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December 09, 15:43 | Comments (5)

Moving a TDC ADSL line (a survival guide)

TDC serves more than 100.000 ADSL customers, so you'd think they had basic procedures down, like moving a line from one location to another. It's an all digital operation that doesn't require a visit by a technician. But oh no. Since Wednesday, I've been told eight different stories as to what my problem is:

  1. "I don't know what's wrong, tech will make it work by Thuesday"
  2. "We have registred your move twice — that's why it doesn't work"
  3. "It doesn't work yet? That's strange. It should! Must be on your end"
  4. "Of course it doesn't work. You have the Wrong ADSL modem. Get another one at our store"
  5. "It doesn't work because you have the old static IP address. I'll update it now and it'll work in 5-15 minutes"
  6. "No, no, we only update the IP table once every day at noon. It'll work at 12:00"
  7. "You should be getting the new static IP address. I'll have some one call you in 1-2 hours"
  8. "There was a problem with the new static IP, I'll give you a dynamic one for now"

Annoying, yet revealing. When moving an ADSL line from one address to another, you need to:

  • Possibly get a new modem: Some centrals use equipment that's only compatible with the SpeedStream modem. If you have an old Siemens setup, it needs to be replaced. This replacement is free, but requires a trip to the TDC store.
  • Have your static IP changed: This doesn't happen automatically on an move order.
  • Ensure no duplication in the move order: This is not something that's immediatly visible to the call-center operator, so ask them to check for it specifically.

Just as importantly, you need to know what not accept:

  • No timeline on problem resolution: There's always a timeline, but you won't be given one before applying pressure. You can use this timeline to expedite resolution on subsequent call.
  • Wait on emails written by the call center to operations: The call center can call the operations department directly if they feel the issue is pressing enough. Make them do that and call you back afterwards.
  • That the problem is on your end: This is a cop-out when the call center doesn't immediatly knows what to do about the problem. Have them walk you through their tutorials on what to do, and when they fail, force them to escalate the issue.

It's also important to realize that you're responsible for collecting all the information and fixes needed to resolve your problem. It's like stiching your own solution quilt together from a dozen patches. TDC call-center staff is trained to resolve calls, which is all about getting you off the line as soon as possible. There's no overarching issue management.

The lack of issue management is bad for customer satisfaction and bad for business. The average cost of handling a support call is around 40 kr. The cost of my ADSL subscription is 15 kr. per day. So my eight calls have cost 320 kr. and the week of refundable downtime amounts to 105 kr. That's more than 400 kr. that the lackluster handling of my move order have cost TDC. On top of that, my willingness to switch provider has been greatly amplified.

I'm now officially a discontent customer. Say, doesn't those Tele2 deals look pretty good?

December 04, 20:35 | Comments (18)

Wifiquette rule #1: Restrict by reference

As private wifi spots lay claim to an ever growing span of band, it's paramount that a sense of wifiquette is established. The emerging social wifi commands it.

Most fundemental to the rules of wifiquette are those revolving around restriction of access. It is hence forth considered selfish to shield a signal behind an unguessable password.

Instead, access restrictions should be applied as a scale of reference difficulty. Those of giving nature will pick an easy reference, those of a secluded nature will pick a hard reference. The only absolute rule is:

Honor the reference

You honer a reference by staying consistent to the universe from which the reference was chosen.

For example, there's a wifi signal in my apartment by the name of "Minasmoria". This is of course a reference to the dwarfen mines in Lord of The Rings through which our fellowship wish to pass. In the movie, entrance is guarded by the riddle "Speak 'friend' and enter" to which the answer is the Elvish word for friend, "mellon". Then, in order to uphold rule one of wifiquette, the broadcaster of "Minasmoria" should have picked "mellon" as his password.

Personally, I've picked an even easier reference: "Deadly Sins". Use the comments to make a guess at my password.