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Theft by Large Corporations
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So I just got off the phone with the wonderful people at Verizon Online Billing Center (800) 567-6789. The reason I had called was I received a bill dated 10 months after my service began, informing me my 12 month introductory rate period was over and I was now being switched to their regular rate.

The reason this happened is, a year ago, I decided to take advantage of Verizon's $14.95 per mo. introductory rate on DSL. When I called to enroll, they told me I could only take advantage of the deal if I had Verizon phone service as well, so I went with a package of DSL and Verizon landline service, and cancelled my former phone service with Cox. The problem began when Verizon never came out to hook up the phone line (required for DSL service). They were however, efficient at billing me promptly from the time I initially requested service. I had to repeatedly call to eventually get someone to actually come out and connect a Verizon phone line (I was told more than once someone would come out, but no one did); it was two months later when someone finally came to my house and connected service.

This entire two months I had been emailing people left and right from Verizon's "customer service" site, and phoned several customer service reps, trying to explain that I'm being billed for Verizon DSL and phone service, but no one has come and hooked it up yet.

Each of these emails either explained they couldn't help, or told me I had to call the billing dept. who would refer me to someone else, and so forth in an endless chain of explaining to me that my contract had begun, and that I was therefore obligated to pay. Each phone rep gave me the same run-around, explaining there was nothing they could do for me, and ignored my explaining that I shouldn't have to pay for service that wasn't provided, and that I should be billed from the date my service began rather than the from day they began my service-less "contract," by repeating phrases over an over, such as "our records show your service began 2 months ago, sir," often in increasingly rude and berating tones.

When I finally got someone to come out and connect service, I cancelled my previous phone service with another company (Cox). Eight days later Verizon disconnected my phone service. That's right, I received only eight days of phone service before Verizon, disregarding of all my emails and phone calls regarding their billing error, disconnected my service.

So then I needed to get my phone service back. I called and reached a rep who steadfastly refused to even acknowledge the situation, even when I asked her if she thought it made sense that I was disconnected after only eight days of service, and, after--in no uncertain terms--letting me know she was no longer interested in taking my call, and after being asked if I could speak to someone else and explaining to me that "there is no one else," told me she could not help me if I couldn't give her my account number (I had called from work--remember my phone was deliberately disconnected which was the primary reason I was calling--and I didn't have my account number at the time nor did I remember it)--this, she decided, was her out--her means of getting rid of me; I told her I'd give her any other identifying information she wanted, but she repeatedly explained to me they weren't allowed to give out any information without an account number (which was false as I'll explain later) and kept repeating that, thinking it would end my call. I tried to explain to her that I wasn't asking for any information--I didn't need any information--I just wanted someone at Verizon to have the decency to look into it and restore my phone service. I didn't even need to be the customer in question for them to look up the records on that customer, recognize the discrepancy between when I was billed and the date my service began, and amend it. The part about needing an account number was a not true, because every time I called a representative, the first thing they asked for was my "phone number or account number, please," and my phone number often sufficed.

To this day my phone delivers a very fuzzy service which Verizon blames on my residence despite my previous service (with Cox) being loud and clear, through the same wiring at my house. That fact still did not deter Verizon reps from blaming my home's wiring.

For some reason, after 11-12 of these encounters, I eventually reached a reasonable rep on the phone who credited my account for 2 months. I was so impressed that I asked to speak to her manager so I could give her a verbal commendation, and her manager told me they take such accolades into account at employee reviews.

Still, after that experience it became obvious to me that Verizon had surrounded itself with layers of protection from its customers, especially the ones it was blatantly and arrogantly stealing money from, in the name of "service."

So, back to the present, today I called to ask for them to once again amend the discrepancy, since I didn't receive a full year of the agreed-upon introductory rate, and was again shouted down by a rep who, in proper Verizon customer service rep fashion, kept repeating to me when my "contract date" began, no matter how many times I tried to explain to her that even Verizon finally acknowledged my service began two months beyond that contract start date, via their refund, and she also informed me there was no one else I could talk to, which turned out to be another ridiculous statement because a few minutes later she was putting me through to her manager with the parting words "but you WON'T be getting a credit!"

The manager who then came on the line began repeating the same lines about how their records show my contract began at such-and-such time and that further, I was "already refunded" the amount for two months of no service. I tripped him up in getting him to agree I was only getting 10 months of the twelve months Verizon's offer promised, but of course that was followed by, "but your contract started at such-and-such date, and we can't change that" mantra. I told him "they sure train you people well," and let it go, thus allowing yet another untouchable corporation steal my money. Of course there's a fee for early termination of the account.

From this experience it seems obvious that Verizon has purposefully and painstakingly erected layers of insulation from customers (those trying to prevent Verizon stealing from them anyway.) It's as though they've provided a rat's maze, designed to appear customer-oriented on the outside whereas you can easily go in (Verizon ads show a legion of supporters standing behind a customer, right?), but all the paths only lead back out. It's very difficult to find any genuinely responsive corporate contact information in order to effect any accountability. It seems customers can only reach these insulating layers designed for the one-way flow of money. Verizon's priorities are revealed by the fact their billing division was extremely prompt, while their service to my residence was nonexistent, for two months. It's obvious to me after dealing with Verizon's email contact points and its customer reps that they're trained to dispense with customers as efficiently as possible, and to not allow any flow of money in any wrong direction, regardless of whether or not the customer has a case. I've read before they're provided incentives to implement this policy, which would explain the emotional and berating kinds of temperaments one can encounter from them. It's telling how disrespected customers are these days--gone are the days where businesses' keys to success in the marketplace involved the adage of the customer always being right. I really wonder if Verizon would do better in the long run putting resources into providing service instead of these bastions of protection from customers. But I really doubt this isn't happening with their competitors as well. Banks certainly operate the same way; the more layers of this one-way insulation they have, the more they can bank on percentages of customers not noticing they're being ripped off, or if they do, another percentage will become frustrated or discouraged in trying to recoup their losses against this customer barricade and give up, the vast majority of whom probably don't have the time or resources to take legal action for relatively small losses; yet all those losses multiply to amount to a not-so-honorable element of profit for large corporations, who are really being aloud to run amok these days in so many ways, to the point where they're heavily influential in writing their own rules beyond accountability to the general public; they really need to be reined in.
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User Replies:
Pomona Guy on 08/21/2007:
You are way too stressed out over this. Yes, you got screwed, but so what? You really have no alternate.
One-Eyed Willie on 08/21/2007:
So you were satisfied with Cox? I've always had Verizon, never had any problems, and I don't think I would want to be serviced by Cox.
Anonymous on 08/21/2007:
One-Eyed Willie - it's hard to beat cox.
old fart on 08/21/2007:
It could be worse, you could have Charter Cable!
JHanson on 08/21/2007:
To Pomona Guy: as a personal experience it's nothing to stress over, but as yet another example of growing corporate arrogance going unchecked, it's an experience I felt should be shared. Outright theft (multiply my experience by how many customers?) as a corporate revenue stream is something we should all be concerned about. I'm old enough to remember when customers were appreciated and respected rather than shook down for their money and then taking advantage of customers' lack of recourse, and to have it all set up systematically like Verizon does. It's wrong and should be stopped.
voiceoff on 08/23/2007:
A great writeup of a very harrowing but typical experience with Verizon. Very few are as fastidious in getting their needs met as you were but the work involved was huge. We have enough stress in this world without polluting our air with more in this fashion.
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Verizon service is AWFUL
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WASHINGTON, DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA -- On May 6, 2006 I called Verizon to set up a local telephone service account and a DSL account for my new apartment. I was told both phone and internet service would be up and running by May 25, 2006.

I moved into the new apartment May 21, 2006. As May 25 approached I called Verizon to check the status of the phone and internet service to make sure everything was in order, as I had not yet received my set-up package in the mail or the wireless router I had ordered (which is supposed to arrive several days before your service ready date).

Verizon told me that my order was “on hold” for an unknown reason, so Verizon cancelled my order, without attempting to call or e-mail me (they had both my e-mail address and multiple phone numbers from when I ordered the service). After about an hour of unfruitful conversation trying to figure out why this happened and to reinstate my order on an expedited basis, Verizon told me the only thing they could do was to start everything over with a new phone number and a new order.

Given no other options (despite the fact that I had already given the old number to everyone, including important business and financial contacts) I re-ordered the phone and internet service. They told me that it would not be ready until mid-to-late June. I explained to them that I had ordered the service at the beginning of May because as I was working from home for the month of June, having functioning internet was essential to my job. Therefore not having internet service for the first three weeks of June was unacceptable. They told me that I needed to just place the order and wait a few days to call back to try to expedite the service because they could not alter the computer-generated service ready date. The Verizon employee assured me that she had noted all of this on my account and when I called back it would be easy to change the service-ready date.

When I called Verizon DSL a few days later the Verizon employee informed me that there was no record of my mistakenly cancelled order or my previous hour-long phone call and that she would be unable to expedite the service because the phone service was not yet set up.

I then called Verizon local phone service office that also had no record of my previous conversations with Verizon and again told me that she was unable to expedite my service and I would just have to wait until June 21 for my service to start. I explained to her that this was a unique circumstance and the result of a problem caused by Verizon and that I absolutely needed the service to start in the beginning of June. The Verizon employee told me she would look into my options and would call me back the following day between 12:00 and 1:00 p.m.

I waited for the call the following day and when I did not hear from anyone I called Verizon at 4:00 p.m. The employee informed me that there was nothing she could do to help me because it was after 4:00 and all the managers had gone home for the evening.

I called again the next day and spoke to the local phone service office again and they again said there was nothing they could do to expedite my service and that I should receive my materials in a few weeks and service would be ready June 21. I asked if I needed to be present for them to turn on the service. They said “no” and that everything was done remotely.

A few weeks later I received my wireless router in the mail. A few days after that I came home from a trip out of town to find a note my landlord had received from Verizon. The note said that a technician had come by my apartment to service my phone, but was unable to do so because I was not home at the time. I was extremely confused since Verizon had explicitly told me they would not need to enter my apartment to start my service.

At this point, it was past the service ready date, so I tried to connect and use my phone. There was no dial tone. I then called Verizon and a customer service representative told me that there was an inside wiring problem with my phone and they would need to send someone over to the apartment to service the phone jack. I told them I would not be home all day but my landlord could let them in to my apartment to perform the service.

The next day a technician came by the apartment to “fix the inside wiring problem.” My landlord let him in and stood by while the technician worked. The technician did NOT fix any wiring problem or perform any service. Instead he simply unplugged the telephone wire from one jack and plugged it into another jack. He did, however, leave us with a $95 bill. When I came home that evening the landlord explained to me that the technician did not perform the service he claimed to have performed on the bill.

When I received my bill several weeks later I called Verizon to dispute the $95 charge for “servicing a jack”. I explained to the representative that we had a charge on our bill for “servicing a jack” when in reality the technician had done nothing other than plug in our phone. The customer service representative apologized for the discrepancy and said he would remove the charge from my bill.

Several weeks later my fiancé received a call on her cell phone from Ms. Tidwell of Verizon (You can call Ms. Tidwell at 410-265-3217). Ms. Tidwell was calling regarding our disputed $95 charge. She said that according to her records we had called Verizon requesting service on our phone and had agreed to pay the $95 fee for servicing our jack. She repeatedly accused my fiancé of lying and refused to acknowledge the fact that even if we had requested service on our phone line, in reality the technician did NOT service the jack. She refused to speak further with my fiancé and demanded to talk to me.

I then called Ms. Tidwell to discuss the disputed charge. Ms. Tidwell was very confrontational with me from the beginning of the call, and clearly had no interest in working with me to solve my problem. I explained my entire Verizon story (detailed above, in painful detail) to Ms. Tidwell, but she simply responded by saying that I had called to request the technician’s service and thus by law Verizon had to charge me $95. She told me that was unable to remove the charge, and that the $95 charge would be sustained.

I informed Ms. Tidwell that there was a 0% chance that I would ever be paying this $95 charge for service that I didn’t need, especially after the horribly delayed service I had received from Verizon and the fact that I only agreed to a technician coming because Verizon informed that I had an “inside wiring” problem. I did inform Ms. Tidwell that since my phone and internet service was finally functioning (albeit more than a month and a half after first ordered) I would happily pay my regular monthly bill going forward with no complaint, but that I could not and would not ever pay the disputed $95 service charge. Ms. Tidwell then told me that in that case my service would be turned off by Verizon.

I asked to speak to Ms. Tidwell’s manager, but was refused. I responded to Ms. Tidwell’s threat to cancel my service by letting her know that I would most likely be a lifetime (hopefully at least 50 more years) Washington DC resident and that at about $50 per month, I would most likely be paying about $60,000 to Verizon over my lifetime. However, if my service was cancelled, I would never pay another cent to Verizon and would acquire phone and internet service through another carrier (most likely RCA or Comcast). Ms. Tidwell’s response was simply that there was nothing she could or would do about the charge, but she would “note” my issues on my account. The conversation ended after about 30 minutes with no resolution.

Today I received a letter from Verizon informing me that if I do not pay the $95 charge by August 21, 2006 my service will be cut off.

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terjoal on 08/05/2006:
I've had basically the same problem with Verizon in Washington DC, and I believe Ms. Tidwell is the same person I dealt with. I wrote to my Congressman and that charge came off faster than I vould blink an eyelash
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Verizon is unable to credit customer accounts where merrited
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NEW ROCHELLE, NEW YORK -- For the last 2 years I have been having problems with Verizon's DSL service in regards to their billing practices. I send their modem back and they never shut off the service. They are now trying to make me pay for 2 months of DSL that I did not use. I have been turned over to various collection agencies and have fought every single one but the core problem is Verizon itself. I have attached the letter that I sent to Verizon and the most recent collection agency. Since I sent the letter Mrs. "O" has been working on resolving the problem. We'll see where she gets. I have changed all the names to letters of the alphabet to illustrate how many people I have had to talk to. There are a few more who are unlisted because, dumbly on my part, I didn't get names when this whole thing started. There are probably 4 or 5 more people that I spoke with prior to keeping better records. I made it to "O" within the letter, add the other estimated 5 people, I have had to go through around 20 people to even attempt to get this fixed!! Very frustrating. I will never use Verizon DSL ever again.

Dear Sir or Madame,

I am writing in regards to a persisting problem that, until very recently, I had believed was resolved as a result of numerous telephone conversations with various collection agency and Verizon employees. Details of the past attempts at resolution are described herein.

I and a roommate lived in New Rochelle, NY for 7 months from July of 2003 to January 2004. During this time we contracted both telephone and DSL internet service from Verizon (Account # XXXX). At the end of our lease term, January 6, 2004, the internet service, along with the telephone service, was cancelled via telephone call and the DSL modem was mailed to the local Verizon service center prior to December 31, 2003. Unfortunately I did not retain the confirmation number from the cancellation.

In early February 2004 I received a Verizon bill in the amount of $34.95 for February DSL service. I called in once again and described the situation to the operator who told me that the DSL had not yet been turned off. The service was scheduled for shutoff as of March 2, 2004 (confirmation #XXXX). The operator informed me that I would receive another bill for the service until March 2 and that I shouldn’t worry as the charges would be reversed in the next billing cycle.

All was well until March 8, 2003 when I received a letter from Collectech Systems stating that I had been remitted to a collection agency because of a past due amount of $34.95 from Verizon. As I was away at college I did not receive the letter until I had received the next bill from Verizon for the service until March 2, this time for the amount of $69.90. I called Collectech and made a complaint. Collectech then insisted that they could do nothing about it until it was resolved with Verizon. I called Verizon who assured me that there was a pending credit and that the charges would be removed in a few billing cycles. The representative, "A", noted my account. (Confirmation # XXXX)

On March 23, 2004 I received another letter from Collectech Systems stating that I owed Verizon for DSL service, this time in the amount of $69.90. I held out on calling as I was assured by Verizon personnel that the charges would be reversed.

When I received a third letter on April 9, 2004 I, again, called Verizon and spoke with a Ms. "B" from Account Collections (Confirmation #XXXX) who connected me with "C" from Final Accounts. "C" said that the last credit was not sent properly. I was referred back to Ms. "B" and connected for a three-way call with "D" from Collectech. "B" explained the situation and all was, supposedly, resolved.

On May 7, 2004 I received another collection letter. This time, however, it was from National Financial Group, Inc. stating that I owed Verizon $69.90. On May 17, 2004 at 5:00PM EST I called Verizon’s billing department and spoke with "F" who transferred me to DSL billing where I spoke with Ms. "E". Ms. "E" said that the DSL Department had issued a credit but the credit kept getting reversed. Ms. "E" spoke with the Residential Office and was directed to call National Financial Group, Inc. to explain the situation. The call was intercepted by an answering service saying that the National Financial Group, Inc. employees would be back in 45 minutes. Ms. "E" reissued the credit and said that she would call the collection agency in the morning (confirmation #XXXX).

On June 1, 2004 I again called DSL Billing to follow up. The call was answered by Ms. "G" who said that she was showing a credit of $69.90 on my account. Ms. "G" brought the Residential Office on the line. Mr. "H" from the Residential Office brought up my account and spoke with a supervisor who directed him to transfer us to the in-house collection agency. We spoke with "I" from the Syracuse Collections Office. She said that she would contact the collection agency tomorrow and will call me back with the results. She also agreed to send a written confirmation when the credit to my account cleared and have the Supervisor, "J", return my call the following day.

After receiving no return phone call I, once again, phoned Verizon on June 24, 2004 and spoke with "K". She informed me that the best time to call to speak with Mr. "J" was on Friday between 8 and 4.

On Friday, June 25, 2004 I called again. I spoke with the Billing Department who transferred me to "L" from Collections. Collections, apparently, had no record of the credit. "L" called the Billing Department which informed us that “[I]t shouldn’t be a problem, even though the account is finalized.” "L" and I then spoke with the DSL Department when we were told that it takes 2 to 3 billing cycles to clear and that it should show up on the next statement. I then asked "L" to call Ms. "M" from National Financial Group. At the conclusion of our conversation, Ms. "M" said that she would put a 60 – 90 day hold on the account until everything cleared up.

On December 5, 2005 I received yet another collection letter from I.C. System, Inc. which was attempting to collect, yet again, on my “delinquent” account in the amount of $69.90. On December 22, 2005 I called I.C. System, Inc. to make contact to prevent further damage to my credit, explain the situation, and procure a contact fax number to send my formal written contest to the charges. I spoke with Scott from I.C. System, Inc. and explained that I was contesting the charges and obtained a contact fax number of (XXX) XXX-XXXX.

I, then, proceeded to call Verizon DSL Billing where I spoke with a Mrs. "O". She said that the records on my account were so old that they were no longer on file. I was placed on hold while Mrs. "O" searched for the account information. A short time later Mrs. "O" returned and explained that there had been a credit issued on the account but, since the phone number that I had had been reissued, the credit had been applied to another customer with the same phone number. Mrs. Burgio said that she would work on the problem over the course of the December 22 – December 28 period and contact me once the issue had been resolved. I also obtained a fax contact number for the DSL Billing Department.

To say the very least I am extremely dissatisfied with the way this situation was handled. I feel that the large amount of time that I spent on the phone with both Verizon representatives and collection agency was a waste of my time and patience. I would hope that, if this type of problem happens to occur in the future, your organization will be better equipped to remedy the error.

Thank you,
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False Advertising
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In a nutshell, if you are an existing customer and try to sign up for a Verizon special advertised on the Internet, you will not be given the advertised price. Various reasons are given. When I initially signed up for Verizon home service on line and got my first bill it was a higher price. When I called CS, no one knew anything about the price that was advertised on the Internet. Verizon local CS will try to tell you that only Internet services can give you that price but when you call Internet services they can never "find" that advertised special. That has happened to me twice. I tried again because my contract ended and I don't need a landline, only DSL, but they won't give me any plan with a lower price. The DSL price they offered me was the same price as my bundle with phone and Internet. Unfortunately, AT&T or Time Warner does not service my area. Everyone says Comcast and Charter are worse. My solution is - class action suit. Who would like to join me?

PS: For those of you who have only DSL, you can get free landline service (VOIP) through Google Voice for free calling/texting to US and Canada through your computer. That includes voice mail and ability to receive calls and messages at your mobile phone. You can even receive email notifications to your mobile phone. I use if for my business.

Oh, if I could only get rid of Verizon!

PS #2: Regarding quality of service, when they installed my land line they charged me about $80 and left the phone cable sprawling across the kitchen floor. When I asked then to staple it to the wall they said they would charge me xtra. On a previous installation I used a private company that ran the phone line entirely across two rooms, did a very meticulous job and charged me $75. Verizon gave me a $30 credit on my first bill but the phone wire is very tackily taped to the kitchen floor and has to be replaced every couple months because the tape picks up dust and dirt.
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Ytropious on 11/15/2010:
Those specials are normally for NEW customers, not existing customers like you.
trmn8r on 11/15/2010:
Regarding inside phone lines - Verizon doesn't do that without a charge. Has been that way for years. They just install to the Network Interface Box.

If you want DSL without a land line, that is called Dry Loop. Uses copper phone lines but you have no phone service. The ISP pays Verizon, in this case, around $2 a month I think to use the line. One such company is
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Poor Service / No service
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NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- Peter Dahl
Summer: 509 Woodlawn
Harrison, ID 83833
(208) 689-3534

I would like to complain about the service that Verizon has provided me. Verizon is the only landline provider in Harrison. We are summer residents (4+ months) so we place our phone on vacation hold for the rest of the year.

Two years ago, we signed up for Verizon’s Freedom Value Package (unlimited local and long distance, and high speed internet access). This involved paying for and installing a modem and various other items. This service worked fine for the summer of 2008 and after calling Verizon in May 2009 and having the service restored, it worked fine for the summer of 2009.

When we called two weeks ago to have the service restored, we were told that that there were no lines available for our area for DSL internet service. We were asked to get unlimited dial-up phone service temporarily, and we would be placed on a waiting list for an internet line. I called the next week – still no line available. On June 1, I called again and talked to Jim in Sales. He said that he could sign me up for a package deal like the original (for $ 65.99 + taxes, etc per month) and after a long data-entering process he said that we should have the DSL internet service the next day.

There was no DSL service the next day, so I called various Verizon phone #s, starting with the DSL #, and got transferred to Billing, Sales, Dial-UP, Tech Support, etc. Each time no one could determine whether any pending high speed internet order had been placed and who to talk to if it had been placed. I started on the phone at 8 am, and was on almost continuously until 12 noon. Often it took 15-30 min waiting time to reach the place that I was transferred to by one of your agents. Finally I went back to Sales and that person’s computer was down, but after explaining my situation for the umpteenth time, she said that she would call me back as soon as the computer was working. She never did call me back. At 3 pm, I tried DSL all over again, who transferred me to Sales. This time the person said that there could be no pending order because there were no lines available in our area of Idaho! I spent all that time for nothing!

It is obvious to us that Verizon Northwest does not care enough about its customers to invest in the infrastructure to provide high speed internet service to our area in Idaho.
Now we have to find another DSL provider, which means buying new equipment and having it installed – a great inconvenience and a lot of expense. On top of that, Verizon’s on-line help is terrible. Jim in Sales should be boiled in oil! The rest of the bunch were awful. I was transferred to Sales in Penn/Delaware once. One person thought ID was Indiana!

Too bad that we cannot cancel all our Verizon phone services – we will have to retain local.

Peter Dahl

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Do Not Use Verizon In North Brooklyn
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GREENPOINT/WILLIAMSBURG, NEW YORK -- I have been paying for "high speed" DSL for 10 years, the only reason I have not switched to a cable modem is because of my neighbors complaints of outages and lag he11 for no reason and ZERO customer service with Time Warner.

I have never received more than 2.7 Mb/s on my "Up to 7 Mb/s" plan. I switched to the 7 Mb/s plan because on the 3 Mb/s or 5 Mb/s plans, you can't get more than 1.2 Mb/s. The reason? There is no central office anywhere near north Brooklyn or south Queens. So Verizon is in effect, selling goods that they can't deliver. I think this is probably against the law. Anyone with Verizon DSL service in Williamsburg/Greenpoint/Long Island City area that wants to sue them for a refund with me, let me know.

The maximum speed that a Verizon DSL customer can receive in Greenpoint is 3 Mb/s with the most expensive plan and the best modem. They don't have the equipment in place to deliver any better, yet have salesmen on your ass telling you lies that the equipment has been upgraded. The line is also noisy and the internet drops out every time it is rainy, or windy or sunny. There will be so much static on the line that you can't even hear and your modem will be flashing red and the foreign fellow with the fake name like "Rick" will tell you that "dee liegn tebist shoween norbmadl staddus!" (The line test showing normal status). Poor guy, I should not make fun, he has a job answering to people who are already very angry when they call. I am probably funding some fat jerk's swimming pool by being ripped off paying for DSL service that I will never receive. The options are Time Warner with zero customer support and random blackouts and bandwidth black holes, Verizon DSL slower than my AT&T dialup was in 1995 or... no internet. Verizon is a ripoff, do not get Verizon in north Brooklyn or south Queens. Verizon sucks in Williamsburg. Verizon sucks in Greenpoint. Verizon sucks in Long Island City. Again, I have been listening to them promise to resolve my latency issues for 10 years only to find out this week from the new technician who visited that Verizon does not actually have the equipment in place to provide residential DSL at speeds higher than 3 Mb/s to the Williamsburg/Greenpoint area. Please join me in posting this information wherever you can so Verizon either remedies the situation or gives us all our money back.
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Verizon Wake Up and revamp your repair procedures and your equipment!
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MANCHESTER, MARYLAND -- Verizon Residential Phone Service and DSL line connectivity on a whole is HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE, HORRIBLE. This year alone we have been without residential phone service twice, each time for 5-7 days each time. That means no phone call, either in or out, and no DSL line connection. I work from home and use my computer all day, and Verizon is aware of this, and still I have no kind of priority. We even have the wire protection and repair line protection which we pay for through Verizon, but I still cannot get them to fix the phone lines any faster. Each time the trouble has been with the outside lines and Verizon has stated this to me. On a whole, their service is HORRIBLE, the line clarity is awful, and the products they use -- their phone lines -- need to be updated or replaced. On talking with a supervisor, begging to get a sooner appointment time than 10 days from now, I asked her to explain what is happening to the wiring -- do they hire untrained people, because this time they are saying that my lines are crossed, and I didn't cross them. She encountered: well, you know the phone lines to your house are very old". I said, "my house is 6 years old". She encountered: "no, the lines coming from the poles to your house". I said: "oh, you mean your lines are old, and should be replaced, but your not going to do it, and I have to suffer each time this happens?" I then asked that if I changed to another carrier, would I be using the same old lines? She said, "no, they would be completely different lines with a different company, but then she stated: "Customers who leave us, always come back!!!" In other words, I take it that they don't care. You pay for repair service, which takes them 7-10 days each event to even look at the problem. Then, they have to fix it, and then you hope and pray it doesn't happen again, but they don't care because they feel "you'll be back". They are really sure of themselves aren't they. You would think we all should be valued customers of Verizon, but we're not. They just don't care about us! Every time I see a Verizon Repair truck in my area, I cringe because I know my lines are going to be messed within some way, and I will probably be without phone service any minute now. They want you to take out insurance on your part of the phone lines, but they are not fixing or updating their own lines. My DSL line is down A LOT. I cannot think of one full month of Verizon phone service that something didn't happen -- from phones not ringing, to us receiving a lot of wrong numbers who swear they are dialing right, to static in the lines, to phone calls being dropped, to HAVING NO SERVICE AT ALL. VERIZON WAKE UP! We're not always going to be your customers. You can be replaced, and will be. I just can't take this anymore. On our bill, Verizon wants us to refer friends at $50.00 each if they sign up for phone service -- I wouldn't refer my worst enemy, if I had one. It would be cruel and unusual punishment. They think they are doing me a favor by not charging me for my usual services while I have no service and they think that giving me a credit is fair and sufficient. Verizon better wake up soon and take care of their customers.
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Verizon Customer Service
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For almost 10 years, we had wonderful DSL service from Verizon. Fast, reliable. Then on Sept 14, a voice repairman comes out and makes a change to some equipment near the demark on our house. To be fair, it is their equipment, and it is on their side of the demark. But now the DSL is dead. We tell the tech about it before he leaves, but he says he knows nothing about DSL. He calls 10 minutes later and tells us he "reset" our DSL, and to re-boot stuff in the house. Nothing. So he shrugs his shoulders and tells us we need to turn in a trouble ticket through billing. HE RUINED IT, but we get to make the call! We call immediately.

Two days later, and 4+ hours on the phone speaking to wonderfully trained and apologetic Indian speaking people (apparently every single Verizon # goes to India), I finally get hold of a supervisor that makes a call to the scheduled repair person that never did show up in two days (and I was assured MANY MANY times that by noon, then by 4:00 and then by 7:30 "don't you worry about that, Mr _____), and then the supervisor (Vanny) comes back on the line and tells me to Re-Order DSL. I HAD IT, IT WORKED GREAT, VERIZON RUINED IT, and I need to re-order it! She hung up after revealing yet another number that ended up in India.

I ordered the DSL, got put into a 2 week install queue. Told them, "Look, I teach an online college course, and it was Verizon that took out my DSL, please move me to the front of the line." So they moved me up from 15 days to only 8 days.

In 2 days they called the house and told us the DSL was ready. NOPE! not working. Called repair now, and told it will be a couple days to get somebody out. Got a call next day, said, it is now working. NOPE! not working. OK, they said, an actual DSL technician (what I should have gotten the day after it was taken out) will actually show up tomorrow. They did, and I finally got a tech that knew what they were doing. By late in the day on Sept 23rd, I had DSL back.

NINE days, (6+ hours on the phone, two supervisors, and a plethora of re-boots later) after they took it out, I get my DSL back as new service.

Now get this. Service worked up to the 14th, they claim it was turned on on the 17th, it actually started working on the 23rd. Billing says I only lost 3 days of service!!!!!

AND while DSL was out, Verizon sends me well over 2 dozen emails (on two different sub accounts) on how to trouble shoot DSL. Hello!, DSL was out, how am I supposed to get these emails?

There is absolutely no one to talk to at this company. NO ONE!!!!!! Can I reiterate, NO ONE that knows anything. They place notes on your account and tickets, there is no conversation and no knowledge of who, when, where, or what anyplace...... When their stuff works, it works great. Hope you never need technical work at your home, though.
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MSCANTBEWRONG on 09/25/2009:
What a bad experience. I'm glad its working now. You should ask for compensation for the days your were out of service.
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Verizon Horrible Customer Support Coupled with Poor Network Maintenance
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CRANBURY, NEW JERSEY -- During the spring of 2008, I decided to bundle with Verizon. I already had their phone service and it had been intermittently problematic but lately not so bad. So I ordered two cell phones, Verizon DSL, and DirecTV. The location is Cranbury, NJ.

First let me say DirecTV is actually quite good. But, then it's not Verizon. Verizon Wireless is OK but I don't have a good connection at my house so I need a land line.

And then the problems. First, Verizon quotes you all of the discounts and bonuses you get to bundle. One was a $200 AmEx gift card from DirecTV. After never getting it, I called DirecTV and they said we do not offer this as part of the Verizon package. So, I called Verizon back and went through 3 different people including one woman who called me every week for over a month and never got me an answer. Finally, I was told I was not entitled to the $200 because I was an existing phone customer. They don't care that their reps promise it. Over the last year, I have been lied to two other times on refunds I was supposed to get for all my troubles. And I don;t even get most of the refunds for periods of service outage.

First the DSL: When it worked speed was OK. Not great. When it went out, a call immediately went to a service center in India. They run a loop back test and if it passes they cannot do anything more besides send you a new modem. They cannot dispatch a technician - they said they are not allowed. They are poorly trained and they waste your time with phone calls that offer nothing and they keep closing your service tickets which they are obviously measured on. I have dealt with Indian tech support a lot and it is usually not very good but Verizon is the worst of the worst. Finally by calling a 978 number I was given a phone number in Ontario for a special group that troubleshoots DSL. They admitted the service center was inept and they diagnosed a hardware problem. Unfortunately with no spare parts and some trouble getting access to a remote terminal plus the Indian service center problems, I was without service for almost 3 weeks. I switched back to Comcast.

Then, phone service. In a 13 month period I have lost service 8-9 times. Once was town wide. The rest were all localized but even when it is town wide, Verizon insists nobody else has a problem. (They did the same thing on DSL when everyone was out. I actually had an Indian tech call my neighbor and conference her in to prove it). THey have replaced parts twice the pedestal near my driveway. The current outage started on June 21 and they are sending a tech June 29- 8 days. The excuse: "We've had a lot of rain."

I am switching to Comcast Digital Voice. I am also waiting for my cell phone contract to run out to get AT&T. I will probably drop DirecTV, as well even though they have been good.

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Three-Week Customer Service Nightmare
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07666, NEW JERSEY -- A few weeks ago I contacted Verizon about moving my DSL service from Brooklyn, NY to my new Teaneck, NJ address. I later found out they had gotten the date of the internet cutoff in Brooklyn wrong. Fair enough, but this started a three-week nightmare, during which time I have spoken to literally 25 different people and probably been on hold a total of about 3 hours. First we're told we can't change the cut-off date, then we're told we can't get DSL in our house in Teaneck, we can only get FIOS, then we're told we can and do have a DSL service order for Teaneck. Then we call back and are told again that we can only get FIOS. Before we can explain that we already have the DSL order we are put on hold again to talk to the FiOS department, even though we don't want FIOS. We ordered DSL and the order was confirmed several times. Every time we call there's a ten-minute wait on hold before the whole nightmare starts all over.

I just called Verizon's toll free tech support number for DSL. This is the same number I have called 20 times to get my NJ situation straightened out. Now I am suddenly told this number is only for NY DSL, not NJ! So either this person is completely wrong, or the 20 other people I spoke to are all insane. Either way this mess is inexcusable.

I called the 800 number supposedly for NJ and was told to wait while a supervisor was found. Next thing I know I'm back in the voice menu again! Finally I'm connected with the FIOS dept and I tell the agent my story. He doesn't respond or apologize. He matter of factly sets me up for DSL and gives me a start date of February 6th, after I TOLD HIM I was scheduled for Jan. 28th and needed it that day. I ask him if he has heard ANYTHING I've said explaining the screw-ups I've endured and he claims he has but can't do anything. He offers to connect me to another department so "we can ask them". I say, "'we'? Do you mean you're going to wait with me for them to pick up and explain the situation to them?" He says, no. "So I guess you mean 'me', not 'we', right?" "I guess you've got me there. heh heh". I tell him to cancel the order as Feb 6th is not acceptable at this point. I also tell him I am very unhappy with his service, and he laughs. At this point I hang up.

I am sick over the way Verizon has treated me. I am switching to cable modem internet service as I've given up getting a straight answer from Verizon.

I just called OptOnline and in 5 minutes got my cable modem order set for Jan 28th, just two days away. It's a little more than DSL costs but worth it to keep my sanity and never have to deal with Verizon again.

EDIT: February 16: Got a bill from Verizon for $106! So now I have to call them AGAIN to "cancel" the order I never placed. AMAZING. I am considering changing my Verizon cell phone service to another company so I never have to call that company again.

EDIT: June, 2009. Just received another bill from Verizon for a new month of service, despite the fact that I have twice called and cancelled the service! Did I mention I returned the DSL modem long ago, and when I call they always acknowledge they do have a record of that.
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Anonymous on 01/26/2009:
When Verizon deploys FIOS in a given area then DSL becomes the unwanted child. DSL people have no idea where FIOS has been deployed so naturally they assign a DSL install. What the OP experienced is SOP for Verizon. Very sad for Verizon.
rpiket on 01/30/2009:
Here is an update. Yesterday I received a DSL kit from Verizon, apparently sent out the day after my last call to them, even though they claimed I have no order. The funny thing is, there was not a single phone number anywhere in the package, not even in the welcome letter which was enclosed. I have helped several people in NYC get DSL and the letter always included their support number. I guess they know their NJ DSL support is so horribly screwed up they don't want to even give out a number! Hoping to have my cable modem service soon and I hope Verizon does not intend to start billing me since I don't even have a number to call to straighten them out!
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