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Broadband - Broadband News - ASA make decision on TalkTalk "Free Broadband Forever"

ASA make decision on TalkTalk "Free Broadband Forever"

21st July 2006

ASA make decision on TalkTalk "Free Broadband Forever"

The ASA (Advertising Standards Authority) have announced their report to the 145 complaints they received with regards to the "Free Broadband Forever" offer from TalkTalk.
Amongst the complainants were competitors BT, Tiscali & ntl:Telewest.

ASA make decision on TalkTalk free broadbandThe complaints detailed to the ASA were:

1. misleading to suggest that the broadband was free when it involved an 18-month contractual commitment to the Talk3 International (T3I) calls package; a connection charge of 29.99; ongoing costs of 9.99 per month plus line rental (20.99 in total) and a disconnection fee of 70;

2. also misleading to claim broadband was "free forever" and

3. not sufficiently clear from the advertising that the availability of broadband was dependent on being connected to a qualifying telephone exchange and that people not connected to such an exchange would have to pay a further 10 per month for the broadband service.

4. The ASA also challenged whether it should have been made clear in the ads that a delay of around 10 weeks would apply before people would receive broadband.

The first 3 complaints were upheld but won't see a huge change in the adsvertising done by TalkTalk and they will still be offering "free broadband".
If you check the T&C's relating to the free broadband it reads:
"Broadband free for first 6 months, thereafter no extra charge. Our broadband service will be available to you for as long as you remain a customer on our Talk3 call plan and take line rental and we provide the broadband service on our network. When you take calls, broadband and line rental together there is a minimum contract term of 18 months. Disconnection charge may apply if you terminate before the expiry of the contract term. For full terms and conditions visit Broadband available as a separate service at 35 per month for up to 8 meg. Subject to availability in your area. Alternative services are available"

The 4th issue brought up by the ASA was not upheld as they recognised the delays were due to unprecedented take up and demand for the service and that TalkTalk could not accurately estimate the demand for the service.

Read the full report from the ASA here.

Author: Broadband Watchdog
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