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Ask Slashdot: Holding ISPs Accountable For Contracted DSL Bandwidth 345

Posted by samzenpus
from the fight-the-power dept.
mcleland writes "I'm not getting the bandwidth I paid for from my DSL connection. My '3mbps' fluctuates between about 2.7 during the day down to 0.1 or 0.2 in the evening according to speedtest.net. Let's assume DSL is the only viable option for broadband at my house and I can't really move right now (rural area, on north face of the mountain, no cable service, very poor cell coverage). This was discussed 6 years ago, but I'd like to see if there are any current thoughts on whether I'm just stuck or if there is some way to make the ISP hold up its end."
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Ask Slashdot: Holding ISPs Accountable For Contracted DSL Bandwidth

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  • by Creosote (33182) on Wednesday May 16, 2012 @08:42PM (#40023733) Homepage

    You don't live up the hollow from me, do you? Because your description fits my situation to a T, apart from my nominal 6 mbps speed. The rural DSL supplier in these parts, Verizon, did take some action in response to a well-publicized community meeting of residents in another part of my county who lobbied a year ago to get DSL extended to their neck of the woods. I think one of the county supervisors attended, and it seems that Verizon decided that it was in their public-relations interest to make a commitment to providing service, which they did in fact implement fairly quickly. In the meantime, Verizon has told me that the notorious evening slowdowns are the result of known "bandwidth exhaustion", which is supposed to be fixed Sometime Soon, for the usual values of "soon". Whether getting all the neighbors together to hold a bandwidth exhaustion protest would do any good is an open question.

  • by turkeyfish (950384) on Wednesday May 16, 2012 @10:38PM (#40024417)

    You guys down under are lucky. You just have venomous snakes. We have republicans and Tea Partiers.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 16, 2012 @11:03PM (#40024535)

    This is why I'm happy to live in Australia.

    No, the reason for that is a deep abiding affection for sheep. Either that or mental insanity.

  • by aaronb1138 (2035478) on Wednesday May 16, 2012 @11:25PM (#40024647)

    I couldn't think of a good conventional way, so obviously the answer was a Kickstarter project. Here's the gist.

    Open a call center in India tasked as customer support -support. For $60 yearly or $40 for 6 months you can subscribe. You call or e-mail with an issue with service with a vendor, give them the appropriate vendor support number and your details as needed (you've paid, so they keep your personal information secure). You even have the option to setup a profile where all this is available to the service, speeding up your time logging the ticket (vendor names / numbers / account numbers).

    THEY (India call center techs) call your vendor to handle the complaint process on your behalf. They handle the time waiting on hold, arguing, negotiating, demanding, etc. They could even call you back to conference you in as necessary (authorizing them to speak on your behalf, etc.). They will handle all of the uncomfortable discussions, demanding to be escalated to a manager, getting credits to your account, everything.

    In many cases, the business model would even save money because the calls would be local!!!

    Further, they could e-mail you links to recordings of the calls for your approval later. "Calls may be monitored or recorded for quality assurance." YOU BET!

    For particularly difficult situations, like a vendor with a horrible cancellation policy, captive market, or just crappy service, they can call up to 4 times daily on your behalf, brow-beating the vendor's support infrastructure. For $10 extra, we will "call bomb" them with a minimum of 10 calls a day for a week.

  • by arth1 (260657) on Thursday May 17, 2012 @12:00AM (#40024839) Homepage Journal

    And isn't New Zealand more into sheep than Australia?

    That depends on how you define "into"...

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