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BT staff to down tools tomorrow

Practice strike during England match

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BT has issued a network-wide ban on engineering work tomorrow evening to coincide with England's opening World Cup group game against the USA.

The rarely-applied "change embargo" measure will run throughout the encounter, plus for an hour before kickoff and an hour after the final whistle.

BT customers will get a brief taste of what service will be like during the threatened Communication Workers Union strike. Unfortunate Reg reader Mark will be toiling on a data centre project on Saturday evening, but has been told that no BT staff will be able to make the necessary connectivity tweaks.

"They have told us that no changes will done on any systems. If I have to work why shouldn't they?," he complained, albeit in jest.

A BT spokesman assured El Reg the measure has not been planned because everyone just wants to watch the game.

"The change embargo is to protect the customer experience and ensure everyone gets the best possible experience. Also any network incidents that occurs during the embargo will be progressed as usual," he said.

In fairness, bandwidth demand is expected to be very high during England games. The third group match against Slovenia will probably hammer BT's network hardest, kicking off during working hours, at 3pm on a Wednesday afternoon.

BT also scheduled a three-month change embargo in the run up to the 2012 Olympics, which will be heavily dependent on its network. ®

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