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Wednesday
Aug172016

So long, Demon Internet!

Demon's death throes

Since 1995 my Demon Internet e-mail address has been deeply embedded in everything I’ve ever done for hobby/ amateur electronics and EPE Magazine. I coined the ‘epemag’ moniker when signing for a so-called Tenner-a-month dial-up account in an era when 14.4k modems reigned supreme, and alan@epemag.demon.co.uk was born.

Demon Internet has changed hands several times and is now owned by Vodafone. Imagine my surprise when I heard that Vodafone is ditching Demon ‘free’ email and web services – free because they accompany a core dial-up account (broadband anyway), even though email has always been part and parcel of Demon’s £10 a month package from Day One. Web services (free websites) were bundled some years later as the market continued to evolve.

Vodafone is clearing the decks of old luggage like Demon and has done a deal with UK ISP Namesco, allowing customers to continue using their demon.co.uk Email address by subscribing to their service instead.  In theory anyway. Business users have already been hit by Vodafone transferring them over to cloud-based intY [sic].

The Devil in the detail

Due to the Vodafone tie-up, Namesco claims to offer you a ‘last chance to keep your Demon.co.uk Email address’ here.

The gist is that you have to buy a Microsoft-Office Exchange or 365 Cloudy package thing instead and Demon mail will get channelled through that. Namesco offers a 30% discount for a single Office 365 user, it’s £58.68 a year. Trusting nothing to chance, the next question will be whether they discount it in Year Two onwards. This will doubtless finally force some traditional users to move their mail to the cloud, but I won’t be one of them.

There’s a bigger worry about ongoing availability though, because in Demon’s FAQ  here

http://help.demon.net/domain-hosting-transfer/#ihaveahostnamedemonc

they state you can continue using these Demon addresses "for two more years." What happens after that is anybody’s guess, but I won’t be surprised if Vodafone just hives the lot off and Demon email addresses will be lost for ever. The old girl will probably be taken around the back and put out of its misery.

The perverse thing about this is that I just got a pestering demand from Vodafone to cough up £144.00 for the next year’s service, but they had already been sent a cheque so I called Demon’s customer service to see what gives.  When I asked, they told me the migration to Namesco will be completed by September/ October 2016. I was in shock at the thought of losing my 21-year old address, and pointed out this was news to me as I’d been told nothing. The Demon rep. said it was being done in batches and they would be in touch. Meantime, I’m being hammered to cough up a year’s service only to have to reclaim a refund for ten months of unused service anyway!

Demon always were lousy for forcing customers to give 30 days’ notice before rolling them over into another year's contract, and even when they’re stopping their service anyway, they still hammer you.

Sad to say, epemag.demon.co.uk will soon be no more, I fear: time for a new email address! What a mess.

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