Poorly Running the High Speed Monopoly
PULLMAN, WASHINGTON -- I live in a fairly small college town where the only option for any sort of internet connection over 5 megs a second is Time Warner Cable. This is unfortunate because that it is an extremely poorly managed business where mistakes go forever uncorrected and frustration is met with the silent treatment.
I've been a Time Warner customer one way or another for about 3 years now, and for the full three years I've been saying the following: I wish we had Comcast here. But since that isn't the case I've had to put up with Time Warner without any other option to connect to the internet with a halfway reliable connection.
I say halfway reliable because if you live in an apartment complex you can expect several lost packets and highly inconsistent transfer rates, but if you live in a house or duplex you can expect fairly decent rates.
My biggest complaint however lies within the terribly uncoordinated customer service, chock full of miscommunication and underestimation. When my roommate and I prepared to move into our new apartment we called Time Warner to have our service moved, which was no problem until the unit we were supposed to move into flooded. Naturally, my roommate called to cancel the move and continue our service at our current location at the time. Time Warner assured us this was no problem and canceled the move from July 1st to August 1st, knowing we would be in our new apartment by then.
However on July 1st, the day we were supposed to move into our new apartment, Time Warner visited our new place and called us, informing we had missed the appointment we knew we had cancelled, and on top of that, they disconnected the internet at the apartment we were living in until our new one was fixed, so we were without the services we were paying for.
We called Time Warner to let them know of this mistake, and they told us it would be weeks until they could come re-connect the internet at our old apartment. After several phone calls expressing our disapproval Time Warner finally sent a technician days later, instead of weeks, to re-establish the connection by removing the service blocker, which took maybe 2 minutes.
I would have been halfway pleased with this "prompt" resolution to their mistake, unfortunately Time Warner saw this reconnection not as an appointment to rectify a mistake, but to permanently change our service to the same address we had kept. So, much to our chagrin, when August 1st came around Time Warner was nowhere in sight. We called to find out why they had missed the appointment only to find that they had canceled it altogether.
Once again we called them over and over to have them come fix the mistakes they had made, only to have them assure us that it was a busy time of year and it would have to be 12 days until they could come reconnect us. After being transferred to what I can only guess was half the staff, telling them that I knew for a fact it took 2 minutes to remove their service blocker, they told me that there was absolutely no way to squeeze in these 2 minutes to rectify the mistakes they had made over the last month until August 12th.
After several more phone calls and a lie to a customer service representative I finally got transferred to a supervisor who was out of his office. So I had to leave a message, explaining the situation and letting him know I was very much looking forward to talking to someone in charge. He hasn't called me back.
The part that bugs me the most is that they are the only high speed internet provider around, and whether or not they know it they should at least make an effort to make up for their mistakes, since I know that they happen to everyone. But instead these mistakes are left to be made without any sort of compensation while you have to talk to a CS representative who knows nothing about computers, the internet, or the services the company he works for provides except for what the booklet of pre-chosen responses to frequently asked questions tells him.
So basically what I hope you'll pull away from this is that if you are looking for high speed internet, Time Warner is the way to go because it's the ONLY way to go. But prepare to be reminded constantly of this, because during your tenure with this company you'll constantly wish for something better which doesn't exist. But if you're one of the lucky few who has the option of going with Comcast, don't consider Time Warner for a second.