Fighting An Upload-Hill Battle

, , , , , | Working | July 28, 2019

(In France, there are four major ISPs, and they are having an ongoing coverage war for optic fiber Internet. Every building can decide which ISP they’re going to be connected with, and the subsequent connection needs heavy work, literally digging trenches in the sidewalk to install fiber in the ground. So, when you land in a building with fiber installed, and you’re interested in having a fiber connection, you go with the ISP already in place. I have just moved in and gotten my box installed using an extremely interesting discount price when I receive a call from a telemarketer.)

Telemarketer: “Hi, I’m [Telemarketer] from [ISP #1]. May I speak to the person in charge?”

(I could say I’m not interested and hang up, but I have some time on my hands. I figure it’d be funny to see this person try to upsell me. I was right.)

Me: “That would be me.”

Telemarketer: “Okay, great! May I ask what ISP you are with and what your Internet plan is?”

Me: “I’m with [ISP #2], and I have the Fiber at 100Mbps down and 20Mbps up for 10€ a month.”

Telemarketer: *pause* “Oh… Okay! Do you know we at [ISP #1] have right now a very interesting discount for a plan at 10€ for the first year?”

Me: “Um, okay, but you guys don’t have fiber connected to my building, so that’s not really a great deal for me…”

Telemarketer: “Wait, we can’t know that before I check!”

Me: “Well, I just subscribed, so I’m pretty sure that it…”

Telemarketer: “One moment, please! Your address is [address], correct?”

Me: *sigh* “Correct.”

Telemarketer: “Okay, then, let me put you on hold for just a sec!”

Me: “…”

Telemarketer: *one minute later* “Okay, it appears that your building is indeed not connected yet to our fiber network. But may I ask why you need the fiber? Our DSL connection is very fast and reliable, and for browsing Facebook and YouTube, even in HD, it’s plenty!”

Me: “Well, first of all, depending on the distance to the hub and the traffic, DSL for a 4K video may not be ‘plenty,’ and second of all, for my work, I often need to download and upload up to a couple of terabytes of files a month, so fiber was actually a quite important criteria in choosing my place. And excuse me, but what did you mean by ‘10€ a month for the first year’?”

Telemarketer: “It’s an exceptional discount offer; after one year the price goes back to normal.”

Me: “Which is?”

Telemarketer: “24.99€ a month. But your current offer is the same, isn’t it?”

Me: “Actually, no, if you recall there were ads on TV for it a month ago. It was a very limited offer, but the discount lasts a lifetime.”

Telemarketer: “Oh, I see… Well, you know, I was checking [ISP #1]’s network, and it says that within 18 months we will have your building connected to our fiber network, and then I can offer you a free upgrade to the fiber plan! So, what do you say?”

Me: “So, let me get this straight. Your DSL plan is what, 20Mbps down and 2Mbps up?”

Telemarketer: “Yes…”

Me: “So, you offer me a plan that is literally five to ten times slower than my current plan—“

Telemarketer: *trying to cut me off* “Yes, but—“

Me:With the vague promise that it’s gonna be upgraded in the not-so-distant future—“

Telemarketer: “Well, yes, and—“

Me:But, in one year’s time, this plan, which will hinder my work, will have the advantage of becoming almost three times as expensive as the one I’m on now, and will leave me paying more for a worse plan, waiting for an upgrade that may or may not come?”

Telemarketer: “Okay, but what TV channels do you have with your plan?”

Me: “I don’t own a TV, and I’m staying with [ISP #2]. Goodbye now!”

(You still have to admire her perseverance and dedication!)

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