[Wolves] Demon (666) still Evil

Andy Wootton andy.wootton at wyrley.demon.co.uk
Sat Jan 3 23:35:06 UTC 2009

When my son started university in 2005 I suggested that he used Demon 
since I'd been quite happy with their service. He lived in a university 
residence with BT's InContact Plus which only allows in-coming calls. 
Demon said that BT had told them this service was technically 
incompatible with ADSL. A bit of research showed that this was not true. 
I argued the case for several months until I pointed out that Tiscali 
had a service running to another flat in the same block. They agreed to 
try it and of course it worked perfectly. At the end of the academic 
year he moved out of the house and we asked Demon to stop the service. 
When he rented a new house we requested the InContact Plus service from 
BT since we now knew that it worked and asked Demon to reconnect their 
service so that he could meet the remaining months of his contractual 
obligation. Demon are still chasing my son for £112 and have appointed 
debt collectors who threatened to take him to court and damage his 
credit rating because they failed to supply this service. He has wisely 
left the country :-)

I wrote a long, careful explanation of the events and they replied 
saying "...ADSL not compatible with...Minimum Period of Service...We 
consider this balance as due for payment". If anyone knows a monkey with 
a typewriter who is seeking employment the prospects look good at Demon .

Today, I sent this reply:

"Thank you for your letter of 20/12/08 which arrived today. 
Unfortunately it contained some factual inaccuracies. Demon told us to 
talk to BT and BT only told me about the InContact Plus service. I’ve 
never heard of Ocbex and a search on Google only gives references in 
Russian literature so I don’t believe that such a service exists.

May I refer you back to my last letter. My son had InContact Plus at his 
first house too. It worked perfectly with Broadband, once you connected 
it up, several months late! BT said it was not compatible on that 
occasion too. At the first house Demon eventually listened to me and 
proved that BT were lying. This is precisely the reason that I am so 
frustrated; you wouldn’t use the benefit your own experience from a year 
earlier. Please look back at your own records.

BT have made a commercial decision that they do not want customers to 
use these services together because it reduces their profits but there 
are no technical reasons that they are incompatible. Demon could have 
connected the service as the year before but chose to support BT in 
their monopolistic practices instead and cancelled the service and hence 
the contract without any technical justification. My son only looked for 
other suppliers after Demon cancelled the contract. The balance is NOT 
due for payment.

As soon as I have printed this letter I will copy the contents, without 
your name, to all the members of a local computer user group. There are 
regularly requests there for advice on the best ISPs. I think they need 
to know how carefully Demon listens to its customers."

In short, not with a very long barge pole.

I've discovered today that BT have withdrawn the InContact Plus service 
and replaced it by one that is only available to those receiving 
benefits - not students who are being loaned money that they will have 
to pay back (now at significant interest rates.) Maybe if Ofcom didn't 
spend its time listening to Russel Brand it would have time to do 
something about the UK's continuing telecomms monopoly.

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