The plot thickens! A concerned consumer at the FaceBook group created in response to Verizon’s mandatory data plans has identified some very interesting information regarding this new policy. According to Verizon’s own Code of Conduct (.pdf) found at the VZW ‘about us’ site, they are not allowed to do this due to certain anti-trust laws being in place. Here’s an excerpt [some parts removed for brevity, but otherwise unchanged]:
4.6.1 Avoiding Violations of the Antitrust Laws
The antitrust laws limit the circumstances in which certain business or marketing decisions are permissible. Before engaging in any of the conduct described below, consult the Legal Department for guidance:
- Tying. Tying occurs when a company forces a customer who wants one product to buy a second product also, as a condition of buying the desired product.
This specifically identifies ‘tying’ (info: 1, 2, 3) in a nice condensed, simplified form. There is more information out there if you prefer to look it up, but this is enough to get the gist. For those who say that Verizon isn’t doing anything illegal, it may be time to change that tune.
On a side note, I received a notice that there would be a response to my complaint to the BBB (from Part II) within 10 days. That was on March 5th, today is March 12th. That’s been 5 business days so far, so there’s 5 to go, and I’ve yet to hear anything else from them.