follow us pulls the plug on free service

San Francisco — The free ride is about to come to an end for consumers who receive their Internet access through Bluelight and Kmart announced today that the monthly access fee will now be $8.95.

Launched in January 2000, Bluelight offered consumers free, unlimited Internet service and rapidly accumulated 3 million users within its first seven months. By March 2001, the company began charging new users $9.94 for 100 hours of service monthly and began reducing the number of access hours existing users could take advantage of at no charge.

At the end of August, charter Bluelight subscribers will no longer receive free service. Those who already pay for the service will have their rates reduced to $8.95 per month for unlimited Internet access. Anyone signing up for the service before Sept. 1 will receive the first three months of service for $6.95.

In addition, consumers who buy any non-clearance item from the site will receive one month of free service, up to a maximum of six months of free service.

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