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Just when I was getting used to the nice Indian support rep…

In a fascinating development, the Indian VoIP market (which was deregulated in 2002) now seems to be closing ranks again.  Call center operators, among others, will have to publish the names of the companies they do business with, and a wide ranging list of offshore operators like Skype and Vonage are banned. 

Om Malik writes: “For a country which views itself as part of Planet Technology, its government is failing to take into account the changing telecom and technology environment.” Tom Evslin goes further in his piece titled India Shoots Self in Foot, noting that you can’t do business with offshore factories that you can’t call.  The India Times has more detail also.

Short sighted, indeed.

{ 3 comments… add one }

  • Gokul December 12, 2006, 7:26 pm

    Hi Alec,

    I don't think this law is being tabled by the Indian government just to protect the phone companies. It looks like there is much more involved in this like security compliance and all that shenbang. I have detailed this out at


  • Alec December 12, 2006, 8:02 pm

    Thanks for the insights Gokul. My view, for what it's worth, is that the smartest thing for the Indian government to do if there are security issues, is to focus on security. Open communications markets have been good for India. I wasn't joking when I said I am getting used to Indian voices when I call for support. If you make it more difficult to call here (by raising prices) or be called from here, then those jobs will go away. I hope you folks can figure out the right balance.

  • Gokul December 12, 2006, 8:44 pm

    "I hope you folks can figure out the right balance"

    Alec, I can only wish I was in a position to make these policy decisions :)

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