Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Customer Service, Verizon Style (Part II)

I've been having lots of trouble with my DSL.
We had to go back to dial-up for nearly a week.
It was enough to make a grown woman weep.
Not really.
Mostly, it just pissed me off.
I've talked to the fine folk in India more than I've talked to my own flesh and blood.
Maybe talk is the wrong word.
I waited to talk.
At one point I was listening to Hawaiian music.
Ukeleles. Lots of vowels. Sounded a lot like
'Maka luna a'ai puka a' a' e' wa nu pu'a'
Try listening to that for 20 minutes.
It will make you wonder why the heck they call it 'Paradise'.
Any hoo.
In case you don't know, Verizon's sweet and polite Indian operators have a script.
The third time that I called,
spent 47 hours on hold,
finally got a human being,
she started with the script.
"Please, I like you to check the connection..."
I said, "No."
She said, "I need you to check..."
I said, "No."
I said, "I've gone through all of this with you before.
It is not my connection.
It was not my connection when I called yesterday.
It is not my connection today.
My modem flashes a red light,
my computer tells me that I'm not hooked to the internet.
Yesterday, Verizon called to tell me my connection was fixed.
I had DSL for about an hour.
Now I don't.
I did not unplug anything.
We're going to assume that it was the same problem I had when I called yesterday.
I've already done the whole connection thing yesterday.
I won't do it again."
I don't think she'd ever flipped ahead in the manual.
It took a long time for her to figure out the next step.
She did.
It was their problem.
Two days later:
I tried to call to find out when I could expect to have DSL.
As soon as I verified my phone number, I got a message telling me
they were 'aware of my problem and working on a resolution'.
Then they hung up.
What they do with the folk who are not 'valued customers'?
Verizon sent help.



Alison said...


You are hilarious!!
That made my night. Thank you.

debby said...

Geesh. I just hit 'publish'!

jeanie said...

Ah - the old Cat 5 solution, I see!

Pencil Writer said...

I know your pain!!!! I can't count the hours I've spent WAITING for human connection THAT CAN ACTUALLY comprehend, identify and FIX the flipping problem.

My experience with those folks in India has been--for the most part--very polite and helpful. (My crew aren't associate with Verizon, but could easily be related otherwise.) And don't you love how though they speak English, too, it's somehow a whole different language because of idiosyncrasies in locale and whatever that don't totally match up with our own. It's a challenge of diplomacy.

All that said, I've found that for the most part those Tech's from India don't have the angry, gee-you're-so-stupid-that-I-can't-even-begin-to-help-you-sort-out/fix-your-pitiful-problem I've found some US based techies.

I can't call my internet provider (gotta luv ATT, cough, cough) w/o it taking a MINIMUM of 1 hour.

The largest hurdle is getting past the gatekeeper--the electronic answering machine.

I think you've given me an idea for a post on my own blog!

Best wishes to you, debby! May your day be filled with good things--minus the need to call your internet service provider!

Mary Paddock said...

I called the IRS today with a tax question that couldn't be answered on their site. They described the number I was calling as "Live Help". After twenty minutes of pushing buttons that lead to statements followed by more buttons, I came to the conclusion that the IRS is no longer made up of humans, but is simply a collection of computers and recorded messages.

debby said...

Oh, Mary, there's a person in there somewhere. He stands behind a curtain, pulling levers, and talking into a microphone to make himself sound big.

Funny story. I was at work. Verizon called there for a different matter. I noticed it was a local number. Never missing a chance to preach a sermon, I cheerfully began to beef about Verizon. Pause. "Wait...are you...and he gives my full name. (At work, I answer our phone with with only my first.)Turns out he'd clipped my first article from the paper and forwarded it to corporate. I said, "Funny. I just am finishing my second..." and he asked me to e-mail it to him. Also offered to forward the responses I get from angry people.