The Curse of the Clueless ISP and the Return of Dial-up

RJ11 plug and cableLast month when I went to pay my telephone bill, I discovered that my telephone and broadband service provider (the same company) was double-charging me for my broadband service. Back in March 2007, I upgraded my broadband service to get a static IP address and since then, the ISP have been charging me for both services. Over the course six months, I had overpaid something in the region of £200.00! The billing department at the ISP was happy enough to credit me the money and apologised for the mistake.

However, you can imagine my shock and frustration when I tried to jump online last week only to find that my internet connection was down. Hmm … what could the problem be? I rang the various 0800, 0845, 0808, 08whatever numbers, keyed in the various ‘To speak to someone about something they know nothing about, press 1. To speak to someone who will provide useless and outdated information, press 2’ numbers to finally get some clerk on the phone who really doesn’t know how my broadband was cancelled or how we can get it back online. After several lengthy periods on hold, I was flabbergasted to be told that my broadband account had been cancelled on the same day that I asked for them to stop double-billing me. Apparently, if the ISP couldn’t bill me twice for the same service, they didn’t want to bill me at all!

So, after what seemed ages on the telephone, I was advised that my broadband service had been re-ordered and that it would take a few days to come online. In the meantime, I would be provided with free dial-up service. Blimey! Back to dial-up! 44.6KB per second!

Urrrrggghh! I can’t complete this blog without my blood boiling! Dial-up! The incompetency of the ISP was enough to make me scream! My therapist says writing about this is good for me, but it only seems to be making my blood bubble in frustration.

And, yes, 5 days later I am still on dial-up.

2 thoughts on “The Curse of the Clueless ISP and the Return of Dial-up”

  1. Liam,

    Sounds like a return to the dark ages. I would think that dial-up makes the internet not even worth having.

    Here is hoping your way back to broadband!!


  2. Hey Mark,

    Actually, the dial-up service was better than I had remembered from several years ago. In this recent bout of internet nostalgia (i.e., experiencing dial-up), I was generally getting a 45KB connection.

    The 45 KB speed wasn’t great for research-like surfing, but it was passable (given the circumstances) for going directly to a specific page or for checking emails. I say it was passable, but I should mention that when I tried to email a 6MB file to a magazine for a time-sensitive advert, the email took about an hour to leave my computer.

    I suppose on the plus side of the dial-up experience, it gave me real insight to the need to keep web pages light and image files small. Poorly coded websites (with lots of nested tables, for example), take comparatively long to download.

    Anyway, I am now back on broadband — thankfully. Long may it continue!

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