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306 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 1590657 12-Jul-2016 22:59
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Haha was thinking about gett8ng UI connected onto a second ont port at home then hammer it till I got disconnected .. it's been a while Ben miss hosting my colos with you :)

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  # 1590660 12-Jul-2016 23:04
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Cbfd: Haha was thinking about gett8ng UI connected onto a second ont port at home then hammer it till I got disconnected .. it's been a while Ben miss hosting my colos with you :)


hey, been long time, hope the boxes are still going?


Im good, just stick with your current ISP please :)


3867 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 1590662 12-Jul-2016 23:17
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Good on you for fronting, but my understanding is if you are going to advertise unlimited,you really need to genuinely be supplying it given the 2014 changes to the FTA and the ComCom's published opinions on first impressions.


Maybe @DejaDeadNZ can chime in, I don't see eye to eye with him much but he is a lawyer :-)







Information wants to be free. The Net interprets censorship as damage and routes around it.

Mr Snotty
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Uber Geek

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  # 1590698 12-Jul-2016 23:49
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Right been following this thread with some popcorn. I have a few things not covered.


1) In your slogan it states "No Limits" - having at-least 2 people disconnected due to "excess use" implies there is in-fact a limit which can be considered as a breach of the fair trading act. If this is the case then putting a "soft limit" of lets say 2TiB might be a good idea saying if users exceed this data they may be subject of disconnection after xx warnings.


2) Some users may well not know they're subject to excess usage - they may be going about their daily use as normal browsing the intertubes, checking their mails and doing online banking however they may also have Malware or their router may be acting as an open DNS resolver (with a public IP). Disconnecting a customer based on excess use without checking these things first is a little harsh don't you think? What if @nitrotech wasn't aware he was in-fact an open DNS resolver? What if one of the devices on his network was subject to a malware infection?


I honestly believe you're the first ISP to disconnect customers due to excess usage. Sure, it is going to happen but disconnection and making it another ISP's problem is not the solution. The solution would be gathering more information and if it is blatant network abuse then give them a warning whilst warning them if they continue then exit them.


Now, I fully acknowledge that @CloudScaleLtd and myself have not had the best relationship in the past (and I really hope that I could just put that behind me) but to be perfectly honest bandwidth is cheap and I do know that the HD Empire does have a little more bandwidth than they need. With myself, being on a 200/200 plan I understand it is never a good idea to do bulk traffic during peak time hence why if I have to I'll do it at night. That does indeed make my bandwidth use quite high (highest month was 6TiB with doing a large project) however 99% of that traffic was done during off-peak time and I am always quite careful to ensure my use does not hinder other users on my ISP's network. I have never once got a phonecall, email, tweet etc to tell me to calm down.


I think if you were to kick customers due to excess use make it clear on your site about the fair use policies regarding this, notify all customers of the new imposed policies (if these change) and since you're a no-contract ISP this may well cause some high users to leave on their own accord. I can understand how this came as a huge surprise from the people who were given 7 days and to be perfectly honest doesn't reflect well on your brand image considering your name or companies + either Geekzone or gpforums in Google brings up quite a few negative topics (including this one). If I was to get this kind of call from my ISP (BigPipe) I would be quite surprised as they too quote themselves as having no limits at all. One bad experience (like this one) can bring up quite a bit of unwanted publicity on a brand.


Otherwise the thing I can see coming from this is my broadband bill paid in full once again from referrals ;)

681 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 1590731 13-Jul-2016 00:13
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I'm quite tired of seeing this myself, I cannot see how this is not blatant false advertising.


The definition of "Unlimited" is "not limited or restricted in terms of number, quantity, or extent."


A limit for high users does not fit this definition. Unlimited is, in English exactly that "not limited"




100GB's is a limit. 2TB's is a limit, 20TB is a limit. These are NOT Unlimited.


There is no room in this products definition for the word unlimited, as it is clearly, by the companies own admission not. They need to find a new term.




It seems stupidly obvious to me....


WHY NOT JUST STATE A LIMIT? Why not just say we're giving you a plan with 2TB's of data? That's your limit. At least people would know where they stood. Why persist on misleading customers?




It's like you are at an all you can eat restaurant and when you go back for a second helping you're told that you're taking more than others so they're going to cut you off. Just like its not unlimited above its not "all you can eat", by definition!






I can understand having terms to stop some one abusing the connection (for instance being a open relay for spam), but this is just silly. 

1561 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1590749 13-Jul-2016 00:19
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I work in risk and compliance. Obviously legal risk is a big part of a deal, on which we (many of us are lawyers but our work is wider than just the law) work with the legal team and/or external providers. With that out of the way, yes, I am reasonably familiar with the Fair Trading Act and the relevant section here is the one that proscribes against misleading and deceptive conduct in trade. The Commerce Commission's published guideline on use of fine prints/disclaimers and the existence of and application of 'fair use' policies in broadband service advertisements are also relevant. I'll excerpt the relevant bits from the guideline.




On fine prints: With all advertising, the first or overall impression made on the potential customer is very important. People reading, seeing or hearing an advertisement can react to and make decisions based on that first or overall impression. If the overall impression given by an advertisement is misleading, it will breach the Fair Trading Act no matter what information is provided in fine print. If there are important limiting or qualifying conditions on a service, these should be shown in a bold, clear and compelling way in the advertisement which cannot be easily overlooked.




 On Fair Use Policies: Broadband suppliers sometimes apply a “Fair Use” policy. Under these policies customers may have their service restricted if they use it excessively. Fair Use policies may mean that customers cannot use the service in the way that they want to. It is important that both the applicability and the terms of the policy are prominently displayed. The application of these policies should not be hidden in small print or in the general terms and conditions of service.




Now Commerce Commission guidelines are not definitive principles of law. These are only the Commission's statement on how they intend to interpret the law and/or enforce it -- if a business doesn't like it, things will have to go to court and the courts have the final say. Without turning this into a long, boring treatise, in my view this company's advertising falls well short of best practice and is quite arguably in breach of the Fair Trading Act.


For example, on their plans page ( all the plans are advertised with a headline of "Unlimited [connection type]" and for the VDSL and UFB plans, there's the usual hagiographic marketing gibberish about how it's really great for streaming lots of stuff and/or for "any application" etc. And then the words "unlimited data" are bullet-pointed. They don't even do what most other providers do and put something like an asterix or footnote next to unlimited and say "Fair Use Policy applies". The usual approach of doing this doesn't necessarily mean you are complying with the FTA either. I would argue that advertising unlimited data and then saying "Fair Use Policy applies" in tiny print below or by way of a spoken line at the end of a TV ad isn't good enough both legally and in terms of managing reputational risk -- but my point here is that this company's approach is well short of even the quite questionable norms.


They, of course, have their fair use policy but it is not a separate policy by itself but rather clause 8 buried within their general T & Cs. Clause 8 is not specially bolded or marked out in any way and the T & C is not written in such a way that clearly and deliberately draws attention to clause 8. From a risk management standpoint, colour me completely unimpressed. This especially when:






Great spotting, we are in the middle of a website/company revamp, the current website is our original content since launch some time ago, this will be updated and or replaced when the new one gets released soon.




See above post, house keeping not perfect, im first to admit that.




Im reviewing/renewing the company at present, getting it ready for it's next phase.




This is about as lame an excuse as one can get for at best very poor commercial practice and, at worst, a blatant breach of the law. Now I am not a member of the NZ judiciary so I can't say you definitely have breached the law but you are skating on really thin ice IMO. Any commercial enterprise should have a risk management framework that continuously ensures that all marketing and advertising material both complies with the minimum standards required by the law and, preferably, upholds high standards of corporate behaviour. The fact that you are trying to explain this away by saying that this is old web content and that your housekeeping isn't perfect is not very reassuring at all.


I personally would not use this company's services or recommend anyone else to use it, just based on what I am seeing in this thread and on their web pages.





1561 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1590759 13-Jul-2016 01:07
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What I don't understand is that on  the FAQ section states:


"So there's no data cap on any of the plans?"


"Nope. You're free to use as much data as you like. We don't even track your usage".


If that part about not tracking usage is true, how can they even know that the OP has exceeded his fair use? They - by their own admission - cannot/do not measure it... In the same answer it goes on to say "If this is happening on a regular basis then we will get in touch with you and discuss changing your use or moving to a more appropriate plan" - This is clearly not the experience the OP has had, unless we are not getting the full story.


The good news is that there seems to be no 30 day notice period in this case (or there shouldn't be as you are leaving at THEIR request), so pick a new provider, request a transition to them, and enjoy a 'more unlimited experience' with a company which ironically won't have the word 'Unlimited' in their name.




Things are just getting better and better for Unlimited Internet here. Now, by now everyone would have seen the post by them in response to yours in which it was claimed that the bits of their web page that you excerpted was old news etc and not intentionally misleading. Yet in the other thread (link above), on page one Sideface quoted their fair use policy which was apparently in existence as at September 2014. Now you can't have a fair use policy without monitoring/tracking users' usage. So, Unlimited Internet, did you somehow drop your fair use policy after apparently implementing one on or about September 2014? Because this is about the only scenario under which your explanation to Wheelbarrow01 can make sense.






2157 posts

Uber Geek

  # 1590761 13-Jul-2016 01:57
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Well done for confirming that this ISP was the joke we thought it was.

4658 posts

Uber Geek

  # 1590778 13-Jul-2016 07:25
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This somehow reminds me of (anyone remember them)? It sounds eerily familiar.

1256 posts

Uber Geek

  # 1590800 13-Jul-2016 08:31
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These are just my opinions, but:



  1. Most households with teenagers would have no idea what their usage is if they don't have some kind of monitor. I accept that most ISPs have a fair use policy, but to state they don't monitor traffic and not provide you with a means to do so yourself means you can't know what your usage is. To kick someone off for excessive usage is therefore unreasonable.

  2. I guess it happens "all the time" but this is the first I have heard of an ISP giving a customer notice that they were terminating service. To do so with no warning (e.g. "your usage has been very high over the last month(s), you need to reduce it to X" is, again, unreasonable.

  3. The customer may (or may not) have some lengthy document written in legalese filed away somewhere that details all sorts of terms and conditions but the messages displayed on a company's website must be consistent with their current business practice. Failure to update this content is not unreasonable, it's negligent.


Sometimes people make me feel like a luddite for having my broadband with Spark instead of one of the hip brands all the cool kids are using, but at least I know what I'm getting when I pay for unlimited broadband.


Spark websiteFair Use


We don't run a Fair Use Policy on any of our Ultra VDSL™ Broadband plans.


The same message appears for UFB offerings.

975 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 1590836 13-Jul-2016 09:51
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Whilst I understand why they would have a fair use policy, I think this is a bit rough and was executed poorly. If you can't check your usage then how are you to know how much actually got used? If they contact you saying hey your a bit heavy on the usage side of things we are gonna have to either slow you down because this could be having a negative impact on other users then I think that's fair. 7 days is a bit rough. Sometimes it can take a wile to get a technician to move your connection.

It's quite funny I have been told so many times that the cost of providing a good unlimited service are actually quite a bit more than people might think. Transit prices have slowly been coming down but wholesale network access is much the same.

1561 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1590838 13-Jul-2016 10:04
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I personally would not use this company's services or recommend anyone else to use it, just based on what I am seeing in this thread and on their web pages.



Quoting myself is a bit weird but let me make one further point. There is a link to an "offer summary" page for each of their broadband plans at the bottom of all the blurbs. In the offer summary page, the fair use policy is mentioned. But here's the problem: you only see this if you click on the link and it is buried below: a headline and a bullet point that mentions unlimited internet (and other bulletpoints that serve as highlights and summaries of their offer), the price, and a link to sign up. Next to the price, there is an asterisk where people might ordinarily expect it to be a note to say "Fair use policy applies". But the asterisk tells you that the price includes GST blah blah.


If this attempt to hide the fair use policy isn't deliberate (and I offer no views here), this company's web pages are nonetheless extraordinarily clumsy and highly unprofessional. 



22487 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1590903 13-Jul-2016 11:40
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Hey Guys,


Ben @ HD here, the owner of (a few things mentioned) posting from this account as it's the only one I have acquired during an acquisition with rep to post.


So I have read all this, cool, does anyone ever ask us? Keen to address the community concerns...


Re the OP post = yes quite a few TB's (over 2.5 on our accounting for many months in a row), cleaning up the network, instructions to a staff member from our network guys (run via me) I am sorry it's affected you personally, this is not personal against you, a few are also in your boat, I know you will be okay with another provider and 7 days should be okay as your connected (intact), if you get any issues Ill personally handle or credit you, just PM this account, ill keep an eye on it.


Re VPS company, yes cleaning up the network of VPN traffic (against AUP), using over 40TB per month for months and not paying BW = paying only our colo fee that includes unmetered traffic (super cheap as normal)...


Re kingjj = no conspiracy, no business issues, the only changes Re Zeon is iv been moving my share holdings around due to a separation :(


I do surf geekzone, and sometimes have some of my brands advertising on this site directly such as HH, UI, HD, CS etc, so keen to keep in good stead with y'all, iv been around a long time, coming up 10 years next month :)





So change your damn name then since you are not offering what you call the company.


21263 posts

Uber Geek

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  # 1590904 13-Jul-2016 11:41
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Is it possible to lodge a complaint with the ComCom if you aren't personally affected? Seems a perfect "test" case.




edit: nm decided to find out by trying.

1561 posts

Uber Geek


  # 1590907 13-Jul-2016 11:45
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Yes, you can complain to the Commission even if you aren't personally affected.





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