News State NSW News NBN ‘protestor’ stages sit-in at Telstra store to demand internet connection

NBN ‘protestor’ stages sit-in at Telstra store to demand internet connection

man gets help from police to restore NBN connection
Matt Dooley grew so frustrated with Telstra he staged a store sit-in. Photo: Supplied
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When disgruntled customer Matt Dooley staged a sit-in at his local Telstra store to demand his case be looked at, an unlikely ally negotiated to help him.

After more than 100 hours pleading to the telco to rectify his NBN connection, and even tethering his laptop to a mobile phone placed on his roof, Mr Dooley staged a protest at Telstra’s store in the Marrickville Metro shopping centre, in Sydney’s inner west.

Security was notified and the police was called to remove the ‘NBN protester’, but upon hearing his plight, police decided to put their negotiations skills to the ultimate test with telco staff.

“The Telstra shop called the [New South Wales] police to have us removed and the police took our side and negotiated the bundle,” Mr Dooley said on Twitter.

“A big win for community policing, a giant fail for Telstra’s Terrible Teams!!!!” he posted.

In the midst of receiving a “torrent” of messages from media and similarly frustrated telco customers on social media, Mr Dooley told The New Daily he was usually a private person.

He said a broken leg was the only reason he had the time to wage a war against Telstra, and had called every day for four months to hear the company’s ‘on hold’ jingle.

“My long-suffering girlfriend said ‘I can’t listen to this anymore, you’re getting angry’,” Mr Dooley said.

“She said let’s go down to the store and let’s not leave until they fix something.”

The 41 year-old film producer said he asked staff to give him any piece of technology to access the internet, but they refused to assist after his name pulled up countless phone call records.

After “raising his voice” at one staff member, Mr Dooley said mall security called police, but the law enforcement quickly realised he and his “lovely, calm girlfriend” were reasonable people.

“I was embarrassed they were there, but they said ‘hang on, let’s try to sort this out’. The police were negotiating our NBN package,” Mr Dooley said.

Eventually Telstra staff brought Mr Dooley a 4G dongle and later express-posted a modem to his home.

Mr Dooley said he was happy to be online again, but would have probably preferred to have not had running water than live without the internet, as he regularly uploaded large media files for work.

“The internet has gone from a nice luxury to being totally essential to everything to all sorts of people,” he said.

The New Daily has sought comment from New South Wales police and Telstra.

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