TPG Pays Fine For 'Misleading' VOIP Claim

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) continues to bust communications providers whose plans aren't described clearly. Today it announced a $13,200 fine for TPG over terms associated with its offering of 'free' VOIP calls for broadband customers.

Picture by Kate Ter Haar

Here's where TPG went wrong:

TPG advertised on its website that consumers who subscribed to a broadband bundle plan would receive 500 free minutes of VoIP calls. However, the offer was subject to terms and conditions which meant that a consumer would only receive 500 minutes of free VoIP calls if each and every call made had a minimum duration of 10 minutes. One of the advertisements also did not disclose that the call must terminate in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide, Canberra or Perth.

"The advertising practice of fine-print qualification is one the ACCC is tired of correcting,” ACCC chairman Rod Sims said. "The ACCC will take an increasingly aggressive approach to send the message that this kind of misleading advertising will not be tolerated." This year alone, we've seen the ACCC fine Foxtel and sue Apple. It also took TPG to court last year over its unlimited broadband plans.



    Would this be a good time to point out that you have a really misleading story about the ACCC and MSY still on your "most viewed" page, and that my annotated explanation of why it was misleading was deleted from the comments section? No dog in this fight, just don't like bad reporting.

      Not really -- that would go on the MSY story. Can't find any deleted comments in the archives. But the court decision and fines are a matter of record, and the comments generally suggest that customer experience has been variable.

    i really would like to see a one strike rule come into play. These companies are flaunting these rules only to walk away with negligible fines.

      Agreed. For a big company like that I would think that a $13,200 fine is less than a slap on the wrist.

    I would love something similar to ACCC exist back home. In my country, this sort of things are rampant! It came to a point that I always ask for the fine print before signing anything..

      And you don't do that here?

    Ten million or so might be more effective. 13k is nothing.

    Telcos are always gouging the customer in some dishonest manner.
    The govt should ban overuse data charges because that is highway robbery.

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