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Tuesday, April 19, 2016

My Case vs Globe at the NTC (Part 1)

I have a current case filed against my Internet Service Provider (ISP) Globelines (a division of Globe) at the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC). It’s regarding Internet Capping that Globelines imposed on my subscription without my knowledge.

Capping Warning

The warning I got when I exceeded my daily cap, which Globe imposed on my account without informing me or providing the full disclosure.

Our Final Hearing is scheduled on May 26, 2016 but here’s the story so far. I became a Globelines subscriber in 2010 before Globe implemented their Fair Usage Policy (FUP) to new subscribers in 2011. My account is Unlimited Internet back then and is considered a Grandfathered account.

Sometime in 2014, Globe Loyalty called me and offered promos to my current subscription of P1,300 per month. The Globe representative never disclosed that they retire my Grandfathered account and I’ll be under the FUP, which is 7GB per month.

I only discovered in 2015 that my Internet subscription is now capped. I downloaded the Star Craft II game which I purchased from Blizzard and it took 3 days for me to download the game which was around 40 GB.

Since my Internet is now capped, if I exceed the daily quota of 7 GB a day, my Internet speed which normally is around 2.5-2.9 mbps on Speedtest.net will be reduced to 0.80 mbps or lower. It would normally be useless for me because I won’t be able to stream even a YouTube video with 0.80 mbps speed without buffering.

That’s when I called Globe and I was advised of my new account and the FUP. That’s when I filed a complaint at the NTC website. This was in September 2015. After a series of emails back and forth from Globe and NTC, the First Hearing was scheduled January 2016.

Current Capping

Globe started their Internet capping for accounts that were installed from November 11, 2011 up to March 11, 2015. This is my current capping now. Globe started a new Internet capping after March 2015 which is now on a monthly basis (like 50 GB/month). I was a subscriber of Globe since 2010 which technically predates their capping policy.

A representative of Globe attended the First Hearing and I demanded for proof that the disclosure about the FUP was discussed to me (via recording) when they offered to renew my contract (as a Loyalty Offer). Based on the NTC memorandum, ISPs can implement the FUP only if they fully notified their subscribers. I wasn’t.

The 2nd Hearing was yesterday and Globe was a No Show. The NTC lawyer who facilitated the hearing scheduled the 3rd and Final Hearing on May 26, 2016. With or without Globe’s representative, the NTC lawyer promised to deliver a verdict on that day.

If you have a similar complaint or scenario about your current wired Internet subscription, please share it in the comments below. Let’s not allow the Telcos to implement their agenda on us simply because they monopolized our Internet Service. Globe already started with a 7 GB/day quota on me, and as of today, they already further reduced it to 50 GB/month for new subscribers.

Our Internet usage these days demands more speed and GB due to Online Streaming (like iFlix, Netflix and HOOQ) and video conferencing (like Skype). Our Internet Service Providers should upgrade their system and facilities or allow more ISPs in the Philippines (like Telstra). Our current Internet speed is the slowest in Asia and very expensive. If we don’t complain now, we’ll suffer more in the years to come.

I am not against the Fair Usage Policy as long as it’s disclosed properly to the subscribers and as long as they deliver the speed they advertise and service is reliable.

Globe's FUP

Globe’s infographics on the Fair Usage Policy (FUP).Our Internet activities these days are no longer limited to updating FB status, posting Tweets or sending out emails. We’re now in an age where TV meets the Internet. We demand higher speed at an affordable price.

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