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You Catch More Flies With Truthful Honey

, , , , | Working | September 15, 2021

Yesterday, I got a postcard from a “beam” Internet company that deals with rural areas. I have DSL, and while slow, it’s dependable and cheap (for around here) and streams movies and allows most/all Internet stuff.

But this postcard was offering FIFTEEN TIMES the speed for the same price! It looked AWESOME! I decided that I’d give them a shot and pay them for a few months without cutting the DSL to make sure that they were above-board and stable.

I filled out paperwork online. They wanted my name, address, phone number, etc. One question was, “How do you want to be contacted? Email or phone?” I chose email because I hate dealing with voice and I like that email leaves a paper trail. 

Thirty seconds after I hit “submit”, my phone rang. The caller ID said it was the beam Internet company. 

I was torqued. 

Representative: “Did you just submit an inquiry about our service?”

Me: “Yes, I inquired and I specifically stated to contact me by email.”

Representative: “For the initial setup, it has to be voice.”

Me: “I’m no longer interested. If you are going to lie when trying to get customers, what happens next?”

She was surprised and seemed shocked that I wouldn’t talk to her after being deceived. Don’t tell me that we will set this all up online and then call. They haven’t tried calling back, though. 

I’ll stick with my slow-but-very-steady $64/month DSL.

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, , , , | Legal | September 2, 2021

Once upon a time, I got a letter from a copyright troll “threatening” me — it was carefully worded NOT to meet the legal definition of a threat, but yeah, it was a threat — with a lawsuit for copyright infringement I hadn’t committed. I even checked the provided IP address against my own logs and found that it didn’t match with any of the IPs I’d had with the ISP I had been with since before the time of the alleged infringement.

I contacted them, and they told me they were absolutely certain I was guilty and that I should pay up the €800 they were demanding as compensation. I told them I was not going to pay compensation for something I didn’t do. I posted my story on social media, instead. The troll contacted me again about being aware of my social media posts on the matter, hinting at taking separate legal action because of it, I just laughed because it’s not libel if it’s true.

I filed a formal request with my ISP for a complete record of the IP addresses I had had in my time with them so that if the copyright troll tried to take me to court, I’d have documentation to prove my innocence.

The law regarding this sort of request defines, in detail, the manner in which the request must be done — which I complied with to the letter — and what the options for the personal information registry owner are; either the ISP provides the requested information free of charge, or they reply with a written letter detailing their reasons for not complying with the request. I got neither. Instead, I got an email telling me they “didn’t consider” my IP address history to be the kind of information they are required by law to hand over free of charge, but that they were happy to provide the information I had requested for a price of something like €50 per hour of work compiling the information, a minimum charge of half an hour.

I called them and the representative I talked to said the email was correct. When I mentioned how the consumer protection ombudsman had stated that it actually WAS the kind of information an ISP must hand over free of charge.

Representative #1: “Well, that’s just an opinion.

No, it really isn’t. The closest it is to an “opinion” is in the sense that a supreme court ruling is “an opinion.”

Me: “Are you saying you refuse to hand over the information as required by law?”

Representative #1: “No, nothing like that. We are more than happy to provide the information, for a price.”

I hung up and went on social media, telling about my experience with their illegal behavior and tagging the ISP in the post. A week later, I received an email from high up in the ISP’s food chain.

Representative #2: “We have changed our policy regarding your kind of information request. If you still want this information, we can have it mailed to you in a few days.”

Naturally, I said yes and got something like fifty pages of IP logs in the mail. As I already knew, none of the addresses matched with what the copyright troll had claimed had been my IP address at the time of the alleged infringement.

However, the copyright troll never bothered me again after I got a government-paid attorney to write a letter to them on my behalf.

I am with another ISP now. My only regret is that, while the reps I dealt with on the matter above broke the law, for the most part, their customer service was better than my current ISP’s. Then again, my current ISP is well-known for defying market court rulings requiring them to hand over names and addresses of their customers to copyright holders, meaning even if I did do that sort of thing, for the foreseeable future the copyright trolls will never get my personal information again.

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I’m Not A Someone

, , , , | Working | CREDIT: NinjasWCandy | August 9, 2021

I work for an Internet service provider assisting sales agents with order entry issues.

Me: “Thanks for calling ISP. This is [My Name]; how can I help?”

Representative: “Hi. I’m entering an order, but it’s not letting me waive their tech installation fee.”

Me: “What services are they ordering?”

Representative: “Only Internet.”

Me: “Ah, for the tech install to be waived, they need to purchase TV services as well as Internet. The fee, in this case, cannot be waived, so the customer will have to pay $49.99.”

Representative: “Is there someone I can talk to?”

Me: “You’re talking to someone right now.”

The representative hung up.

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An Employee By Any Other Name…

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: victablook | August 9, 2021

Me: “Hello, this is [ISP]. My name is [My Name]; how may I help you?”

Customer: “Did you say your name is [My Name]?”

Me: “Yes.”

Customer: “Hello?”

Me: “Yes, hello?”

Customer: “I’m asking you if your name is [My Name].”

Me: “Yes, it is.”

Customer: “Hello?”

Me: “Yes, that is my name.”

Customer: “See, I want to cancel my internet now. Because you people are always so rude to me. I don’t need your Internet anymore.” *Muttering to herself* “All this attitude because I asked for your name, come on…”

I had a neutral tone in my voice the entire time. I’ve had other customers ask me to repeat my name multiple times in a similar fashion and they’ve never had an issue. Calls can have audio issues, I understand that. Normally, I would try to do some retention methods, but I was just so taken aback by the response that I just cancelled her. Jeez, lady… all I did was tell you my name.

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It’s Not Nice To Be Confused By Nice

, , , , | Right | August 6, 2021

I connect to the customer service online chat for my Internet provider. I’m having a small problem with my account that’s really just a nuisance, but I hope it can be fixed.

I chat with [Representative #1] for a few minutes. She doesn’t have an answer for me but says she’ll connect me with another department, and after a few minutes of waiting, [Representative #2] comes on the line.

Representative #2: “Hello, my name is [Representative #2].”

Me: “Hi, I’m [My Name].”

Representative #2: “Please give me a moment to review the chat log.”

Me: “Did [Representative #1] fill you in on… Oh, okay. I’ll wait.”

At the end of the chat, [Representative #2] said I was “the first nice customer” she’d worked with her entire shift, and she wanted to reward me for it with a $10 credit toward my next bill. It wasn’t much, but I was grateful anyway, much more for the gesture of kindness in return for kindness than for the monetary value of it. I thanked her enthusiastically and made sure to give her the best score possible on the post-chat survey.

I don’t like to think how mean her other customers must have been for my simple statement of “I’ll wait” to be such a relief.

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