When I got home from work today there was a voicemail from Eastlink, our phone, cable and Internet provider, asking us to call their Accounts Receivable department. So I got on the phone and talked to an agent who ultimately had no idea why they’d called originally, and suggested that I was the victim of their system placing random calls to innocent customers.
When I got off the phone I went to use the Internet, and found that we had no service. I did the usual checks of the wifi access points and the cable-modem, but nothing jumped out at me. Later in the evening I phoned technical support, explained the mysterious call earlier in the day, and was assured that there was no problem with my account. They asked me to call back when I could be in front of the cable-modem.
So, just now, I trudged back down to the basement, got tech support on the horn again, talked to a different (and very helpful) chap who told me that my “modem had been deactivated” on their end. He put me on hold for 5 minutes and came back on the line to explain what had happened.
When our ISN service was switched over to Eastlink service last week we ended up with the original ISN-provided cable-modem when Eastlink replaced it with their own. The installer made mention of the fact that we should return it to ISN, and told us to call them to find out where. So a few days later I called ISN and was told that I had to return it to the Charlottetown Mall Eastlink kiosk.
As I’m not in the habit of going to the Charlottetown Mall every day, nor indeed am I regularly in its neighbourhood, I put the cable-modem on the dining room table with plans to take it out there this weekend.
Apparently this wasn’t soon enough for Eastlink: they decided to punish me for my tardiness by cutting off my Internet service. Without warning. They then made matters worse but bungling the follow up.
I knew that the halcyon days of ISN customer service were gone, I just didn’t realize how quickly and arbitrarily the faceless corporateness of Eastlink would manifest itself.
Sigh. I’ve been a Eastlink customer for more than 7 years, and an ISN customer for more than 10 years. It’s not like I’m selling my second cable-modem on eBay and making off with the proceeds. I can understand cutting off service after, say 60 days and a few phone calls. But after 8 days? 17 years of customer goodwill eroded seriously by a single careless act.