BT bans discussion of Phorm on its BT Beta forums
The Register has revealed that BT Retail has had enough of the on going discussion of Phorm and their implementation of it called Webwise. A trial for the product is currently underway and recently hit the news when a Plusnet customer using a trial BT Retail network was presented with the WebWise trial opt-in.
"Our broadband support forums are designed to be a place where customers can discuss technical support issues and offer solutions. To ensure that the forums remain constructive we're tightening up our moderation policies and will be deleting threads that don't provide constructive support. For example, we have removed a number of forum discussions about BT Webwise. If you do want to find out more about BT Webwise, we provide lots of information and the facility to contact us at www.bt.com/webwise. We hope you'll continue to enjoy being part of the support community. "Statement from BT Beta forums
It would seem BT is keen to try and keep their forum on track and focused on technical support, but from those observing the trial it may give the impression of a big company trying to silence a few customers who while they may be tenacious over the subject are simply trying to make themselves heard.
Hopefully BT will not distance itself from questions people now submit from the Webwise site itself. If it does then they face the danger that mis-information may increase. A common example is that Phorm replaces adverts on all websites you visit, whereas in reality it only replaces them on sites that are signed up to the Phorm advert exchange (OIX).
Whether this will turn into an own goal, depends a lot on what BT Retail does next. In the current economic climate the pressures to gain extra income from systems like Phorm will be increasing, but there will be a point at which the silent majority decide that some processes are too much of an invasion of privacy and rebel.