We Versus Vodafone, Day 2

Following up on yesterday’s post, I first wanted to thank everyone for their support and suggestions. Besides the comments left on the post, various other blogs have also discussed it. Medianama discusses Content vs Carriage. WATBlog asks what it will take for the telecom operators to change their attitude. Pluggd.in and Atanu Dey have also chipped in, and discuss different aspects of the issue. There is also a discussion on India Mobile Forum.

One clarification: what Vodafone has blocked is the shortcode for Vodafone subscribers to opt-in (or opt-out) for MyToday subscribers. We do not use Vodafone for sending the SMSes to existing MyToday subscribers so that part continues. Vodafone subscribers cannot now subscribe or unsubscribe to MyToday services.

Vodafone also called up one of our large media partners and threatened them that they risked their shortcode being blocked if they continued to work with MyToday and promote the media partner’s own recently-launched free SMS content services (which are powered by MyToday).  Talk of arm-twisting.

We are examining various options at this point, and I will keep you all updated.

256 thoughts on “We Versus Vodafone, Day 2

  1. Wow! Some of this is getting into the “incredulous” zone.

    1. Vodafone consumers cannot unsub ? Thats gotta take the cake, given what they’re supposedly trying to do for the consumers 🙂
    2. The arm twisting : sad, sad, sad. Evidence, though, that a mighty operator is now a little worried about MyToday – bodes well for the opening up of the walls, perhaps ?

    All the best in your battle. Though its extremely unfair, and loaded against you guys at the moment.

  2. Almost every blogger who blog about telecom sector has blog on mytoday v/s vodafone news.
    I am quoting lines of a blogger who blogs at http://www.mobigyaan.com

    “Whatever may be the actual reason of blocking MyToday services but at first instance it seems that MyToday is hurting the revenues of Vodafone. This is because when a mobile subscriber is getting SMS Alerts free of cost then why would one pay for premium SMS services whose costs range from Rs10/month to Rs50/month.”

    I completely agree with this. It is more than clear that Vodafone blocked MyToday services mainly bcoz its hurting Vodafone’s revenue

  3. Dear Rajesh,
    Well you have the subscribed vodafone customers in strangle hold now since they have subscribed and cannot unsubscribe. and u can send them whatever you want … probably 10 ads everyday or a “dear customer do you knw you cannot unsubscribe to my service ? yess even if you dont like my service you cant do anything about it courtesy vodafone ” just to make them call up vodafone to help them unsubscribe ( i knw you wont do it but just an idea ), will the ndnc not act upon it as all these mobile services need to have a sub/unsub option together and in working condition, and being a facilitator for consumers it shud act upon it. Are Indian Content Providers together in these times with you? are they willing to plug out of vodafone if need be ? are they ready to force a boycott of vodafone by cutting off all the feeds and content. that shud teach vodafone a lesson. but i’m sure that wont happen. Only if people were together 🙂 Indian VAS wouldnt be having a 20-80 share with operators. but other way round.

  4. This is incredulous! I am on Vodafone and use Mytoday to manage events etc at my local art of living community and for the last few months the alerts through Mytoday have been erratic and I always thought it is a s/w issue with Mytoday…you will find couple of complaints that I have lodged with Mytoday. But now I realize why my friend who is on Airtel always gets the alerts, whereas I who own the group and send the SMS alert, do not. This is monopolistic attitude and will hurt Vodafone, you should take the legal recourse! I am wondering if they would do the same to Google SMS service as well??

  5. This attitude of vodafone shows that they are afraid of u. do u think starting an ad campaign highlighting this would help? i know till know u have achieved this huge customer base only thru word of mouth but this ad campaign can serve multiple purposes.
    1.) Make Vodafone wary of things to come.
    2.) As media would follow this campaign the court case could be hastened… dosent it go that way in our courts these days.. if there is a lot of public awareness regarding a case then things go fast.
    3.) Your customer base would/could increase due to more awareness
    4.) Other telecom operators would think twice before doing such a thing(only if things go bad for vodafone)

    Also you can start a pink chaddi like campaign, though I agree this is not as sensitive an issue like the manglore pub bashing but it still is against the liberty of an individual.

    With You,
    Idris

  6. This is completely outrageous behaviour from Vodafone. For what it’s worth, I shall make sure not to renew my prepaid with Vodafone when the balance runs out; will move to some other mobile firm. Yeah, I know what you’re saying, not as if they’re losing significant revenue if I don’t pay them a hundred more rupees. Just that, it’s _my_ hundred bucks that they won’t see.

    Of course, their constant SMS spamming and wasting of my time with their innane robocalls for caller-tune subscriptions only makes my decision easier.

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