The UK government is a confusing, sprawling mess wherever you stand politically. Pick a public service – it’s almost certainly in crisis with its future hanging in the balance.
It’s a convoluted assembly of outdated systems and processes.
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There’s one thing that UK Prime Minister David Cameron definitely does know he wants though: universal access to broadband speeds of at least 10Mbps for every Briton.
For people living in rural areas, this must feel a bit like de ja vu. Hasn’t the government already promised this? Well, yes and no.
It started the Broadband Delivery UK scheme – in which every contract was won by BT, despite it being an ‘impartial’ nationwide tender for bids – but this only promised ISPs matched funding if they chose to increase the reach of their services into more remote areas – there was still no obligation to cover the least financially-rewarding spots though. As a result, they didn’t get connected.
Now, Cameron has said that the providers won’t have a choice – they’ll have to connect every home in the country to speeds of at least 10Mbps by 2020.
As someone who grew up in the countryside, I know the pain of cripplingly slow broadband.
However, I can’t help but feel that somewhere behind the altruistic push for connectivity, the government might be considering things like how much easier it is to get a whole overview of communications if it knows that every citizen can now get online.
Connect to the internet at faster speeds than you have before, but remember that every single thing you do is being watched and recorded.