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DATE OF MEETING
18 December 2017
No Grounds to Proceed
Advertisement: The Contact Us webpage on the Vodafone website http://www.vodafone.co.nz
stated, in part: "Contact Us. We're here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week."
The Chair ruled there were no grounds for the complaint to proceed.
Complainant, C. Doolan, said: "I wish to complain about Vodafone's misleading & false
advertising for their services. On the Vodafone web page below as well as other pages they
state their support service is available 24/7. However when I rang them with a broadband
connection problem at 6.15am, Vodafone told me the support for this product only operated
between 7am & 12pm. I also note they previously advertise the 24/7 support in other media
which is why I became their customer. I understand it is an offence to use false & misleading
advertising & at the very least Vodafone should have to clarify what services are & aren't
covered by their 24/7 support. https://www.vodafone.co.nz/contact/"
The relevant provisions were Code of Ethics - Basic Principle 4, Rule 2;
The Chair noted the Complainant's concerns the claim "We're here 24 hours a day, 7 days
a week" was misleading as they were told support for broadband connection only operated
during specific hours.
The Chair was of the view the likely consumer takeout of the advertisement was that
Vodafone were available to be contacted '24 hours a day, 7 days a week. When considered
in its entirety, the Chair said the advertisement did not give the impression that Vodafone
would be able to rectify any problem on being contacted at any time of the day or night. The
Chair noted there would many cases where it was unlikely an issue could be rectified
immediately, particularly if an onsite visit needed to take place.
The Chair said the advertisement was unlikely to mislead the consumers about the support
service they could expect from Vodafone and it was not in breach of Rule 2 of the Code of
Ethics and had been prepared with a due sense of social responsibility to consumers and
society required by Basic Principle 4 of the Code of Ethics.
Accordingly, the Chair ruled the complaint had no grounds to proceed.
Chair's Ruling: Complaint No Grounds to Proceed