Broadband News

BT makes closure of Talk21 a little less painful

The Talk21 email service is something that people may remember from many years ago, more recently it has been known as the basic BT email service, but having announced the proposed closure of the service some time ago, once the emails informing individuals started to go out the volume of complaints started to increase.

A common theme appears to be that many people signed up years ago, when a personal email address was much harder to get hold of and people have grown attached to the address. So to get told that they have the option of moving their broadband to BT, or paying for a BT Premium service at £1.60 to retain their address and sub-accounts means people are panicking.

"We’ve listened to our customers’ concerns about closing the free basic mail talk21 service and in order to give customers more time we will be giving all talk21 customers the option to move to Premium Mail free for a year. We’ll be contacting affected customers from 9th September."

BT statement, offering 12 months free Premium Mail service

It seems BT has relented to some extent, so that people can now migrate the account to the Premium Mail service and have 12 months free access. 12 months should be long enough for people to extract any valuable information buried in their inbox, and inform contacts or change access credentials for websites that have this email address registered against them.

Another option is to get your own domain name and an email hosting solution, there are lots of options for individuals or people running small businesses that want their email not linked to a specific Internet connection and price wise they can be found for similar costs to the BT Premium Mail service but with the advantage of your own domain name.


Or, you know, use a free email service like gmail.

  • Kushan
  • over 7 years ago

It's all fine saying that but the problem would be updating ALL services you have used with that email address to your new address once the service is closed down.

  • chris6273
  • over 7 years ago

Quite glad they've gone ahead with this. A few of my elderly relatives still have Talk21 e-mail addresses and this gives them time to learn how to use a different e-mail service

  • gf20
  • over 7 years ago

For goodness sake, how much does it cost to run an email server ? They could simply forward the existing email addresses on to one of their existing servers. It really is completely wretched and pathetic. What is it ? The cost of maintaining one domain name and a forwarding system. Unbelievable.

  • shaunhw
  • over 7 years ago

Or they could run an online forward configuration tool to forward the incoming talk21 emails anywhere, the customer wants.

Sheesh. Sheer greed it seems to me. They could run those emails until they detect no traffic on them and close them down like that.

  • shaunhw
  • over 7 years ago

I still have two email addresses that work with an ISP I left 10 years ago, haven't paid them a penny in all that time and it can't be costing them much to maintain the service (which I obviously am not assuming will continue indefinitely).

  • kasg
  • over 7 years ago

The way this closure has been handled is a PR disaster. As a shareholder I hope the boss of BT Comms is removed swiftly. The goodwill lost is immeasurable. Talk21 was from a then trusted source, British Telecom, free email address for life. They seem to have forgotten that. They have caused alot of worry, now they have had to change there tune after I suspect pressure from the MP who is in charge of Communications for the Condemed!

  • AnnoyedboutBT
  • over 7 years ago

Well I have news for you annoyedaboutBT.
Frankly no one gives a sheet about this.
Life has moved on - there are better free email providers around.
I've no idea why ISP's provides and email serive at all - it must be a load of aggro.
Anyway the latest is O2 who are withdrawing their free email service to their mobile customers

  • mdar5
  • over 7 years ago

mdar5 wrote: "Frankly no one gives a sheet about this."

Quite obviously someone does.

  • shaunhw
  • over 7 years ago

I worked for BT Internet back in the day before Broadband we charged .50p a minute to sort out connections on any free email service. I no longer use talk21 but I know what a pain it will be be if I have to change my email address on everything I have it attached to!

  • mrtweaks
  • over 7 years ago

I've just had a letter from Virgin informing me they are closing their dialup internet access, whilst I very occasionally used the dialup it is where I get my email address from so here is another free email server closing !

  • lmschuffer
  • over 7 years ago

Re Virgin, can't see a forum entry for their closure. Only 3 mnths to closure, difficult timescale. It was my original dialup acc, 5 separate email addresses, used for everything, since beginning. Dialed up every 2 months to keep it active. So, just wondering how BT was presured, because a similar year from virgin would make it a lot easier. I'll have another forum search before I post a starter.

  • Dieng
  • over 7 years ago

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