Troubled unmetered ISP RedHotAnt has accused some of its customers of abusing its service causing serious connectivity issues for other users.
The company's director Bob Garrioch says that a certain faction of its user base is being unreasonable by expecting to stay online 24 hours a day.
"If people have a real need to stay online, then they should. It's about having courtesy towards other parties. But there will always be abusers out there," says Garrioch.
RedHotAnt users have complained that often it is nearly impossible to dial in to the ISP and, while Garrioch says that RedHotAnt allocates more lines-per-user than conventional ISPs, he acknowledges that sometimes it may take up to 12 attempts to dial in.
The ISP says it will send an email to its customers asking them to respect other users by not spending unreasonable amounts of time online.
"As soon as you get a free service, some parties are going to come on board who don't disconnect. We're asking people to work with us, and trying to discourage people from staying online."
One expert thinks this may have little impact: "I don't think they [the users] will necessarily change their behaviour," says IDC analyst Mikael Arnbjerg. "The reason they have unmetered access is presumably because they need large consumption."
Arnbjerg is not surprised at RedHotAnt's predicament: "Unmetered access is in some ways an artificial construction. Somewhere along the way telco charges are still metered and that's not so fantastic for them [unmetered ISPs]."
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