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Topic # 96296 24-Jan-2012 20:21
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Hello,

I'm posting this while I still have access to the Internet, I'm hoping I'm posting this in the right section in the forum. Also, I'll be making the same posts in other forums, so I'm sorry if anyone is offended by this behavior. I believe that I have been wronged by TelstraClear, and their quality of service and trying to express my opinion and hear about other people's opinions. I used to be with Orcon, and I decided to move to TelstraClear last month (you know, there is that 30 days notice problem). I talked to both the parties a month ago, and expected there to be no problem with porting the line or to be informed if there is one.

I had a bad feeling that something might have gone wrong last week, as I had heard nothing from TelstraClear when I was supposed to start using there service within a week. I rang them a couple of times on Friday, talked to a couple of representatives. Apparently, the order was there, but for some reason it wasn't being "forced through the system." They made the request then, and told me to expect to be contacted from the provision team.

The line porting was supposed to be done on the Sunday, and I had no problem using the connection so I assumed that the porting was done successfully. Today, I did habitual usage checking on Orcon website (I was doing that just to be sure that its service was discontinued) and found out that I was still using their line. And here is the crux of my story.

I called their customer care and found out that I had given them the "notification," (including the date that I want the service to be discontinued) but hadn't given them the "order" for cancellation. Honestly, I don't see the difference, but it didn't matter that much. They were gracious enough to "backtrack" to my notification and treat it as a cancellation order. And they informed me that they haven't received any "porting request" from TelstraClear, which was a bad surprise.

So I called TelstraClear this time. I was told, "there is a problem with your order. It's not being forced through in the system. I just escalated the issue, and you should expect to hear back from us within a week as it might take a week. Meanwhile, call back Orcon and tell them not to discontinue their service for a while."

... Gosh, I called Orcon again this time to make the request, but was met with "sorry. Your cancellation order was backtracked to the day you notified us, and was put through. It has been done and the system says that your service was discontinued on the 24th of January. And sorry, we cannot put you back on service." Hmmm, that didn't make me feel any better, but it was certainly an understandable reply.

So what should I do now? I guess I will just buy a dongle (mobile Internet) to last me a week and ask TelstraClear for the compensation for the inconvenience caused by the delay. My next action was to call TelstraClear with that plan in my mind. I called them, and a customer service representative (sorry, I can't remember her name) answered. Her first reply was, bad luck there, but we've done everything we can and you just need to wait. Wait, what? Really? So I brought up the subject of compensation for the inconvenience caused. Here is the response that really surprised and angered me. I will use C for the customer representative. And please understand I'm only reenacting the gesture of the conversation and the following conversation is not verbatim.

ME: Regarding the matter, can I get some sort of compensation for the inconvenience?
C: Sure. There is nothing we can do now, so you will need to wait for the matter to be solved first.
ME: Okay. Just for argument's sake, how much compensation can I expect?
C: Let's say that because of this problem, you are left without Internet connection for 7 days. Then, at the end of billing cycle, your compensation will be paid in credit according to our compensation scheme. You will be paid back 7 * (monthly bill/30).
ME: ??? what about the compensation for the inconvenience and extra cost incurred because of the delay? At the moment, I actually won't have Internet connection for I don't know how long exactly.
C: NO. We ARE compensating you for the inconvenience. We are not charging you for the exact number of days you don't get to use the service.
ME: Let me give you an example. What if I really need to use the Internet during this period and by a dongle, or mobile Internet, which might cost me anywhere around 100 dollars? Can I expect to be reimbursed for that?
C: Well, if you decide to buy mobile phone (I'm just deriding her a bit here, because she didn't understand mobile Internet or dongle and thought I was talking about buying mobile phone to use the Internet) because of the inconvenience, that's your choice, we will still give you the compensation for the 7 days.

And then, the conversation went nowhere from there. I was saying that that's not a compensation for the inconvenience caused and she kept saying, "no. Instead of charging you for the whole month, we are compensating you back for the days you didn't get to use the service." I asked to talk to someone with more authority, but her supervisor wasn't there and she said that I would get exactly the same reply.

Because I originally signed up for 12 months contract, and I didn't like the look of it already, I tried to talk to someone from the "retention team" and see if I can get out of contract. I was trying to see if I can get out of it if I didn't like the service later. I was talking to her about getting out of contract, and I asked if I could get out of contract. She said that I should be able to before the connection was setup, but I would need to do it quickly. At that point, I gave up on even asking if I can try for a couple of months and then get out of contract.

Well, the bottom line is, I was told, "sorry. The problem is at our end. For that, we will be gracious enough not to charge you for the service for the days you don't get to use our service." Honestly, they acted like I was an unreasonable customer, and was making too much fuss out of it. Was I that unreasonable for asking for a small compensation for the inconvenience? Sure, these days, no one uses the Internet on daily basis, so it's unreasonable to ask for THAT MUCH compensation (it's not like I asked for a couple of thousand dollars).

I would like to hear other people's opinions on the matter.

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BDFL - Memuneh
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  Reply # 572964 24-Jan-2012 21:13
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Wait until you get the first and second bill, then explain again and ask them to credit it.

It is easier for them to zero existing accounts than put your account in credit.

I don't think it is unreasonable, but it is unlikely and entirely at their discretion, you just have to go about it the right way. They get many calls of this nature every day, and the vast majority walk away empty handed.

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  Reply # 572982 24-Jan-2012 22:42
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If the service is not connected yet and you don't want to stay with Telstraclear, then you can probably cancel without disconnection fees. However you will want to check the terms and conditions or any contract you agreed to.

You should only pay for the service once it is connected, so the pro-rated charges while it isn't connected being waived would be a minimum step.

As for any additional 'credits' -thats a difficult one. Consumer broadband is usually provided on a best effects basis (however there is the CGA). It is my experience signing up to broadband and moving houses that a disclosure statement is usually read out that covers some of the aspects of disruptions, not being able to provide service, the inability to promise availability until the service has been connected etc... it pays to check that particularly when switching providers (as there can be some disruption although shouldn't be extremely long).

You might be able to get some mobile broadband usage covered if the disruption significantly exceeded the time-frames that you were told but ultimately thats between you and Telstraclear. Business grade broadband that provides better certainity and SLA's for downtime tend to be higher priced.

In saying that - there is a complaints process with most ISP's that you should follow if you are getting the run-around as that will usually help you out. Telstraclear is a member of the TDR service which means if an agreement can't be met, it can be escalated to an independent service who will figure out what needs to be done. To kick that process off, you need to lodge a complaint with your ISP (details on the process can be found here).

I strongly suggest that if you're still not fully connected with Telstraclear (or if you want to take this further) - raise a formal complaint and get a reference number. Make sure you outline whats happened so far, the dates, and what outcome you want.




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  Reply # 572997 24-Jan-2012 23:41
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When you found out you were still on Orcon, I would have called Telstraclear to see what was happening, rather than call Orcon. Hindsight, yes, but get info from each ISP before deciding what to do. You had already identified a potential problem.

The title to the thread isn't actually TC's Compensation Policy, that is what you are wanting.

If you are going onto contract, you cannot expect to get a trial period.

Issues can happen, and as you are on Residential broadband, that is a best efforts service as already noted. Sorry to be a wet blanket, but I don't feel you have case for compensation, and I feel too many expect compensation. Compensation is cost recovery, and you won't have a cost for the week you aren't connected.

I would call TC, and ask if they can escalate to get you connected sooner, that is a good resolution, particularly if Orcon has disconnected you. They may be able to shortcut the winback process by connecting you on a new connection basis, rather than a winback, in order to fastrack you.



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  Reply # 573008 25-Jan-2012 00:44
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@gzt
That's exactly where the matter stands at the moment. I guess there really isn't all that much I can do about it and there are quite a few people who simply put up with it in silence. Sigh... I'm seriously concerned about the quality of service and customer care in general here.

@cokemaster
Thank you so much! You understood exactly what I was talking about and gave me the most helpful advice. I'm glad that someone else also thinks that waiving the charges for the service when the service isn't even provided is a given. And thank you for letting me know about the complaint process.

@tdgeek
Yeah. In hindsight, I should have called TC beforehand. That's the first thing that came to my mind when I found out about the degree of the problem. I thought that the rest of your reply was a little bit inconsiderate; it's not a big deal, so I just hope that you can try to think about the whole matter in a slightly different way.

Well, I know that I cannot expect a trial period if I'm going into a contract. However, I was only thinking about pushing that as a compromise between TC (no further compensation) and me (reimburse me the minimum amount of compensation for the inconvenience).

Compensation is about cost recovery as you pointed out. However, I believe that "costs" in this context should cover opportunity costs. And I personally don't think TC is giving it its "BEST efforts." Let me raise one hypothetical case.

Let's say you are changing your power provider during the winter. You are suddenly left without power for a week, simply because somebody didn't do a proper paperwork. You are freezing in your room at night. You have to eat outside for a week. You cannot do anything at night, because it's so dark. And of course, forget about using your computer altogether. A week later, the power company proceeds to give you 20 dollars credit because they think that that would be the reasonable amount of power usage I might have used. Great. All problems solved, right?

Sure. I would be UNREASONABLE to expect TC to compensate me if their is a regional network outage. If their system didn't work because there was a power outage in the entire Auckland area, I will be okay with whatever best service they can provide. However, in this case, someone didn't do their job; the system wasn't maintained properly. They can't say, "oops, we made a mistake. But what's been done is done. Now that we said we are sorry, you cannot hold us responsible for it." Really, in any business, you have certain expectations about the product you sell or buy. And in this case, TC isn't certainly meeting my expectations (which I hardly think are unreasonable).

I might have sounded a bit harsh, but it's hard to help. I didn't like the customer representatives' attitude of "we said we were sorry. Just let it go," and I saw a similar tone in your post, so I would be lying if I said the post didn't make me feel uncomfortable.

@all
I talked to Orcon a bit later around 10pm, and talked to someone who might have solved my dilemma. Although their system said "cancellation complete," he said that he can still send a request to stop the cancellation order. Well, I still have my connection at the moment. I just hope that the request has gone through, or goes through in time. That's a huge contrast to another customer care representative at Orcon, who said that the cancellation was complete, and there was NOTHING she can do. Well, I can't really blame her, but all I'm saying is, "look, is it really that hard to spare a couple of minutes to do something extra to make a customer feel at ease?" Now, that WAS a great customer care service (this time, I'm referring to the guy who I talked at 10pm, and definitely not being sarcastic).

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  Reply # 573017 25-Jan-2012 06:46
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I can see and understand your frustration on Telstra's failure to switch you over by the specified date but to be honest it does not seem to be an uncommon problem and not limited to Telstra either. You just have to keep at them and it will happen. Unless the plan is significantly cheaper then what you are paying now you should not be out of pocket because of the delay and if you are that is something that I would expect compensation for.

On the other hand am sorry but I cannot understand how you can expect Telstra to reimburse you for the loss of internet access. They did not cancel your existing service. You did. There is a careful process that ISP's have to follow to make sure that a new ISP can start their service as the old one is terminated. Instead when it seemed that the switch over might not happen when you expected it instead of talking to Telstraclear to make sure they got onto resolving it or at least giving you a new date you cancelled your existing service. I fail to see how that is their fault?








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  Reply # 573060 25-Jan-2012 08:56
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I read all this and I am now thinking... Someone at Orcon has put a "halt" in the disconnection. If this is going to happen or not, we have to see (knowing how help desk people usually say something but don't act on the words).

The big problem though will be when the TelstraClear disconnection request comes through, and Orcon claims they don't have a notice from you - and charge you for something. It may happen, hope not.

Seriously though, it could've been many different problems. When you change ISPs it may include changing ports, or cabinets if the new ISP have their ow gear on Exchanges (if you are not on a cabinet). Sometimes there's a queue because the exchange is full - this is out of the control of the ISP. Perhaps this is what the TCL person meant when they said there was a problem.

Who knows?

harrison9746: I didn't like the customer representatives' attitude of "we said we were sorry. Just let it go," and I saw a similar tone in your post, so I would be lying if I said the post didn't make me feel uncomfortable.


Unless you get a contact or reply from TelstraClear here in the forums, the only thing you will get is people giving opinions, like it or not. And everyone has a different one. Sometimes they will not be the same as yours.





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  Reply # 573070 25-Jan-2012 09:22
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harrison9746

I'm sorry if my post made you feel uncomfortable, it wasn't my intention to come across is a "just suck it up" way. My intention was that these moves involve a lot, as MF stated. Often, the move is relativey seanless, but there can be process issues, mistake issues, technical issues, so my expectation is not to expect a switch off/switch on situation. I don't think it is a fair comparison to compare to power providers, as power is a critical service, so it has a harsher level of process, although I don't think there is a physical channge, only a billing change.The key is to realise that you may or may not get a downtime, and do what you can to lessen that, by checking ststus with both ISP's, and as you have done, talking to them if there is an issue, so they can work to minimise that.

I recall opportunity cost, Economocs 101! But it is only residential internet, priced accordingly. If you moved address and Sky didnt connect you for a week, would you expect opportunity cost compensation for loss of enjoyment for missing out on movies or sport on Sky in that week? Unfortunate, yes, but at the residential level, not compensatory. If however they had ongoing issues that went on and on for weeks, no doubt they would give you some freebies

But glad to see you are online and getting there, cheers.

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  Reply # 573083 25-Jan-2012 09:49
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harrison9746: Hello,

I decided to move to TelstraClear last month...


Hi Harrison, sorry to hear about this. Please use the email button to send me your customer number (if you know it), address the service is for, and your name and contact details (phone number/email etc) and I'll get one of the team to look into this for you.

Gary



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  Reply # 573105 25-Jan-2012 10:38
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Gary, thank you for the reply. I got as far as I need to find out asid from orcon and get back to tc. Unfortunately, orcon is having problem with their call management system and their call centre is down... what are the chances...

By the way I was told that communication between two teams take two business days, so it would be nice if you can help speed things up. I've got a sister in korea, who's flying to switzerland this friday. I would love to get at least land line working.

I can't find email button though. Can anyone tell me how to pm or email a member? I only have access to the internet on my mobile though. I might not be looking at the same web page layout.

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  Reply # 573107 25-Jan-2012 10:42
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harrison9746: I can't find email button though. Can anyone tell me how to pm or email a member? I only have access to the internet on my mobile though. I might not be looking at the same web page layout.


You are probably using the m.geekzone.co.nz site. Click the link at the bottom to switch to the full Geekzone site and visit this discussion again:

 




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  Reply # 573171 25-Jan-2012 14:04
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harrison9746: Gary, thank you for the reply.


Hi Harrison - I have sent you a message here on GZ that has my email contact.

Cheers, Gary

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  Reply # 573733 26-Jan-2012 17:19
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On the other hand am sorry but I cannot understand how you can expect Telstra to reimburse you for the loss of internet access. They did not cancel your existing service. You did. There is a careful process that ISP's have to follow to make sure that a new ISP can start their service as the old one is terminated. Instead when it seemed that the switch over might not happen when you expected it instead of talking to Telstraclear to make sure they got onto resolving it or at least giving you a new date you cancelled your existing service. I fail to see how that is their fault?



I'm under the impression that because his internet was working Tuesday, and Telstraclear were meant to do the relevant work the previous Sunday - they never got in touch saying there were any problems, so cancelling Orcon seems to be a good step. The poster was under the impression they were using a TelstraClear connection.

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  Reply # 573833 26-Jan-2012 20:15
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I, myself, would be very much like harrison9746 and request compensation. If I worked at TC and were handling the case, I'd completely support your request. But hey, that's just me.

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  Reply # 573870 26-Jan-2012 22:08
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StevieT:
I'm under the impression that because his internet was working Tuesday, and Telstraclear were meant to do the relevant work the previous Sunday - they never got in touch saying there were any problems, so cancelling Orcon seems to be a good step. The poster was under the impression they were using a TelstraClear connection.


It is always easy to say these things in hindsight but if it were me if I had logged into my old ISP and could see the connection was still active not to mention never having been contacted by the Telstra provisioning team or doing anything with the modem, I would have contacted Telstra to see what was wrong. I certainly would not cancel the connection that I am (confirmed from the web site) still using.

Hopefully harrison9746 is being sorted out by Telstra with all urgency as it sounds like they have now lost internet.







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