New regulations introduced by Ofcom this week mean broadband customers can claim compensation if their provider's service is not up to scratch.
We would hazard a guess that pretty much everyone reading this right now has been infuriated by a poor internet connection at some point in their lives. We're not talking about waiting for dial-up to connect us back in the 90s either, although the mere thought of going back to those archaic days sends a shiver down our collective spine.
No, we mean having to deal with slow and frustrating broadband in the present day. A world where having high-speed internet really should be a given. We have been spoiled in that regard which means whenever something does go even slightly wrong, it drives us berserk. We look for someone to blame, someone to compensate us for this inconvenience.
People in the UK now have that right. It was reported by Gizmodo that starting this week, broadband users can claim compensation from their internet service providers if the service they provide is not up to scratch. Communications regulator Ofcom has instigated the changes, stating "it's unacceptable that people should be kept waiting for a new line, or a fault to be fixed."
There are a few caveats to these new regulations. First of all, providers have to opt-in so depending on who supplies your broadband, the right to request compensation might not be one that you have. However, most of the UK's major providers have opted in or promised that they will relatively soon. Those companies make up 95% of British broadband users, so most of the country does or soon will have the right to claim compensation for a shoddy service.
There are also strict guidelines as to what you're entitled to and when. It's not as simple as kicking up a fuss because your internet speed isn't fast enough for you to play Fortnite. You will be entitled to £5 ($6.57) per day for services that don't start on time, £8 ($10.51) per day if those services stop completely and aren't fixed within two working days, and £25 ($32.86) if an engineer doesn't show up/cancels with less than 24 hours notice.