Issue No 24: 21 September 2022



Hot Topics

  • ACOMMS 2022: Photos here Highlights Video here

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Record Drop in Telco Customer Complaints 

Communications Alliance has welcomed the record 33.4% drop in complaints to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman (TIO) during the past financial year.

The TIO’s Annual Report, just released, revealed that problems about connection delays, failing to cancel a service, and billing issues have improved dramatically compared to last year, with the number of complaints dropping by over 40 per cent. Complaints about a telco being uncontactable have also decreased considerably.

The TIO noted that while overall complaint numbers declined significantly in the period, the proportion of mobile complaints increased to 39.7 per cent of all complaints, from 32.7 per cent in the previous year (against a declining overall volume of complaints).

Complaints about internet services decreased by 32.3 per cent, compared to the previous year. Complaints about landline services and multiple services declined by over 45 per cent, while complaints about phone and internet services from small businesses were down by 44.2 per cent. 

Communications Alliance CEO, John Stanton, said there would never be a moment when the industry would attempt to call “mission accomplished” on customer care performance.

“To see record improvements in industry performance, however, during a time of historically high disruption through pandemics and natural disaster events, is genuinely remarkable and testament to the efforts of Australian service providers and to the fierce competition in our domestic marketplace,” Mr Stanton said.

Submission on the draft Model Defamation Amendment Provisions 2022, Part A

Communications Alliance has made a submission in response to the Attorneys-General working party draft Model Defamation Amendment Provisions 2022, Part A. The submission 

  • welcomes the proposed statutory exemption from defamation for mere conduits (including ISPs), caching and storage services;
  • requests that internet domain hosts, internet domain name registries and registrars equally ought to be afforded the same statutory exemption; 
  • supports the exemption for search engine functions but asks that search results suggested by the search engine not be excluded from the statutory immunity;
  • supports Recommendation 3A which proposes to create a safe harbour for internet intermediaries but suggests further improvements to the legislation in relation to the complaints notice process; 
  • recommends that a further limitation of liability be incorporated to the effect that an intermediary will not be liable for damages or any other civil remedy as a result of the intermediary taking any good faith access prevention steps in relation to a publication;
  • comments on the interrelation of immunities with the Online Safety Act 2021 and welcomes further clarification in this area; and
  • raises concern with the breadth of the suggested language in relation to new powers for courts to order a non-party to the proceedings to limit or prevent publication as it could be interpreted to imply an obligation for the intermediary to monitor the internet for resurfacing of the defamatory content or variations thereof.

New Members

Communications Alliance is pleased to welcome the following new members:

Southern Phone Company



Southern Phone is one of the largest providers of fixed line, mobile and Internet communications services in regional Australia.

We were formed in 2002 after receiving $4.77 million in funding from the Australian Government’s Networking the Nation scheme. Our vision was to deliver more affordable telecommunications services to regional communities.

We serve a national consumer and business customer base covering all parts of Australia.  We’ve created more than 250 jobs across our Moruya, Bendigo and Melbourne offices.   

Southern Phone Company was acquired by AGL Energy in December 2019 and is a 100% owned subsidiary of the AGL Energy Limited Group.

QCN Fibre



QCN is delivering solutions of improved telecommunications Coverage, Capacity and Competition to Queensland.

QCN was born from the Advance Queensland Initiative, with the express goal to ‘Back our Regions to Compete Globally’. We are jointly owned by Powerlink and Energy Queensland, whose telecommunications network we utilise.

We provide Internet and Retail Service Providers increased transmission capability through unlocking unused space on these established state of the art, stable, optical networks.

Our network spans over 12,000 kilometres of optical fibre stretching West from Brisbane to Toowoomba and beyond, and North through regional townships up to Cairns. Our operations improve regional connectivity through increasing competition and supporting new investment and jobs in regional Queensland.

Current Consultations

Below is a list of currently open telecommunications-related consultations being conducted by Government and other organisations that provide an opportunity for you to have your say.


Consumer Data Right rules - expansion to the telecommunications sector and other operational enhancements

Amendment to the Carrier Licence Conditions (Superfast Networks) Declaration

Consultation on draft updates to the CDR Privacy Safeguard Guidelines - Home (oaic.gov.au)

 Organisation/Closing Date 

Treasury / 14.10.2022

DITRDCA / 13.10.2022

OIAC / 07.10.2022

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Contact Tel: (61) 2 9959 9111