Anyone who has travelled around Australia at all by road will have noticed some Big Things: the Big Merino just out of Goulburn, the Big Guitar at country music capital Tamworth, the Big Prawn (or maybe Shrimp to you) at Ballina, the Big Banana at Coffs Harbour, the Big Pineapple near Nambour.

Big Lobster, South Australia

Perhaps even the Big Lobster at Kingston SE, South Australia (picture by sixty4coupe via Flickr, courtesy of a Creative Commons licence)

Name the Big Cable Competition

And now the Very Big Telco, Telstra, has announced a naming competition for a new “very big, state-of-the-art, fibre optic cable stretching across the ocean floor for 9,000 kilometres (5,600 miles or so) between Sydney and Hawai’i, which is connecting Australia with the U.S.

The new cable sounds pretty impressive:

17 millimetres wide and capable of carrying 1.28 Terabits* of traffic per second from Australia to the US – the equivalent of 160,000 simultaneous high definition television channels

This competition is apparently intended to stir some genuine creativity, with a nice prize to aim for.

There’s no prize for calling it the “Big Cable” but anything a bit more creative will be in the running to win a pre-paid mobile phone and a $100 pre-paid wireless broadband kit.

According to the press release, the new cable will provide much improved service for all Telstra customers, both retail and wholesale.

As an Australian not living in a big city, I hope there’s no fine print on that, along the lines of “…in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide …”.

Details of the competition are on Telstra’s Now We Are Talking site. Some will find the graphics cute, but I have to wonder what Telstra paid for the animated cartoon with the juxtaposition of a kangaroo with boxing gloves (yawn) and a Hawaian girl with ukelele (original) on the opposite shore.

As to my entry, I was thinking something like “The Big Kahuna” might not cut it, but after seeing that graphic, I’m not so sure. Maybe I should get it in before someone else does!

The competition is open to all Australian residents 18 years or older. For my US readers, sorry about that: but just so you know, I hate it when I get excited about a competition and then find I have to be a resident of the US or China or Kazakhstan or wherever – no, I haven’t seen any China or Kazakhstan competitions: it was a kind of feeble gesture in the hope of not singling out the US.

But couldn’t they have had some sort of a prize for our mates in Hawai’i at least? Strictly Limited Alohas for Telstra on that one, I suggest.

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