Telus Responds to Wind Mobile Cybersquatting Scandal

by Jeff Wiener on January 28, 2010

This is a banner day for the TheTelecomBlog.com; Telus responded to my email.

Recently I inadvertently typed in www.winmobile.ca while researching a story on Wind Mobile. However, instead of being directed to the Wind Mobile website, I found myself at the website of Koodo, a subsidiary of Telus, a direct competitor of Wind Mobile’s parent company, Globalive. (You can read that post here). My discovery prompted a post deriding Telus for cybersquatting on Wind Mobile’s URL, an underhanded act akin to Globalive creating the website Teluss.ca and having it link people to the Wind Mobile homepage. If that were to happen, you better believe that Telus would not let it go unpunished.

I brought this issue to the attention of Telus, seeking an explanation or some sort of response on their part… and then I waited. I figured that someone from Telus had probably read my post, although they were, again, not responding. In my mind, the silence was probably either due to the general ineptitude of their subpar social media department, or the fact that they were simply ignoring me; which begs the question, what were they hiding?

I will note here that I have written many posts on Telus. A quick search on the blog suggests I have written about Telus, their products, or their services at least 50 times. Now how many times has the Telus marketing department called or emailed me in the 7 months I have been writing this blog? Zero. That’s right, Telus has never responded to my inquiries or even noticed my blogs, making their reaction here more than a little suspicious.

Then, several days after my original post, after plenty of time for Telus to get all their ducks in a row, I just received the following terse reply:

Sorry for the delay, we had to verify some information. I can confirm that neither TELUS nor Koodo owns the www.winmobile.ca domain. TELUS has tracked down the owner of the domain and requested that the redirect be terminated immediately. If you try that address today, it is not going back to any TELUS property.

After getting over the shock that Telus actually responded to my inquiry, the content itself was certainly not a surprise. If I had just caught Telus in the midst of a cybersquatting scandal, I would never expect them to admit it to me. In fact, if I were Telus I would probably disavow all knowledge of owning the domain name or of it connecting to my company and I would do my best to find a scapegoat to blame my faux pas on. And that’s what Telus did.

So while there’s probably no legal or professional recourse available to Wind Mobile at this time, the story has too many loose ends to ignore. It is too coincidental that the URL www.winmobile.ca was registered a mere two days after Wind Mobile’s launch, it is still confusing why this URL would connect anyone to Koodo, Wind Mobile’s competitor, and it is surprising that Telus has picked this opportunity to finally decide to communicate with me. Sure, it’s not a rock solid case, it might not even be enough for Matlock, but it’s enough to make me think.

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Written by: Jeff Wiener. www.digitcom.ca. Follow TheTelecomBlog.com by: RSS, Twitter, Identi.ca, or Friendfeed

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