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Thread: Frustrating Puzzle

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2004

    Thumbs up Frustrating Puzzle

    Hello Folks,

    I am a bit puzzled and I need your advice.
    I read the other night Bull Dog's (UK Broad-Band ISP bought last year by "Cable & Wireless" Telephone Network) Terms & Conditions for 2 hours and the next day for about another 1.5 hour (32 pages in total !) and there is a clause/section 12 which is worrying me.
    Usually, all ISPs T & C mention that we cannot mis-behave such as harras others, send abusive messages, spam, mis-behave, etc. but it seemed to me Bull Dog is saying I will have to pay fines 2,000/5,000 pounds (British Sterlings) if I or anyone using my broad-band connection engage in any of these.

    Clause 7 states what we are prohibited to do and clause 10 states our liability to bull dog and bull dog's liability to us.

    I emailed the customer service about this issue and he says he thinks (which means he is not sure) the clause mentions that bull dog's liability to me is
    2,000/5,000 pounds and not my liability to them but if that is the case then I don't understand why it states "your liability to Bulldog" .

    Anyway, my English isn't too good (as English is my 2nd language and I am not a caucasian) and was wondering if anyone would be kind enough to read the clauses/sections (they are short) and tell me what you think.

    On their T & C link :

    please read the section (it is short) :


    You will notice that the consumer section/clause (12 ) states :

    " subject to clauses 7, 10 and the obligation to pay Charges due under these Terms, Bulldog's liability to you, and your liability to Bulldog, in respect of all causes of action arising in each calendar year in contract, tort or otherwise (including liability for negligence or breach of statutory duty) under, in connection with or arising out of the supply or non-supply of Services and/or Equipment:

    in respect of each and every line shall be limited to damages equal to 2,000 in such calendar year; and;

    in aggregate shall be limited to damages equal to 5,000 in such calendar year. "

    Actually, please read these 3 small sections/clauses :


    before reading section/clause 12 because section/clause 12 mention about section 7 and 10 when it says "subject to clauses 7, 10 and the obligation to pay Charges due under these Terms,"

    So, kindly read those 3 sections/clauses before posting what you have understood from the 3 sections/clauses.
    You can finish them all in 5 minutes.

    I asked customer service what they mean by "line" when the T & C states :

    " in respect of each and every line shall be limited to damages equal to 2,000 in such calendar year; and;

    in aggregate shall be limited to damages equal to 5,000 in such calendar year. "

    and he said it means "phone lines".
    I thought that maybe it meant that for every "line" of prohibited act (mentioned in section/clause 7) we may have to pay fine of 2000 (max 5000 per year) but I guess line means "phone line" after-all.
    Nevertheless please keep both interpretation of "line" in mind when reading the sections/clauses and see which interpretation makes sense. I think their interpretation does now, but you never know mine could be right because as far as I am concerned the customer service maybe lying through their teeth just to sign us up as some of them do that here in the UK.

    Ok, you might have a question : Why am I so worried that Bull Dog might suddenly start fining me ?
    Well, as you can imagine, every house-hold has teenagers and experience tells me that they are most of the time "chatting" in chat-rooms and making "new mates" whenever they are on the internet.
    And ofcourse, they chat with strangers and all sorts of people and sooner or later some guy wishing to be funny and wishing to start a chat-flame before ending his chat for that night starts abusing other chatters. My worry is, when teenagers from my house-hold get offended by other chatters (who start chat-flames) they are most likely to retaliate by sending similar abuse.
    And that, might land me in trouble with my ISP (Bull Dog) as they have made it very clear on their T & C that they will monitor and record every internet activity.
    Yeah, I can tell my house-hold not to swear at others on the internet and they would promise me they would behave but when the time comes when you lose your head because others are just being plain stupid and swearing at you for the sake of starting a chat-flame then you just forget all your promises and only remember it when your ISP drops you a big fine on your lap.
    Frankly, I haven't found any better ISP than Bull Dog because with Bull Dog our minimum contract is only 1 month unlike most others whose minimum contract is 12 months.

    Plus, Bull Dog offers 4mbs download band-width unlike all the others whose max download speed is 2mbs.
    And, Bull Dog does not put uploading or downloading restrictions unlike most others.
    That's why I prefer Bull Dog but that clause 12 is holding me back from signing-up.
    To this day, I still use dial-up.

    Cheers Folks !

  2. #2
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 1999
    Jacksonville, Florida, United States
    Blog Entries
    Presuming this is not an attempt to advertise Bull Dog...

    Every ISP will try to protect their rights. They are only going to enforce all those terms if in the middle of a legal battle with you. A tech rep is not qualified to interpret their TOS for you, you should try to speak to their legal department...

    Still, they are not going to change them for you, at the end you are still going to end with the dilema of signing it to get the service. And no, your ISP is not going to fine you for your teenagers chatting and using inapropriate language. If they do break the law, the ISP is going to use common sense and go the cheapest way. That usually means disconnecting your service. In order to "fine" you over their stated charges, they'd have to sue you and win, which means incurring legal expenses on their behalf... And they're not in the business of suing people.

    I suggest you step back (from the TOS ) and look at the bigger picture, just use common sense.

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