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  • Free Press Launches a Petition against AT&T's FaceTime Rules


    AT&T previously announced that it wonít be charging for the FaceTime over cellular feature in iOS 6 but will require customers to be on one of its new Mobile Share data plans to be able to use the feature back in August. This meant that AT&T customers on the older tiered data plans and the unlimited data plans werenít eligible for the free FaceTime over cellular feature. At the time, open internet groups such as Public Knowledge and Free Press felt that AT&Tís controversial data plan requirement to allow FaceTime on their network in iOS 6 was violated F.C.C. rules.

    In September, Free Press, Public Knowledge and New America Foundationís Open Technology Institute informed AT&T that they will be filing a complaint with the F.C.C. for its illegal activities. Due to the threats of F.C.C. complaints and widespread public outcry, AT&T recently announced that it will be allowing FaceTime over cellular for all tiered data plans earlier this week. Unfortunately customers with the grandfathered unlimited data plans are still not eligible though.

    As a result of this, Free Press has now launched a petition to allow customers with the unlimited data plans to speak out against AT&Tís practices, which it says is still in violation of the law and the broader principles of Net Neutrality. The petition site carriers a banner that says ďAT&T: Your World Blocked.Ē As of right now, the site has roughly 105,000 comments and counting. If you are interested in joining the petition, you can do so by clicking here.

    Source: Free Press via TUAW
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Free Press Launches a Petition against AT&T's FaceTime Rules started by Akshay Masand View original post
    Comments 19 Comments
    1. Scotty Manley Silberhorn's Avatar
      Scotty Manley Silberhorn -
      Thanks for this, I signed the petition! Hopefully everyone else does too! Even if it doesn't apply to them.
    1. Roadw3's Avatar
      Roadw3 -
      Thank you for bringing this to my attention. Signed and replied.
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      I filed a complaint in Nov 2012. Will definitely sign the petition too. But if AT&T allows FaceTime on unlimited data, I'll give credit to myself rather than this petition.

      Signed and tweeted.
    1. iLoveWindows&iPhone's Avatar
      iLoveWindows&iPhone -
      This is awesome. I usually don't sign or support online petitions (or good ol' fashioned petitions for that matter).

      Education, gun control, women's rights, human rights, genocide...BORING! Dont have the time.

      AT&T not allowing me to use FaceTime while other AT&T customers on cheaper plans, paying AT&T less money, and not having been AT&T customers nearly as long as I have can....Is Unacceptable! The whole thing is completely backwards. Instead of rewarding their loyal customers for staying with them despite the lack of customer service, they are punishing the loyal customer for...being loyal customers.

      They try and twist the loyal customers arm into switching to a new plan (so they lose unlimited data, which they won't tell you) by putting special restrictions on them, and only them, to try and convince them to switch plans. If the loyal customer does not switch plans like they want, they will continue to enforce restrictions until the customer decides it would just be easier to switch....

      This is the best example of a business bullying its customers I have ever seen, it's ridiculous. Completely ridiculous.
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      Quote Originally Posted by iLoveWindows&iPhone View Post
      This is awesome. I usually don't sign or support online petitions (or good ol' fashioned petitions for that matter).

      Education, gun control, women's rights, human rights, genocide...BORING! Dont have the time.

      AT&T not allowing me to use FaceTime while other AT&T customers on cheaper plans, paying AT&T less money, and not having been AT&T customers nearly as long as I have can....Is Unacceptable! The whole thing is completely backwards. Instead of rewarding their loyal customers for staying with them despite the lack of customer service, they are punishing the loyal customer for...being loyal customers.

      They try and twist the loyal customers arm into switching to a new plan (so they lose unlimited data, which they won't tell you) by putting special restrictions on them, and only them, to try and convince them to switch plans. If the loyal customer does not switch plans like they want, they will continue to enforce restrictions until the customer decides it would just be easier to switch....

      This is the best example of a business bullying its customers I have ever seen, it's ridiculous. Completely ridiculous.
      With all opinions aside, It has nothing to do with that. AT&T doesn't want the network congestion having users chat freely with no limits. Is it fair, maybe not. But that's the facts.
    1. svolam's Avatar
      svolam -
      Quote Originally Posted by Scotty Manley Silberhorn View Post
      Thanks for this, I signed the petition! Hopefully everyone else does too! Even if it doesn't apply to them.
      I signed it.
    1. hunterw's Avatar
      hunterw -
      And the unlimited data get throttled after 3 gig on 3G anyway, making FaceTime unusable!!!
    1. vinaygoel2000's Avatar
      vinaygoel2000 -
      Quote Originally Posted by iLoveWindows&iPhone View Post
      This is awesome. I usually don't sign or support online petitions (or good ol' fashioned petitions for that matter).

      Education, gun control, women's rights, human rights, genocide...BORING! Dont have the time.

      AT&T not allowing me to use FaceTime while other AT&T customers on cheaper plans, paying AT&T less money, and not having been AT&T customers nearly as long as I have can....Is Unacceptable! The whole thing is completely backwards. Instead of rewarding their loyal customers for staying with them despite the lack of customer service, they are punishing the loyal customer for...being loyal customers.

      They try and twist the loyal customers arm into switching to a new plan (so they lose unlimited data, which they won't tell you) by putting special restrictions on them, and only them, to try and convince them to switch plans. If the loyal customer does not switch plans like they want, they will continue to enforce restrictions until the customer decides it would just be easier to switch....

      This is the best example of a business bullying its customers I have ever seen, it's ridiculous. Completely ridiculous.
      What makes you think that unlimited data plan customers are paying AT&T more? It's actually opposite. They make more, a lot more money from overages (when people go over their limited data plan). That's why AT&T wants to get rid of all unlimited data plan customers because we pay less and use lot more.
    1. mr117's Avatar
      mr117 -
      This is solely about money: unlimited data plans are not as financially rewarding as are tiered plans, which involve "overage" payments if/when a user goes over a set limit. A good question to ask is what percentage of AT&T users have unlimited plans, and how folding them into access to FaceTime would affect the network. Since AT&T just allowed a large group of users into the FaceTime pool, congestion would not seem to be the driving force behind this action. I would need to see hard data that AT&T's network would be in any way affected to believe a word of this. I think it is a matter of closing down data plans AT&T wants to remove. Nothing more.
    1. Perceptum's Avatar
      Perceptum -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThatOneProfile View Post
      With all opinions aside, It has nothing to do with that. AT&T doesn't want the network congestion having users chat freely with no limits. Is it fair, maybe not. But that's the facts.
      Then why is it that I can give up my unlimited plan and change to one with more unthrottled data and use it all on Facetime? With AT&T unlimited does not mean unlimited.
    1. Trooper Sam's Avatar
      Trooper Sam -
      Indeed, network congestion would seem to not be the motivating factor. They're quite happy to let those who pay more for data tie up the lines all day.
    1. AKCHRIS's Avatar
      AKCHRIS -
      Last time i heard they were already doing this, cause i called At&t n they told me that they rolling this out quietly within the next few months SOOO i can wait TBH.
    1. wolverinemarky's Avatar
      wolverinemarky -
      Signed and shared
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      Quote Originally Posted by Perceptum View Post
      Then why is it that I can give up my unlimited plan and change to one with more unthrottled data and use it all on Facetime? With AT&T unlimited does not mean unlimited.
      Good point.
    1. nxovkin's Avatar
      nxovkin -
      done!
    1. itsjustlenny's Avatar
      itsjustlenny -
      I use to have unlimited and opted out on my own accord. I just dont see the point on paying for "unlimited" but getting throttled at 2 or 3gb. whats the point of having X amount of internet when its at Edge speeds? I didnt see a point. So i switched to 3gb a month and was able to downgrade my monthly plan to the lowest. Saving myself about $30 a month (went from $130 cellphone bill down to $97).
    1. ThatOneProfile's Avatar
      ThatOneProfile -
      Quote Originally Posted by itsjustlenny View Post
      I use to have unlimited and opted out on my own accord. I just dont see the point on paying for "unlimited" but getting throttled at 2 or 3gb. whats the point of having X amount of internet when its at Edge speeds? I didnt see a point. So i switched to 3gb a month and was able to downgrade my monthly plan to the lowest. Saving myself about $30 a month (went from $130 cellphone bill down to $97).
      That's why att pushes users away from the unlimited. Same reason with facetime. They make it a burden on you guys.
    1. szr's Avatar
      szr -
      Quote Originally Posted by ThatOneProfile View Post
      That's why att pushes users away from the unlimited. Same reason with facetime. They make it a burden on you guys.
      Well, I don't believe it's really a burden. For one thing, one doesn't need to worry about overages, and people on tiered plan have been known to be throttled as well. Combine that with the fact that unlimited costs less than many of the tiered plans, and I think it is worth it to stay.
    1. Greatbiguns's Avatar
      Greatbiguns -
      Quote Originally Posted by mr117 View Post
      this is solely about money: Unlimited data plans are not as financially rewarding as are tiered plans, which involve "overage" payments if/when a user goes over a set limit. A good question to ask is what percentage of at&t users have unlimited plans, and how folding them into access to facetime would affect the network. Since at&t just allowed a large group of users into the facetime pool, congestion would not seem to be the driving force behind this action. I would need to see hard data that at&t's network would be in any way affected to believe a word of this. I think it is a matter of closing down data plans at&t wants to remove. Nothing more.
      x 2