Sunday, July 20, 2008

British Telecon

Hurrah! I'm back online again.

After the buffoons decided to cut off my phone line, I made the fatal mistake of phoning BT Customer Services (If any department is wrongly named, it is this one.) Endless recorded voices describe option after option, none of which ever mention having your phone line disconnected. Eventually I would be put through to a call centre in either India or the UK.

It's easy to tell which is which. If the operator is called 'Kevin' or 'William' and wishes you a cheerful 'Good morning, Sir!' when it is six thirty in the evening, then you are definitely talking to India. Immediately ask them how long it takes to get from Bombay to Mumbai for your own amusement. They will then regretfully inform you that you need to redial and select option 2. Who's laughing now then, eh?

On the other hand, if you can't understand a single word they say and you are told that you have come through to the wrong department, then you are dealing with the UK. Demand to be put through to India immediately. This confuses them and you may accidentally end up speaking to someone high enough up the chain to actually do something useful.

More often however, they will simply wear you down to a state of screaming incoherance. I phoned for nine consecutive days before giving up, ditching the fools and buying a little thing from "3" that plugs into your USB Port and receives the internet via a mobile connection. It's been fine so far and costs 15 quid a month. If they offered to pay me, I would praise it even more.


Anonymous said...

Ah BT no I must not start - life is too short.
Glad to have you back

Anonymous said...

Welcome back. I think I will get one of those things.

Steve said...

If you get through to someone called Kevin, you've most likely got the prime minister of Australia (just ask Lenny Henry, he'll agree with me).

I fully agree with you though. I've just lost my job of 24 years with the Australian equivalent of BT. My replacement will be in Malaysia.

Jane Smith said...

Our phone line comes in underground, and last Saturday it got severed by a digger while we put in some new drains.

I asked BT if we should dig a new trench for the replacement cable to go in, while we had a digger up here, and was told they couldn't answer that as it was a Saturday and their engineers didn't work at weekends. We dug it anyway, which was just as well as BT would have had to arrange for a contractor to come and do the work, all at great extra cost.

When my husband spoke to Open Reach (BT's engineering service) the following Monday to chase up the repair, he explained again that the cable had been severed in two places. He was told that the engineers would need to visit to asses the damage, and that the severed cable was not necessarily the cause of our problem.

My, how we laughed.

Anonymous said...

Ah so true, the joys of BT.

I had a 18 month battle with BT trying to charge me over £350 for a service they hadn't yet provided me with.

After wasting over 30 hours (no, really, THIRTY HOURS) on the phone to their Customer No-Service dpt, i was forced to take the complaint all the way to the CEO (a bit of creative "research" found me his e-mail address) to get it resolved (and it still took nearly another 3 months from there!).

Anonymous said...

Thank God I'm not the only one. BT screwed up my phone line and cut off my internet which in the end took me 5 WEEKS to get back.

It's impossible to speak to "someone in authority" and you're lucky to get Kevin or Steve. The employees for whom English is not a first language are only really able to deal with very simple queries - anything complex, like my situation was going completely over their heads.

So much for deregulation - BT still has all the other providers by the b**ls.