According to PCWorld, Comcast is testing a program called “Domain Helper” that will redirect you to an advertising page if you type the wrong URL.
Today, we’re beginning to roll out something new to help high-speed Internet customers get where they want to go online even faster and easier than before. It’s called the Domain Helper service and we’re introducing it as a market trial in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Oregon, Texas, Utah, and Washington.
With the Domain Helper service we are testing now, we will instead help direct your Web browser to an easy-to-use page with suggestions and links to get you back on track. We also provide a seamless search experience on this page, which is powered by Yahoo!, so you can find relevant search information, or simply perform another search.
The program is opt-out — which means you’ll automatically be enrolled. This new “feature” isn’t exactly going over too well in the comments.
“… just started the ridiculous opt-out process.
This is not a “best practice”; It is one of the WORST practices that an ISP can become involved in. You are breaking fundamental rules that govern the architecture of the internet. Further, your attempt to spin this into a positive feature is an outright lie.”
“It is not surprising that Comcast cannot be trusted to conform to a standard, time tested protocol. Instead they have willfully chosen to damage the user experience in an effort to squeeze a few extra dollars from a service we are already paying for. To expect Comcast to be reasonable and customer focused on this issue is expecting too much. I think the only option is to complain to the FCC. It is what I am doing and I encourage others to do so as well.”
This is unwanted, unneeded, and unwelcome. You’re doing this as a market trial to get user feedback, yes? Well here’s your feedback from Utah: Stay the hell away from my browsing!
You can check out all the backlash here.
Comcast Redirects Bad URLs to Pages With Advertising [PCWorld] (Thanks, David!)
Domain Helper service: Here to help you [Comcast Voices]