May 14, 2000
9:15 AM   Subscribe

$50 dollars a year for a Web appliance and unlimited access. After three years, it's free. The only catch I can find is that if you cancel before three years, you have to pay a bazillion dollars. So who's going to make the Virginconnect into a cheap Linux box?
posted by endquote (7 comments total)
Well, there are some other catches, like these from the agreement you have to "sign" before receiving the service:

4.1 Content. You understand that anytime you access the Virginconnect Services using the Webplayer, advertising and other information will appear at various locations on the Webplayer display screen, including, but not limited to, the "frame" surrounding other content. The part of the display screen controlled by Virginconnect is the "Webplayer Interface." You agree not to tamper with or otherwise attempt to interfere with the Webplayer Interface in any way.


3. USE OF THE WEBPLAYER. You agree to actively use the Webplayer to access the Virginconnect Services for at least (10) ten hours per month. "Active use" does not include turning your Webplayer on and leaving it unattended...


5.4 Applications/Questionnaires. You agree to answer accurately, truthfully and completely all requests for information that we may send to you from time to time, whether such requests or responses are sent electronically or by any other method.


6.3 No Breach of Privacy. You agree and acknowledge that our collection and use of your personal information, as described above and in our Privacy Policy, and our operation and provision of the Virginconnect Services to you, in no way constitutes an actionable breach of any right of privacy, publicity, or other right, and you hereby waive any and all such claims, whether foreseen or unforeseen.

and so on...
posted by grumblebee at 10:29 AM on May 14, 2000

Close, but still TANSTAAFL. You must spend at least 10 hrs/mo online through their service (they will warn you if you're not surfing enough, and just turning the box on is not sufficient). If they are using a proprietary TCP/IP variant (through Prodigy), then turning it into a Linux box doesn't necessarily help you meet that criterion. They claim that they won't give out your information--and information may include where you surf--but they do say, "We will use [your information] only to serve you better by providing an online experience tailored to your information needs and to your shopping preferences". To me that translates to, "we are subsidizing the cost through electronic direct advertising that you will have no choice but to suffer through"

In their agreement, if they terminate your account for any reason, including not surfing enough, you have to return the device and pay a steep fine.

Further, although their privacy policy is pretty good, you are required waive the right of retribution if they screw up.
posted by plinth at 10:29 AM on May 14, 2000

Ha! I tied you grumblebee! Jinx! Can't talk till I say your na...opps I already did.
posted by plinth at 10:30 AM on May 14, 2000

Well, yeah. I meant besides the whole signing your life away bit.
posted by endquote at 10:50 AM on May 14, 2000

> We promise not to provide your personal information to anyone not affiliated with Virginconnect.

Oh, well, yeah; *that* narrows it the fsck down.

When *are* these people going to learn? Most of their market for this sort of thing has a geek to ask about it.

Most of us are going to say "Hell, no!".
posted by baylink at 11:13 AM on May 14, 2000

hehe. wasn't virginconnect originaly a porn site?
posted by tiaka at 11:23 AM on May 14, 2000

Does anyone really want to be at the "center of Virgin Megastore culture"?

Reminds me of those vision boxes in Orwell's 1984 - you can turn them down, but you can't ever turn them off . . .
posted by aladfar at 1:03 PM on May 14, 2000

« Older Amtrak   |   Internet VCR. Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments