dacut writes with the sad news that Charter Communications, which provides cable and Internet access to 2.6 million customers, accidentally and irretrievably wiped out 14,000 active email accounts
while trying to clear out unused accounts. They're providing a $50 credit to each affected customer, which seems a paltry sum for anyone who was less than diligent about backing up their email — though those who relied on Charter's webmail interface had no easy way to accomplish backups. From the article: "There is no way to retrieve the messages, photos and other attachments that were erased from inboxes and archive folders across the country on Monday, said Anita Lamont, a spokeswoman for the suburban St. Louis-based company. 'We really are sincerely sorry for having had this happen and do apologize to all those folks who were affected by the error,' Lamont said Thursday when the company announced the gaffe."