RIM Faces Lawsuit Over BlackBerry Outage

Josh WolfordBusiness

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Remember that 4 day outage that left BlackBerry owners all over the world without BlackBerry Messenger, email and in some cases, web browsing? Did you think that it was over when RIM apologized and threw free apps at the affected customers?

Those of you that felt that the free apps weren't enough to assuage some BlackBerry users have been proven correct, as a suit filed in Quebec is seeking class action status on behalf of "all residents in Canada who have a BlackBerry smartphone and who pay for a monthly data plan" but because of the outage, were unable to access their messages and emails.

As a quick refresher, the BlackBerry outage began around October 10th, when reports emerged from parts of Europe, Africa and The Middle East that folks were having trouble with some of their services. In a couple of days, that outage had spread to North America. BBM, email, and web browsing were the three things most affected by the outage.

As services were slowly being restored, co-CEO of RIM Mike Lazaridis took to YouTube and issued a video apology to BlackBerry customers. He said that they had failed on their goal to provide reliable communications and that they had let many people down.

Shortly after that, RIM announced that they would be giving BlackBerry customers free apps in compensation for the outage. The free apps list included things like SIMS 3, Bejewled, and Speech Translator Pro. All in all, over $100 worth of apps have been offered for free.

Many were skeptical that this display would be enough to satisfy disgruntled users - that some would want real monetary compensation for the multiple days that they were unable to use the BlackBerry network. This is exactly what this lawsuit is asking for.

The Respondent has failed to take action to either directly compensate BlackBerry users or to indirectly compensate BlackBerry users by arranging for wireless service providers to refunds their customers and to take full responsibility for these damages

When you think about it, compensation for 4 days of data services being down doesn't really amount to much money. I guess for some people, it's the principle of the thing.

Time will tell if more suits like this are filed in other countries. Were you affected by the Blackberry outage? Do you feel like RIM did enough with the free apps and apologies? Let us know in the comments.

Josh Wolford
Josh Wolford is a writer for WebProNews. He likes beer, Japanese food, and movies that make him feel weird afterward. Mostly beer. Follow him on Twitter: @joshgwolf Instagram: @joshgwolf Google+: Joshua Wolford StumbleUpon: joshgwolf