22 MAY 2002

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Public survey on phone mail published

Results confirm public's reaction to way service was introduced

An overwhelming 76% of respondents have unequivocally stated that Phone Mail should have been offered to subscribers at their request, and not introduced, arbitrarily, nation-wide. Furthermore, almost half of the respondents, that is, 47%, have actually had the service discontinued from their residential lines.

Last week, the MCA commissioned Prof. Mario Vassallo to conduct an independent survey to test public reaction to the way Phone Mail was introduced by the incumbent fixed line operator, Maltacom plc.

The undertaking of this survey was agreed to, in principle, last month, during a meeting called by the MCA with senior Maltacom officials. It was originally to be conducted by Maltacom itself in June; however, in view of the recent controversy, the MCA had decided to bring the survey forward.

This survey has also served as an eye-opener, for regulatory bodies like the MCA, because 77% of respondents were unable to answer correctly the question, "Do you know what a regulator is?" In fact, the MCA, which came into being in January 2001, is the national agency responsible for regulating telecommunications and e-commerce. Once the Postal Services Act is enacted, the MCA will also become the competent authority for regulating postal services.

The random telephone survey, carried out between the 13 and 16 May, polled 500 respondents. The full survey may be downloaded from the MCA's website on www.mca.org.mt

 



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Editor: Saviour Balzan
The Business Times, Network House, Vjal ir-Rihan San Gwann SGN 07, Malta
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