The watchdog formerly known as ICSTIS has rebranded itself PhonePayPlus and promised to come down harder on TV shows, after a series of rip-off scandals in the last year garnered it widespread criticism. Bravely joining the crusade against spaces, and in favour of mid-word capitalisation, PhonePayPlus aims to be a bit more …
Lousy choice of name.
Maybe the ICSTIS name does have problems, but it at least sounds like a regulator, like an official organisation, because it's a meaningless acronym.
The real problem with 'PhonePayPlus’, however, is that it sounds exactly like one of the crooked operators they're supposed to be policing. If you had a complaint about a premium rate competition scam, would you call someone named 'PhonePayPlus' to discuss it? Or would you expect them to be the sort of people who charge you £1/minute for phoning them?
Typical PR bollocks
PhonePayPlus sounds like a third-rate mobile phone company. The kind that makes flamboyant promises, demands a year's subscription up front, then promptly goes bankrupt, and the managing director turns out to be some spotty 19-year-old called Shane from Romford.
I'm guessing that the name was dreamed up by the same geniuses of corporate branding who gave us Consignia and the Olympic logo.
Where's the proof?
It's all brilliant rebranding your committee to a name no-one can pronounce properly but I've got a question for The Reg, where's your proof, because the ICSTIS' website has no mention anywhere (especially the press section) about the rebranding of their name.
Could get confusing... Unless that's their new branding ;-)
http://www.phonepayplus.ltd.uk / http://www.phonepayplus.org
Rebranding does solve the problem
The issue is they were caught not enforcing their rules. Suddenly the world knows that ICSTIS has no teeth or isn't brave enough to use them. Simply changing the name and the logo doesn't change the organisation.
Proof as requested...
Proof is on the ICSTIS web site, but not in an obvious place !
On the whole
ICSTIS are a much more effective watchdog than the MPS or TPS.
I've complained about a few companies to ICSTIS. One, running a scam where they sent texts telling me I'd got a message (on a premium rate number, of course), was shut down and fined tens of thousands of pounds. Another company advertised a premium rate number for tech support without giving the price, and kept me on hold for several minutes, never revealing the cost of the call. ICSTIS checked them out and warned them to fix it or they'd be fined.
I've complained to the TPS about several companies who've called my numbers registered with them, but all I get is "We have no powers to impose fines." and "It'll be included in the next report"
Guess which one is run by the industry it's supposed to be policing!
The re-branding has a whiff of jos-sticks and echoes of whale song though...
I hope the el Reg observers are ready to spot the new logo, which will probably be inspired by the London Olympics logo. Only worse.
Cant They Think Of Something Better?!
That name is pathetic it sounds like some dodgy back street company, not a regulator at all....
Whoever thought of the rebranded name wants sacked!!
A fraud within a fraud
ICSTIS are useless. “A fraud within a fraud (being the premium rate industry in general. I wrote twice (recorded) tot these guys regarding un-requested SMS reverse billed messages. THEY DO NOT EVEN HAVE THE DECENCY TO REPLY! That is why the industry is in the position it is – where fraud is rife. The criminals responsible for ripping off the public should be arrested and put before the court. These companies have conned MILLIONS OF PEOPLE! – yet not one single arrest. What a corrupt country we live in. Its okay to commit fraud if you are *** PLC
Won't change the staff though...
Re-branding won't change the staff that actually run ICSTIS, who don't seem to know what they are doing. I complained once about a premium rate scam and a while later got an email back from them asking to call with more details. The email had been openly copied to a number of other people who had apparently also complained about the same scam! A minor breach of the data protection act perhaps, but it simply should not happen with such an agency.