Monday, 9 September 2013

A Tale of Collective Idiocy

So, about a month and a half back I wrote the first post of supposed to be many about an upcoming knockout tournament. It was to be the subject of many posts to try to give me the kick back into blogging. However, given the collective idiocy of Virgin, Sky AND BT I have been without the internet pretty much since that post was made. I have it again now, but the tournament is over. So I'll cut to the chase, Rich A won with a simple guard list. I expected him to get knocked out every round as he was always up against a strong opponent, but he came through each time. I faltered at the semi-final - losing to Scotts Tyranids 8-6 in turn 5. The dice said the game ended, so we recorded the win. We played turn 6 out of interest. I was winning 11-4 with Scott having a single, dry, wounded Tervigon left. Ah well, such is life.

So, a cautionary tale now of the idiocy of telecommunications companies. Knowing that our flatmate was moving out (whose name the Sky contract was in) we took the opportunity for the remaining flatmates and replacing flatmate to shop around for a good deal. We found it in Virgin. We booked everything in, it would be switched on a couple days before the Sky got switched off. No problem.

Until Install Day (1)

Virgin called to say they had checked the switchbox they wanted to put us on, and they couldn't fit us in. So we couldn't have the broadband. We could still continue with the contract if we wished, but we'd be paying for internet we couldn't have. Er... no thanks. Would have been handy if someone could make a note of a full communications hub and not sell slots that aren't available to other customers, but never mind. Virgin being off the table, we went back to sky.

We sorted out a deal with Sky, they asked if we wished to keep the same phone number, we said "sure why not, don't really care" and they booked us in. We'd be a couple weeks without internet.

We get a call off Virgin... why did you cancel the contract? Can you give us any feedback? Er... you're morons.

We then get a text from Sky. There is a problem with our contract, and our install day (2) has been cancelled. Upon calling in, it turns out they couldn't keep the same phone number for us. So why offer it to us? And because they couldn't keep it, they'd cancelled the entire job. We had to rebook. Luckily we were paying close attention through all the terms and conditions, as it seemed on the second booking they nearly opted for the wrong package. But we have Install Day (3) set.

Install Day (3) I sit in for 6 hours waiting for the engineer. No show. We try to call them and about 4 days later get through to someone. Turns out the engineer arrived, found at the box that there was a fault on the line and he couldn't complete the job, so just didn't knock. All it would have taken would have been a knock at the door to say "sorry, problem found, can't do it today, carry on with your day and don't waste time sitting waiting for something that isn't going to happen!" But no, the idiot left without an explanation. They then knew they had a fault on the line, but waited for us to call them about it. They couldn't test it, so had to book it out to BT.

By now we're getting quite cheesed off and are thinking to see if BT can do better, when someone explains to us that the box we plug our phone into is a BT diagnostic box that blocks other telecomms companies from testing the line, forcing them to cut BT into the lucrative fault finding business. Such underhand tactics put me off BT straight away. But anyway, with pressure from us on Sky passed on to BT, we get the line fixed and install day (4) is booked.

Several days before Install Day (4) we get a text from Sky "Sorry our engineer missed your install appointment, please rebook"

We call up and ask which appointment exactly this is regarding. Yeah, they had nothing on the system for install day (4) so they offered us Install Day (5) - another 2 weeks away.

At this point several unprintable words were uttered and we demanded to cancel the contract and start afresh. In the end, by offering a reduced bill for the year and an install Day (4.5) of only a few more days, we agreed.

So now it's in, and appears to be working. And sods law I now get Windows Genuine Advantage warnings popping up on my decade old XP system, screwing my computer around and pissing me off. Bugger.

In other news, with a tournament I thought might be fun to visit in December I have resurrected my Pirates Vs Ninjas project, so that should give me something less frustrating to blog about. I've written a list and ordered the models, and there is some extensive converting to do on about 1500 points worth of Dark Eldar. One problem... I just saw today that the tournament I thought was December is actually October 19th... I have no idea if I can possible make that deadline. But it could be an interesting few weeks ahead...


  1. PMSL. So many excellent bits. Couldn't reserve the number so they cancelled the whole thing. Engineers turning up and leaving again without knocking.

    The sad thing is, it's not a surprise and *we* have learned to expect these sorts of shenanigans from ISPs.

  2. Sounds like you had a nice fun time with Sky/Virgin/BT. So far I've not experienced this fun merry-go-round of inept morons. But that's probably because the area of Stoke I live in is still using copper cabling from the invention of the telephone.
    Glad to hear it all got sorted in the end. Plus Sky will give you free stuff if you threaten to cancel at the end of the contract

  3. Damn.

    That is astonishing.

    Well done you for getting something done in the end. Now begins the campaign of sending these companies housebricks daily without paying postage...