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FCC Asks Questions About Providing More Information to Empower Consumers

Do you find it hard to understand special offers from telephone, cable and other communications companies? Are you getting a better deal if you buy everything you want —phone, Internet and pay-TV — from one company? Would you like to know more about coverage when you’re choosing a wireless service provider? And once you’ve made your choices and get a bill for what you’ve bought, will you be able to understand what you’re paying for and whether you’re getting what you were promised? Would a standard format make bills easier to understand?

We know that consumers now have lots of choices, and that choosing the best communications service for you has become more and more complicated. Therefore, the FCC published a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) asking these and many more questions. Specifically, the FCC asked whether you have enough information to make the best decision for you at all stages of purchasing your communications services: 1) choosing a provider, 2) choosing a service plan, 3) watching how you are using your plan so you don’t have unpleasant surprises on your bill, and 4) deciding whether and when to switch to a different plan or service provider. The FCC asked for answers to these questions for all the communications services available to you: traditional landline, wireless, Internet service, VoIP and cable or satellite.

The FCC also asked whether the information you receive from communications providers is helpful, what additional information you’d like to get, and what can be done to make the information easier to understand. You can look at the NOI and the complete list of questions.

For more information

For more information about the NOI or other communications issues, visit the FCC’s Consumer website or contact the FCC’s Consumer Center by calling 1-888-CALL-FCC (1-888-225-5322) voice or 1-888-TELL-FCC (1-888-835-5322) TTY; faxing 1-866-418-0232; or writing to:

Federal Communications Commission
Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau
Consumer Inquiries and Complaints Division
445 12th Street, SW
Washington, DC 20554

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Empowering Consumers: FCC Asks Questions About Providing More Information Guide (pdf)

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