Mark Bult Design: San Francisco, CA, Established 1988

Web design and development for small and large business, e-commerce, b2b, b2c, SAAS, and community websites. User experience design and usability testing.


Monday, March 29, 2010

AT&T fail

My friends at AT&T must have been partying in the phone “office“ down the street and tripped over my wire, because our Internet was shut off for nine days.

After much troubleshooting with our ISP, I had disconnected all the interior wiring, everything down to the wire coming through the wall from the outside and the power pole. This means the fault was with outside wiring, which is your local telco’s responsibility (AT&T) to fix.



Stupidly, my ISP’s contract with Covad (which does all the interior installations and wiring service calls) requires Covad to send out a guy to any and all service calls, regardless of the fact that my ISP (Speakeasy) told them we’d isolated the problem to the outside wiring and tried to bypass the requirement.

So I had to wait many days, then the Covad guy (a retired AT&T guy, btw) comes out and tells me exactly what I already knew: that it’s AT&T’s problem. So I wasted a full day (took off work) waiting for the Covad guy, and the AT&T guy still needs to come the following day (Velma waited for him instead).

Needless to say, nine days after we reported the outage, the AT&T guy shows up and fixes it right away by going down to the "central office" and hooking up the unplugged wire.

All parties get a fail:

Speakeasy fails for having a stupid contract with Covad that allows Covad to push them around in such cases just so Covad won’t lose any service call fees. (Too bad, because I’ve really liked Speakeasy for many many years. Their phone support is generally way better than most.)

Covad fails for having such a stupid contract requirement with Speakeasy.

AT&T fails for causing the problem in the first place, not to mention giving people a service call window of 8am to 10pm. That’s just plain unprofessional.

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