Posted in Technology, Travel

How to cancel the Orange France Internet connection

If you have an Internet connection (DSL or Fiber) from Orange France and you need to cancel it because you are moving out of France for professional reasons (job transfer or finished school), you must send Orange/France Telecom a letter via registered mail (in France this is called “Lettre Recommendée avec avis de réception” (LRAR)).

In French cancelling your Internet connection is called résiliation d’un abonnement internet. You can also do a Google search for these terms to find more information, if you are curious.

However, I will try to make it easy for you and provide the steps on how to accomplish this. You can also call 3900 (if you are in France) to get details, but they will speak very rapidly to you in French.

Here are the steps you need to take to cancel an Orange Fiber or DSL connection. This worked for me.

STEP 1: Send a letter of cancellation and attach a letter from your employer or school stating that you are moving abroad. If you signed up for Internet service more than a year before your departure, you don’t need to provide a “professional” reason for cancelling. You can just cancel. So you can omit attaching the letter from your employer.

Below is a form letter for the cancellation of an Orange Internet connection for professional reasons. I took this from a French website that provides form letters for all kinds of contract cancellations (phone, electricity, etc.).

* * * * *

[Your name]
[Address in France]

France Telecom
La Fibre
Section 40
TSA 90008 59878
Lille Cedex 9

[City you reside in, date of this letter ]

Madame, Monsieur,

Par la présente, je vous demande de bien vouloir résilier mon contrat d’abonnement Internet Livebox Zen Fibre (No. compte internet __________; No. de ligne Livebox _______); No. client ________). En effet, je souhaite mettre un terme à mon engagement dès le [date on which you want your Internet connection to be cancelled] pour des raisons professionelles. Je quitte la France pour aller à l’étranger.

Ci-joint une lettre de mon entreprise.

Vous remerciant par avance de bien de vouloir m’adresser une confirmation écrite m’indiquant la date effective de résiliation (enter the date of cancellation) ainsi que le montant restant dû, je vous prie de croire, Madame, Monsieur, en l’assurance de ma considération distinguée.

Cordialement,

[Your name and signature]

* * * * *

Step 2: Go to the Post Office and send this to Orange/France Telecom via LRAR.

Step 3: Wait for confirmation from Orange France. This is the tricky part. Although you are required to send them the cancellation via snail mail, they don’t have to send you confirmation of the cancellation via snail mail. They get to send it to you via email! So make sure you check your Orange email within 7 days (you can go online to your customer page on Orange.fr and look in your inbox. Orange assigns its customers, upon signing up for Internet service, an email address that usually goes like this — lastname.firstname@orange.fr).

Step 4: Take your Orange router, TV decoder (and if it was provided to you, LivePlug and optical fiber connection box) to an Orange store in order to get your deposit back. Orange will remit your deposit to your French bank account so don’t close it until you get the money back. Ask your French bank how you can close your account from abroad (this involves sending a fax — email is NOT enough).

Posted in Technology

Facebook is now a spam machine

Facebook has changed its policy regarding how you can filter who sends you messages. Facebook is going to make money off people who want to spam you.

If people pay Facebook to send you spam, Facebook will route it to your inbox.

Here’s a quote from Facebook’s policies regarding messages:

“Whichever filter you choose, you may sometimes get messages in your inbox from people you’re not connected to. . . . Additionally, someone you’re not connected to on Facebook may pay to ensure their message is routed to your inbox instead of your Other folder.

If I start getting a lot of spam, I will simply leave Facebook. My friends know how to reach me via email.

Posted in Technology, Travel

WiFi news: Starbucks, zombie cafes, free WiFi in Asia and more

Lots of WiFi related news, including how technology and culture have turned cafes into Zombie Cafes, the unpleasantness of Starbucks, the delights of free WiFi in Bali:

A reflection on Starbucks in the US: lack of cafe culture and the role of WiFi

Travels with an iPod Touch: Free WiFi experience in Asia

Posted in Current events, Technology

Do PR people need to take a basic English writing course or are they just dishonest?

I have had it up to here with misleading press releases. I received a press release that read: “XYZ Wireless, one of the nation’s largest wireless broadband operators, has just launched service in  . . . ”

What do you conclude when you read the line “one of the nation’s largest wireless broadband operators”?

When I read that, I conclude that they have a large customer base. But since I have never heard of XYZ Wireless, I decided to ask them what they mean by “one of the largest”. It turns out they mean they cover an area of several thousand square miles, one of the largest areas of coverage for the kind of wireless service they offer.

Think about that for a minute. You could cover large swathes of the permafrost region and call yourself one of the largest wireless broadband operators in the world. But the people who write these breathless press releases know that if you say “one of the largest wireless operators in the world”, people will think you have one of the largest customer bases, which may not be true.

If they want to be accurate, they should write: “XYZ Wireless, a wireless broadband operator with one of the largest coverage areas in the nation . . .”

Unfortunately, the vast majority of press releases are written this way. Some are outright lies. They hope that the lazy press will simply copy their press releases. I don’t think I have to tell an adult who (I assume) is a native English speaker how to write a basic sentence in the English language.

So what is the problem with people who write these press releases? Do they need a remedial English writing course? Or are they (and their clients) just a bunch of liars?

Posted in Technology

Is your ISP throttling your broadband connection?

Find out if your ISP is blocking or degrading P2P (Bittorrent) traffic with a simple tool called Glasnost and also find out your true broadband connection speed:

http://www.muniwireless.com/2009/01/28/find-out-if-your-isp-is-a-bad-isp-with-glasnost/