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Old 06-January-2008, 22:44
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Default Another AOL Nightmware - need some advice


After being in a contract with AOL since 2005, in June last year, after never being able to improve my internet connections beyond 300kbps (having been paying £30 a month for the top download rates which went from 2mb to 4mb and then to 8mb), I called AOL to cancel my account - I was out of contract. During the technical support conversation a sharp-talking irish technical support guy convinced me they could probably do something about the download speeds because they were so terrible. He convinced me to buy their recommended netgear router, which I did.

During the conversation, the technical support guy offered to reduce my £29.99 to £9.99, which was apparently a rate for their "special customers". I did agree that I didnt want to pay more than I should be, but my main concern was that I needed to resolve the speed issue otherwise I wanted to cancel. He arranged for me to try to get the issue resolved once the router arrived.

Nearly two weeks later the router did arrive, and it took me a few days to get it up and running. Then because of my job I found it difficult to do the full diagnosis. A few weeks later I managed to spend the afternoon playing with my connection, and was still getting the download rates I first had when I rang to cancel. So I called technical support. During that week I spoke to TS on 5 occassions, and in one of them I was told my line couldnt take more than 8mb, so I shouldnt have even been charged for more than the 2mb service back since 2005. I mentioned this to the cancellations department and they denied it, yet a conversation yesterday has again confirmed my line cannot support more than 2mb.

During that week, exascerbated, I called to say "thanks, we tried to sort the download problems, but you cant solve them so I'd like to shutdown the account." Only when I made that call, I was told I was now in a 18 month contract because they had lowered my monthly charge from £29.99 to £9.99. You can imagine how angry I was to find this out.

I spoke to trading standards and they advised me to write a specific letter to the cancellations department and have it delivered recorded delivery. They received the letter and I never heard a response. This was back in October last year. I then spoke to a department in the local council who were interested in the complaint to trading standards. However their concern, while interesting in that they ar elooking into AOLS very bad practices, couldnt offer me any direct support in tihs case.

With nobody to speak to at AOL beyond the cancellations department, I'm stuck in a 18 month contract and I cannot really use their service. I need to work from home and remote desktop to work, but I cannot. Cancellations just bark that I'm in an 18 month contract, and I can cancel, but they'll take out all of the months outstanding from my account.

I have never seen a contract, and I was never sent a letter to tell me I had joined a new 18 month contract. I dont do 18 month contracts ever, and annoyingly the previous initial contract was a vanilla 12 month contract. I feel legally I should have been given some proof that i was now in a new contract period - not knowing that i was in a new contract I missed the cooling off period.

Can anybody help or offer any advice? :-(

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Old 09-January-2008, 01:12
Mark unplugged
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Default Re: Another AOL Nightmware - need some advice

They are in breach of their own contract, ie not supplying you with 8meg.
Quite a few threads with 'how to cancel' if you want to search.
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Old 09-January-2008, 02:32
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Default Re: Another AOL Nightmware - need some advice

They are in breach of their own contract, ie not supplying you with 8meg.
Quite a few threads with 'how to cancel' if you want to search.
Originally Posted by Mark unplugged View Post
They will not be in breach of contract as there are no real service level agreements on consumer level broadband. The service will say "upto 8mbs" and "depending on line" etc.
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Old 11-January-2008, 02:02
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Default Re: Another AOL Nightmware - need some advice

i agree aol cover themselfs by saying up to 8mb speed. no one can guarantee that speed. also if aol suggest you can get that speed it might be in your interest to contact bt to run a diagnostic on your phone line. in regards the 18 month contract. you would of received an email saying you upgraded. its automatic that this is sent out. this would have been sent to your master screen name. with all the f.a.q. entailed. and if your can still use the internet even at the same speed then u dont have grounds for cancelation, as i above stated no one can guarantee that speed. if you live a great distance from the exchange that might also be an issue.
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