So last night I spent fifty (50) minutes on the phone with someone at Comcast, trying, yet again, to fix our internet service (it is not, at present, working; I’m writing this at the library. God bless the library). Though problems with Comcast have been a regular feature of my life since moving in to my current abode at the beginning of August, they are still better than Time Warner in a few ways:
1) The automated system takes two minutes to get through, after which the caller is rewarded with the experience of speaking to an actual human being; no hold music, no estimated 45-minute wait times.
2) That human being is usually competent and helpful, and apologetic for the problems the caller is experiencing (and ESPECIALLY apologetic if a tech person was supposed to show up and did not).
3) When it is necessary to schedule an appointment for a tech person to come to the house, that appointment is usually scheduled for 1-3 days in the future, not two weeks (cough-TIME WARNER-cough).
4) When the tech person does show up (and on two or three occasions, I will readily admit, s/he has not), s/he is competent, helpful, and usually fixes the problem (often by replacing one piece of non-working equipment with a piece of working equipment, which means they came prepared).
So, on balance, better than TWC; but then again, they didn’t set the bar very high, did they? An unathletic snail could get over that bar, given a few minutes. Putting things in perspective; I know there are many, many people in the world who don’t have access to clean water or enough food, and that is a much worse problem than spotty internet access – a problem in a completely different category. On the other hand, we’re paying for the service, and having to spend hours on the phone, and further hours waiting around the house for tech people who may or may not show up, depending on which house Mercury is residing in these days (I don’t know what their criteria are), just isn’t acceptable.
Here, again for your enjoyment, are two examples of people turning frustrating customer service experiences into humor (and, in one case, results!), rather than – as I’ve done here – simply rephrasing that whiny, impatient chorus of a child trying to drag his/her parent out of a boring situation or setting, such as a conversation with another parent, or a shoe store: Come on come on come onnnnnnn!
Let’s just hope the guy shows up this time.