How Not to Shutdown an ISP

Let's say you are AT&T, and you aren't making any money on your worldnet ISP business. You decide to shut it down, stop providing a personal web page server, and send the email business to yahoo if you can sucker the old customers into paying $15.95 a month just to keep their old email address (while providing no substitute for web pages).

Obviously the first thing you'd do is start sending apocalyptic sounding email to your existing customer from yahoo servers. This will clearly assure your customers that the mail is really from worldnet and isn't just phishing spam from someone trying to fake you into providing your email password. (After all, no spam ever originates from yahoo servers).

The next thing you'd want to do is be very very careful to keep all the old worldnet member services web pages free of any information about the shutdown. This will add to the impression that the apocalyptic mail is obviously official since anyone who checks the web site won't find any confirmation of it.

This has been a flawless plan so far, but finally you make one mistake. You send out an actual physical letter describing the impending shutdown of worldnet. It would have been more more in keeping with the plan to just cut off the service suddenly. Fortunately, it isn't a big mistake, because you do wait till there are only a couple of weeks left before sending out the letters.

Once the cat is out of the bag with the letters, you finally modify the old worldnet web site to mention something about the shutdown as well.

Anyway, my web page which was once at:

is now at:

(No doubt the clock is now ticking at comcast...)

Now all I have to do is fix the 47,321,622 email subscriptions and logins I have...

Grrr... I've switched to gmail, but now I find gmail has this annoying habit of discarding the copy of the mail that mailing lists send back to me, so I can never tell when the round trip was completed and the mail actually made it to the list.

Only one thing to do: Sign up for a second gmail account, and use the first account to post to the list, but tell the list to never send me any mail, then use the 2nd account to read the list, so I'll get copies of the mail I sent from the 1st account :-).

Page last modified Fri Mar 19 21:24:27 2010