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Heart Internet TOS a warning

The account published below is an exact copy from the email exchange that I had with Heart Internet when I tried to close my account. I had requested to close my account but didn’t realise that according to Heart Internet’s TOS I had to request to close the account twice. That’s right twice.

I thought that I had closed the account but found out a few months later that Heart Internet had not closed the account they had been drawing money from my credit card account for four months!

Please Note that I have commented on the exchange between Heart Internet and myself. Heart Internet would not refund the money they had taken from my credit card account.  All comments are in italics. Emails are numbered for reference.


Cancel an account

1. Hi Geoffrey,

*** Please read this ticket fully as your cancellation is NOT finished until we confirm that it has been completed ***

Thanks for contacting us. To process your cancellation, we will ask you for two responses during the process, both of which will need to be provided. We will then confirm back to you when your cancellation has been scheduled. Please note that if we do not receive both responses from you then your service will NOT be cancelled. Renewals will then continue as per our terms and conditions.

We are sorry to hear that you would like to cancel your hosting account with Heart Internet, so if there is anything we can do to help you please let us know and we will do everything we can to help you. If there's something we don't include in our services, or something you are unable to get working please let us know as we would like to try and help you resolve any problems.

In the first instance please reply to this ticket letting us know why you would like to cancel your account, this will allow us to start the cancellation process running. We will then ask you for the next response once this has been provided.

Our cancellation process does take a short while to complete, at the end of the process your account will be immediately deleted from our system and all your files, folders and data will be deleted. Email addresses will also stop working. Once deleted none of this data can be recovered. We would urge you to make comprehensive backups before proceeding.

Please also note the following from our terms and conditions:-

"20.3.1 by you giving to us at least seventy-two (72) hours advance written notice

through our support ticket system https://customer.heartinternet.co.uk/manage/ticket.cgi

As part of our cancellation process, we will respond to you through our support ticket

system and you must re-confirm your cancellation request. You must re-confirm your

cancellation request via our support ticket system or we will continue to supply the

relevant Services and your cancellation will be ineffective. You cannot cancel any of your

Services by letter, email or telephone. You will not receive any refund of the price you

have paid for the Services you have cancelled..."

This is so that we have enough time to progress the cancellation through the relevant departments at Heart Internet. However if you reply to us promptly confirming your wish to cancel, we should be able to deal with your request much faster and your cancellation will be processed in just a few minutes.

Once again we hate to see anyone leave us, we are committed to improving our products all the time and we hope that you will consider using us again.

If you are cancelling your hosting it would be our pleasure to handle your domain name renewal. You will automatically receive notification for any Domains in your Heart Internet account at your registered email address.

Best Wishes,

Robert Berry

[this email is the first in the dialogue that took place by email. That is months after I had thought I had closed my account!]


2. Robert

I am unable to reply to the ticket.as the ticket is closed.  I was surprised that I did not get an email asking me why I wanted to close my account. It was only when I found out that I have been charged for a service which I never used that I had to email the company to find out why I am being charged for an account which I had closed.  Your ticket system says "closed"

 And the reason why I have decided to close my account has already been stated in my original communication, which was by using your support system.  I think it is unreasonable to ask me to confirm my request to close the account and if not at least the company should have emailed me.

I confirm that I am entitled to a refund of the charges made against my account apart from the initial trial month which I paid for.

Geoff Edwards


3. Hi Geoff,

Thanks for your reply.

Cancellations are done through the ticketing system, not via email. You did raise this ticket on (2012-10-25 13:22:00) and my colleague Robert than replied at (2012-10-25 13:33:21) to which a response was not given. You would have been notified in your Heart account regarding a ticket reply and also by email (to email address your Heart account is registered to (Mr Geoffrey Edwards <ed@xyzweb.co.uk>). From checking the logs, you were sent an email notifying yourself of a reply to your ticket at:

2012-10-25 13:33:21 - titled - Your support ticket 1210250244: Close account

Tickets would only have automatically closed if no reply was received within 24 hours.

Best Wishes,

Darren Atwal

[the email was that line  “. . . Close account” there was no mention of the necessity to do anything]


 my response Friday to Darren ATwal's Support staff reply

4. Hi Darren Atwal

I did recieve the email you refer to, but when I logged in to my account The ticket window said  " Status closed" which I assumed meant that my account had been closed.  The workings of the machinery of Heart Internet's Support system  is not easy to understand. Which is confirmed by an Internet search taken recently).

 Furthermore, I have no copy of any agreement between the company and myself. I signed up for the Reseller Account and understood from your advertising that there is a 30 day money back guarantee.

My request via the heart Internet Support system to close the account is obviously a request that I no longer want the account. The reason that the company gives, as written in Robert Berry's reply, which I did not read at the time as it was not obvious to me that there had been a reply. I think I thought that the link in the ticket information box was to my request to close the account.

I have not made any use of the services of Heart Internet. But by taking up the opportunity of a 30 day money back guarantee I would be able to decide whether I wanted to move my business over to Heart Internet.

I think that if a reseller wants to close their account then the manner in which that is accomplished should be made clear to the customer.  The email to me should have stated clearly in CAPITALS or bold type that in order to continue to close the account the customer would need to login to their account and confirm the request to close the account.

Under the circumstances if I receive a full money back as promised I might reconsider the reseller account in future.

Geoff Edwards



5. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

There only way that we process cancellation is through the ticketing system. A ticket was opened, though the cancellation process was not completed, so the service was renewed. We had not stated that the process had been completed:

--------

*** Please read this ticket fully as your cancellation is NOT finished until we confirm that it has been completed ***

--------

We stated in our first response that we would require two responses:

-------

To process your cancellation, we will ask you for two responses during the process, both of which will need to be provided.

-------

we didn't receive the required responses here. If you'd like me to continue with the cancellation process, I can do that for you, though a refund can't be offered.

Best Wishes,

Drew Sawyer

[the emails are after I had found out that money had been deducted from my credit card account and contacted Heart Internet]


6. Hi Drew Sawyer

Your statements are incorrect. And you have ignored my claim that the terms of service included a 30 day money back guarantee.  You have also ignored my objections and sensible suggestions.

I shall take this matter further. In addition to seeking a complete refund I shall ask for damages. . It is a further cause for complaint that this matter is being dealt with by the Support team rather than customer care.  I suggest that this matter is brought to the notice of senior staff.

I confirm that I want my account closed and a refund of monies taken from my credit card account without my permission.

Geoff Edwards 19th January 2013


7. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

The service has been provided for more than 30 days, so the 30 day money back guarantee doesn't apply here. We require 72 hours notice of the cancellation to prevent automatic renewals, as these are non-refundable. We also require the two responses that were mentioned in the initial response from Robert to have the process completed. These were not received and so the service wasn't cancelled.

The automatic renewals were agreed to by yourself when you ordered our services, this is outlined in our terms and conditions that you are required to agree to before we can process an order for the service.

Best Wishes,

Drew Sawyer


8. Drew,

I requested that the account be closed within the 30 day period. 

Geoff


9. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

The cancellation process was begun at this point, though the process wasn't completed and so it wasn't cancelled during the 30 days since ordering the service. The service has now been running a few months now, so the 30 day money back guarantee no longer applies.

Best Wishes,

Drew Sawye


10. Drew,

I think that is a feeble excuse. I opened the account on the 12th Oct 2012 and requested closure on the 25th October 2012.  I have already given my opinion that Heart Internet needs to ensure that clients are informed that if they seek to close their account they need to make an additional request.

geoff


11. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

The service has been provided since 12/10/2012 and so the 30 day money back guarantee is no longer applicable. The cancellation was requested on 25/10/2012 but the process wasn't completed and so it wasn't cancelled. We instructed you on what would need to be done in our first response to your request to let you know what was needed to have the account cancelled.

Best Wishes,

Drew Sawyer

[Drew Sawyer keeps going on about their instructions to close the account only after I had found out that the account had no been cancelled. I had used none of the services, none at all. All I did was have a good look around the Heart Internet website]


12. Drew,

This comment is not true: "We instructed you on what would need to be done in our first response to your request to let you know what was needed to have the account cancelled".

I did not know that my account had not been cancelled until I saw that my credit card had been debited. There were no particular instructions in the email response to my request to cancel the account.  

In the email that acknowledged receipt of my request to close the account there is no mention of what I needed to do. In fact there is this "We will reply to your question as soon as possible" the text of the email just reprints my request to  close the account.

Geoff


13. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

the instructions were given in our first response to this ticket, we can't process cancellations via email, it must be done using the ticket system. We received a request to cancel the account in this ticket and responded by beginning the process, which gave you the requirements for cancellation and you were also notified that the cancellation process will not be complete until we confirm that it has been completed. This was not completed, so the account was not cancelled.

Drew,


14. Drew

"which gave you the requirements for cancellation and you were also notified that the cancellation process will not be complete until we confirm that it has been completed. This was not completed, so the account was not cancelled."

No I didn't follow the link in the ticket as under Status it said "closed" It would be natural for anyone to assume that the account had been closed.  

Does this company think that it is right and proper to continue to take money off a client who believed that his account had been closed?  Furthermore I did not use any of your services.

Incidentally, if I click "Close Ticket" does that mean that you or someone else will close my account?


 15. Hi Geoffrey,

Thanks for your reply,

the status on the ticket saying closed is purely a status of a ticket, it means that a ticket either hasn't received a response from either heart or the customer, or it means that you yourself have set the ticket to closed, using the close ticket button. This wouldn't close an account, the account would only be closed once the process has been completed, so I wouldn't recommend that you click that until we have confirmed that the account has been closed. The service has been provided since 12/10/2012 in full, so you have been charged for the service.

Best Wishes,

Drew Sawyer


16. Drew,

I have not made any use of the service, as I thought that my request to close my account had been processed how can Heart Internet continue to insist that I should be billed over £100 for a service that I cancelled. There is no other business Internet or otherwise that needs two requests to cancel an account.

How can you as an employee of the company think that I should pay over £100 for a service that I never used and which I believed to have cancelled?

If someone came to my house and tried to take money off me I would use physical force to defend my rights until the police arrived.  Taking money from my credit card account without my permission is in my opinion theft or fraud.

Close this account at once and confirm that you have arranged to do so. 

 Geoff Edwards 


 

17. Hi Geoff,

Thank You for your reply.

Please bear with me whilst I process the cancellation for you.

Best Wishes,

James Stephens


18. Hi Geoffrey,

I have processed this cancellation for you now and this will be removed from your account in a few hours.

 Best Wishes,

Anthony Allen

[I have been reluctant to take this issue to the small claims court due to the amount of time I have wasted on this attempt to get a British Company to respond fairly. Perhaps publishing my account of how difficult it is to cancel an account will forewarn others.  As far as I know the TOS have not been amended. (Professional Reseller Account)

Are we really supposed to fully read the TOS of companies? Even though it might seem obvious that we should it would be good practice to provide a shorter version –perhaps of headings to the full TOS eg. Procedure for cancelling a service or client account.

We communicate by email and ticketing systems are established so that support can reply to specific emails.  Heart Internet’s ticketing system is meant to reduce the cost of support and results in a lower quality.  I can email or pick up the phone 24/7 to Fasthosts and get excellent service, although I seldom need to do so. An email with a ticket number is sent first to acknowledge receipt of a request. But then nearly all companies do this now, but not Heart Internet.]

Geoff Edwards

 

404 page not found

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Website links do not work!

How often is it that website links do not work. the message received by the user is 404 Page not found. That is not my fault. Good practice is to keep the old page and add a message including a link to the new part of the website. Often I prefer to upload copies of documents rather than refer to them as they tend to disappear. This should not happen. Adding a link to another website is a fundamental requirement of Internet publishing. Unfortunately, by uploading doucments to my website I could be accused of copyright infringement.  I look forward to such accusations as the counter accusation is to suggest that public documents are being hidden.  Or, an attempt is being made to undermine a website. 

Do not blame me or my websites if links to external sites do not work. But you may query why this has happened and please let me know! No one is perfect, I can and do make mistakes with internal links as well as external links:) Most recent error: http://www.lettertothepm.co.uk/parental_choice_of_school.php Apparently I used the .htm suffix in the link rather than the .php suffix result a 404.

Microsoft blocking earlier Office files why?

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Some people will receive via email Word and other Microsoft Office documents that they are unable to open since installing Windows Service Pack 3 because the documents were created in an earlier version than Office 2003 and Office 2007.  I have already mentioned the nonsense faced by any user who has earlier versions than Word 2007 who is unable to open the docx file the answer is here docx file opener But now we have a lock on earlier files. for security reasons. Really? why can't users just right click and select their favourite antivirus program - I use AVG -to scan the file? Instead they are instructed to alter their registry:

This file is so potentially dangerous that it can't even be sent from an IT advisor using Microsoft's own Outlook 2003 as an attachment - it is removed before sending. I presume that I need to use my car to deliver this Registry Fix to a client!  I do not believe for an instant that Microsoft would utilise these tactics to force users to upgrade their copy of Office to the most recent edition. However is this really the best that they can do. Or are we really facing such a serious threat to our security that these measures are neccessary?

I repeat is this the best that Microsoft can do, or is the threat so serious that this level of expert intervention is neccessary? In my case I need to visit the customer to download the registry fix, which is necessary to countermand the block created by Service Pack Three, that I am unable to send by Microdost Outlook 2003 -which blocks the transmission.

What a joke! The fix can't be sent as a file by Microsoft's software as being too dangerous to send! But the fix is certified by Microsoft!

 

The CSS Box Model, Microsoft & the artist

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Introduction

This article is really aimed at the computer professional and web designers. The article presents the difference between the CSS Box Model, Microsoft's Box Model and the relationship of those models to those of the artist's concept of Picture. I am quite sure that the differences can also be considered by the interested layman. There is a general confusion leading to problems in creating working websites that are seen by computer users using different Internet browsers. The two principal browsers are Internet Explorer and Mozilla's Firefox, but there are others and different versions of,  for example Internet Explorer, that may "render" the web site design in different ways.

Displaying web site pages

Quite apart from the different size of display unit that computer users have there is also a related issue of the resolution of the display unit. I usually have my display units set to a lower resolution than the maximum display resolution. Text size can also be set larger or smaller. These variables make web site creation a complicated task. Very rarely is a web site "page" set to a width with no divisions of the page. Usually the web page is composed of sections, divisions (divs) or boxes which may be created with tables to layout the page or with Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) or with a combination of both. Web pages may also have divisions created by using "frames" which can be scrolled independently of other parts of the web page. Indeed web pages may use CSS tables and frames and also use active scripts to enable the user to select and buy goods and services or to send information.

The Box Model

The layout of the page is fundamentally dependent on the concept of the Box Model. Central to the model is the notion of "width" Unfortunately, the width of the "box" is confused by the existence of the official Box Model concept and that in use by Microsoft. Apparently, Microsoft was using the concept before the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) defined theirs.

I have wasted a lot of my time, and still do, coming to grips with my web pages not appearing according to my planned design layout. The diagram below includes both the W3C and Microsoft's box model and an interpretation of what the box model should be. As a professional artist I believe that both the W3C and Microsoft have got it wrong.

The argument which I feel reflects what most people would consider sensible is derived from thinking about a picture and its frame on a wall:

The box model presents "Content" on a web page. In this argument the picture is the content.

1. a picture exists in a frame (we could refer to the frame as the Border property)
2. a picture, particularly a water colour would have a mount which separates it from the frame (we could refer to this as Padding)
3. a framed picture exists on a wall (we could refer to this as the Margin property)

If I take one of my pictures to be framed. The width of the frame would be the width of the picture plus the mount and the framer would discuss the size of the mount.

My conclusion is that the Artist's Box Model reflects accurately the way in which paintings have been considered in their environment for centuries.  It's too late to change the existing Box Models. Of the existing box models I prefer the Microsoft one as I can easily absorb the "border" element into the Width concept as the border is usually narrow. On reflection it's the W3C concept that has caused business to pay out possibly billions of pounds or dollars in additional website development work. A good reference is Wikipedia's Box Model Bug but I can't see how it's a bug.

On the other hand the Box Model doesn't just apply to pictures or passages of text it applies to every element on a web page. Each word, for example, can be considered as being the content of a "box" with the following properties: padding, border and margin. From this viewpoint restricting Width to content as in the W3C box model makes a lot of sense. Well it does if one contemplates the degree of flexibility this notion provides. 

MS Office Word 2007

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Why Teach?

First some rant. I used to teach, my current status is retired. I am still allowed to teach until I'm 70. However, teachers although they have a unique DES  number which can be used to ensure that if they go off the straight and narrow can have their record of good service amended now need to subscribe to an inquisitorial panel. Several years ago the labour government introduced The General Teaching Council which every teacher must be registered with at a cost of £36 per annum. This is a supervisory quango-like organization that serves no useful purpose whatsoever.  In addition, every teacher needs to have a Police search made every three years at a cost of £32 if they are out off regular employment. Supply teachers thus have to pay the £32 every three years.

I could only work as a supply teacher as I am far too expensive to be employed otherwise. I have a higher degree and two vocational City and Guilds to level III in CAD and nearly twenty years experience in secondary education. I am a former moderator for GCE and GSCE examination boards. So do not even think that I am not a capable teacher. </rant>

It would be nice to have the occasional day or two a month in school, but I'm not paying for the privilege!

Educational Software Costs

As a teacher I always made sure that I had MS Office and other software so that I could teach IT as well as DT and also Art. The purchase of the software is not an item that can be offset for income tax purposes as the software would need to be an essential requirement for employment as a teacher. Teachers buy the software at their own expense. I have not since retirement decided to update my copy of Office 2003 to Office 2007.

The Ribbon

If I did I would need to become familiar with the changes that have been made by Microsoft. Even professional users of computers are having trouble learning the new software. The interface between the users has been altered. Whilst there are sound arguments for altering the interface there is a problem for users who are used to the familiar MS user interface. Furthermore many programs use the familiar MS user interface with their programs.

The principal change to MS Office software is the Ribbon and one can read about it and get help here: Word 2007 Cheat Sheet

My view of the changes, which I am not really familiar with, are Microsoft should provide the option for users to use the familiar user interface as well.  Of course, if that option is available to users of Office 2007 then it's is not apparent to those who have contacted me with their problems.

 

 

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