October 23rd, 2007

St. Eldritch
  • smu

Oh, Verizon

On Sunday, my father got a new laptop. The man is not the most tech savvy guy ever, so I promised to set it all up for him. It has Windows Vista, the first of our computers to ever have it. I knew it was going to be an adventure. His old desktop died after freezing every window and taking an hour to start up.

We have Verizon FiOS and we also have a wireless modem. I figured it would be deeply simple to get the laptop onto it. I had the SSID and WEP keys all ready.

Boy was I wrong. The laptop worked fine, but could not connect to the internet at all. It wasn't recieving any packets, while my computer on the exact same network was working absolutely fine, the internet going as fast as anything. My father's old desktop couldn't recieve packets either, but I attributed that to being old and half-dead. So now we have two machines in the house recieving the internet fine, and two others (one brand new) who aren't.

I call up the Verizon helpline. After being on hold for awhile, I finally get a real live person. First of all, I couldn't understand the person on the line at all. It wasn't India, it was definitely someone in America, which made me double-take. I felt like I was talking to a rap video.

I tried to explain my problem and he first of all jumps on me for calling about a Vista machine, since he said "it's new technology, we can't do anything about it". Even though I explained it wasn't the COMPUTER that was having the problem. And how is Vista "new"? Hasn't it been out over a year? More than enough time for a company who deals with internet to have ways to connect to it.

Despite showing a knowledge of computers, he kept talking down to me. "Okay ma'm, I want you to use your mouse and press the BIG SHINY BUTTON on the bottom of your screen, THE ONE WITH THE BIG FLAG IN IT". No shit? You mean the "start" button? Why couldn't he say that? He took me to the wrong place in the control panel and I had to correct him. It became clear he had NO idea what he was doing.

He asked me to go to the modem and read off the numbers on the back. "You mean the WEP key and the SSID?" said I, having them already ready. "I tried them, I double checked them". He refused to believe that I had gotten them correct, despite another machine in my house using them and working fine. I go to my garage, where the modem lives, and told him it was bolted to the wall and I couldn't move it. "Why would you do that, ma'm?" he sneered, like I was an idiot. "I didn't. The man from Verizon, who installed it all, did.". "Suuuuuuuuure, okay, ma'm" was his answer.

After somehow moving the modem to get the numbers, WHICH WERE THE BLOODY SAME, he kept telling me to do things with them which were impossible. "Try typing them into the address bar in an open brower window". WHY? That wouldn't do anything. And my internet is working on that machine, so what's the point!

After more insane ideas, he told me to plug the laptop into the ethernet cord. "It's a wireless machine, with a wireless modem, it should be WIRELESS" I said. He told me that it wasn't his problem.

So I plug it into the ethernet cord and nothing happens. I tell him so and he says it's all Vista's fault. He starts to berat me for buying a computer that's powered by Vista "especially if you have no idea what you're doing". I was getting really pissed at this point. He kept saying that Vista wasn't compatable with some Verizon products and it was all my fault.

Fed up, I asked to speak to his supervisor. He LAUGHED at me and said "Ma'm, I would LOVE to get you a supervisor, just so I can hear them tell you the EXACT same thing I did." You smug fucking bastard! I wait on hold while he presumably gets a supervisor. It's maybe ten minutes of hold before he comes back on the line. "There's no supervisor here at the moment willing to deal with you, here's one's e-mail address". He rattled off the address before I could even get a pen to write it done, then HUNG UP ON ME!

Fuck you Verizon! After that, I shut down every computer in the house, including the new laptop, then shut off the modem. After ten minutes, I turned it back on and Viola! The laptop could connect to the internet with absolutely no problem. Despite the bastard call center guy saying it would NEVER connect since it was Vista!

I dunno, shouldn't that have been his FIRST fucking answer? "Oh, try turning the modem off". Not bitching at me, having no clue what he was doing, or being a complete asshole? I'm still so pissed about all of that!
  • Current Music
    The Killers and Lou Reed - Tranquilizer

(no subject)

Dear shuttle drivers,

The morning shuttles are intended to get people up the hill to class. Stopping the shuttle so you can argue with each other about who is on the right schedule kind of defeats the purpose. Thanks for making me late for class.

Hell is MDM/Broadstrike Cable

Since May I have been experiencing poor reception on Discovery, Bravo and A&E channels of the expanded cable package with MDM. While I could see the show, the sound kept going out like on a cell phone. I called numerous times (holding for 1/2 hour each if not more) about this, but MDM kept telling us they were in the process of upgrading our service to digital and once that was done we wouldn't be experiencing any more problems. I tried unsuccessfully to get some sort of credit since those channels were basically useless (just try watching Law & Order with shoddy audio) without any luck. After speaking with my neighbors, I found out MDM was handing out $100 credits. So I called back a dozen times, giving up after a half hour. I then started calling and emailing. Emails as follows, too many calls to write up.

July 17 - Explained ongoing audio issue, asked for same credit as neighbors received via email. Refused.

Aug 2nd - Again, asked for credit via email this time listing neighbors who received credit. Given $20 credit. Sent politely worded protest email.

Aug 7th - Canceled cable service, sent back cable box with polite letter explaining I no longer wanted their cable service since they didn't support tech problems for customers.

Aug 9th - received email from MDM once again apologizing and insisting I still have Basic cable. Returned email explaining I canceled because the service was more trouble than it was worth. Received email apology once again.

Sometime after that MDM changed its name to Broadstrike with a new bill format. So today, got a bill from Broadstrike regarding "Basic cable service & internet" and after checking the last few months which only show MDM "Basic Connection". After done screaming, tried to call - long hold times, so I tried their online help desk and their tech gave me a $50 which is 1 month of basic cable. Ugh. Forwarded emails from August showing I canceled that service and now waiting for another email with hopefully credits from August & September.

Unfortunately, Broadstrike is the only high speed internet provider where I live since my home has a thick tree line making satellite service impossible and none of the phone companies offer it where I live.
  • Current Mood
    aggravated aggravated

bad-service... or not?

When this happened, I was pretty pissed... but some people might have thought it was a reasonable action for the cashier to take. I'd like your opinions!

I grew up in Wisconsin but I'm currently a college student in Oregon. I still use an Wisconsin drivers' license, because that's my legal state of residence.

About a year ago, I had been hanging out with some friends on a Sunday. They were going to go to someone's house and hang out, but I had a paper to write so I was going home. I needed to pick up some stuff at a Safeway, though, and they needed to buy beer, so they dropped me off on the way and had planned to walk home (only a couple of blocks). Point of interest: every one of us is 21 or older.

We walked in the store and I went off to pick out some cheese. As I was standing in the dairy aisle, an announcement came on the loudspeaker calling me up to the front of the store. In Oregon, it's illegal to sell alcohol to someone unless everyone in the party is 21. Since they had seen me walk in the front door with my friends, they needed to verify my age.

I whipped out my drivers' license, which is clearly me (distinctive hair and glasses). However, because it was THREE DAYS expired, they would not sell beer to my friends.

Now, just because my license has expired does NOT make me un-turn 21.

I fully realize that it's illegal to sell alcohol to minors, and I fully realize that the cashier was just doing his job. But I think this is going WAAAAY too far. What is your opinion?

(And why did I let my license expire? Because I don't drive in Oregon and thus I didn't need it, and I had a valid passport for flying back to Wisconsin. And because in order for me to renew my license from afar, they need a current eye exam. And because my Wisconsin insurance won't cover an eye exam... because I'm in Oregon. That's another story, though.)

I was pretty annoyed at the time, but it sounds like most commenters think he was just doing his job, and I have to admit I agree. I think the law takes it a little far, but I guess I should just get over it already!