The Top Ten Things I hate about Charter High-Speed Internet Service:
10.) Having to keep a diary of all the times I’ve had to call Charter Customer Service and be put on hold in the last two and half weeks. For example:
February 29—first call made for service outage.
March 2—two technicians replace cable line from building to the box on the street edge and leave it lying exposed on the grass. Next day we get 8 inches of snow.
March 5—another technician comes to fix outage and says its my modem which is a problem—I replace it with new one.
March 13—two technicians come back to “bury” the exposed cable in the grass—internet goes off for good and they disappear without a word to either me or my neighbor whose digital cable TV has vanished as well. I call and speak to “Irene” at customer service that evening and stay on phone for approximately 45 minutes. She promises things will be taken care of within 24 hours. (It’s not.)
March 16 –tech call that afternoon, the internet goes off and stays off within two minutes after technician leaves after adjusting my modem/the cable box on building.
March 17 – on in the morning, Internet goes off at approx. 1:30 pm and comes back on three separate times by unplugging/re-plugging in the modem until goes off for good at 2:45 pm. Another call to customer service where “Victoria” promises me technicans will call me within the hour (this said at 3:15 pm). No calls received within the hour—or the day. Or even the next morning... Why am I not surprised?
9.) Having to push “0” over and over at every automated switchboard prompt until I get a real live human being. (Keypad on phone now worn thin.)
8.) Having to repeat my sob story over and over again to these helpless Charter customer service reps who do not live in my city, state—or possibly country.
7.) Having to pay for Charter High-Speed Internet Service in the first place because AT&T hasn’t set up the lines so we can get DSL Internet service in this neck of the woods.
6.) Having to pay my cell phone company for the minutes that I went over my plan this month because I was put on hold so many times calling Charter High-Speed Internet Customer Service.
5.) Being promised a rebate on an $89.99 modem I got in August when I signed on with Charter High-Speed Internet —the modem that at least one technician told me was “broken” and I needed to rent one from Charter at an additional fee per month. The modem rebate (promised within 6 to 8 weeks) has yet to arrive. All emails sent to the email address for questions about rebate not answered, either. Charter Customer Service reps say they “know nothing about the rebate program” yet Charter’s icon is plastered on the web site and they provide the modem. If they contracted this incentive program from an outside source, they are responsible for it ultimately—right? Why else would you advertise it and put your company logo on it?
4.) Not being able to send doc files to my telecommuting positions as expected—missing out on potential income and creating ill-will with potential customers because I’m not able to respond to their email requests in a timely manner.
3.) Missing out on promotional activities online because I cannot get online and stay online. Not being able to update my web sites in a timely fashion. All lead to lost sales and advertising opportunities for my books.
2.) Having to buy gasoline at over $3.09 a gallon to drive to other places to use public Internet—and then finding they have a “nanny blocker” on some of these public WiFI access points so I can’t even access my own publisher’s web site!
And the number one reason why I hate Charter Communications High-Speed Internet Service…
1.) Those damn flashing green lights on the modem when it’s kicked me offline for the upteenth time in the last five minutes!
If you have a similar tale of woe (related to Internet service problems or not) please feel free to share it in the comment section. After I've calmed down somewhat, I might do a drawing for a little prize of one of my backlist books or something. Thanks for your understanding. I think I will take a Valium and go lie down now before I'm tempted to buy a shot gun...
UPDATE: I thought that the "pen was mightier than the monopolistic cable company" but I was wrong. Here's the continuing saga of wonky Internet connectivity:
March 19—Internet service works fine the day before, then goes off and on again all afternoon on the 19th but eventually stays on until my bedtime.
March 20—Internet service goes off within approx. 10 minutes of turning on computer.
Online 8:25 AM
Offline 8:36 AM
On again 9:37 AM
Off again 9:45 AM
On again 10:00 AM
Off again 10:15 AM
On again 10:26 AM
Off again 10:30 AM
Online again 11:04 AM
Off again 11:09 AM
On again 11:20 AM
I will continue to keep this blog updated until I have this problem addressed to my satisfaction, I find out where the president of Charter lives so I can throw a rock through his bedroom window, or I have hypertensive episode and wind up in the hospital intensive care. Your prayers and comments (below) are welcomed.
I thought all my problems had been solved after the latest tech call on March 22, but alas no. I've suffered "mini-outages" several days now. Nothing major, but obviously the problem hasn't been fixed permanently. I do now get more "personal attention" when I contact Charter... Perhaps all those red flags on my file saying, "Mad, whiny woman who threatens lawsuits--handle with care!" is helping?
When will this all end? Sigh!
April's Fools Update:
Things have been going fairly well this past week, although I did get a e-bill for TWICE the normal rate from Charter. (I promptly ignored it. They can send me a paper bill and then we'll discuss what I owe them.) And then I start noticing the "mini-outages" again and today--it wasn't a funny April Fool's joke to be kicked offline for fifteen minutes in mid-day.
You can be sure I'll let them know my sense of humor has been stretched a bit thin...
But your comments are still welcomed and appreciated.