Internet service providers led by TalkTalk, Sky Broadband and Vodafone have kicked off a campaign to persuade the government and regulators to break up BT.
The aim is to persuade them that the UK would be better off if Openreach, BT's monopoly infrastructure arm, was set free from BT's ownership and control. As an independent company, it would be able to make investment decisions unencumbered by BT's wider business interests.
The move follows the unveiling yesterday of Ofcom's restructuring plans for BT, which will provide further independence for Openreach, but stopped short of finishing the job and recommending BT's break-up.
Unfortunately, the campaign is led by TalkTalk, one of the few companies in Britain with a worse reputation than BT. Nevertheless, that hasn't stopped TalkTalk's highly remunerated CEO Dido Harding having her say.
"For too long, UK businesses have been let down by the nation's broadband infrastructure, receiving poor speeds and even poorer service. How is the UK economy supposed to grow and compete with the rest of the world with one hand tied behind its back by failing broadband?" she said.
"Ofcom's proposals simply don't go far enough, and we know many people up and down the country feel the same way. This is a once-in-a-decade opportunity for them to tell the regulator directly they don't want a halfway house for another decade, they want truly radical change now."
The campaign encourages ordinary internet users to sign a petition to Ofcom demanding the break-up of BT.
MPs have added to the growing chorus of voices demanding BT's break-up, telling the firm last week to shape or be broken up. This followed a similar call in January in the run-up to Ofcom's review.
The regulator recommended instead that rivals should be given more access to Openreach infrastructure to be able to roll out their own networks alongside BT's.
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