EarthLink Policies and Agreements

EarthLink Simulataneous Usage Policy

Your EarthLink account offers you virtually unlimited access to the Internet from one computer at a time. And when you occasionally need to get your mail or browse the Internet from two or more computers at the same time, you can do that too. This is called simultaneous usage. EarthLink charges subscribers a small fee for simultaneous usage—$1.00 per hour, prorated to the minute.

FAQ: Simultaneous Usage

Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about simultaneous usage:

1. What is simultaneous usage?
Simultaneous usage occurs when two or more computers using ONE EarthLink Internet access account are hooked up to EarthLink at the same time.

2. Can I log in to EarthLink from two computers at the same time without realizing it?
Yes. You (or you and a family member) can engage in simultaneous usage once, twice, or even more often, entirely by mistake.

3. What are some of the most common ways that simultaneous usage occurs?
If you sometimes use more than one computer to collect your mail or browse the Internet, you are at risk for simultaneous usage. Be certain that you disconnect from EarthLink each time you leave your computer or are not actively using your connection. Some programs might check for mail automatically if your computer is not shut down. For instance, if you leave your computer on at work with your email program open, and then you go home and look something up on the Internet, that could cause simultaneous usage. If you use your EarthLink account from your portable computer while you travel, and someone in your family continues to access the Internet regularly from your home machine, that could cause simultaneous usage too. And if you have more than one computer in your house, it's very easy for family members to cause simultaneous usage unintentionally. To avoid these charges, you'll want to be certain that no one else in your household or office is using your account at the same time you are. And always keep your password safe and private.

4. Don't the multiple email addresses that come with my EarthLink subscription entitle me and my whole family to get mail from EarthLink and use the Internet from several different locations?
Yes and no. Most EarthLink access plans come with multiple email addresses, each with its own Personal Start PageSM, webspace, and preferences—but these are for use with one EarthLink Internet access account. That means that only one person may dial in to the Internet and access your account at any one time. If family members typically use separate computers, you will need to be especially certain that two people or more are not logged in to EarthLink at the same time. If it's important to you to avoid charges, you'll want to take turns using the Internet or get separate EarthLink access accounts.

5. Will EarthLink ever bill my account without telling me first?
Yes. EarthLink does not send warnings about simultaneous usage, so the first time you learn about simultaneous usage activity on your account might be when you receive your monthly bill. EarthLink charges $1.00 per hour for simultaneous usage, prorated to the minute, through the end of each monthly billing cycle.

6. Is there any way to avoid simultaneous usage charges?
To avoid simultaneous usage charges, just be certain you are never logged on to the Internet from more than one computer at a time. However, if you are someone who often needs to use the Internet from two different places (say, work and home, or upstairs and downstairs), you might be able to save money by purchasing one or more additional EarthLink accounts. To discuss this option, or to order your additional accounts today, please call us at 1-866-226-0572.

7. How will I know how often I've engaged in simultaneous usage? Can I keep track of my usage?
Unfortunately, we do not have a system that will allow you to keep track of your own simultaneous usage on a minute-by-minute basis.

8. Can a High Speed Internet access account (like DSL or cable modem) accumulate simultaneous usage charges?
Since High Speed (or "broadband") accounts are "always on," we handle simultaneous usage a little differently for subscribers with EarthLink High Speed Internet accounts. Your primary connection via DSL or cable modem does not count directly toward our simultaneous usage calculations. And with your DSL account, you are allowed up to 20 hours per month of dial-up modem access, called "roaming access," in addition to your DSL line. If you exceed the 20-hour-per-month roaming access allowance, additional roaming access charges apply. High Speed Internet accounts can only accrue simultaneous access charges when you access the Internet via two dial-up modems at the same time. So as long as you are only using your primary computer (with broadband access) and up to one additional computer (with dial-up access), simultaneous usage fees should not apply to you.

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