Category Archives: customer service

Peter Needs Help Sorting Contract Nuances

So, I’m not sure about the finer points of issues like this. Anyone have any advice?

I have honestly had all the energy sucked out of me by TalkTalk.

My Broadband experience has been nothing short of awful (I’m
surprised that I’m connected right now).

But that is not my gripe.

Basically I joined TalkTalk in June 2006.
Transferred my line in May 2007.
Tried ending my 18 month contract today (June 2008).
Only to be told that I have 5 months left on my contract.
They told me that my contract began in May 2007, and would charge a
£70 disconnection charge.
I argued that my contract started in June 2006.
They did not accept this and told me that they had to create a new
account when I moved in May 2007.
They really do not care about the customer. You can hear it in their voice.

I was never informed that I was placed on a new contract.
I can not find this information in the terms and conditions.
Doesn’t a transfer mean just that? Otherwise they should say ‘cancellation
then connection to a new 18 month contract’.
I am absolutely flat broke and this has come at the worst possible time,
especially since they have cost me so much pain over the 2 years.

They have informed me that they are sending me a letter that they had
sent on the 3rd May 2007 stating that I’m on a new 18 month contract.
I keep all my letters, and I never received this letter.
Also, if I never agreed to it, how can I be bound. Especially if it’s not
in the terms and conditions.
Even if it is on the letter, it’s not worth the paper it’s written on. I would
not have paid over £100 to install a BT line, then another £30 to cancel, then I
think more money, just to be told that I am on another 18 month contract
with those vultures! Pure Evil the pain and frustration they have caused
so many people.

Do I have a leg to stand on?
Please help.

Thanks!

(Link) How to reach a person.

Hey guys,

Got sent a link by someone involving the below article. Unlike a lot of link spam, this is actually pretty useful. It’s a sort of primer on how to navigate phone trees. Some of it is just relevant to the US and Canada, but you guys might find it useful as well!

We’ve all been there. It’s infuriating to sit on hold for 20 minutes, only to be connected to a service agent who has only a cursory grasp of the English language and even less knowledge about how to help you. The following tricks will help you skip to the head of the line and find a better person to talk to.

VOIP News: 50 PBX hacks

Confirmation regarding e-mail

Hey guys,

I have some information regarding the e-mail thing. Talk Talk are going through an upgrade period to resolve some of the previous e-mail issues you guys had.  Some of the upgrades didn’t go as planned, hence the problems from last week. They say they’re still working through a backlog of issues at the moment but hope to have things resolved soon.

Let me know if that helps or not!

SMTP restrictions?

Derek wrote in with this regarding sending e-mails from another ISP’s network. My thought is it’s an IP restriction to try and prevent relaying through their mail servers.

(For a run down of open mail relays, clicky on Answers.com

Check Derek’s e-mail:

I have been in France for the past eight weeks. A friend allowed me to use his wireless network but not once could I send an email via talktalk on my VAIO laptop. I telephoned the talktalk help line using my mobile telephone but was told that everything was OK, or that I should use the talktalk internet mail service. This I could do. I then sent an email to talktalk telling them about my problems in only being able to receive emails and not send them. They sent me a reply again asking me to telephone the help line. I asked them to telephone me and another reply simply told me to again telephone the help line.

As you know, using a mobile telephone to contact a help line, press one, press two press three etc. is very expensive. Fortunately, I had retained my dial-up connection to waitrose.com and was able to access this to keep in touch with emails and such like.

When a customer is in difficulty and sends an email asking for help, surely it should be within the bounds of the help line to ring back to try and discover the problem.

I have been a strong supporter of the TalkTalk telephone and Broadband service since it started and recommended it to many friends. I appreciate that the service has attracted incredible numbers, as there is no service to beat it at the price. I hoped that after the service had been in existence for such a length of time most of the connection problems should have been sorted out.

What do you guys think? Any confirmation? Honestly though, the tech should have known if this was the case.

Dial contact centre in South Wales

Looking for insight into CPW’s contact centres? Look no further than the Lone Voice and Kimi Magazine.

Both are former employees of a company called dial. They supposedly:

gives you the ability to concentrate on your core business and still respond to change, rapidly and effectively

dial specialises in the design, implementation and operation of the people, process and technology that constitute a modern contact centre

Their biggest customers are the Carphone Warehouse, British Gas, Welsh Injury Network and the Basic Skills Agency. Impressive no?

Dig a little deeper though and you’ll find some difficulty. Apparently dial was purchased by http://www.yesloansuk.com/, an unsecured loan company. On the news section of the dial website, this apparently means:

The deal secures the immediate future of all 300 employees, who will now be paid all monies owed to them.

Wait, so employees were working without pay?

It gets better. Yes Loans, the company that now owns dial has a rather large history of sketchy business. According to the Mirror:

THE first thing you need to know about Yes Loans is that it’s not actually a loan company. It charges £49.50 to put you in touch with other firms, which may or may not give you a loan.

And if you don’t get one, receiving a refund proves a nightmare, according to victims who’ve contacted us.

The second thing you need to know is that Yes Loans is owned by Keith Chorlton, who is currently serving a 10-year ban on acting as a company director.
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Click here to find out more!

Chorlton, 56, had siphoned £460,000 from his insolvent dating agency, leaving creditors unpaid.

Yes Loans says he’s just a shareholder. Yet his Linked In profile has him down as owner twice. Once for financial services and the other for IT services.

His current company doesn’t seem that er, above board either.

This quote is from one of his former employees:

Dan said, “I didn’t feel personally that I was misleading them, because I did stick to the script, but I felt the script was fairly misleading. I was speaking to a lot of customers, that after they made their applications, and returned their fee with the forms, they had been advised that they had been declined for the loan, and they felt pretty unhappy and were saying they had been misled by the company.”

Not to mention the employees that alledge they were hit, or generally taken advantage of.

Kimi and Fido both say they weren’t offered holiday or sick pay when working for dial. Not only horrible but highly, highly illegal.

Knowing all this I’m rather terrified of the idea of these folks knowing who I am or what my bank account details are. Read for yourself….

WLA Case Study
Mirror story
BBC Wales: The customers who wish they’d said “no”
Kimi: Talk Talk/Dial/Yes Loans – The dire telecoms company.
Fido: Keith Chorlton – Post 2. Dial/Yes Loans

USwitch poll shows Orange and Talk Talk at bottom of customer satisfaction

It’s all better, right guys?

Orange and TalkTalk — which collectively own 14 percent of the market, with over two million customers — have failed to pull themselves out of the bottom two spots in the league.

The companies, both of which recently launched “free” broadband, have the most dissatisfied customers — 35 percent and 31 percent respectively.

Household names give worst broadband service

Is anybody out there?

In an attempt to step this up after a year of no contact from anyone willing to give their names in CPW, I’ve decided to contact them. I’m sending the below to Charles Dunstone and the press office. I’m pessimistic but genuinely hopeful someone will come back to us.

Dear Sir/Madam,

I’m the webmaster behind Talk Talk Hell, the blog featured in the Observer in December and used by your disgruntled customers for solutions (and general gripes.) I’ve been running the site now for over a year and still get around 800 hits a day (600 of those unique.) Over 100,000 people have come to this blog seeking support. And yet, I realize to you that these numbers seem small. However, our page ranking is 1st on Google for ‘talk talk problems’ and various permutations of the above. Any answers you provide will be read by your deeply unhappy customers.

In the time I’ve been running this blog I haven’t had any direct correspondence with anyone within CPW PLC willing to give their name (beyond your enthusiastic legal department.) I thought it was time to provide you with the opportunity for ‘right to reply’ and give my readers some answers to the issues they’re having.

I was wondering if someone would be willing to address some of the current issues on my website.

Amongst the most frequent problems people are reporting:

1. Billing issues. Your billing department, despite promising they wouldn’t, recently sent a 73 year old man to a debt collection agency. This isn’t the first or last time I’ve heard of this happening. In fact, on the blog now, there are 3 separate incidents within the last 6 months that readers e-mailed me about.

2. Connection problems. Despite Charles Dunstone stating over and over again connection issues are being or have been resolved, I’m still getting reports of people taking months to get connected.

3. Compatibility issues between Talk Talk’s products and popular models of Netgear routers. I realize Talk Talk states in their T&Cs that they won’t support routers purchased from other sources. However, many people still do use these products! We have a fix, but your tech support providers seem unaware. This is, by far, the most highly read article on the site.

4. LLU issues. People are still being left without phones/broadband. You’ve just launched a cheaper unbundled product. Are there any contingency measures to make sure the issues you’ve had with Openworld don’t get any worse?

5. Continued e-mail problems. There are regular disruptions to your mail service. As of yet no fix, solution or status has been provided.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind Regards,
Tiffany Craig

Anything else you guys want to say?

Edit: Well, that didn’t go very well!

his is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification.

Delivery to the following recipients failed.

PressOffice@cpwplc.com

Final-Recipient: rfc822;PressOffice@cpwplc.com
Action: failed
Status: 5.2.1
X-Display-Name: Press Office

Edit2: Decided to give it another go:

postmaster@cpwplc.com
to me

show details
13:40 (1 hour ago)
This is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification.

Delivery to the following recipients failed.

PressOffice@cpwplc.com

Final-Recipient: rfc822;PressOffice@cpwplc.com
Action: failed
Status: 5.2.1
X-Display-Name: Press Office

Edit3: From Charles Dunstone’s office (bets on whether or not they’re popping a nice Pinot and laughing at me?)

Thank you for your email, this is a courtesy response to let you know we
have received it. We always strive to respond within 3 days

This is an automated response, please do not reply to this message.

Charles Dunstone’s Office