UPDATE - Pac Bell Circuit Causes E-Mail, Web Problems: Some Lose Service

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Pac Bell circuit causes e-mail, Web problems: Some Intercite subscribers lose services

By Lisa Rapaport

Bee Staff Writer (Published June 14, 2000) Problems with a Pacific Bell circuit in downtown Sacramento caused an interruption of e-mail and Web page services for some Intercite subscribers for about eight hours Tuesday.

The incident comes a week after 144,000 Northern California residents suffered through a daylong Pacific Bell e-mail service shutdown.

Bill Cullifer, executive director of the nonprofit World Organization of Webmasters, said the glitch put a glitch into his workday. He said he revises his organization's Web page several times a day and relies on hundreds of daily e-mail messages to keep tabs on member activities all over the globe.

"I'm already pulling my hair out and there's no way for me to get back to messages I'm not getting," Cullifer said.

Engineers worked throughout the day to restore service to about 150 affected customers, officials said.

Service was restored to the World Organization of Webmasters shortly after 5 p.m. But by that time a day's work had been lost, Cullifer said.

"I'm the one who keeps everyone in touch, and when I can't do that, everything shuts down," he said. "Then I have to spend a day catching up."

The glitch only affected about 5 percent of Intercite's customers, said Robert Bruce, vice president of sales and marketing.

"The type of thing going on today unfortunately happens intermittently in our line of work," Bruce said.

While Intercite pays Pacific Bell for use of the circuits necessary to connect its operating center in El Dorado Hills with a downtown Sacramento relay center, where the outage originated, Bruce said this incident is not typical of the services provided by the utility company.

"Across the board they do strive to provide a good product," Bruce said.

Representatives from Pacific Bell were unable to identify or comment on the problem.


-- (Dee360Degree@aol.com), June 14, 2000

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