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Thread: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

  1. #17
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by spacein_vader View Post
    It's clear in English & Welsh law (no idea about Scotland,) that the tennant has the right to control supplies as long as the landlord doesn't live with them (e.g. they're not a lodger,) and they pay the utilities themselves (so they aren't included in the rent.)

    Furthermore if a tennant wants to change the meter for a smart one the landlord cannot stop them.
    I guess mine is breaking the law then. Great. Agents should have a duty to point this out then rather than siding with the landlord.

  2. #18
    Senior Member spacein_vader's Avatar
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
    I guess mine is breaking the law then. Great. Agents should have a duty to point this out then rather than siding with the landlord.
    How is he breaking the law? If the utility is in your name then change supplier if you want. It has nothing to do with the landlord and any clause they put in saying otherwise is unenforceable.

  3. #19
    Banhammer in peace PeterB kalniel's Avatar
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by spacein_vader View Post
    How is he breaking the law? If the utility is in your name then change supplier if you want. It has nothing to do with the landlord and any clause they put in saying otherwise is unenforceable.
    Utilities are not in my name, but I pay the landlord back.

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Just to say Internet Services Providers' Association is ISPA.

    IPSA, as it seems to be abbreviated in the article, is the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (or a few other things too according to google). I was quite surprised when I got two thirds way down the article to see IPSA were responding to this!

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    almost all companies operate a default rip off policy which I feel is wrong. I have been with the same car insurance company for a number of years now but only once I have found a cheaper quote and they either match it or within say £5 as I feel it isn't worth my time to switch for a small amount of money. I am getting tired of having to complain at the end of a contract just to get a fair price. I have saved over £200 on car insurance by complaining. I wonder how many people still accept the renewal and how much free money companies get each year due to this.

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    The late but legendary peterb - Onward and Upward peterb's Avatar
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by lodore View Post
    almost all companies operate a default rip off policy which I feel is wrong. I have been with the same car insurance company for a number of years now but only once I have found a cheaper quote and they either match it or within say £5 as I feel it isn't worth my time to switch for a small amount of money. I am getting tired of having to complain at the end of a contract just to get a fair price. I have saved over £200 on car insurance by complaining. I wonder how many people still accept the renewal and how much free money companies get each year due to this.
    But how do you value a service like insurance (or anything else for that matter) or determine what is 'fair'?

    It is only by shopping around and comparing prices that you can find out what other company's offers are. And if a consumer can't be bothered to look for a better price, it seems reasonable to assume that they are happy with the price being offered.
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    I have to phone Virginmedia on a regular basis as they normally add on loyalty discounts that last various amounts of time. I need to call again this week as I just had a letter telling me the bill is going up again, normally this doesn't apply if you are on a loyalty discount but no harm checking.

    I am never off with them, just ring up and ask what they can do for mre.

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    But how do you value a service like insurance (or anything else for that matter) or determine what is 'fair'?
    Except when you can get new quotes from the same company for less than the renewal for what appears to be an identical policy. Admiral have been very crafty with this and make it very difficult to get a genuine new quote as an existing customer - why would they do this? I have to ping-pong between the AA and the RAC for breakdown cover because I assume the economics of charging people a 50% premium for the same service beyond the first year is more profitable even when offset against the people who leave. Why cannot there just be one fair price a company offers for a service? It might not be competitive against another companies product, but is it fair that I pay £50 for something and you pay £100?

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    It is only by shopping around and comparing prices that you can find out what other company's offers are. And if a consumer can't be bothered to look for a better price, it seems reasonable to assume that they are happy with the price being offered.
    As a member of a tech forum without issues using price comparison sites this is very much a non-issue for me. It's an inconvenience having to shop around, or call up to haggle over a renewal (and costs them call centre time compared to just buying a new policy online with no human interaction), but it's something that has become an annual routine (times by half a dozen for the number of policies/contracts). For some someone elderly or vulnerable it's a barrier however. Some people don't have internet in their homes, yet they still have house insurance.

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbouk View Post


    As a member of a tech forum without issues using price comparison sites this is very much a non-issue for me. It's an inconvenience having to shop around, or call up to haggle over a renewal (and costs them call centre time compared to just buying a new policy online with no human interaction), but it's something that has become an annual routine (times by half a dozen for the number of policies/contracts). For some someone elderly or vulnerable it's a barrier however. Some people don't have internet in their homes, yet they still have house insurance.
    In which case ypu go to an insurance broker who - if he/she is any good - will broker the best deal for you.
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    It is only by shopping around and comparing prices that you can find out what other company's offers are.
    Nope, every other company is only offering their 'introductory' offer in big huge bold letters as well. They'll only stick you with the true cost however many months down the line, and if not that, then out of nowhere after the contract period lapses. That's the problem.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    And if a consumer can't be bothered to look for a better price, it seems reasonable to assume that they are happy with the price being offered.
    Why would you think that's reasonable assumption? Why would you even assume they're at all aware that they're being stiffed by a marketing scam? Most people's bank statements are littered with hundreds of transactions every issue. They're not going to go through a financial forensic deep dive every time they have a new statement, it's neither practical nor reasonable. They place a high degree of trust in the businesses they have dealings with, and reasonably assume they'll act in good faith, and for the government to step in if they do not.

    They should be grateful that long term customers continue to do business with them, not trying to scam them.
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    I see the people who don't switch regularly as subsidising my lower prices. As such I hope not too many of them figure it out as then prices will rise.

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by spacein_vader View Post
    I see the people who don't switch regularly as subsidising my lower prices. As such I hope not too many of them figure it out as then prices will rise.
    The problem is this often affects the elderly. 80-90 year olds don't tend to have a great handle on their finances and usually are of the old school mindset that loyalty will be rewarded. They're often on the worst energy tariffs and won't even consider changing them. Often if they're contacted by someone to offer them a switch, they'll just hang up (for one of many reasons). There are people like yourself who delight in getting a better deal and getting one over on the prats fleecing them. I get stressed to hell dealing with this stuff - I have far better things to do and this stuff really winds me up. I'm pumped up with massive doses of stress hormones to... er... keep me alive and so I really can't deal with this stuff. Sometimes it's nice and easy but often it's just a nightmare. If a company does jam the price up unreasonably at the end of the contract and then try and force me into a new one, I will leave them on principle. I think there should be a premium paid if you're not in a contract as the reason for getting it cheaper for a 12/24 month commitment is that you're basically buying in bulk and they're securing your income. Therefore, once that deal has lapsed and you're on a rolling 1 month contract I think the payment of a small premium is reasonable. When it's something like a mobile phone company still charging you for a handset that is now paid off after the contract has ended without making any effort to contact you, then THAT is entirely unreasonable gouging of the customer.

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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by aidanjt View Post
    Nope, every other company is only offering their 'introductory' offer in big huge bold letters as well. They'll only stick you with the true cost however many months down the line, and if not that, then out of nowhere after the contract period lapses. That's the problem.
    So at the end of the contract you shop around for more introductory offers.


    Quote Originally Posted by aidanjt View Post
    Why would you think that's reasonable assumption? Why would you even assume they're at all aware that they're being stiffed by a marketing scam? Most people's bank statements are littered with hundreds of transactions every issue. They're not going to go through a financial forensic deep dive every time they have a new statement, it's neither practical nor reasonable. They place a high degree of trust in the businesses they have dealings with, and reasonably assume they'll act in good faith, and for the government to step in if they do not.
    So you don't think you should be responsible for checking your own bank statements and be responsible for your own financial affairs?

    Quote Originally Posted by aidanjt View Post
    They should be grateful that long term customers continue to do business with them, not trying to scam them.
    This is business, not friendship.

    Gratitude and loyalty don't come into it. If a company is 'grateful' for my business, they can show it with a discount - in which case they buy my loyalty. They might also buy it with good customer service, in which case I am happy to pay a premium. But if not - I'm gone - I owe them no loyalty and I expect none in return.
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    So at the end of the contract you shop around for more introductory offers.
    So you move from one fraudster to the next? Ignoring the fact that it's disruptive and unnecessary to do an annual ISP hop? Also, ignoring the fact that too many wont because they're unaware of the fraud, as all good frauds do. That's why they're doing it (aside from the government being nowhere on this, not even informing the public on it).

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    So you don't think you should be responsible for checking your own bank statements and be responsible for your own financial affairs?
    It isn't the consumer's job to not be defrauded. Consumers place a lot of trust in who they do business in order to give them access to their bank account via their credit/debit card details or a direct debit mandate. If they abuse that trust they should be punished. If we just let rampant fraud occur, the system will start breaking down because nobody would trust anyone.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    This is business, not friendship.
    Correct. And lawful and honest businesses aren't built on defrauding customers.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    Gratitude and loyalty don't come into it.
    If does if you want repeat and growing business.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    If a company is 'grateful' for my business, they can show it with a discount - in which case they buy my loyalty.
    The non-fraud rate isn't a discount, it's just the normal price. That's what they advertise, right? And they wouldn't be intentionally misleading their customers with fraudulent claims now, would they?.

    Quote Originally Posted by peterb View Post
    They might also buy it with good customer service, in which case I am happy to pay a premium. But if not - I'm gone - I owe them no loyalty and I expect none in return.
    Sure, but you can expect to not be defrauded.
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    There is no “fraud”. If there was, there would be prosecutions as there is a whole section of law enforcement dedicated to fraudulent activity.

    A business may charge what it likes for a service or good, it is an offer to the prospective purchaser. The terms and conditions of the contract are visible to the purchaser, who accepts or declines them.

    Consumer law already (rightly) protects consumers against unfair contractual terms and gives remedies against broken contacts on both sides.

    In the case where the supplier may be in a monopoly situation, there is a case for legal controls and there are regulators for that.

    It is not unfeasible to shop around when a contract ends, or would you rather see a situation that when the contract ends your broadband/phone/insurance just stops?

    But if you find it too difficult see the handy guide I posted earlier. https://forums.hexus.net/hexus-news/...ml#post4016828
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    Re: Broadband 'loyalty penalty' super complaint received by UK Govt

    As a Zen customer I find this all a bit odd. There aren't any introductory offers, but they do have good customer service which I have hardly needed to use because the connection is superb. I use this for work, so I can't go cheap with the dropped connections, poor performance and dynamic IP shenanigans that often go with low pricing.

    I suspect that banning a "loyalty penalty" will mean banning initial offer pricing, not the higher end price, so you just go straight to the pricing after 12 months. I think people should be careful what they wish for.

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