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2010 Oct 07 elly-miang


Guy Blade Guy Blade---00:30:00


How to fail
This morning, I got up and was unable to access the internet via my Charter cable line. I assumed it was my router acting up again, but after a few attempts realized something else was wrong. I called up their technical support line and began going through the automated system. Their automated system had me do exactly what I had previously been doing before I got fed up with it and asked for an agent.

After confirming my identity, the agent informed me that my service was suspended due to an outstanding balance. This surprised me as I had set up automated payment of my bill about two months ago. The agent then transfered me to billing who informed me that my automated payment had been "suspended" rather than activated, but offered no reason as to why that might be the case. The billing agent even informed me that the notes on the account didn't include a reason why the automated payment hadn't been properly activated. She then attempted to charge me a $2 fee for "service reactiviation" which I balked at given the fact that it was they who failed to bill me properly.

Points of failure in this conversation:

1. The automated payment of my bills was blocked for no known reason and without informing me.
2. The automated help line failed to recognize that my service was disabled due to a billing issue and instead tried to walk me through nominal troubleshooting.
3. Transferring from one agent to another (even the automated to human technical support agents) requires reauthentication at each step. This led to me providing my phone number thrice and my address twice.
4. The agent attempted to charge me a fee for what amounts to their own incompetence.

Summary: Fuck Charter.

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