This is part 2 of our ongoing saga with CenturyLink. That’s right, something this sad has happened before.
This is a story of payback and redemption.
Wait. This is a story of the absence of payback, and the absence of redemption.
You see, when we moved to a shiny new house in October, we were very excited. It was a tremendous upgrade over our old living situation — a place with hundreds of square feet of extra space, and a house we could call our own. There were only a couple of downsides: we had to break our current lease, and we wouldn’t have internet the day we moved in. We were told we’d have it by the end of the month, though, or less than two weeks.
Consider that to be the first in a mountain of misguided statements, confused promises and outright lies from CenturyLink over the past two months.
Our new house comes with a bit of a quandary: it’s located at the outskirts of the city, so our service options are somewhat limited. CenturyLink was available, though. We are fans of CenturyLink’s internet service, even though their customer service is the most abysmal of any company with which I’ve ever interacted. It generally has very little downtime, and they offer much better speeds (40 mb) than anyone else in Flagstaff (7-10 at best).
But despite our best efforts to give CenturyLink our money, the company doesn’t seem interested in taking it. Or providing a straight answer of any kind. Or not wasting our time.
Here’s the situation. Prior to the move, I called to find out what service was available in the area and was told that they had an older connection set up (5-7 mb) and that fiber optic cables were being laid in the near future for faster connection speeds. That slower speed was going to be a bit of a problem for uploading our video and audio, but it would certainly work as a temporary thing — at the very least, we could check emails and surf the web with that speed.
We first had an appointment set up with a technician for shortly after we moved. On the day of that appointment, no one arrived and no one informed us of a cancellation. When we called to find out why that was the case, we were informed that there was no internet in the area, so there was no point in sending a technician. Never mind that our neighbors have internet, or that when you look at a list of possible wireless connections in the area, almost a dozen have “CenturyLink” in the name. The internet didn’t exist, even though we were told that it did.
(NOTE: Allegedly this dichotomy exists because this service was a temporary stop-gap until a more permanent solution was found. But more on that later.)
Despite that frustrating phone call, we were told that the cables were supposed to be finished by the end of Novemeber. That was about three weeks away at the time, but it still sounded like we had a solution on the horizon. All it would take was surviving a few more weeks while our internet show and site faded further into obscurity, but it would be solved, right?
The end of November came and went with no solution whatsoever. About a week into December, I spent another hour and a half on the phone (because short telephone interactions do not exist in CenturyLinkLand) trying to get some answers. This time, I was told that the 5-7 mb service was available again, and that the cables were indeed finished. The higher speeds weren’t ready just yet, but we could be set up with the slower one and immediately switched over once their new 100 mb service (!) was good to go.
(We’re not going to touch the subject of why CenturyLink refused to bring any of this information to us or why we constantly have to call just to get updates — that’s just crazy talk.)
Anyway, we set up another appointment with a technician for the next possible opening, six days later on a Thursday. All seemed right in the world, and I actually (foolishly, I admit) let myself believe that a solution was finally at hand.
On Dec. 12, CenturyLink no-call, no-show’d us again.
After sifting through some more lovely hold time on the phone the next day, we were told EXACTLY THE SAME THING AS THE TIME BEFORE — that the internet didn’t exist in the area, so there was no reason to send a technician. Never you mind that we asked THREE TIMES for clarification that there was service available when setting up the appointment. And never you mind that the internet clearly, irrefutably DOES exist in the area, unless I’m supposed to believe that the 2,000 or so square feet in which our house exists is a dead zone where internet vanishes despite existing all around us.
So now we’re back in the holding pattern. Our online radio show continues to be buried because we have no means to take it online. Our efforts to pay good money for a connection are wasted on a company that couldn’t dislodge its head from its anus with all the pliers and clamps and vice grips in the world. And there’s still no end in sight — apparently, when Shaun’s dad talked to them last to raise his displeasure, he was told not to call anymore, because they would call us instead.
Well, I have something to say to you, CenturyLink: Fuck you, fuck your awful customer service, and fuck your incompetent stonewalling of a customer who used to support you. Oh, and fuck you for sending a response to a frustrated tweet that I posted about the situation — sure, it seems nice on the surface, until you remember that I CAN’T SEE YOUR RESPONSE BECAUSE OH YEAH I DON’T HAVE INTERNET.
And that’s the end of our story for now. What will happen to our abandoned heroes? Stay tuned.