After terrifying local small telcos and their customers with a ban on mobile phone plans that bundle SMS and voice services, the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority is changing its story, reports ProPakistani today. The government agency received a heavy backlash when it threatened to force customers to pay more for each text and call in the name of morality.
Now in crisis management, the PTA alleges its directive was misinterpreted, and it will instead ban chatrooms offered by cellular carriers, on which customers can chat anonymously with other subscribers. The original letter containing the directive made no specific mention of “chatrooms.”
On November 14, 2012, the PTA ordered telcos to cease and desist “late night packages” that were deemed “contrary to the moral values of society” according to a survey. The PTA’s recent clarification reads:
With reference to news reports on Pakistan Telecommunication Authority’s latest letter to Cellular Mobile Operators (CMOs) to stop ‘chat packages’, PTA spokesperson has clarified that it is not a new matter but a continuity of the PTA letter of November 14, 2012 on the same issue.
(Editing by Steven Millward)