TeamTalk opts to join 'immoral' organisation

Despite earlier criticism, company signs up to TCF

Ten months after claiming the Telecommunications Carriers Forum (TCF) is immoral, TeamTalk chief executive David Ware has joined the organisation.

In January Ware wrote to the forum’s CEO David Stone claiming the TCF was “nothing more than a club that a few large telecommunications companies use to buy the industry into submission and to paste a veneer of respectability over their immoral behaviour”.

Ware objected to the TCF’s bid to take control of the Numbering Administration Deed, and to its propensity to send out large documents for its members to consider when drafting codes that govern industry behaviour.

But in October, after several meetings with Stone, Ware signed up TeamTalk – boosting the numbers of industry participants in the TCF to 15 (other new members include 2degrees, Northpower and Enable Networks). So what made Ware change his mind?

“The thing that I was jumping up and down about at the time was about numbering and it seems I have won that battle. The TCF isn’t going to take over numbering so I am quite happy about that,” Ware says.

“The second thing that has happened is that I am actively involved in the Ultra Fast Broadband stuff, CityLink is bidding for Wellington. The TCF are setting the network standards and doing a good job of it and I want to be part of that process and contribute to that.

“The third thing is I have met with David Stone from the TCF about three or four times over the year and basically he has convinced me that TCF is reforming itself and can move from their old ways.”

So everything OK? Not quite. What hasn’t changed is the volume of documents from the TCF, nor Ware’s colourful way of expressing his displeasure. In reply to an email from the TCF suggesting a catch up for new members, Ware wrote: “I’ve paid my dues – I’m going to sit quietly in the corner – please leave me alone. If you want my vote on anything the default answer is no. I’ve had five, yes five, emails from you today and much as I hate to admit it that’s almost enough to make me go postal.”

When asked about the email, Stone defended the TCF’s volume of paperwork. “We generate information; we try and put it in a form that makes it useful to our members. Bottom line is that it is either us doing it or it is the regulator doing it. If the regulator is doing it you still have to spend the time and resource looking over things.”

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