I am going to get the upside out of the way here because this is about the downside. The upside is that I am grateful to have my electronics and devices. For this story, the downside is about the basics. That includes TV, computer, phone, both land line and cell. Yes, I know land lines are becoming obsolete. However, they still come in handy when all else breaks down. To be more specific, this vent is more about the service providers.
There are two major service providers in the country who compete with each other since they rule the roost. They constantly raise their monthly charges under the guise of providing better service along with improved technology. In some cases the so-called improvements or advancements have made things worse. If you elect not to go along with their changes, the plan you currently have and enjoyed, suddenly gets cut. Either you have to pay more for what you have, or pay your current amount for less services. Whatever options we might choose, we’re screwed.
How they go after your wallet is to offer bundling phone, TV and internet. It’s usually an offer that’s hard to refuse. It all sounds so good when $ signs are dancing around in your head. From what I’ve noticed with friends who have taken those bundling deals, is that when one of the services goes down, they all go down. Consequently, I do not bundle.
Here’s what happened. My phones went dead for about 36 hours. Part of what I do is dependent on phone calls. Don’t worry, I am not a telemarketer. I used my cell to let the provider know. I was put on hold, as usual, to the tune of losing $45 worth of minutes on the cell. BTW, this was the second time the phones went dead in the past few weeks. There had been an issue with the outside lines which was supposedly fixed. Obviously not. I had to wait another 24 hours for a repair person. Ok. There was an upside. I still had internet and TV. Once again it was the outside lines. Hopefully the fix is in for the long haul.
As soon as I heard a dial tone, I phoned the company and asked for compensation for both the dead phone time and cell phone loss. The upside was they did make an adjustment on my phone bill, crediting me for an entire week. All good, right?
The next morning while watching the news the TV went out. This provider is a different company from the phone company. I knew the issue was an area problem because a friend who has one of those bundles. All their services were down. I phoned the provider to report the situation, which by the way, was the second time this happened in recent weeks. Fortunately, service was restored in a few hours not like the last time which was way longer.
Once service was restored, I did what I’ve gotten into the habit of doing which was to call for compensation for lost service. They did accommodate. The cost of these services increased so much in the past few years they are approaching unaffordable. Consequently, I have no compunction asking for compensation when service fails. The upside is that they have never refused my requests.
At times like this I tend to get a little nostalgic and back to the futurish. There are pros and cons to every decade. Our psyches are best served when we focus and appreciate the good in each era. To paraphrase Jimmy Dean, we can’t change the direction of the wind, but we can adjust our sails to make for smoother sailing.
Comments are welcomed.