*File photo
*File photo

The Regulatory Authority on Monday informed Digicel that their ad in the Royal Gazette ‘poking fun’ at Logic is in bad taste.

Below is the letter sent to Digicel CEO Wayne Caines by Philip Micallef:

Dear Wayne,

On Friday 7 February 2014 Digicel placed an advertisement in the Royal Gazette daily news paper on page 9 and placed a similar one today on page 12.  The advertisement concerned Digicel's free internet promotion which, it is well known, remains under investigation by the RA pursuant to a complaint raised by Logic on 23 January 2014.  At the top of the advertisement, appears a cartoon (meme) of a woman winking with the following caption "Below is the promotion Logic doesn't want you to know about". Logic sought the RA's views on the use of its name in the advert. We advised Logic to communicate any concerns it had with the advert to you directly. 

For the RA's part, we have considered the relevant provisions of the RAA and Digicel's licence obligations placed on Digicel. The advert is unlikely to fall into the category of unethical or unlawful conduct on the part of Digicel. However, the RA feels that it is in bad taste. This is especially in light of the fact that Logic has complained about Digicel's free internet promotion using the proper channels and that both parties have been informed that, although the investigation has not been completed, the promotion will not be suspended pending the outcome of the investigation. Against this backdrop it would appear as though Digicel are using the circumstances of Logic's complaint and the RA's decision concerning one portion of it to gain further commercial advantage over Logic solely on the basis that Logic has used its right to complain concerning the promotion. 

The RA encourages competition between carriers and believes that competition within the bounds of reasonableness is good for the consumer. In this particular instance, however, the RA considers the advert to run contrary to what is ordinarily considered healthy competition and has strayed away from the promotion of Digicel's services and it's belief that it provides good value to customers and into the area of poking fun at a fellow ICOL holder for failing to succeed in one part of its complaint.  This email is not a decision and will have no bearing on the investigation into Digicel's actions concerning the promotion its self, however, the RA believes it is important to let carriers know where they stand on certain aspects of advertising when the circumstances arise. 

The Regulatory Authority shall be expressing the same views aired above in any comments requested from us by the media.



UPDATE Tuesday 11th February, 9:30am: Statement from Digicel CEO, Wayne Caines

 I would like to take this opportunity to respond to comments released by the RA to the media regarding recent advertisements about our innovative Free Internet Promotion. As you may be aware, when we launched this promotion, which saves customers $600 over the course of a year, Logic complained. It seems that Logic is now complaining that we have drawn attention to the fact that they did not want customers to benefit from this promotion in the first place. We respect Logic as a competitor in a dynamic telecommunications market. The irony of this second complaint, however, must be apparent to our customers.

 Digicel will continue to bring new and innovative promotions to the market because we believe that ultimately customers benefit. Prices have decreased across the board since we first introduced Digicel Internet. That is something of which we are proud. We aim to make people smile with our promotions and the most recent ads are no exception.