GUIDE How to Choose a Broadband Internet Provider - Page 9 - UK ISPreview
GUIDE How to Choose a Broadband Internet Provider
By: Mark Jackson - September 5th, 2011 : Page 9 -of- 9
"The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is currently working to set out clearer and firmer guidelines for broadband ISP advertising"

how to choose a uk broadband provider3. Dispute/Complaint Resolution Schemes

Ofcom requires that all UK ISPs are members of an approved ADR scheme. These are meant to supplement, not replace, a providers own formal complaints procedures. The advantage they have is that an ADR is free and can order your ISP to either fix the problem or pay compensation. Generally you will only use an ADR if an active ISP complaint has gone unresolved for 8 weeks.

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4. The Internet Service Providers Association (ISPA) Code of Practice

Many ISPs are also members of the ISPA, which is an Internet trade association that represents the interests of UK internet providers. The group also runs its own 'Code of Practice' that all members must abide by and is designed as a commitment to good business practice. The ISPA can also handle complaints for member ISPs, especially those that fall short of the groups quality standards.

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5. Voluntary Traffic Management Code

Ofcom has recently been granted new Traffic Management powers which include the ability to require additional consumer information and set a minimum broadband quality of service. This quality of service could be a minimum broadband speed to ensure a basic level of access for consumers.

However, at the time of writing, neither the EU nor Ofcom has implemented any strict rules concerning how ISPs should or should not manage their customers' traffic. Instead the Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG) has recently stepped in to help mediate the construction of a Voluntary Code of Practice between the markets largest ISPs. At the time of writing they are still attempting to iron out the final details before launch.

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** UPDATE 24/11/2011** Ofcom's New Traffic Management Guidelines:

6. ASA Guidelines for Broadband Speed and "Unlimited" Advertising * UPDATED *

The UK Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) is currently working to set out clearer and firmer guidelines for broadband ISP advertising of internet access speeds and "unlimited" usage allowances. A series of new proposals are on the table and the final decision should surface before the end of 2011.

* UPDATE 6th October 2011 *

The ASA has now published its new rules and you can find those below.

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We hope that this guide has helped you to better understand the market, its technology choices, the limitations of various services and your own options. Unfortunately the market can be very complicated and there's no avoiding that but we've done our best to cover most of the important points. It is our hope that you will leave this page feeling better informed than when you first arrived.

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