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Hurricane Irma took 7 million cable and wireline subscribers offline

Enlarge / Destroyed power lines hang above a road on September 12, 2017, two days after Hurricane Irma swept through the area. Power outages played a big role in Internet, TV, and phone disruptions. (credit: Getty Images | Spencer Platt )

More than 7 million subscribers to cable or wireline telecom services have lost service due to Hurricane Irma.

"There are at least 7,184,909 (down from 7,597,945 yesterday) subscribers out of service in the affected areas in Alabama, Florida, and Georgia," the Federal Communications Commission reported Tuesday in its latest storm update. These are subscribers to Internet, TV, or phone service or some combination of the three.

In addition to those 7 million, many subscribers in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands lost service. "Since there are widespread power outages in Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands, the FCC has received reports that large percentages of consumers are without either cable services or wireline service. Companies are actively working to restoring service," the FCC said.

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CenturyLink is being sued by everyone over deceptive billing

CenturyLink lawsuit: worst internet service provider

It's not been a good month for CenturyLink. In the last few weeks, a former sales rep turned whistleblower filed a lawsuit against the company, a video surfaced showing the company's former Chief Diversity Officer going on a homophobic rant, and a class-action lawsuit was filed over deceptive billing practices.

To add serious legal insult to injury, the state of Minnesota is joining the party, and has filed a lawsuit alleging the telecoms company engaged in unfair billing practices.

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Comcast says net neutrality supporters “create hysteria”

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | SweetBabeeJay)

Broadband providers made it clear this week: they wholeheartedly support net neutrality... but they want to overturn those pesky net neutrality rules and replace them with something that isn't so strict.

In fact, the way to truly protect net neutrality is to keep the Internet free of regulations, Internet provider CenturyLink wrote. "Keep the Internet Open and Free—Without Regulation" was the title of CenturyLink's blog post Wednesday.

"Reversing the FCC’s 2015 Internet regulation order will do several positive things: Increase customer choice, spur innovation and investment, [and] create lasting consumer and competitive protections," CenturyLink wrote.

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Cox expands home Internet data caps, while CenturyLink abandons them

Data cap cash. (credit: Aurich Lawson | Getty Images)

There's good news and bad news on data caps for home Internet users.

Cox, the third largest US cable company, last week started charging overage fees to customers in four more states. Internet provider CenturyLink, on the other hand, recently ended an experiment with data caps and is giving bill credits to customers in the state of Washington who were charged overage fees during the yearlong trial.

Cox, which operates in 18 states with about six million residential and business customers, last week brought overage fees to Arizona, Louisiana, Nevada, and Oklahoma. Cox was already enforcing data caps and overage fees in Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, and Ohio. California, Rhode Island, and Virginia technically have monthly caps but no enforcement of overage fees, according to Cox's list of data caps by location. Massachusetts and North Carolina seem to be exempt from the Cox data caps altogether.

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Video shows CenturyLink’s ex-Chief Diversity Officer giving homophobic rant

CenturyLink Chief Diversity Officer Odell Riley

It's not been a good few weeks for CenturyLink. While in the midst of a $34 billion merger, the firm has been hit with a pair of lawsuits seeking up to $12 billion in damages for a Wells Fargo-style fraud scheme.

Now, a video has emerged of Odell Riley, CenturyLink's Chief Diversity Officer, railing against the sins of homosexuals in a sermon given at Jerusalem Temple COGIC in
Leland, Mississippi.

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