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On Monday we wrote: "Media giant Time Warner appears to be censoring subscribers to its Road Runner Net access service by corrupting newsgroup messages it fears contain pirated material."

Road Runner messages 'censored', newsgroups complain

Time Warner Cable has at last contacted The Register to tell us the reason for the message corruption. Here is the company’s explanation: “Last week our primary feed for news infrastructure experienced a glitch with binary articles, causing them to become corrupted. As a result users saw truncated and/or corrupted files. We have since corrected the problem.”

There was a legitimate story to be written here. We correctly identified mysterious problems experienced by users, who said they were being kept in the dark. But following our inability to get TW to speak to us, we leaped straight to a black helicopters conclusion.

So hands up, we were wrong. Apologies to our readers. And to TW too.

Now for Time Warner Cable’s missive in full and a response from the author of the article.

Keith Cocozza
Director, Corporate Communications
Time Warner Cable

Your recent story on Road Runner in The Register was misleading and completely baseless.

Road Runner does not censor postings, news or any information. Road Runner has not instituted any new limitations on posting and has no interest in doing so. Road Runner is committed to providing its customers with a robust broadband experience while offering the best value in the high-speed data space. As you may know, Road Runner has increased download speeds to 3mbps and looking at increased upload speeds in an effort to allow customers to take full advantage of today's media rich Internet. We would not do anything to curtail that experience. We do not currently, nor have any plans to prohibit or block mp3 files, movies, games, etc.

Last week our primary feed for news infrastructure experienced a glitch with binary articles, causing them to become corrupted. As a result users saw truncated and/or corrupted files. We have since corrected the problem.

Not being able to reach the Vice President of Communications in time for your deadline does not allow the publication to act irresponsibly with the facts. I would like to see a correction to the story posted as soon as possible.

Kieren Mccarthy replies: Road Runner was contacted both by phone and email on Thursday 13 November first thing in the morning US time. The personal email address of the person best suited to respond was provided and used. In each case the exact details of the intended story were provided and the urgency of the situation made clear.

No response arrived that day or the next day. The story was held back until the afternoon of the Monday in case Time Warner had come up with a response over the weekend. No response was forthcoming.

No announcement was made by Road Runner with regard to a newsgroups problem, the problem has been going on for at least two weeks and the quoted limit on newsgroup messages was taken from Road Runner's own site. ®

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