'

Campaign for Unmetered Telecommunications dissolves

CUT says that it has achieved its goal of bringing unmetered access to the United Kingdom

The Campaign for Unmetered Telecommunications (CUT) has dissolved, stating that it has achieved its goal of catalysing the creation of "sustainable unmetered telecommunications in the United Kingdom at reasonable cost".

Since the introduction of British Telecommunications' wholesale unmetered plan Friaco last year, flat-rate Internet services have become available from a number of ISPs, most notably AOL and Freeserve. Cable competitors such as Telewest have also stepped in to provide their own flat-rate services, CUT points out.

As a result, on 10 June CUT's five-member committee unanimously voted to dissolve the group. "It is time to stop when ahead," the CUT committee said in a statement on its Web site. "It would be unworthy of the campaign, the committee and its members to have it fade into the background; the Campaign was set up to effect change and change it has effected."

CUT was founded in 1998, around the time that Freeserve sparked an Internet boom in the UK with the "free" ISP business model. At the time there were no flat-rate options available, and broadband access "was just a twinkling in BT's eye", said spokesman Errol Ziya. While issues still exist around broadband and unmetered, such as pricing, CUT felt its basic aims had been achieved, Ziya said.

"We always said the measure of our success would be that we no longer needed to exist," he said.

A recent report found that because of the UK's unmetered scheme, ISP fees are lower here than in the rest of Europe or even in California.

See the Internet News Section for full coverage.

Have your say instantly, and see what others have said. Click on the TalkBack button and go to the Telecoms forum.

Let the editors know what you think in the Mailroom. And read other letters.