ISP V21 to sue wholesale supplier

Summary:V21/Biscit sues NetServices after its customers were handed to another ISP, prompting claims they were being bullied into new contracts

...about his concerns, who said they weren't able to take action and explained that all requests to move away from ezeeDSL would be processed in bulk on 24 November.

"The lady at Ofcom was very helpful, but she asked me to please file a complaint so that they can get the MAC rules changed," said Pike.

Row over bandwidth charges
In its statement announcing its legal action against NetServices, V21 — which represents about 20 percent of NetService's business — said it has had a "commercial dispute" with its supplier for "some months", Biscit claimed that after it bought V21 in October it was presented with a bill for "burst bandwidth charges" dating back to December 2005.

V21 rejected the invoice and last week began auditing all its previous invoices with NetServices, said Biscit, which also claimed that NetServices had been withholding technical support and MACs from V21's customers since October. Following Wednesday's events, V21 is now advising its customers to demand their MAC codes from NetServices — even though NetServices claim this is impossible — and use them to reconnect to V21.

NetServices was also a supplier, along with Tiscali, of ISP Fast24, on which it recently pulled the plug. Fast24 customers have also been routed to the ezeeDSL page and urged to sign up. They were also refused MACs.

Ofcom, the telecommunications regulator, announced in August that it wanted to be able to force ISPs to issue MACs at the customer's request. And, on Tuesday, BT said it would start charging ISPs that refused their departing customers MACs, as Openreach has itself been obliged to pick up the bill in such cases.

ZDNet UK attempted to contact NetServices for comment, but was told that everyone was in meetings. Attempts to get through to the V21/Biscit offices also failed.

Topics: Networking


David Meyer is a freelance technology journalist. He fell into journalism when he realised his musical career wouldn't be paying many bills. His early journalistic career was spent in general news, working behind the scenes for BBC radio and on-air as a newsreader for independent stations. David's main focus is on communications, of both... Full Bio

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