It has long been clear that the litigious nature of the United States with respect to personal injury claims is now established firmly on UK shores. Anyone who turns on the TV at lunchtime during the week will hear how even if you tripped over a fly whilst guzzling the last dregs of your Vodka bottle there is a ‘lawyer for you’. (In fact, these commercials are now so hectoring it’s enough to give you a hangover without the vodka!). But now this pernicious legal trend is affecting the business information industry where companies even sue over public information matters. In one ongoing case, the owners of a liquidated firm are blaming the UK Registrar, Companies House, for their demise (Read HERE). I cannot comment on the detail of this case but it is surely the responsibility of each company and individual to check on their status in this information age and to make every effort to correct inaccuracies with the information providers concerned. It takes time to run down a healthy company. Can one untimely data point be the cause of such destruction? Put me down as a sceptic!
Strike one up for the little guy. (Yeah, right!) So called ‘privacy advocates’ (and who isn’t when it comes to their own information?) are hopping for joy over the European Court of Justice, the European Union’s highest court ruling that we all have a digital right for certain data historic data points to be ‘forgotten’. Google, which delivers 90% of all search in Europe, is rightly worried that the ruling will mean it faces a huge burden which none of its clever algorithms will be able to spirit away. Tech companies are all about automation and scale. Try calling Google with a service question and their response is reduced to the voice activated morass of all big companies. They are simply not set up to deal with grit in the Oyster. Still, they’re smart enough to spot a nightmare when it’s on the horizon. But does the wider business information industry?
Let’s face it when Equifax gets sued because it’s technical and customer service systems can’t handle a chap called ‘God’, what chance does the credit reporting industry have when European punters notice just how much historic data these companies have? What’s more, so much of it is being sold to third parties who aggregate it and post snippets freely to attract web traffic so that visitors will purchase the more up-to-date variety (full disclosure: I built a whole business around this model) it won’t be long before the ECJ’s ruling is a real business disruptor for big business information companies like Equifax, Experian and Dun and Bradstreet. Sleep now while the going's good...
This morning Virgin launches its quad play with TV, mobile, internet and landline deals costing ‘as little’ as £30 pm. Virgin is aiming to leverage its impressive result to date of 66% of its customer base taking three products, BSkyB has so far managed to get 37% of its 10 million customers to take three of its products. The more services a customer takes also reduces customer ‘churn’ for Telcos. But the mobile reception offered by the Quad provider may not be the best for a customer and how many now need a landline? All to play for...
Concise, immediate, comment on the balls bouncing around the digital technology space.