Australian Y2K News : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

About a month ago there were many complaints on this forum about the lack of Y2K news in the mainstream media of America. Then all of a sudden everything is coming out of the woodwork. Well I've been waiting for the same thing to happen in Australia and approximately 5 days ago it has started.

In the 10-March-1999 Issue of 'The West Australian' Newspaper a Y2K articled appeared (more below), then advertising of a Year 2000 report on one of Australia's most popular current affairs show '60 Minutes' has been hitting (that show is tomorrow night and I will be taping it). Someone else has told me that on another tv station another current affair show is reporting about Y2K on Monday night and finally another station is having news reports all week about it.

What follows is the article from 'The West Australian' on the 10-March-1999 .... (Sorry for the delay in posting this, I work full time and don't have as much time to do things after work.)

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Hard-nosed look at the coming Y2K crisis

By Nick Miller

Chris Gilbey does not see himself as a Y2K doomsayer. He sees himself as a Y2K realist.

But the title of his book makes no bones about what he considers realistic: How to Survive the Y2K Crisis in Australia: The essential guide for every household.

"Governments are making contingency plans, large corporations are making contingency plans, cities are making contingency plans - ordinary people should do the same," he says. "It's not going to be the end of the world as we know it. Life will continue, the human race will flourish. ut it will be different - and in what way? That's an unknown."

Gilbey found out about the millennium bug more than 30 years ago when he began work as a computer programmer.

"On my first day on the job I was told, oh by the way, we use two digits for dates, that's something we'll have to fix in the next 30 years," he says. "We didn't."

The book begins by explaining the history and nature of the problem, then suggests some scenarios of what might go wrong, how badly, and the impact on society.

"One or two of these scenarios may be quite scary," he says. "The idea of a contingency plan is you look at the worst case scenario. We have no historical precedent for the event so we can only speculate."

In the United States, the advice given out by authorities was to treat the Y2K problem as a natural disaster like a hurricane, he says. He began looking into how he could prepare for the event, then decided to write a book to share what he had discovered.

He believes it is foolish to assume everything will be sorted out in time.

"In Australia we are in really great shape with out Y2K remediation, but it doesn't mean we can afford to be complacent," he says. "The history of IT is that there has never been a major IT project with a deadline that ran on time or on budget."

"In the Atlanta Olympics there were some significant criticisms about the unreadiness of the IT systems, though it appeared to function."

In summary, he believes it will be more than just the "bump in the road" that conservative bug-watchers predict. His position is to hope for the best, but prepare for the worst, including a possible loss of power and water supplies, and shortages.

So what does Gilbey recommend? "People should have two weeks' food and water stored away," he says. "You should get all your paperwork in one place, records of assets, etc., in case all digital information files are lost.

"And if you have a medical condition that requires medication, stock up on extra medication. Companies are already predicting shortages."

The Bantam paperback is in most bookshops for AUS$17.95.

* Chris Gilbey will speak ar a literary sundowner for The West Australian and Dymocks [A bookstore chain.] on Thursday, March 18, at the Perth Parmelia Hilton. Call XXXX XXXX.

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I will try to attend at the time, but due to work constraints I will most likely be unable to attend. If I do make it I will ensure to post what happens here.

A final note, a customer walked into where I work the other day and asked my employer 'Are you Y2K compliant?', my employer responded that we were. WE ARE NOT! When I talked to my employer about it and pointed out our PABX system may not be compliant, he responded that we would just get a new one when the time comes. I mentioned that might mean no one could contact us for several days or weeks, he said good that would mean no Tech-Support calls for us to deal with.

O and if my employer is saying 'Yes' then guaranteed that other employers are saying the same thing as well.

Regards, Simon Richards.

-- Simon Richards (, March 13, 1999


Keep the good reporting work Simon :).

-- Bob Barbour (, March 14, 1999.

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