international capacity after 5pm to 8am is at ~30%. There is massive capacity already. Southern Cross is running at 50%. The throughput of the Southern Cross can then be doubled easily.

              • Jackal


                It actually doesn’t *need* to happen. Southern Cross Cable can easily expand to 2x of it’s current capacity.

                You can get the current connection you actually need, now.

                Rubbish! The Southern Cross Cable, after a number of upgrades, currently has a total system capacity of 2 Tbit/s. It’s unlikely to have any significant future increases in design capacity.

                In contrast, the proposed Pacific Fibre system would be the highest capacity per fiber pair system ever built. At first its design capacity would be 5.12 Tbit/s, with an ultimate cable design capacity of 12.8 Tbit/s.

                Many New Zealanders cannot get the connectivity they need. We have some of the worst and most expensive broadband services in the developed world. It’s also very slow in comparison… So stop talking nonsense infused.

                • infused

                  “Many New Zealanders cannot get the connectivity they need. We have some of the worst and most expensive broadband services in the developed world. It’s also very slow in comparison… So stop talking nonsense infused.”

                  This has nothing to do with the Southern Cross cable. This is the industry I’m in. It’s you lot that are talking the nonsense.

                  The cable is only limited by the technology we have currently.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    The cable is only limited by the technology we have currently.

                    BS, it’s going to be limited by the quality of the fibre as well. At some point, no matter the technology on the end, that quality will prevent extending the bandwidth. Modern fibre cables will have a much greater quality and so be able to far exceed what the Southern Cross cable is capable of. It’s presently limited to 6tbps using technology available today.

                    Of course, that’s actually beside the point. What Jackal seems to be getting confused with is the national network which really is crap due to under investment by Telecom and incorrect investment by the other telcos producing their own networks (we would really be better off if the money spent doing that had just been invested in Telecom’s existing network).

                    BTW, when I said 100mbps I meant 100mbps minimum so you’d probably be seeing some people with gigabit connections or better. There’s no way the Southern Cross cable would be able to handle that sort of load.

                    • infused

                      There are NZ local caches of everything now. Google (youtube etc) amaki. You’d never see that load.

                      Again, your missing the point about the interconnects. Every hop you go through internationally you lose a percentage of your bandwidth. If you have a gigabit connection here, you will most likely only get 10mbit throughout the US unless you use multiple connections.

                      No one gets full speed internationally, it just doesn’t happen.

                    • Jackal


                      What Jackal seems to be getting confused with is the national network which really is crap due to under investment by Telecom and incorrect investment by the other telcos producing their own networks.

                      I’m not confusion at all. It appeared that infused was referring to the end user when he/she said; You can get the current connection you actually need, now.” This is obviously not correct, with many New Zealanders having a lack of, bad or expensive connections.

                      In hindsight, he/she may have been referring to telcos getting the connection they need through the Southern Cross Cable. But again I would have to disagree. There is a lack of competition within the industry (something that privatising Telecom was apparently meant to fix) that means the end user is paying through the nose for broadband services. According to Dotcom, a Pacific Fibre cable would go a long way to ensuring New Zealanders got the connection they need.


                      No one gets full speed internationally, it just doesn’t happen.

                      That all depends on what you mean by full speed? You’re correct that there is drop, but this will become even worse when loads increase. Without future proofing our connectivity with the rest of the world and upgrading the system now instead of when the government has to because people are getting restless about the shit services we have in New Zealand, why not support a private entrepreneur to upgrade the system now? Is it perhaps because “you work in the industry” and Dotcom’s plan would undercut telcos, effectively stoping them ripping Kiwis off with overpriced broadband?

                      There are NZ local caches of everything now.

                      How exactly does that help online gamers? Remember this is one of the biggest growth industries in the world. New Zealand has the 10th fastest growth rate in the OECD for fixed broadband connections. But hey, let’s just wait around for the infrastructure to not be able to meet demand. Great plan there infused. Not!

                      unless you use multiple connections.

                      Although you’re not specifically talking about “multiple connections” in this way; you could in fact use the Pacific Fibre cable in conjunction with the Southern Cross Cable to dramatically increase the speed and amount of data able to be transfered. 2 and 5.12 Tbit/s become 7.12 Tbit/s etc.

                      Caches can only go so far in providing the consumer with what they want. When you say below that there’s been “a lot more caches built in the last few years,” you’re effectively just saying that there’s been a lot more servers connected to the Internet. Wow! What a revelation infused. You’re clearly a genius! /sarc

                    • infused

                      Gamers typically play on nz servers due to ping. They always have. Your bandwidth isn’t going to change this, again, it’s the interconnects.

                      Latency is gamers biggest issue. If you are on fibre in NZ, you will get pings of around 10-30ms to nz gaming servers. Aussie is around 50-70ms, US being 100ms+. I was gaming back in 1997 on xtra dialup @ $2 an hour 170ms pings to NZ servers (shitty dialup). Been gaming for many years now, so I’m quite confident about what I’m talking about.

                      Ping is less important for games like WoW/RPGs, so you can get away with 150-200ms ping to the US. It’s really only FPS games which require the low latency.

                      Southern Cross has kept up with demand so far hasn’t it? It’s full capacity will be around 6tbit.

                • infused

                  One other thing, even if you get 12tb in to the us, where does it go from there? We have gig connection at work. Download from the UK or Germany like I’ve stated. You will get ~1mb/s if that. International interconnects.

                  Do some research.

                  • Draco T Bastard

                    You work ISP must suck. My mere 16mbps connection often gets better than 8mbps continuous and that’s not counting the horrible bloody overhead that comes with the TCP/IP protocol.

                    Of course, speed is also dependent upon the speed of the site that you’re downloading from. If that site is on a 1mbps connection then you’re going to get SFA.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      a plausible conclusion is that infused is full of shit, and knows next to nothing about internet infrastructure.

                    • infused

                      It depends what your doing. If you are using something like bittorrent you will. Also, how do you know your not getting your data from a cache?

                    • infused

                      Here is how you can workout your connectivity overseas. Do a tracert yourself and you will see your latency.

                      1ms: 64240 / 1 * 8 / 1000 = 100Mbps
                      2ms: 64240 / 2 * 8 / 1000 = 100Mbps
                      3ms: 64240 / 3 * 8 / 1000 = 100Mbps
                      4ms: 64240 / 4 * 8 / 1000 = 100Mbps
                      5ms: 64240 / 5 * 8 / 1000 = 100Mbps
                      6ms: 64240 / 6 * 8 / 1000 = 85.5Mbps
                      7ms: 64240 / 7 * 8 / 1000 = 73.4Mbps
                      8ms: 64240 / 8 * 8 / 1000 = 64.2Mbps
                      9ms: 64240 / 9 * 8 / 1000 = 57.1Mbps
                      10ms: 64240 / 10 * 8 / 1000 = 51.4Mbps
                      20ms: 64240 / 20 * 8 / 1000 = 25.7Mbps
                      50ms: 64240 / 50 * 8 / 1000 = 10.3Mbps
                      100ms: 64240 / 100 * 8 / 1000 = 5.1Mbps
                      150ms: 64240 / 150 * 8 / 1000 = 3.4Mbps
                      200ms: 64240 / 200 * 8 / 1000 = 2.5Mbps
                      300ms: 64240 / 300 * 8 / 1000 = 1.7Mbps

                      AGAIN it’s the interconnects, not the actual pipe, ie southern cross cable.

                      Do some tracerts to places you go and look how many hops your going through.

                      Also look how akamai works http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akamai_Technologies

                      It’s transparent, you wouldn;t even know your on it.

                      There have been a lot more caches built in the last few years. We use very little traffic internationally now because all of google is cached (most isps cache youtube), a lot of businesses now use akamai (Microsoft etc).

                      Many businesses are being stung now hosting stuff overseas. Yeah it may be cheaper, but your speed to it, and data cost people seem to forget about, or not even take in to account. It’s more than just having a 100mbit/1gbit connection.

                      And yes your right, it depends on the other ends connection, but also their interconnects and how much resources that web server or whatever your connecting to is going to give you.

                    • lprent []

                      traceroute on Macs and Linux.

                      Your comment about the data is quite valid in general but it ignores the charging of overseas traffic coming into NZ. Typically you get charged $2 per GB for overseas traffic in excess of your cap, which is usually about 25GB on a dedicated server. So if you have large volumes of content the spambots and search engines like google or bing (who run their spiders from offshore) suck up your data and give you excess bills.

                      So on this site 95% of human traffic is within NZ, but 95% of the machine traffic is from offshore and while it is less than 50% of all traffic, it costs almost as much as the base cost of the system.

                      Your best bet to deal with that absurdity of charging is to use a CDN like cloudflare or akaimai even if you are hosted in NZ. That makes it easy to maintain the site on the local net, and all of your overseas traffic now gets routed to the CDN’s servers – so no excess charges. There is just one problem. If the CDN doesn’t have a local server (cloudflare doesn’t), then your local customers also pick up your locally hosted data from offshore as well.

                      But hey, it only costs us USD20 per month to help load the southern cross with NZ readers going offshore to read local content because of the charging absurdities of the ‘free’ market.

                    • infused

                      lprent you are mixing two things togeathor. Home/Business internet connections and hosting.

                      You can find flat rate services for both. I have flat rate cable at home for $80/m. Work I have flat rate as well. I do around 6tb of international data per month. One of my other websites gets over 180k visits per day.

                      This is all hosted in NZ.

                      You could host this place at webdrive (Pretty cheap for the performance). So much for supporting NZ eh?

                  • Colonial Viper

                    Did you just make a snide remark about supporting NZ when you’ve been pushing for the Bermuda tax haven based Southern Cross Cable to be left along to keep sending profits offshore?

                    • infused

                      That’s cute CV.

                    • infused

                      I find it funny that I host everything here in NZ. I’ve even built a DC here, yet ‘thestandard’ chooses to host overseas.

                      I just thought you’d all lead by example.

                    • Colonial Viper

                      But you are supporting a bermuda tax haven based Southern Cross Cable right?

                      And instead of supporting the NZ owned Pacific Fibre initiative you are actively criticising it?

                  • pete

                    Infused is running rings around the Viper.

                    [lprent: Perilously close to the owned/pwned stupidity that ignites flamewars. Avoid it or I remove the problem – in this case you. Read the policy. ]

    • Flying Kiwi 16.2


      That would make it $720/MByte making the cost of a 550MB download – a single CD’s worth – $396,000, and that’s wholesale!

      ISPs have plenty of bandwidth available because of contention – available international bandwidth might be eg 100GB but you can have ten ISPs each offering their customers a total of 25GB on the basis that no more than 40% of them are going to be online simultaneously. Usually that’s OK but at peak-times contention hits the wall, plus ISP are always getting new customers and customers are usually increasing their internet usage so that contention is ‘filling up’ towards the limit, and when that limit is hit everyone gets throttled back.

      But while a bigger pipeline to the US would be better a bigger pipe westwards to Australia, Asia, India and Europe is also needed. Recent traceroutes from here to Europe were being held up by several full seconds over three or four hops across the US from West to East.

      • infused 16.2.1

        megabit is not a megabyte. ISPs pay for bandwidth, not data.

        Also, a lot of isps uses southern cross to aussie then travel out through asianet.

  17. Colonial Viper 17

    Southern Cross Cable Ltd, 50% owned by Telecom, is incorporated in the tax haven of Bermuda. NZ Govt only gets only a limited amount of tax from it. Fucking typical.


  18. AmaKiwi 18

    I am not qualified to evaluate this proposal but others are, including David Cunliffe. (He was minister for information technology and in 2007 received an award for his work.)

    I would like to know whether this is a feasible and likely business proposal. Do the numbers add up? Are there major hurdles which might block it?

    Is this a great p.r. stunt or might Dotcom create a business which would be good for NZ?

    • Mickey Mouse 18.1

      Dotcom will create a business that is good for Dotcom, just as Labour will create an electorate that is dependent on it (just like Greece) and National will create a set of accounts that looks great, but in which people are considered zeros to be rounded out of the final numbers.

  19. Jenny 19

    In the 19th century the invention of the steam powered printing press put the old technology of hand presses out of business. Instead of printing books by the hundred for the first time books could be printed by the million, massively lowering the price per unit and making cheap books available to everyone.

    The printed word became universally available. The huge surplus saw the birth of the free library. This movement was bitterly opposed by those stuck in the old paradime where books were expensive and in short supply and if you wanted to read one you had to buy it. The old business model did not fit the technology though they fought to continue the monopoly on knowledge the earlier technology allowed it was not possible.

    But the wide dissemination of information saw a flowering of culture and science and education which heralded huge advances in science and technology and business. New ideas and techniques spread around the globe in the holds of steamships at a speed and in a way incomprehensible before.

    Dotcom’s free broadband plan is comparable. Internet freely available to all private citizens and for a fee to business, would place New Zealand at the cutting edge of the information age. Who can imagine what innovations might arise.

    Just like Britain in the steam age New Zealand could become the information technology workshop of the world.

    First of all of course Dotcom must not fall prey to the vendors of the obsolete technology who are struggling to maintain their monopoly on knowledge.

  20. Well New Zealand lags behind the rest of the world when it comes to internet. My family in the states have unlimited broadband usage (with no caps) alongside higher speeds than you get in New Zealand (for less than $50 a month).

    • Draco T Bastard 20.1

      And that’s because we sold Telecom and deregulated telecommunications. If we hadn’t done those things then we’d have equal if not better telecommunications than the US.

      • kiwicommie 20.1.1

        Well the government also supported the Telecom monopoly (created conditions where no other player could enter the market), just as the government currently does with Sky, the AA (driver licensing), bus companies and list goes on.

      • Mickey Mouse 20.1.2

        Selling Telecom is only one reason.

        Other reasons include a susbstantially lower population and logistics-challenging geography.

        Increasing immigration, mainly into Auckland and mainly from Asia, will make the population question less of a problem over time, but I suspect the geography will be a greater challenge.

        • Colonial Viper

          Will power is a greater challenge than geography.

          • Mickey Mouse

            Hmm, ok, let’s see how far will-power gets you in providing quality infrastructure of any kind in a long, skinny, mountainous country comprised of a set of islands within the southern ocean, and where most of the people don’t want to live near too many other people, and where many feel entitled to stuff purely because they were born.

            Please summon your dragons, my friend, and conjour us up a fabulous new interweb.

            I’ll be your first (free) customer.

        • Draco T Bastard

          All of those were easily over come when Telecom was state owned. Was making a good profit too.

  21. It is amazing what these reporters will write to maintain access to the spa pool and drinks at this clowns house.
    A very quick google search reveals his criminal past including pump and dump episodes on stocks.
    When is somebody going to start actually calling him out on his ridiculous statements.

    Draco, you are possibly to young to recall what Telecom was like when it was state owned. Wait a month to get your phone connected. 2 bucks a minute to call the UK..
    Yes Labour gave it away but you cannot put the poo back in the donkey and Telecom is a far better animal now than it was when run like the cuban post office.

    • Jackal 21.1

      You’re clearly confusing developments in technology with how telecom was run. If we take the main indicator of whether privatisation has been beneficial, the financial one, we find that selling Telecom was perhaps the dumbest thing any New Zealand government has ever done.

      We’ve lost as a country billions and billions of dollars overseas, while the telecommunications infrastructure has been left to degrade in order to maximise profits, meaning that Kiwis now have some of the worst communication services in the developed world.

      You might also be interested to know that Dotcoms hacking exploits were conducted before he was 20 years of age. Are you saying that he should continue to be punished because of something he did as a teenager? Or are you judging Dotcom on the FBI’s jumped up charges for which he’s not been found guilty?

    • felix 21.2

      Yeah, I remember when Telecom was publicly owned.

      You couldn’t get a white iPhone and the waiting list for a broadband connection was 20 years long.

  22. Fortran 22

    The cable has to go to the US – there is no way that anything to do with Dotcon input will get that.
    It has to come under the Trans Pacific Partnership (not agreee yet) which actually means that unless it is fully in the favour of the US nobody is going to get any smell of anything as it is not good for the US and bugger anybody else.
    Dotcon will only do what favours himself and his new file sharing.

    • mike e 22.1

      Fartrain Who invited millionaires and billionaires to this country by making it easy for these wealthy individuals to get special treatment such as shortcuts to citizenship!
      Shonkey althought he probably can’t remember!
      Fartrain why has Shonkey come out and supported the idea in today’s media or are you righties suffering collective amnesia!

    • lprent 22.2

      The cable has to go to the US…

      Why? There are cables with excess capacity going out of aussie in various directions. I’d be looking at getting onto sucking up capacity on those.

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