Cox Ends Free Web Pages For Internet Service Customers

It’s understandable for a company to end a free service for customers when it’s little-used. But even if that was the case when Cox Communications decided to stop offering free personal Web hosting for its Internet service customers next month, it might have been helpful for them to give a heads up to their technical support employees. Or maybe that was just the person reader John happened to reach when he called about the transition.

I just received an email from Cox Communications that it has decided to discontinue providing Personal WebSpace for its customers effective December 6, 2011 (screen capture attached). Obviously this gives thousands of customers about a month to scramble to find new web hosting or a different ISP. I phoned their tech support line and they were unaware of the change and asked me to forward them the email.

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Personal WebSpace provides a personal home page for users regardless of where they access the internet. I am sure many nonprofit community organizations use the Personal WebSpace to organize their activities and will be adversely affected by discontinuation of the service.

In their notice, Cox states “there has been minimal use of the service” (10 MB per customer). I doubt that reflects how frequently the pages are accessed, the service they provide to the customers, how the pages benefit them and their community, or even the visibility they give Cox Communications. I can’t imagine how many internet searches lead to Cox-hosted web sites!

In June 2011 Cox increased the price of its basic service by 20 percent and its most popular TV service by 9 percent. The price of internet service was boosted by $3 per month.

Seems like another case of cutting operating costs while boosting rates — another case of paying more for less. But in this case, Cox apparently considered neither the free marketing the pages provide, nor the fact that their main competitor, Verizon, provides free webspace hosting.

Well, kind of. That depends on what kind of Web hosting you want. If you prefer or your site requires the use of FTP instead of an EZ page creator to upload pages, Verizon doesn’t provide free hosting.