FYI ONLY >> Non-Operational (at least directly)

I Am Not A Lawyer Simpson wsimpson at
Wed Apr 14 00:35:42 UTC 1999

> From: I Am Not An Isp <patrick at>
> Naturally - they make a lot more money lying to you and then paying the
> penalty when they get caught.  Like 100% SLAs - a provider who offers a
> 100% SLA *knows* they can't actually meet their guarantee, so they budget
> in $X for payment of the penalties.  And sometimes they even make the
> process ridiculous to get your refund.
If they get caught, the penalty can be pretty high.

When you sell a service that you don't actually provide, you can be
changed with fraud and treble damages.

Under the uniform commercial code, selling a product that works half as
well as specified, you still have to refund the entire price, no half

As I understand it, after the Milan Michigan cut a few years ago, MCI
had to refund (to a major auto company) the _entire_  amount of the
contract from its beginning, as they had never provided the physically
redundant circuits specified in the contract.  No matter that they
provided _some_ service that worked up until the cut -- they didn't
provide the service specified in the contract.

And to retain the rest of the contract, MCI had to put in a redundant
fiber -- right down the center of Ann Arbor, at huge expense, including
millions resurfacing some roads that had just been resurfaced a couple
of years before, and (I've heard) paying 40 dollars per foot per year
for the easements.

NB: Too bad Merit doesn't have as good lawyers....  They were hit by the
same cut, and I'm not sure they even got a refund.

I guess the moral is, the contract is only as good as the amount of
money that you are willing to spend on lawyers.

WSimpson at
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