Unhappy broadband customers urged to respond to Ofcom’s …
Frustrated broadband users have been urged to contact sector regulator Ofcom directly. According to the Fix Britain’s Internet campaign, an industry coalition consisting of Sky, TalkTalk, Vodafone and the Federation of Communication Services, one in four Britons are not happy with their internet service. Figures also showed that one in eight people feel it is getting worse, while almost two-thirds of adults in the UK feel let down by their broadband connection at least once a month.
The campaign group has therefore urged frustrated internet users to air their views to sector regulator Ofcom in its consultation on proposed reforms to Openreach. Ofcom has ordered BT to give more independence and investment powers to Openreach, with the broadband subsidiary being run as a distinct and legally separate company with its own board.1
The watchdog believes its proposals will provide Openreach with the greatest possible degree of independence without separating the companies entirely, and lead to decisions being taken for the good of its customers and the wider telecoms industry.
“For the first time in ten years, Ofcom is giving the public the opportunity to have their say on the future of the UK s internet,” the group said.
“With both the regulator and MPs recognising that Openreach, the UK s national internet network, is in need of radical change, the campaign to Fix Britain s Internet has been launched to give members of the public the chance to email Ofcom directly to have their say.”
The group stated that public responses to the consultation, which runs until October 4th, could help bring the UK “out of the broadband slow lane”. Fix Britain’s Internet went on to warn that poor broadband connectivity is having a negative impact on people’s physical and mental health.
Research found that four million Britons have experienced stress and anxiety due to a slow internet connection. Figures also showed that slow broadband has left 56 per cent of people unable to perform simple online tasks from their home, such as chatting on Skype, streaming a movie, shopping online or working from home. One in four respondents compared the frustration with that experienced when they are delayed on public transport, while one in seven said the level of stress is comparable to being on a long-haul flight next to screaming children.
The findings showed that this is increasingly leading to people having angry outbursts, as well as internet users pleading with their devices and even being reduced to tears.
Neuroscientist Dr David Lewis commented: “The tortoise-like speed of a poor broadband connection doesn t just waste our time, it can also be detrimental to our physical and mental health.
“When internet connections slow to a crawl in the middle of completing an online task, we experience significant increases in blood pressure and heart rate, impaired reasoning and decision-making, growing anxiety, intense frustration and even incidents of computer rage .”