Verizon dances on grave of AT&T lawsuit

Verizon wasted no time gleefully mocking AT&T after the rival carrier dropped its lawsuit challenging the legitimacy of Verizon's "There's a Map for That" ads.

Verizon wasted no time gleefully mocking AT&T after the rival carrier dropped its lawsuit challenging the legitimacy of Verizon's "There's a Map for That" ads.

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In the day since AT&T announced it was dropping the suit, Verizon spokesman Jeffrey Nelson has updated his Twitter account 15 times to reference the failed suit. Typically, Nelson would retweet a comment from another tweeter making fun of AT&T. Prominent examples include "There's An Apology For That: AT&T Dismisses Its Pointless Lawsuit Against Verizon," "Now AT&T can focus on improving their 3G network," and "AT&T to Verizon: We give up, you win the ad war."

Additionally, Nelson linked to an speech delivered by Verizon Chief Marketing Officer John Stratton detailing the company's plan to continue ridiculing AT&T throughout the holiday season. Furthermore, Stratton said that Verizon has scrapped its original holiday ad campaign in favor of producing more ads attacking AT&T.

"We tried to do some research to find out where our competitors' 3G coverage actually was, but we couldn't find it, they didn't provide it," he said. "So we went with an industry source, a third-party source who maps roaming for the industry and asked them to map our 3G coverage and map our competitors' 3G coverage… Now, we had already completed our fourth-quarter holiday work at considerable expense, but we have that stuff now sitting on a shelf."

Verizon's "There's a Map for That" ads typically show AT&T users struggling to use applications on their mobile devices while Verizon customers happily watch live streaming videos. The ads then display maps that show the total geographical reach of 3G coverage for each carrier, with Verizon's map showing a far larger area of the country covered by its 3G service.

In its lawsuit, AT&T did not dispute that the maps used by Verizon in its ads were accurate. Rather, it accused Verizon of misleading consumers by implying that AT&T has no wireless coverage in large parts of the country, when in reality parts not covered by AT&T's 3G HSPA network are still covered by its 2G EDGE network. However, in Verizon's ads the company clearly marks the maps as "AT&T 3G Coverage" and "Verizon Wireless 3G Coverage."

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Brad Reed

Network World
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