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AOL, CUT Collaborate For Internet-Phone Rate Boycott

AOL UK and the Campaign for Unmetered Telecommunications (CUT) are collaborating in support of the European Telecommunications Boycott, a movement to drop the local phone fees associated with the higher cost of Internet use in Europe.

Following an open letter Thursday from AOL UK president and managing director David Phillips, CUT has revealed that the relationship between AOL and the campaign has been growing closer for weeks.

The telecommunications boycott across Europe for one day is scheduled to take place on Sunday, June 6. Campaigners are asking all telephone users to pull the plug on that day for 24 hours and for Internet users to lay down their modems. It is all in the cause of persuading telecoms companies to drop metered charges for local calls.

"The response from AOL subscribers to the CUT and AOL collaboration has been, and is, phenomenal," say CUT's organisers. "In one period of five minutes on Wednesday night 29 people signed up to the aims of CUT; there has been a steady flow ever since."

CUT's campaign in the UK has been at least partially blunted by BT's sudden conversion to unmetered Internet access on weekends, starting on the very weekend of the proposed strike. CUT's reaction has been typically scathing, calling it a "remarkable turnaround" for a company that recently said: "unmetered access is akin to a free lunch."

In his open letter, AOL UK chief David Phillips called on the government to support the strike action and do its part to "turn off the clock" for Internet users and "make the promise of the Internet a reality for everyone."