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The answer differs from case to case.

Subscriber protection

In certain cases the legislator wished to protect all parties having concluded a contract with an operator: in that case he used the term "subscriber". This is for instance the case for the obligatory mentions in a telecoms contract.

In other cases he merely wished to protect those parties having a considerably weaker position than the operator.

Consumer protection

At other times the legislator wished mainly to protect or inform the consumers. These are the persons asking or using a telecommunications service merely for private ends.The tariff simulator for instance deals with the tariff plans the operators sell to consumers.

Protection of consumers ànd self-employed and small companies

Sometimes the legislator wishes to protect the self-employed and small companies in addition to the consumers.  

Often it is a matter of how many numbers to be granted.  For instance, to enjoy the limitation of cancellation fees after six months, the subscriber is only allowed 5 calling numbers maximum.

Large companies (multinationals, hospitals, etc.) are not concerned by these protection measures. The ltd of a bakery or a butcher around the corner, having a contract with two telephone lists with corresponding numbers, is.

This distinction between small self-employed and small companies and large companies also applies in the case of Internet contracts (although subscribers are not allocated a calling number or numbers in that case).

In other cases it matters whether the small business user subscribed to a tariff plan for consumers. The baker or butcher around the corner who uses his private tariff plan for his business (as well) may for instance use Easy Switch to change bundles or fixed line services. 

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