Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Slaves to Telecommunication

First, for your reading pleasure, excerpts from a written transcript of my telephone call with Rogers, in which I attempt to clarify and change my cellphone plan:

Rogers guy: how can I help you?
Me: I'm interested in maybe changing my plan.
RG: ok
Me: first, can you tell me what the "Wireless Essentials Discount" is that I see here on my bill?
RG: I don't see that here it must be on your bill. [?!]
Me: yes. What is it?
RG: I don't know.

This exchange didn't give me much hope for the rest of the call, and, unfortunately, I was correct in my negative assumptions. Turns out the Wireless Essentials Discount is what I got for having both call display and voicemail on my phone together as a package. I found this out AFTER I removed voicemail from my account. At which time this [edited for length, which was too long, and clarity, which was not present in any way] conversation transpired:

Me: so, I just removed my voicemail feature, at $5.00/month, but in doing so, lost a $6.00/month savings? That adds a dollar to my bill.
RG: Yes.
Me: Why didn't you tell me that before?
RG: I don't think I can add it again.
Me: Well, please find a way.
RG: Ok, I added it again.
Me: Will I get the discount again?
RG: no
Me: then please remove it.
RG I can give you voicemail free for a couple months.
Me: no thank you. Could you please tell me what the Airtime Option fee is?
RG: I don't know. Can I put you on hold while I find the information I need?
Me: Yes
[hold music}
Me: yes?
RG: it means you get more minutes in a month,
Me: What does that mean, how many more minutes?
RG: I don't know, it would take me an hour to find that information.

Deep. Cleansing. Breaths.

So, I never did find out what the Airtime Option was. As frustrated as I was, I realized after the call that I shouldn't have been frustrated with RG. No, he didn't have any useful information, and yes, he ended up making my bill more expensive. Despite all this, however, I believe he handled my call as well as he could have. It really seems like it was hard for him to find any information. I didn't get the impression that he was deliberately trying to be unhelpful, although it did seem as though he didn't care. That apathy felt familiar to me, it is what happens to me when I feel like I have been left alone in left field, unequipped for the task I have been given. I'm pretty sure that was the case here too. I'm really sick of the way many companies seem to have decided to stop investing in people, employees and customers alike. I ended up feeling enslaved to this plan that I know nothing about and can't get any information about. And poor RG is a slave to frustrated customers because his company doesn't see fit to equip him to do his job properly.

In conclusion, I've decided to break free from the tyranny of Rogers Telecom and cancel my plan altogether. If, after months of being cell-free, I decide I need one for whatever reason (I never did want one in the first place!) I will look into getting a new plan. Not with Rogers. Although, phone companies are not looking all that good in general (hey, 313, remember the MTS debacle?). Hopefully I can do without one and remain free of the scourge of wireless telecommunication.


Diedre said...

To quote me: "AUGH!" That actually came out of my mouth just now as I read "313" and "MTS" in the same sentence.

Laura said...

Ah, but we loved Patty from MTS. She was lovely :)

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