/ Technology

My inbox was left high and dry. Thanks, Sky!

An email made of clouds in a blue sky

I regularly get asked ‘What have you done to the computer!?’ But this time, it wasn’t my fault. It turns out, when it comes to email, Sky has reached the limit.

While I do vaguely remember some communications from Sky saying that my email account was going to move to Yahoo!, migrating away from Gmail. Apparently Google could ‘no longer provide Sky with an email platform’ that caters for its requirements.

Unfortunately, it was the delivery of every email from the past three years – thousands of them – into my inbox last week that was the real introduction to my e-move.

After checking online forums, I realised that I wasn’t alone and it felt slightly better that others in the country were also spending hours deleting old emails. I thought that my problems ended there, but no, there was more.

The iPad inbox iPanic

When I’d sorted out the inbox on my PC, it was our iPhone, iPods and iPad – all with Sky email addresses – that demanded my attention. But now we faced a different problem. We could see emails arriving, but then they were disappearing into the trash box in seconds. It’s quite a good game really, speed reading emails before Sky decides time’s up and dumps them. I hope there wasn’t anything important in them.

Over the Easter break, the husband deserted the family for the Sky helplines. The kids and I have been trying to keep out of the way, but I think our neighbours could also hear the sounds of his frustration.

He says that the advice from Sky has been vague, with nuggets along the lines of ‘Let’s hope we can get this sorted soon!’. Yes, let’s hope, Sky, because while our emails may include lots of spam (‘funny’ photos and alerts telling us that we could claim thousands from PPI payments) the husband relies on email for his business. So yes, let’s get it sorted out very quickly please.

I can see that Sky has now added a statement to its website explaining that most issues should now be resolved, although about 10,000 customers could still affected.

When it comes to an email switchover, Sky has demonstrated that it’s far from a ‘smooth operator’. Take note other businesses, this has been a great lesson in how not to move people on to other systems. Like other Sky customers, I’ll be waiting for the apology. If you’re a Sky customer that’s been affected by this, I suggest you give them a call to complain – you may convince them to give you compensation. Were you affected by the Sky email migration?

richard says:
13 April 2013

Join Virgin Media – No problems for me since I subscribed to Fibre Optic Broadband over 20 years ago.

SouthportSmith says:
13 April 2013

Although I feel sorry for those left high and dry by Sky, to a certain extent you only have yourselves to blame.
Why anybody would want to be aligned with ANY organisation that has even the slightest association with the Murdochs is simply beyond me

David says:
14 April 2013

I had the usual problem of 100’s of old emails downloading to my PC. When I spoke to Sky their representative said there was nothing that could be done about this and in answer to my next question assured me that these download emails would not be deleted from the server. Fortunately I checked and found that all the emails had, in fact, been put in the “trash”. But I was able to recover those I wanted into active folders.
My problem relates to my Flickr account. I created a Flickr account in 2011 with a Google log in using my sky email address. However when I started logging in after the migration I think Flickr now recognised my Sky email as a Yahoo address (because of the migration) and asked me for a display name (alias). I put in my original display name and received a message that that name was already in use, so I decided to pick another alias which was accepted. However this process created a brand new (empty) Flickr account wiith no way to link to my original account containing my pictures and links to other Flickr users. Having realised what had happened I tried logging in again to my original account picking the “Google log-in” option but was unable to do so. It only let me access the new account. I looked at various options and one was to delete the account which it said was created in April 2013. I did delete it in the hope that I would then be able to access my original account. However it appears that this action also deleted the original account which now shows “this user is no longer active” when trying to view it throught the direct URL link. I have contacted Yahoo support explaining that the account was deleted in error, but the email reply frustratingly just confirmed that my account had been deleted. I have responded to the email again requesting thhe original account to be reinstated but with no response.


Flickr indicates that the problem is easily resolved:

Can I restore my account?

If you deleted your own account you can write to us using Help By Email below and, if we can verify you as the account owner, we can reactivate the account.

If it proves difficult to recover your account, it might be easier just to upload the photos again.

David says:
14 April 2013

I did use the “help by email” facility, but there appears to have been no atempt to recover my account – just a response confirming it has been deleted.

I agree it is easier to start again but I should not have to. Particularly as the account I deleted was described as being created in April 2013 and made no reference to my original account created in 2011.

Michael says:
17 April 2013

It is now 10 days since the compulsory change over to Yahoo mail for us hitherto very well served Sky e mail customers, and it is still chaos. No one seems to be able to find my missing e mail address and contents, and why should I keep ringing their premium help line to be rewarded with flannel?

They should respond to a calmly e mailed request for guidance with a telephone call, offering step by step help.

WHY did they ever leave Google?? Murdochs unwilling to pay the going price?

wev says:
18 April 2013

Jenny Driscoll, are you still reading this conversation?

Have Which soliciters told you if people can claim compensation from home insurance policy or small claims court for emails deleted and business lost?


Hi Wev, as far as home insurance goes, you could only claim on an insurance policy if it is a risk that’s covered by that insurance policy, so a policy holder would need to identify a part of the policy that covers the loss in question.

And to take any claim to court you firstly need to show that the trader you are in dispute with has breached the contract it had with you, and secondly that you had a loss as a result of that breach. If the contract was for domestic broadband, a provider may argue that it didn’t envisage business losses. If the contract is for business broadband then it would be necessary to look at the T&Cs of that service and if necessary take advice on whether there is scope to claim. I hope that helps.

Peter says:
18 April 2013

A salutary reminder that it really is not a good idea to tie yourself to the email service provided by your ISP. Quite apart from anything else, it’s a factor discouraging you from changing ISPs.

Peter says:
19 April 2013

I might add as a Sky Broadband customer, that Sky’s email change was totally seamless to me. But then I use email in an joined up way – using a proper email client picking up mail using POP3.

dabhand16 says:
28 May 2013

I use windows Live Mail as my e-mail client. I’d set up IMAP for the Sky G-Mail (which I hated), but Yahoo does not offer IMAP so I set up a second Sky account for the Yahoo service using POP. Now I can access all of my old messages from my old .account and have had no issues in using the new one.

Derek says:
1 June 2013

My emails in the inbox just disapear after a short while , max number is about 10 , also i cannot send out a group email using an existing email, it only works if I type in the first letter of all the address in the To box , rather long if you want to sent to 20 + receiptants

Pauline says:
2 June 2013

I was happy with sky email till it was yahooed! If i’d wanted a yahoo account would have joined.
Since switch nothing but problems, disappearing mails (thought it was me as not as quick as I used to be) and constantly told I have “created a suspicious activity” and system blocked from sending mails. I am on a couple of charity groups and often have to send the same email to about 5-6 people – very suspicious. I am also fed up of having to prove I am not a robot by completing strings of obscure letters/numbers, sometimes 2 or 3 times a session. It is not as if I send that many emails 2-3 per day max often none. Eventually worked out how to make a group mail but don’t always want to include all.
Also the search is useless, used to be able to search for content now if don’t know sender I have no chance and remembering names has never been my strong point!!!
Don’t want to move to another provider as has taken me long enough to remember passwords etc and navigate this system. Is anyone able to keep up with these constant changes over which we have no control?

Edward says:
10 June 2013

One aspect with the sky/yahoo merger which I find annoying and, in some recent cases, obnoxious is the flood of small but massive advertisements scattered around my email pages. These range from jigging to nauseating images to those that take up excessive space, including one square box on the lower left of the inbox screen that, even using the diminish click available, still impedes details of contacts, etc., on the left side of the screen.
Can this meddling Yahoo rubbish be deleted, or Is my only option departure from Sky email?


Was on o2 just taken over by Sky.
If this is what we have to look forward to, must be time to move provider.
Now I wonder why they are offering us Sky Broadband Unlimited free for 12 months ?!?!?!?!?!?

Pauline says:
24 June 2013

Sky email problems since merging with Yahoo! never! The problems have been so horrendous I have stopped all incoming mail, and switched to Outlook, until I am able to change my broadband completely, when we move. I am still unable to always open emails. Certainly unable to send any, either with a message saying I am sending to too many people at one time, that includes sending to just 3 or 4 people, or getting an ‘example’ to copy and then try to send, the yet another ‘example’ to copy and still unable to send them. I have done all that has been asked, change of password etc., read all help messages and applied any requests asked, sent emails explaining problems, either getting no reply at all or telling me to do what I have already done again. This has happened since April, and has not got any better at all.

Richard says:
18 August 2013

DON’T EVER rely on your Internet Service Provider (BT, Sky, Virgin, Wanadoo, TalkTalk or whoever) for email. Bad idea!

To an ISP, email is a nuisance. They don’t care if you complain, and they often set low limits on how much email you can keep.

Instead set up your own email address with a cloud email company, for example http://www.gmail.com or http://www.gmx.com – it is in their interests to look after you properly. If you like, backup using Outlook (or Thunderbird) to copy your cloud emails onto your own PC.

The main benefit is that you can change ISP as often as you like – because you are not locked in to their unfriendly unreliable email service,

sandra says:
22 November 2014

All my inbox e-mails have disappeared, I have holidays booked for which I need check in details etc, okay luckily I made copies at the time, but I have mail that is special to me too how can sky just wipe the whole lot out, and yes I phoned that premium rate number to be told wait 24 hrs it may come back but it didn’t, so what happens now! Any help plesse

G.P.Wanless says:
26 October 2016

I am sick and tired of my e mail input being refused! What a c**k up this yahoo mail is. I have tried to sign in through yahoo but i can,t use my own e mail which i have had for years!! How do i get over that problem and still keep my e mail?
Thinking of kicking sky into touch!!