just to let you know... i posted to the verizon direct forum last week about my upload speed issues. they set up a ticket for me on the 18th. i received a voicemail last night (aug 21st) saying that the problem had been corrected. not bad, considering that verizon has been out on strike. anyhow, the problem does seem to be fixed. my upload speed been upped to the advertised maximum. i will wait a week and then try to get a contract if it still working properly. so it seems that at least in big cities they are making some attempt to maintain their dsl service.
3358 Kbps / 863 Kbps on the modem w/ fastpath 2830 Kbps/ 710 Kbps & 35 ms ping w/ qos at speedtest.net
they're still offering the contract at least online. i don't know what the asterisk about taxes is about. there have never been any on my past internet bills. i think that they just automatically put that on the bottom of everybody's bill.
I just checked online and I'm not seeing that offer that you posted. I don't know if that's because you're in NY and I'm in MD. Maybe it's a regional thing. The cheapest plan they had for me was $44.99 a month for Regional Essentials POTS with 3 Mbps DSL, or $59.99 for Freedom Essentials and 3 Mbps DSL plus taxes and fees. For dry loop the online ordering system wouldn't let me get on a contract, only month to month at my current $44.99 a month.