$375,000 Fine For 'Premium' Mobile Service Company Upheld

The only thing that's 'premium' about many so-called mobile services is the monthly hit they inflict on your phone bill for something basic like a ringtone or game. So we're pleased to see the Federal Court upholding a $375,000 fine against two premium service providers for misleading advertising, even though some of the advertising involved Justin Bieber.

Global One Mobile Entertainment Ltd and 6G Pty Ltd both received fines for TV advertising that suggested services would attract one-off costs when they in fact involved ongoing charges. Those services included Space Invaders and Doodle Jump games, as well as a Justin Bieber ringtone. The original penalty was imposed in June 2011, but the two companies appealed the decision. That appeal was rejected by the Federal Court.

Rules for advertising premium mobile services changed in June, requiring prominent use of the word 'subscribe' if recurring payments are involved. That's a welcome improvement, but our advice is unchanged: don't go anywhere near them.

ACCC


Comments

    The good old days of re-occurring ring tone charges for that free ringtone which took 3 months to cancel are over, lest we weep for Crazy Frog .

      I wonder what happened to the companies who used to advertise those crazy apps.

        I was watching MTV a couple of weeks ago and was surprised to see a jamster ad. I didn't know they still existed but they're still advertising the love calculator!

    "even though" should be "especially considering"

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