A new law should be created giving consumers the right to take misleading and aggressive businesses to court, the Law Commission and Scottish Law Commission have said. The new law would only apply to transactions between a business and a consumer, the Law Commissions said as they launched a consultation into whether there should …
Good Idea !
Given the current sue'em attitude of tech companies, it's about time the consumer was given protection regard faulty software and should have the same rights as if it was any other product.
If they wish to treat software with the same legal standing as the physical world then what is good for the goose is good for the gander.
The trouble with this is that agressive and misleading businesses will often do most of their communication verbally. It would be very difficult in this case to prove that the company had been agressive or mislead the customer. I have found that when having problems with companies they will often try to reply to my emails by telephone, presumably so I have no record of the conversation. In the past I have resorted to "He's not here at the moment, can you send him an email?"
Is this part back to front, and if so then whose fault is it...
"The new law would also give businesses the right to take legal action against customers who owe money, even if a contract doesn't exist."
Is that what you/they meant to say, or is it backwards? Everything else seems to be about customers injured by businesses, not the other way around. I'll see if I can find a response address...
The new proposals were looking good until this line appeared.
"misleading and aggressive businesses"
So, for start that is:
BT, PC World, Virgin Media, British Gas, Sony, Microsoft, News(sic) International, WEA, UMG, BPI, ACS:Law (ha ha, hit em hard Judge Birss)...
Will have little or no effect
Companies ship c**p products but have expensive well paid lawyers and are unlikely to ever be worried about Joe Bloggs trying to get his money back.
How many toys have most of us bought for kids, spent Christmas glueing them back together before chucking them out on Boxing day? How many times have we bought a TV and seen it fail when its 18 months old (when I was a kid a TV lasted 10 years+). When I am offered an 'extended warranty' for a washing machine that takes it to '5 years cover' and costs the same as the machine I just inform them that if it breaks in 5 years they fix it or I stick it back through their shop window - a washing machine should last more than 10 years. I'm sorry to say that most of the stuff shipped in glossy boxes from China is less use than a chocolate fireguard, its 'quality' reflects the price of production - not the price in the shops. Most of the time now I buy my son old toys from ebay because they still work.
These businesses just bully their way through consumer law anyway, they try to blind you with tripe and bluff their way out. If you buy a product or pay for a service that's what they should provide, well until they try to fob you off with the 215 page EULA that says they don't actually accept responsibility if their product doesn't work. I thought we already had the Trade Descriptions Act, Sale of Goods Act and Unfair Contract Terms Act already on the statute book but clearly being evaded.
Will this hold manufacturers to account?
In UK consumer law, the contract is between you and the vendor, not the manufacturer. You buy a device and at some future date, the manufacturer releases a firmware update that disables a function that attracted you to the device in the first place. Failure to install the firmware means you're locked out of online functionality. You can try taking the device back to the vendor, but its out of warranty and not actually broken. The manufacturer has you by the balls.
On a completely unrelated note, does the paid-for PlayTV Live Chat upgrade provide the same functionality as MythTV/Linux used to provide on the PS3 before Sony removed the OtherOS feature for "security" reasons?