Last week I kept getting a message all in Chinese as I would try to access web pages. Randomly this message would pop-up when I tried to get to google.com, yahoo, or whatever. It would automatically redirect to the Chinese message just for a few seconds before again redirecting to the desired website. The first few times I just ignored it and because it only flashed for a few seconds I really didn’t have time to do anything about it. I saw that it was from our web provider (Here in China there is only one company who can give web service, by the way.), so I wasn’t really worried about it being a virus. I finally got the bright idea to quickly copy and paste the message the next time I saw it. Now, remember, there was seemingly no method to the pop-up randomness…so I brushed up on my shortcuts (ctrl+a = “Select All” & ctrl+c = “Copy”) and did my normal web surfing. Finally, the message popped up again.
Well, I was able to copy the message. I did my best to understand the message…it had a lot of words I’m not too familiar with like “modem”, “router”, and the such. After my choppy translating work I came to the conclusion that I was way off because what I thought it said couldn’t be true. So the next day I went to work and had a Chinese person translate it for me. It turns out I was right! The message said something to the effect that I was breaking the service agreement by plugging into a router and using multiple computers on my internet connection. Again, let me emphasize the “my” in that last sentence. The message continued by saying that if I continued to “violate” the service agreement they would shut it off completely. What??? I can’t use multiple computers on my own internet connection? What’s up with that?
This creates a serious problem for us. For one, we really love having wireless connection in our house. Secondly, we do have multiple computers – desktop, laptop, work-issued laptop and most importantly, our new Skype phone that we paid way too much for. (Yes, the Skype phone does count as a computer according to the Internet company.) Thirdly, it’s just the plain principle that someone is telling me how I can and can’t use my own internet service that I pay for monthly.
Wait…it gets worse.
I had the previously mentioned Chinese person call the company to get details about the “service agreement”. It turns out that we can pay more to allow use of the router – RMB 30 PER COMPUTER!!! That’s just ridiculous. By the time we paid for all the computers we would have doubled our monthly fee. I’m willing to pay a bit more…but double??? Again, I reiterate…that’s just ridiculous.
I’m not sure how this one is going to turn out. I’ll have to let you know. No matter how it turns out, though…this is just lame, lame, lame.