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BBC justifying 0870 (Read 15,890 times)
a very nice man
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BBC justifying 0870
May 12th, 2006 at 8:22pm
 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/foi/docs/organisation_and_management/how_the_BBC_is_Run/Use...

Doesn't need explaining.

Any other firms offering justification?
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Tanllan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #1 - May 12th, 2006 at 9:52pm
 
Just a shame that the BBC's "Michael Stock, Business and Partnerships Manager, Marketing, Communications & Audiences" does not realise that the code is 020 and not 0207. No wonder the thinking and justification is so skewed.
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idb
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #2 - May 13th, 2006 at 2:10am
 
The document is simply what the Beeb's master - Capita - has told it to say. Capita is laughing all the way to the bank, fleecing the general public to the tune of millions per year. When Capita says 'JUMP', poor old Auntie says 'HOW BLOODY HIGH'. Instead of independence, the poor old W1A lapdog has to do what it is told or suffer the consequence.

Interestingly, our major networks here - NBC, ABC, CBS and FOX, and similarly in Canada, seem to manage quite well without the need to use telephone extortion. Accepted that they, unlike the Beeb, are generally funded through advertising, but so is ITV, and that also uses scam numbers. All television voting here appears to use toll-free numbers!

Capita is a great example of the worst kind of excesses that have been allowed to prosper by HMG and the spineless regulator Ofcom. Its rationale is to extract every drop of revenue from the caller without a care in the world. Executives' salaries and shareholder profits are paramount, and if that means charging premium rates for everyday calls, so be it.

What a wonderful country!
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derrick
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #3 - May 13th, 2006 at 11:56am
 
And they are still using this old chestnut;_

3. Why not replace 0870 with geographic numbers like 0141 or 0207 etc so callers could ring for free or very cheaply under call discount plans?

We decided against that in 1998 when the Governors approved the use of 0870 numbers because they are fairer – everyone pays the same regardless of where they live. The 0870 numbers also bring some technology and operational advantages such as being able to redirect calls. The BBC has welcomed Ofcom’s proposals to cut the cost of 0870 calls and improve information so we expect it will become cheaper to call the BBC.
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Shiggaddi
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #4 - May 13th, 2006 at 3:15pm
 
That kind of decision might have some ground back in 1998, but this is 2006, and the telecoms and technology sector have evolved.

Pity the same living in the dark ages attitude doesn't apply to the licence fee.  I wouldn't mind paying 1998 prices!!  However the BBC are bang up to date on how much to charge.

Pity the same can't be said about cost of calling them.

And of course, they believe the usual "0870 numbers allow us to divert calls" nonsense.  What it actually means is "We can divert calls using geo numbers, but Capita doesn't allow this, so 0870 is the only choice"

And "We don't receive revenue from calls" is admitted as "We don't get a rebate from Capita as we don't want to be seen as greedy, but instead let Capita keep the money for their own gain, and the revenue we would get, is taken into account when setting the licence fee"

However at least in that document they ackowledge the opposition to these numbers, and Watchdog for instance has adopted a London number.

It's a bit misleading when they get responses saying people are satisfied about the cost of calling their call centres.  Perhaps these surveys only question the help that was given by the call centre agent, and it's up to the person filling in the survey to add comments about 0870 in the "any other comments" section
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Dave
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #5 - May 13th, 2006 at 9:34pm
 
And where in that response does it mention why 0870 has been chosen over 0845?  Roll Eyes
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« Last Edit: May 13th, 2006 at 9:34pm by Dave »  
 
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NonGeographicalMan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #6 - May 15th, 2006 at 2:56pm
 
Dave wrote on May 13th, 2006 at 9:34pm:
And where in that response does it mention why 0870 has been chosen over 0845?  Roll Eyes


Or over a 1p per minute at all times 0844 number or an 0800 number.  Especially as the BBC does use 0800 numbers for some of its phone calls. Wink
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« Last Edit: May 15th, 2006 at 2:57pm by N/A »  
 
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Tanllan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #7 - May 15th, 2006 at 3:05pm
 
Not sure why they use the justification of postage. After all they do not (yet - eeeek) have a share in the stamp...
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NonGeographicalMan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #8 - May 15th, 2006 at 3:57pm
 
Tanllan wrote on May 15th, 2006 at 3:05pm:
Not sure why they use the justification of postage. After all they do not (yet - eeeek) have a share in the stamp...


With a stamp you pay a third party body just for the cost of moving the letter to the body it is being sent to and they don't return part of the cost of the letter stamp to the body the item is sent to (mind you better not to give Capita any such ideas like that!)

The correct comparison is with walking into a shop to browse their goods or to complain about goods you have previously purchased from the shop.  No such shop attempts to charge you for this facility and this is the correct comparison with 0870 call revenue being used to prop up the call centre you are calling regardless of whether or not you buy any additional services from them.
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gdh82
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #9 - May 15th, 2006 at 6:54pm
 
Quote:
I was assured by none other than a senior Ofcom employee that the BBC get most of their outgoing phone calls for nothing due to all the revenue share taken by Cable & Wirless on the incoming calls.  The BBC are therefore getting a big kickback on the cost of the 0870 calls.  Its just that they don't receive an actual payment but get a massive discount on their own outgoing phone call costs.


This thread just gets more depressing but we need to know these things.  Not only are the BBC's justifications wafer thin, the lack of the whole truth (discounted outgoing calls) is bordering on dishonest.

Should the '03' range be introduced, how likely is it the BBC would adopt it, given it would presumably lose some of the 'benefits' of 0870 ?
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« Last Edit: May 15th, 2006 at 6:54pm by gdh82 »  

There's more of us that them, stick together and challenge 0870/0845 etc etc
 
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NonGeographicalMan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #10 - May 15th, 2006 at 7:05pm
 
gdh82 wrote on May 15th, 2006 at 6:54pm:
Should the '03' range be introduced, how likely is it the BBC would adopt it, given it would presumably lose some of the 'benefits' of 0870 ?


Very likely they will have to change as companies getting 03 numbers will broadcast they are part of inclusive call allowances whereas 084/7 are not, especially as taking this option will cost them more money (or loss of free kickbacks etc).

Once 03 is launched there will be overwhelming pressure for the DVLA, Inland Revenue and BBC to move across to it.

Of course much will depend on how much Ofcom does to advertise or properly explain the launch of the 03 code and why it is necessary.  However the retention of National Rate 0870, Free 0800/0808 and premium rate 0844/0845 and 0871 all on the same code seems to be deliberately designed to ensure the public remains as uninformed and baffled as ever.

Ofcom and its overpaid telco favourable regulatory climate promoter Stephen Carter are a disgrace.  The sooner Mr Carter goes the same way as Charles Clarke the better as far as I am concerned. Angry Angry Angry
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #11 - May 15th, 2006 at 7:10pm
 
I personally can't see any government organisation migrating to 03x simply because it will actually cost them whereas now it may not (depending on who their provider is).  In other words, without a incentive then why would they move to numbers that is going to cost them not just in migration costs but also likely getting charged for incoming calls they receive on these 03x numbers.

I believe this is what happened on 0845 a long time ago when they were introduced.

As for the BBC, I can see them just staying on 0870 and if we are lucky then BT will carry these calls as geographical and then (again hopefully), other providers will follow suit.
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NonGeographicalMan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #12 - May 15th, 2006 at 7:18pm
 
bbb_uk wrote on May 15th, 2006 at 7:10pm:
I personally can't see any government organisation migrating to 03x simply because it will actually cost them whereas now it may not (depending on who their provider is).  In other words, without a incentive then why would they move to numbers that is going to cost them not just in migration costs but also likely getting charged for incoming calls they receive on these 03x numbers.


At the meeting I went to at Ofcom in November (the one you could have gone to bbb if I had given you more notice or you had taken a day sick off work)  Marc Michael from the Central Office of Information was very clear that what they wanted was a number that gave all the call handling feature of 084/7 on older non voip phone systems but without callers having to pay more than for a normal uk phone call.  They didn't like 0800 numbers because they involve the government call centre also being ripped off by the call companies and attracted crank calls and hugely increased average call length compared to any call where the caller was paying for the cost of the call.  And for huge government agencies like Inland Revenue rerouting calls around all their call centres for certain services using old phone technology was not possible using 01/02.

So personally I expect to see all government department lines move to 03.  The big question is about government agencies like DVLA that see themselves as a separate revenue centre.  I am sure the Inland Revenue will get 03 numbers though as its difficult enough being the tax collection authority without putting taxpayers off calling you about paying their taxes!
Shocked

The good thing about 03 is that it is the company receiving the calls who will pay for the additional features and as they have major purchasing power (unlike individual consumers) they will be able to shop around and drive prices down.
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #13 - May 15th, 2006 at 7:30pm
 
Quote:
The good thing about 03 is that it is the company receiving the calls who will pay for the additional features and as they have major purchasing power (unlike individual consumers) they will be able to shop around and drive prices down.
I realise that government departments would have to pay for features like intelligent call diversion, etc but will they also have to pay x amount per minute for each minute that someone calls them?  If so, this is why I think there will be resistance in migrating because it could, depending on volume of calls, become very expensive for them.  I realise they'll have better marketing/buying powers than the likes of us joe public but 0845, at first, was expensive in that they had to pay x amount for every minute someone called them.  Obviously, this has changed now for 0845 anyhow.

From my FOI's, in some cases the reasons why they decided on 0870 was that at the time (ie when 0845 was known as local rate and 0870 was known as national rate) they had to pay to have the 0845 and its features and pay towards the cost of incoming calls as well whereas an 0870 they never had to pay as much out (ie they never had to pay x amount per minute for each incoming call).
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« Last Edit: May 15th, 2006 at 7:30pm by bbb_uk »  
 
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NonGeographicalMan
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Re: BBC justifying 0870
Reply #14 - May 15th, 2006 at 7:59pm
 
bbb,

I think some of these issues are unclear from the proposals in Ofcom's Review of Numbering and so you must demand in your response that companies only pay for the call handling features and do not pay a per minute charge etc for every call diverted using an 03 NTS number.

NGM
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