I had an account at individual.net for nearly 5 years (spanning theI have been tempted to buy an annual account at individual.net (because
it's cheap) simply because Albasani, E-S, and other freebie servers tend
to go down a bit more than I care for. Not often but they do go down.
It is not a rare event. Considering that I'm not always connected to
their server (you only connect to retrieve or send, not to read what
you've already downloaded) and that there has been a number of times
during just those times of their server being unusable (i.e., they're
down only during those times I'm sampling their service), they do go
down more often than I ever recall when using Giganews (as my ISP's
contracted Usenet provider). Be interesting to know what the uptime (or
how often there is downtime) at the student-managed university-operated
era of the free-to-pay transition and the name change in 2005) and
don't remember a single instance of downtime. That's not to say they
didn't have issues, but like you said above, I only need the system to
work when I'm trying to connect to it. If they have issues in between,
I'd never know or care.