Consumer Groups Seek Tighter Rules on ‘Premium’ SMS Charges

The CBC reports that Union des consommateurs, a non-profit group based in Montreal, is preparing a submission that must be filed with Canada's telecommunications regulator by Monday as part of the group's request for strict rules concerning "premium" text messages.


  1. thumbs up says:

    I agree with the Consumers Union.

    If people are being told to pay or lose their service then that’s not following procedure now is it?

    Bell, videotron, rogers, et al. get their money (and collection fee) and they seem to think you have no recourse.

    This is another case where there customer/consumers must file with the CCTS and wait a month for a decision. Then if (and ONLY if) the decision is in their favor, the cell providers give your money back about 3-months later.

    I don’t know about Rogers or videotron, but Bell is a 3 month wait for a credit.

    And if the CCTS doesn’t come back with a favorable response because you didn’t explain yourself well enough, too bad for you.

    I don’t see anything on these teclo’s websites showing how you can contest the SMS charges either. Nothing. Nothing at all.

    The Consumers Union webpage shows how though, and its a run-around! Its made to discourage you.

    1. Complain to the telco
    2. Send a check in seperately for the extra charges “under protest”
    3. Write the CWTA (the body who controls the Short codes)
    4. write the CCTS
    5. wait for replies from everyone.
    wait, rinse, repeat. And meanwhile you paid and continue to pay.

    As stated, even if you’re canceled, these SMS’s can continue to come in for a few days or a week later (and you pay) till it ends.

    The you have to go through the same run-around again listed above.

    Its made to discourage you.

    If there is a billing dispute why should it take 5 steps and a letter writing campaign.

    I’m all for this.

  2. lombardy65 says:

    Everyone should read the full record
    The full record is available on the CRTC’s website, with the Union application and the response from the industry.

  3. Thumbs up says:

    TY for the link!

    I read it all.

    I find the telecom response a bit disturbing and I see some holes, problems and issues.

    Does anyone else? Am I alone?