Talk about getting hit over the head for being upfront, Charter Communications' plans to track and sell customer web-surfing data--set to begin in June in four of the company's markets across the country--has raised concerns and drawn the attention of two congressmen who've asked the company to postpone its implementation.
Charter notified high-speed Internet customers in Fort Worth, Texas; San Luis Obispo, Calif.; Oxford, Mass.; and Newtown, Conn. of its planned partnership with online ad firm NebuAd to gather data from a "few hundred" customers to help develop targeted online ads.
Reps. Edward Markey, D-Mass., and Joe Barton, R-Texas, wrote to Charter asking it to hold off until they speak with CEO Neil Smit. Markey is chair of the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications and the Internet; Barton is ranking Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee.
Neither NebuAd or gathering web surfing data is new, NebuAd has been working with Embarq on a similar project for months. The difference is Embarq announced its deal quietly and avoided play in the media. Lesson learned Charter? Shame on you for being transparent.
See the story at STL Today