by Mike Masnick

Filed Under:
defamation, india


Vodafone India Threatens Upset Customer With Defamation For Complaining About Bad Service

from the yeah,-that'll-work dept

You would think, by now, that companies (especially big companies) would recognize that attacking customers who complain about service online is a strategy destined to backfire in a big bad way. And yet, it continues to happen. Vodafone India has apparently sent a legal nastygram to a customer who complained about crappy Vodafone service on Facebook, and tried to reach top management to get their attention. The story is made a bit more confusing by the guy complaining that Vodafone somehow has access to his "private" conversations, but (from the description in the article) it sounds like the guy might not have known that if you don't set conversations to private, then they're open to the public. Even so, the larger issue is the almost certain backlash for any company that threatens a customer (no matter how annoying) for complaining on Facebook or Twitter. Focus on fixing the problem, not attacking the messenger.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. icon
    PrometheeFeu (profile), Jun 6th, 2011 @ 10:32pm

    I remember once complaining about my rates being raised by Geico on Twitter. It felt very arbitrary and I was quite annoyed by it. Within hours, a Geico rep had messaged me to give me a succinct explanation and apologize for the inconvenience. They didn't solve the underlying issue that I wanted to give them less money, but it definitely made me feel better about their company.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Prisoner 201, Jun 6th, 2011 @ 10:43pm

    Say hello to Mrs Streisand.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    abc gum, Jun 7th, 2011 @ 4:39am

    "it sounds like the guy might not have known that if you don't set conversations to private, then they're open to the public."

    The default setting is public?
    Seems to be a recipe for disaster.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. icon
    John D (profile), Jun 7th, 2011 @ 5:58am

    If it wasn't for bitching on Twitter, I don't think Time Warner would have ever shown up for my installation.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    dwg, Jun 7th, 2011 @ 9:33am

    Can you hear me defaming you now?

    Hey Vodaphone,

    (1) Nice public image you're creating. Better to go global with a misguided legal notice than to let one dissatisfied customer flame out.

    (2) In California, we have a statute--Cal. Civ. Code S 425.16--called the Anti-SLAPP Statute that specifically deals with attempts to silence protected first-amendment behavior like your customer's. If there is a statute like this one in whatever jurisdiction you're threatening legal action, be warned--they have teeth.

    (3) Shuddup.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. icon
    Bnesaladur (profile), Jun 9th, 2011 @ 8:12pm

    @ dwg - I doubt Vodafone-India worries about that because India has no such laws, although some statutes could be extrapolated to be used in that fashion they are not built for anti-SLAPP uses.
    as per information I found at

    @ abc gum - Ya no kidding. Anytime a system designed to facilitate the spread of potentially private information fails to give the users protection of privacy by default, there is a problem. Per post public access should be available as an opt-in with the ability to opt-out later with warnings to the effect that once made public opting out may not prevent its access. Full public opt-in access should be used carefully and definitely not be on by default; also warnings should be in place to notify the user that it is on to prevent it being changed accidentally.

    @ Prinsoner201 - lol.

    @ PrometheeFeu - It is cool that they contacted you and apologized and explained themselves, despite failing to give you a deal. Understandable I guess, in a sense. Even more cool that they worked with you rather than suing you and being douche-bags.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    suresh, Dec 19th, 2011 @ 9:07pm

    want to know the details of mobile number

    want to know the details of mobile number 8143403678

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Aug 2nd, 2014 @ 9:48am

    Vodafone claim to be the top networks it but may be but
    it service to its customers suck big time specially in delhi NCR

    Why cant i expect better service when i paying more than others
    who choose cheaper call rates ones in the market what do you think you are only one in the market.

    I am utterly disappointed with the service i recieved.

    i had called on 13th july and this complaint number was given
    2471298222 after 15 days when i called i spoke to the manager
    he said that i did not pick up the call which was made by the back end team, i said i did not receive any call but still i agreed may be it was off or something , even though i still beleive it was not so the manager said he would open up new co plaint with reference to old one as old one was closed (without even confirming resolution).

    He said i would receive new complaint number in message which i never did even the manager or supervisor are so irresponsible
    the turn around time was one week it was more than that.

    So finally i called today 2nd august when i asked for manger
    the agent says he is busy i called again after 20 min again when asked for manger please call after one hour manger is not there.

    What kind stupid reason is this ... i will not tolerate this
    i have already started blogging about this shitty service.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    rsc, Aug 22nd, 2014 @ 1:30am

    I invite Vodafone to sue me .I am publicly accusing them of cheating people. They are the worst customer relationship company and if they don't resolve my issue I sue them in consumer court. They think they had Mr. Jately as their legal adviser.They are wrong he is minister now and will not favor thew when they are wrong.

    This is last public massage to them.Learn to respect customer otherwise soon you will be looking for them.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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