UK mobile subscribers revolt against new directory

Jeremy Phillips

On Monday Guardian Online reported that the controversial mobile phone directory service 118 800 had been suspended. The service, which charges up to £1 to put people in touch with a mobile number from its list of some 15 million mobile phone account holders, commenced operation last month [see earlier Datonomy post here], since which time it has been deluged with people trying to remove their details from the system.

Right: many UK mobile phone users don’t like the idea of others monkeying around with their numbers.

According to the article,

“Last week the office of the Information Commissioner said it wanted to talk to Connectivity, the site behind the 118 800 service, to find out how it planned to protect consumers against having their numbers included against their will.

However, a spokeswoman for 118 800 said the site’s owners had earlier talked to the Commissioner and ensured the site did comply with UK laws. She said the suspension of the site and phone directory service were a result of “technical glitches” that meant parts of the site needed rebuilding and that the suspension would be temporary”.

According to some cynics, the major “glitch” is simply that people do not want to be listed. One of the attractions of mobile telephony up till now has been the personal control that phone holders have been able to exercise as to who may have access to their numbers.

At the time this article was posted, the 118 800 service remained suspended.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *