Online Report Logs Citizens' Y2K Complaints

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Even though the year 2000 is still months away, people are already experiencing Y2K glitches, says an information service called Y2K Newswire, which is posting unhappy Y2K-related experiences on the Internet.

For example, according to the service's web site, bank customers are being told they have insufficient funds when that is not the case, and people are receiving vehicle registration and other official deadline notices when they are not due.

Newswire added the public bulletin board to its web site in mid-July, said site creator Mike Adams, because the media has not adequately reported on inconveniences caused when computer chips don't recognize the year 2000.

'The public is not being told the truth about Y2K,' Adams wrote in an editorial describing the bulletin board project. 'Problems are minimized or covered up and 'progress' is overstated, redefined and described in preapproved terms.'

One reason is that Y2K-related incidents are embarrassing for organizations, Adams said, especially for those that have spent millions of dollars on fixes. Contributors to the bulletin board do not have to prove the glitch was caused by a computer chip date error, according to the web site. 'As citizens, we must be aware of all the failures, then work to sort out which ones were Y2K-related,' it says.

Adams said the Y2K bug is already manifesting itself because there are many dates before and after Jan. 1 that can cause problems for old software and hardware. Also, he suspects data has been lost or corrupted during the process of upgrading systems to reach Y2K compliance.

Contributors are asked to submit a phone number for the organization involved in the glitch so Y2K Newswire staff can attempt to verify claims. The staff reads and edits submissions before posting them and discards those that are obviously not Y2K-related, said Adams. They will also remove an entry if the organization named in the report calls them with proof that the information is false.