While I do not have the same exact situation that you are describing, I can say that in my opinion, Earthlink has been the absolute WORST ISP in the history of the web. I work in the software industry, and can tell you that Earthlink is a corporation that systematically provides horrible service and has VERY SHADY billing practices.
Even IF you were happy with Earthlink - they pull all kinds of scams and rip-offs to steal as much money as possible from each and every customer. The money you reportedly "save" by using their poor quality and unreliable service is more than lost when you factor in the down-time and numerous excessive charges they make.
We moved to a new home, very close to our old one - all we wanted was to transfer our Earthlink account to the new number. Earthlink stated that this would require a ONE HUNDRED AND FIFTY dollar TRANSFER FEE. That is 150.00 dollars to go into the account and enter a new telephone number.
We fought tooth and nail against this treatment, and finally got a compromise where we STILL HAD TO PAY for the transfer. Ridiculous.
Earthlink service goes down more than any other service we had ever used. As I stated before, I work in the software industry, and by no means a novice when it comes to configuring my home systems for internet access. That being said, if you ever call Earthlink for some Tech Support, you will be put on the phone with an individual who seemingly has no experience with the actual software or hardware itself, and is simply reading from some kind of a checklist in front of them.
THEY CHARGE YOU FOR THIS TECH SUPPORT BY THE MINUTE. While this may seem reasonable, the part that isn't is the fact that they try to keep you on the phone as long as possible, and try to spend time asking questions that you know have nothing to do with the problems. So for example, when I call Tech Support, they go through all of the most basic items, VERY SLOWLY, while I know for a fact that everything is set up properly. I start out by telling the Tech everything I have done - BEFORE they can ask any questions. At the end of a very long and costly conversation, they confirm that the problem was on their end, and STILL try to bill us for the call! Outrageous.
"Transfer Fee" to Cancel and Account?
Another weasel tactic they use is to charge a "transfer fee" in addition to the "Cancellation Fee" described in the contract. They will state that this is in the contract even if it is not - most people dont keep copies of these contracts on file to dispute these claims.
Do not accept this kind of treatment from Earthlink. They have settled in numerous cases alleging fraud and misconduct. We warned Earthlink that if they attempt to bill us for their fraudulent claims, we will file suit, and speak to local media outlets (such as newspapers and tv news consumer groups) about these outrageous and unacceptable business practices.