11 days ago Verizon CEO Lowell McAdam said that he would consider eliminating wireless contracts if consumers asked for it. The internet heard these words and responded with a hearty "challenge accepted." At the time of this writing the petition has reached over 72,000 signatures and it's following is growing quickly.
Verizon got a lot of heat earlier this week for announcing that it would add an extra 2 months to the time before it would allow customers to upgrade their devices. Verizon is also known for spotty customer service, incredibly high prices, and a poor track record when it comes to pushing out OTA updates to its Android phones.
Big red could eliminate all the ill will it has accumulated over the past few weeks and could position themselves as a progressive, customer friendly corporation by listening to what its customers want and making changes to it's business model. Contracts may have made sense in a world where text messaging was considered a gimmick. Today the mobile industry is growing by leaps and bounds and wireless carriers are holding back the ability of their customers to take advantage of these new technologies.
The story of Mike Beauchamp, the tech blogger from Wichita, Kansas who started the Change.org petition has been spreading like wildfire. CNN has picked up the story and quoted Mike as saying "I believe that people should have the freedom of choice ... to move freely between carriers. I think that model where you tie customers in for two or three years is a tired model that doesn't need to exist anymore." We couldn't agree more, Mike, thank you for taking the initiative to get the ball rolling.
I encourage anyone reading this to sign the Change.org petition by clicking here. If Verizon chooses to ignore the outcries of an enraged group of its consumers, they can do so at their own peril.