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Welcome to Broadband 4Britain - the UK's Broadband pressure group and information centre - keeping you up to date with developements on the British Broadband situation.

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I've just received your email update. You suggested emailing you my discontent with ADSL. Well, here goes.

I live on a new housing estate. My house was buillt 3 1/2 years ago. All of the telephone lines on our estate were installed by British Telecom. I know - I've spoken to the guy who actually laid the lines. I've also spoken to the BT engineer who was working on the road, who confirmed that the entire estate has been fitted with copper BT lines.

I applied for ADSL the week it first became available. My postcode passed the test. I'm in an ADSL enabled area, and I'm only a few hundred metres from the local exchange. Basically, I'm in prime ADSL-enabled area. Yes, that 40% of the country that can actually get ADSL.

There's one problem. I can't get ADSL. Why? BT Openworld (and whoever in BT do the ADSL for thirdparties) claim that I have a fibre-optical cable. Very nice - fibre-optics - capable of gigabit ethernet. Not in Britain.

I wasn't going to stand for BT's answer though - so I called Openworld to moan. They told me to call BT Telephone. So I did. They transferred me to Openworld. This continued for two hours - so I gave up and tried again the next day. The next day, I was transferred around BT for about 3 1/2hrs - I managed to speak to everyone there except the person who I needed to speak to. So I gave up and tried again. Third time lucky, right? Not with BT - this time I managed to talk to someone who didn't sound like a braindead moron. That was until he diverted me to "nothingness" (the "hung up" tone).

That's when I gave up totally. I'd wasted about 15hrs chasing BT around and trying to get ADSL installed - so I cut my losses left it.

Recently the ADSL price dropped. So I thought - what the hell, I'm going to have another go. So I ordered Pipex's ADSL product. They managed to send me all the bits and bobs to get me connected. All was going swimmingly. However, after a week, I'd still not had a connection date. So I chased it up - apparently BT had a problem, so they couldn't do the line-test. They'd have to re-submit me - but I'd be put through on priority because of my long wait. Another week passed. Then another. So I chased again. You've guessed it - line test failed - fibre-optical line. Very good BT - not only have you come back with the same inane excuse - but you've not actually come back - you've managed to keep my line-failure a nice little secret, kept me waiting around like a moron whilst you had your fun.

Anyhow - I was not pissed. VERY pissed. So I called BT telephone company - and after a few hours of being diverted to nothingness I managed to get through to a very nice young lady. This lass said she'd get me an engineer out to install me a copper line! Excellent! Result! Or maybe not. The engineer would call me back that afternoon to arrange a time to get everything sorted. Guess what? He/she didn't call. I left it until the end of the week, still no call, so I chased it. The engineer would call me back immediatly. No call. Wait another week. Still no call. So chase it again - apparently they sent me a letter. Funny, as I've not received a "letter". Well, I'vre received another phone bill - for my two lines and "Anytime" internet. The 2nd line being for internet-only. The 2nd line costing 30 a month (15 rental & 15 Openworld Anytime) for an internet service which dribbles along at 56k/sec and has a two hour cutoff - oh, and an internet service I'd have cancelled by BT if I actually used it (apparently if you actually use these services, they're obviously not the service for you - for always-on internet you can buy ADSL from BT, only 30 a month too, and it's fast).

Zoom to today. I've chased BT again. The engineer's going to call me back immediatly. Somehow I don't trust this "engineer"..

The worst aspect to all of this is that we're stuck with BT. BT own the telephone line - so we're stuck with their line rental. I can't show my disgust with BT's incrediably ignorant and abbysmal service - because if I did, I wouldn't be able to call anyone or access the internet.

I'm not the only person experiencing these problems, am I?


Ps: For the record, my girlfriend, who lives in Holland, has been connected
to the internet at 2mb/sec for 3 years now. She has a fibre-optical line.

Please take a moment to sign the online petition, the results of which along with the questionnaire will be presented to parliament. We also urge you to contact your MP, and have your say on the B4B message board.

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Have your say and share your experiences in the B4B discussion forum.