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FilePlanet of the apes

May 6th, 2002 · No Comments · Uncategorized

While trying to get the latest patch for Alien Vs. Predator 2, I had my first encounter with FilePlanet. Theses folk run a bunch of download servers for mostly game related files. Their gimmick is that they offer only a limited amount of bandwidth for free. When that bandwidth is maxed out, you are put in a download queue. At peak times, these queues can get very long.

It was just such a peak time when I was trying to get the patch for AVP2. Since a friend and I wanted to try out multiplayer, we did have a bit of a time constraint. Losing an hour of game time didn’t seem very appealing.

FilePlanet offers no wait downloads if you subscribe to their “personal server” service, at $7 a month. They made this abundantly clear as I was waiting in the queue for my patch. Wanting immediate gratification, I decided $7 was worth not waiting an hour, so I signed up.

During the sign up process, I had the choice of paying $7 for 1 month, renewing monthly (of course,) or $7 for 4 months if I switch to Sprint long distance (also renewing monthly).

I personally wouldn’t sign up for Sprint long distance even if I were offered $500 cash, so I wasn’t interested. It struck me as rather sleazy to make the offer in the first place, since a good chunk of FilePlanet users are kids, and asking kids if they want to slam their parents with a new crappy long distance service so they can get a good deal on FilePlanet is pretty low.

I made a mental note to cancel my FilePlanet before the next month rolls around, unless I found myself using it.

When I signed up for FilePlanet, I was sure to unclick every “Please spam me” box they threw at me. The folks at FilePlanet realized that I when I said “I don’t want spam” interpreted that as “I don’t want spam, except from FilePlanet, who’s offers I would be very interested in, even when I declined them the first time.” This email graced my in-box

Thanks for recently subscribing to FilePlanet Personal Server! We noticed that many people started off by taking us up on the Sprint special offer for 4 months for the price of 1, but we also noticed that some didn’t complete

the sign-up process for Sprint 7ยข AnyTime(sm View definition in a new window).

If you DID NOT, for whatever reason, complete the Sprint special offer to receive 4 months of Personal Server for the price one, we’d like to extend a second chance. Please click on the link below and fill out the Sprint form completely. We’ll let you know when you have been approved. Otherwise, your Personal Server subscription will be renewed its second month.

To improve our offers and serve you better, we’d love to hear your feedback about the signup process.

Did you not understand the Sprint offer before trying to sign up for it?

Was there too much information to fill in?

Was the Sprint offer not what you expected?

Were there technical difficulties that kept you from signing up for the Sprint offer?

What prompted you to not complete the Sprint signup process?

Just reply to this e-mail or contact us at downloadsystem@fileplanet.com with your feedback.

Any information you can provide would be greatly appreciated so that we can make more meaningful and easier-to-use offers like this in the future.

So apparently I must be stupid since I didn’t take them up on the Sprint offer: “Was the form too hard, you moron? Did you get confused? Did your crappy computer crash? Did you have a hard time filling your name into the form? Did a stroke prevent you from hitting the submit button? What on earth is wrong with you?

Well, since you asked:

To: downloadsystem@fileplanet.com

Subject: Feedback about your SPRINT offer.

Two responses to why I didn’t take up the Sprint offer:

1. Sprint sucks. I hate them. One reason I hate them is their relentless, shrill, intrusive marketing. Believe it or not, no matter how you price it, word it, or set it up, some people know Sprint is a horrible company that spends too much on marketing, and not enough on actual service. Feel free to forward these thoughts on to the people at Sprint. If Sprint were offering free long distance forever and all I had to do was click a single link to get it, I would still turn them down. And I would begin to dislike companies that associate with them. Hint. Hint. Hint.

2. Never, ever send me email in regards to any kind of offer again, or I will terminate my subscription with you. To be clear: no solicitations of any kind should be sent to this email address by you.

Thanks.

Within one day, I got a response back:

—– The following addresses had permanent fatal errors —–

downloadsystem@fileplanet.com

(reason: 550 5.1.1 Unknown user.)

Bounce, bounce, bounce. Huge surprise.

But, seeing as FilePlanet was kind enough to spam me just on the eve of my second month of service, I considered their email a reminder: I went over to their web site and terminated my service with them. Thanks FilePlanet!

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