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Battle on the @Home front

The collapse of Excite@Home created headaches for nearly 1 million customers who were switched to AT&T Broadband, causing many to ask whether Net access should be regulated like electricity, water and phone service.


Should Net access be regulated like electricity, water and phone service?

By CNET News.com Staff
December 26, 2001, 8:00 a.m. PT

The collapse of Excite@Home created a range of headaches for nearly 1 million customers who were switched to AT&T Broadband. In addition to the see complete coverage: Trouble at home temporary loss of Net access, many customers are still trying to retrieve old e-mail messages. Others are asking why the company has not sent out change-of-address notices.

After all, if a public-storage company goes out of business, customers can still claim their belongings. And the U.S. Postal Service readily handles change-of-address requests. As more commerce and communication is done over the Net, is it time for government oversight?

Oversight needed? Mishaps fuel regulation debate
The consolidation of telecom powers and high-profile failures that hurt customers have many calling for regulation, but others warn that the heavy hand of government would stifle the industry.

AT&T's role: Throwing good money after bad
Victim or villain? That is the key question when it comes to determining AT&T's role in the Excite@Home collapse.

Your turn: @Home subscribers sound off
The Excite@Home debacle has angered employees, shareholders and millions of subscribers.

Consumers face narrow broadband market
A curious paradox is at work in the high-speed Internet world: High-flying companies such as Excite@Home are collapsing in droves, but demand remains for their services.

Oversight needed? Mishaps fuel regulation debateNext page

The crumbling of Excite@Home has left many customers looking for answers to a grab bag of questions.

Where can I get information from Excite@Home or the major cable companies?
Excite@Home press releases can be found here. AT&T Broadband has published a FAQ about various transition issues. Cox has information online, while Comcast has a toll-free customer information hotline (1-888-433-6963) and information online. Customer service phone numbers and e-mail addresses for @Home local service providers can also be found here.

What is the status of service for Excite@Home customers?
Most of the 850,000 Excite@Home AT&T customers who had their service cut off have been switched to AT&T's network in recent weeks, but there are pockets where service is still not available. Those customers are being offered dial-up service and credit for the days they are without broadband access.

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