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'Conflict of interest'

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British broadband ISP Bulldog has refused to say if it plans to take any action an employee who was forced to apologise to readers of the much-respected broadband Web site ADSLGuide.

The employee, known as "JamesX", caused concern after posting material on the independent ADSLGuide Website that some Bulldog customers found offensive.

Yesterday, JamesX admitted he worked for Bulldog and issued a formal apology after the broadband ISP was asked to investigate by staff at ADSLGuide.

While ADSLGuide is happy for employees of ISPs to post on its site, it takes a dim view of ISP employees masquerading as members of the public "without making their affiliations clear".

Wrote "JamesX": "Since becoming an official employee of Bulldog, I now realise that it would not be appropriate for me to continue to post here as JamesX, as it may be perceived as a conflict of interest.

"Please accept my apology if my comments and actions in any way, were misleading or misunderstood."

Unfortunately for Bulldog - shortlisted for the title of "Best Consumer Broadband ISP at this year' industry awards - the apology has failed to calm some of those concerned by the online activities of "JamesX".

One reader wrote: "JamesX was rude to me and in some of his replies he was more than rude.

"He is a BD [Bulldog] employee so can ya tell us why he is allowed to speak to paying customers like that? I wanna know what you are going to do about it b4 I get on the phone to BD and demand some sort of enquiry."

No one at Bulldog was available for interview today, declining to comment on whether any action would be taken against "JamesX" and what measures have been put in place to ensure that such incidents don't happen again.

Instead, Bulldog issued the following statement: "It is company policy for Bulldog employees to disclose their name and title when officially representing Bulldog in forums.

"The comments of JamesX were made by the individual, and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Bulldog." ®

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