TPG Penalized for Misleading AdvertisementsAvaya
TPG, an Australian Telecommunications company, has been fined $13,200 for supposedly running misleading advertisements. According to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), TPG claimed that consumers who subscribed to its broadband bundle plan would be given 500 minutes of free VoIP calls. The company however failed to mention that the offer had terms and conditions that meant that the 500 free minutes would only be given to those who only made calls that were each over 10 minutes. In addition, TPG did not disclose that each of these calls were to terminals in Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra, Sydney, Adelaide or Perth.
According to Rod Sims, the ACCC chairman, “The advertising practice of fine-print qualification is one that ACCC is tired of correcting.” After repeatedly warning the telecommunication industry against misleading advertising, the ACCC had no choice but to act in this instance by penalizing TPG for not offering transparent information that would help consumers make informed decisions. ACCC looks at how transparent an offer is, how clear the information is on the price as well as the terms and conditions that accompany such offered services. In order to secure a culture of compliance from the telecommunications industry, the ACCC has taken an increasingly aggressive approach that such kind of misleading information will not be tolerated.
The payment of infringement that TPG paid does not however mean the company has contravened the Australian Consumer Law. The ACCC has full right and authority to issue an infringement notice under the consumer protection laws if necessary.
TPG provides a diverse range of communication services from telephony services, IPTV (News – Alert), mobile broadband business networking solutions and Ethernet Broadband access among others. It serves residential and SMEs as well as corporate and government enterprises. The company owns an extensive network infrastructure across Australia. The company also offers cloud services that includes applications, storage and servers, both as an on-Demand and scalable service.