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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

When I joined Plusnet several months ago, I went to great lengths to ensure that the ISP I chose was going to be the right one. Plusnet advertised their premier package as being uncapped and suitable fore P2P and Newsgroup downloaders.

I even telephoned them to discuss this with their sales team. They advised me that the more expensive "Premier" package was the one I needed, as the £15 PM package throttled those protocols.

Low and behold, after signing up with Plusnet's premier package, I found that their service did indeed offer what they advertised. I'm not a particularly heavy downloader, and my peak usage has never exceeded 100GB PM... Usually being 50-75GB (sometimes as low as 20).

Six months down the line Plusnet began to mention "Traffic shaping"

Here is where my problems started.

Plusnet have so altered their TOS that any contract customer on the Premier package could very well argue that the package they were sold is now so radically different from the one they contractually entered into, as to make the contract legally void.

I rebuilt my system this weekend, and had to redownload my Newsgroup headers (No file downloads... Just the headers!) and Plusnets new, and pathetically low usage caps were exceeded. Do not let Plusnet fool you into believing that "traffic shaping" is different from capping!" After updating 20 days worth of headers (one would expect to do this at least once a month in stages) my downloads of any files were capped at 30Kb/s

For those of you who don't understand speeds... 30Kb/s is seven times slower than the usual connection speed. In other words, if you use Newsgroups, then just updating your headers will put you over the limit and make even basic Newsgroup usage unviable on Plusnets service.

Enough is enough! I signed up for an unmetered and uncapped service, (which I was explicitly told I was getting) and am now unable to viably download from my third party (and paid for) Newsgroup provider. I paid extra to get unlimited downloads from my Newsgroup provider, but even their capped download packages don't take header updates into consideration in their monthly allowances.

In short, if Plusnet were the police, they would be sued for entrapment. Their customer base has increased by 77% this year, but none of that is from providing a good service. They have advertised their packages as being uncapped and unmetered, and pulled in customers, only to change their TOS to cap and metre them once they are "onboard"

Plusnet seem to want to have their cake and eat it. They want a large customer base, but are not prepared to allow even moderate usage from those customers. In Plusnets eyes, their customers should be made up of people who are willing to pay £20 or £30 PM to let their kids surf for homework research two or three nights a week. Anybody who wants to make use of ADSL's biggest selling point (which is a whole worldful of rich and varied multimedia downloads) can go to hell or do it at capped (sorry... traffic shaped) speeds closer to dial-up than broadband.

I, for one, can get my kids to do their homework research for free in the Library. My hard earned £20+ PM will soon be heading toward another ISP, because Plusnet (or with this capping, should that be "minusnet") have lost the plot.

If you're looking for expensive dial-up internet access, the Plusnet is for you. If you want Broadband... Then you should move on, because there's nothing to see here.
39 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,877
Thanks: 1
Registered: 05-04-2007

Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

and did you not have the opportunity to quit the contract when the terms were updated at the end of august beggining of september? Also, AFAIK everything plusnet have done with premier would have been covered by the old terms.

Finally plusnet have not advertised their products as unlimited since mid 2004.
JonathanW
Grafter
Posts: 2,648
Registered: 02-10-2007

Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

With regards to your comments, you're correct, our packages aren't unlimited. They haven't been for some time, and certainly haven't been advertised as such for well over a year. You might have been informed that there were no set usage levels, as when you signed up it wasn't possible to make the figures for the SUP available.

With regards to the usenet usage level that has been introduced recently, the level of 15gb is higher than the majority of our customers use, and is why it was set at 15gb in the first place. You can continue using the service after this, but as you've seen you will see slower speeds.

The days of truly unlimited broadband are coming to an end, with more and more ISPs either introducing a Fair Usage Policy, or traffic shaping their connections. This is the way the industry is going, its just that PlusNet are leading the way, as we've done before.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

Firstly... Yes it was advertised as unmetered and uncapped. As I stated, I even telephoned customer services and they not only confirmed this orally, they explicitly advertised it on the site as being P2P and Newsgroup friendly, over there other package. NOT ONCE was I told that that protocol throttling or metered usage was in the pipeline for the near future.

If you don't consider this as a deliberate attempt at misselling a product, then your personal definitions are so diaphanous and self serving, as to make them meaningless in any real and usable way.

Secondly... You claim that 15GB Newsgroup usage is acceptable and below what most customers use? It may very well be if you take into consideration the customers who never use Newsgroups and use that figure to calculate mean usage.... And that's exactly what Plusnet do, is it?

I, like most Newsgroup users, update my headers about twice a week. I subscribe to no more than 10 or 15 groups (which is about normal) and the header updates alone amount to around 15GB per month.... So there you have it. A normal Newsgroup User is going to eat their entire usage limit just updating headers. Even paid-for third party Newsgroup providers do not take header updates into consideration when calculating usage caps, for precisely this reason.

So your assertion that 15GB (including headers) is far below most users is laughable in the extreme.

Thirdly... If you believe that unmetered and uncapped services are a thing of the past, you are deluding yourself. Many ISP's offer just that, and many more are coming online every year. Why is that? Because there is a huge market for it, that's why. Why do you think that Plusnet's Premier package proved so popular in the past, and why do you think so many who opted for it over the basic 15 quid package are starting to moan and vote with their feet?

It's simple market forces... Supply=demand. Don't try and tell me that only a few users are eating up all the supply, because it doesn't wash. Over 70% of all data traffic is either newsgroups or P2P protocols, and it's still growing. Why do you think so many people are signing up for 8+ meg connections? Is it perhaps because they want the Google homepage to load 4 or 8 times faster, or is it because they want to make use fully of broadband's best feature, fast, large file downloads? If you believe it's the former, you truly are deluding yourself

Within the next five to ten years, video-on-demand etc is going to be streamed over ISP's connections, how many customers do you think Plusnet are going to have if they keep throttling these new and innovative services? Speeds are going to increase enormously and customers are not just going to demand uncapped and unmetered services, they're going to need them.

You keep defending capping, while others increase their pipes... And we'll see who's still around in ten years, shall we!
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

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or is it because they want to make use fully of broadband's best feature, fast, large file downloads?


Interesting point and as I would like to make use of of broadbands best feature would you be so kind as to post a list of the large files that I absolutely must have and cannot live without; that I cannot get from other sources other than Usenet or P2P.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

In reality, you don't need broadband at all, if you're going to describe what it is you "cannot live without" or "must have"... All you really need, is a loaf of bread and several glasses of water every day. As Plusnet are not in the Grocery business, I didn't come to them for what I "must have"

What it is that I desire is a service that I pay for, and one which was explicitly sold to me on the basis of that desire, as expressed to plusnet sales team prior to signing up.

Alas, I feel you are alluding to copyright infringement... Which European law has absolved all responsibility from ISP's...

I'll tell you what... I wont pass comment on the porn you undoubtedly download (With over 80% of html pages being pornographic in nature, the chances that you don't download it are negligible) and you return the favour by not assuming I'm downloading the latest Star Wars movie. OK?
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

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II'll tell you what... I wont pass comment on the porn you undoubtedly download (With over 80% of html pages being pornographic in nature, the chances that you don't download it are negligible) and you return the favour by not assuming I'm downloading the latest Star Wars movie. OK?


How on earth did you read all that into 3 and a bit lines.What you or anyone else downloads is of no interest to me at all, and was merely a comment on the fact that not everyone myself in particular considers the ability to download large files as broadbands best feature....... you may consider it so but I do not. But it was interesting to note how quick you went onto the defensive with accusations.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

C'mon you don't need the brains of an Archbishop to figure out what you were alluding to... It is the stock response from people who reply to comments about usage in just about every forum on the net.

"If you're using more than a few GB a month you must be doing something wrong

Well, whoopy! If newsgroups and P2P are so evil, why don't Plusnet just disable all protocols used in filesharing? The simple answer is that if they did, they'd only have about 3 customers left in the entire country after about two weeks.... that's why.

People who use Broadband to it's full potential (P2P, Newsgroups, FTP etc) are getting sick and tired of the implications that their internet activity is anybody's business but their own... They pay for a service, they expect to receive it.

If you're happy to surf the net with one dreary html page after another with the odd 5 meg software trial download and the occasional 10 second clip of a dwarf doing unspeakable things to a goat, then fine, get dial-up... Coz that's all you really need.

If on the other hand you want to explore every facet of the wide world of online multimedia, gaming, streaming movies, webcams, FTP, P2P and Newsgroup binaries, then let's face it, you're going to use more than 10 or 15 GB in a month.

Plusnet believe they are being proactive in creating a sustainable Broadband service, but in reality, they're desperately trying to hold it back and curtail their customers ability to make full use of their very fast connection.

It's like buying a Ferrari and being told you can only drive it at 20MPH round dreary country lanes, when all you want to do is get it on a race track and burn out the sports clutch.... All the time having to listen to sanctimonious people making comments about how they only drive their old Moggy Minor to the shops and back twice a week, so why shouldn't everyone!

More and more users are demanding bigger and faster pipes and higher usage (plusnet has admitted this in this thread and others) but their answer isn't to rise to the challenge, but to penalise and reign in their customers.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

Hi leafee,

This is starting to get a bit argumentative and there are one or two iffy comments creeping in. For example the dwarf / goat comment.

These are family forums and the implications of said comment are plain.

By all means discuss your issues but keep the innuendos off the boards, please.

Thanks.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

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If on the other hand you want to explore every facet of the wide world of online multimedia, gaming, streaming movies, webcams, FTP, P2P and Newsgroup binaries, then let's face it, you're going to use more than 10 or 15 GB in a month..


No argument from me there with the exception of gaming and P2P the former does not really interest me and there is really nothing I need or want for me to use the latter at the moment: if there was I would have no problem with using it.But as I said the comments are primarily how what I consider to be the best feature of broadband differ from yours.You mentioned webcams and if I may quote something that I posted to another thread and I doublt you will find it particularly exciting or interesting........ which is about my reaction to online gaming it shows a reasonable typical day for me you will in all probability find it "yawnsville" I quote:

"Friday for example I had a video converence with an astronomer in Australia, one in Japan, 4 in North America, a look through a telescope in Arizona, and a look through another one in New Mexico....... a 6 way chat with some friends in Canada, and a lengthy discussion on Chess tactics including use of whiteboard with an opponent in Brazil. This is pretty typical of my daily usage because of world time differences there is always someone I can video conference with,They usually have to remind me to to it off when I am using voice but I usually have http://www.loudcity.net/stations/RadioFreeColorado/default.htm which I find to be a high quality online radio station playing in the background."

Although I used to do this sort of thing when I was on dial-up to me the best feature of broadband, is that unlike dial up with a postage stamp sized screen I now do it at three quarters screen at 20-24 frames a second.So I am pretty well up with multimedia and just use my data transfer different to you,I interact with people you download files...... so what? it is everyone to their own thing, and I more than likely use a bit more then 15GB a month.

It may come as a suprise to you but I do not agree entirely with the way Plusnet have done things,and I do not consider what you do with your connection to be any of my business and frankly do not care, and I do not believe I have said anything to the contrary.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

Point taken pcsni, but the implication was merely a retort (instantly denied by the poster, but obvious in the extreme) that users who use more than just a few gig a month are somehow less morally correct than those that don't.

I was pointing out the double standards of people who claim some sort moral high ground in internet propriety, and how they conveniently and often overlook the vast array of improper material available through "normal" internet activity.

Indeed, visit any Newsgroup or filesharing network and the amount of inappropriate "adult content" is (while still there) swamped by the sheer volume of normal family-suitable material. Now compare that to the statistically proven volume of adult or inappropriate content available through normal HTML surfing compared to the so called "none pron" net, and we begin to see the lie for what it is.

It is like some pron surfer being morally outraged at a filesharer for having the audacity to use the internet for something other than his particular predilection.

With over 8 out of ten search queries for HTML, being adult related, the "moral high-ground" argument just doesn't wash, and needed to be nipped in the bud before it raised its head above the hypocritical parapet.

We're not discussing content (that's nobody's business but the individual's concerned) were talking about usage limits, capping and throttling. Content doesn't enter into it, and it was entirely inappropriate for Sunhouse to attempt to divert the thread away from usage and onto content.
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

Sorry for chain posting, but this needs addressing.

I've asked for my migration details, so I can put Plusnet behind me, and this is the reply I've recieved

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before we can issue a mac code we will require the Deferred Activation - (Cancel Without Payment)
Start Date : 04/07/05 Current Year : 1 End Date : 03/07/10
Current Cancellation Charge : £58.75
please advise how this is to be paid we can then progress your mac request.

Regards,
Link:CUAremoved


How does this work then? I'm on a monthy, no ties contract. I don't have to pay a cancellation fee!

[Moderator's note by Mark (pcsni): CSA name removed as per the rules]
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,878
Registered: 04-04-2007

Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

You've had a deffered activation, so regardless of the contract type you need to pay for the activation fee.

Chris
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

No I didn't... I paid an upfront activation fee and the extra 11 quid

Any other guesses as to why Plusnet thinks they can swipe nearly 60 quid out of the back pocket of a leaving customer?
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Its official! Plusnet "unlimited" is capped at dia

That being the case I reckon that a mistake has been made.

Reply to the ticket pointing out that you have paid for the activation and let us know what they say.

Out of curiosity click "account details" - "Account Summary" from the member center on the left and post your account description.