I am writing to complain about the service received from BT. From day one, the service received has been awful. We waited 2 weeks longer than expected for our broadband service to be switched on, we were told there were faults on the line, we were promised times and dates that the service would be switched on, none of which were kept to.
In February of this year, we moved address. Initially we stopped the service as we were moving to a temporary address. We then called you at the beginning of April to get the phone line and broadband set up. We were told that you had never stopped the service at the previous address and that we had a large bill outstanding. Finally you admitted that you had made a mistake and that the bill was incorrect. At the end of April / beginning of May, we finally had the problem with our bill sorted out (or so we thought).
We still had the problem of having no broadband service, our phone line was connected as promised (congratulations, this is the only thing your useless organisation has managed to get right so far, you must be so proud). So we contacted your help(less) desk, who could not really understand English, let alone speak it. They explained that there was a problem with the line, then that there wasn’t a problem on the line, then that we were too far from the exchange (we live less than 50 metres from the exchange), then again that there was a problem on the line, then, finally, that BT hadn’t bothered to actually request the set up of the broadband! We eventually agreed that the broadband would be connected within a week.
Guess what, it wasn’t (I’m sure you are as surprised as me!). So I called again around the 23rd April, went through the same ‘reasons’ (or lies, as I like to call them) for not being connected and was told that it would finally be connected on the 30th April. I was understandably not happy with this (approx 3 weeks after you originally ‘lied’) and complained that this was simply not good enough. I was assured that it was an error from BT that meant my broadband order hadn’t been set up correctly and that due to some tests you had to carry out on the line there was no physical way it could be connected before the 30th. I was unhappy, but so fed up of arguing with someone who couldn’t understand me or speak English properly that I resigned myself to defeat.
Now, imagine my surprise when I returned home on the 28th of April and my broadband was magically working. I checked everywhere for sprites, leprechauns, unicorns, wizards and witches, but in the absence of any magical beings I came to the conclusion that your ‘no physical way it could be connected before the 30th’ was in fact another reason (lie).
I didn’t phone up to complain about this, it seemed a waste of my life and at the end of the day I was finally a happy (in comparison with someone who has a life threatening disease AND problems with BT) customer.
Sadly, you were back to your old tricks soon enough. Despite my giving you DD details on at least 2 previous occasions, you persisted on sending me quarterly bills, again backdating them and trying to charge me for the period in which you were not actually providing me with any kind of service whatsoever (other than a very poor one!). I was quite rude to one of your staff and demanded to speak to someone in Britain.
I was told this wasn’t possible, but finally I passed to someone called Vince, from Glasgow (although I did notice his accent was more Punjab than Paisley), he was very helpful, and in fairness had a grasp of English about as comprehensive as the average Scot, so I wasn’t overly upset that BT had reasoned (lied) to me once again. ‘Vince’ eventually gave up arguing, once he realised he was wrong and agreed to wipe around £60 off the bill to make up for the period you were charging me when I received no service anyway – how kind! I gladly paid the money I owed and again gave my DD details.
This time, it appeared that BT weren’t reasoning (lying) to me, I did indeed receive a new bill – paid as agreed and a letter stating that a DD had been set up. On later investigation, my bank corroborated the story, so definitely no reasoning (lying).
I was happy, again!
Until the evening of 5th July, when my broadband service vanished. I couldn’t summon the energy to teach someone English that evening so I hoped the magical creatures might return overnight and fix any problem that had occurred. Sadly, it didn’t happen this time.
So on the evening of the 7th July I called BT, using the number that was displayed on my forlorn looking laptop when I tried to access the internet. First reason (lie) from BT… the bloody number is wrong! The auto woman (who sounded refreshingly English) informed me that I could now call BT freephone, wonderful I thought! On reflection, this amounts to nothing but fraud, indeed I am now seeking legal advice to see if I can sue BT.
How many people call the technical helpdesk from the incorrect number displayed on your ‘sorry our service is shit’ message? I bet a fair few, (in fact, could you provide me with the numbers please?) every one of those people is charged for listening to a message which gives you a freephone number… why not just change the number I thought… of course, BT wouldn’t make any money out of their service being down! So, please forward myself (and every other BT customer who has ever called this number) a cheque to repay the money charged due to your not being bothered to update a number. I am not joking. This is fraud.
Anyway, I digress. I called the aforementioned freephone number and after eternity someone answered and promptly asked for my telephone number (i had already confirmed on the IVR system that I wanted to talk about the number from which I was calling). I explained what the problem with and the lady on the ‘phone kindly read through all her pre-prepared scripts in pigeon English.
Unsurprisingly after an hour of this, my connection was still not working. I had tried everything from turning it on and off (I knew at this point I was talking to a professionally trained and highly skilled technical operative) to unscrewing the socket from the wall and discovering much to the surprise of Miss Helpful, that I definitely don’t have a test socket. (I knew this, but she insisted that I move my sofa, TV unit and entire bookcase half way across my living room to I could check anyway).
She then proudly declared that there must be a problem with my broadband connection (no shit, really?), not since Newton was struck by an apple has anyone had such an epiphany. She then asked me to replace my ADSL filter as these often break. Sadly on this occasion I didn’t have one lying around (so annoying, they’re normally everywhere, I must have thrown at least 20 away just yesterday). She did point out that I may have one in the original packaging, as BT realise their products are crap so send a spare for when the first invariably ceases to work. I pointed out that I had moved home twice since then (which BT know, see above) and had about as much chance of finding it as BT will have finding a reason (lie) to explain my problems so far.
I then enquired whether BT would kindly send me another ADSL filter. Miss Helpful placed me on hold and then confirmed that no, my ADSL filter which was expected to break, was out of it’s warranty. She suggested I buy another one to see if this was the problem.
At this point I lost it, I went mad. I ranted for about ten minutes about how crap BT are and then demanded that my broadband was canceled. She seemed taken aback, and persisted on trying to fix the problem. I kindly explained that it didn’t matter if she did fix the problem, I still wanted my broadband canceled. This culminated in verbal tennis to rival the 5th set of Federer Vs Roddick at Wimbledon 2009. I would say I didn’t want it fixed, just canceled and she would reply with, ‘I appreciate you frustration, I will try to find the fault’.
To add to this, I note that at the end of June 2009, BT were voted as having the ‘worst customer service in Britain’ (the telegraph). I also note that there is a website dedicated to BT complaints
So, to the crux of my letter, I would like the following:
- A full and detailed explanation of your recruitment policy for your call centres, I assume all your reasoners (liars) are highly trained professionals with recognised industry qualifications?
- A cheque to me and to every other BT customer who has called the fraudulent telephone number (see above).
- An explanation as to why your company purposely reasons (lies to), deceives and defrauds it’s customers.
- A letter from ‘Vince’ giving me detailed directions to a shop of his choice within Glasgow city centre (just to prove he was really from Glasgow)
- A letter confirming the number of customers who have called the fraudulent telephone number.
- A letter detailing why BT is such a useless company, who are unable to keep simple promises and who let their customers down with a consistency that could rival the laws of physics.
- A copy of all information that BT hold on me, as I am allowed to request under the data protection act. If there is a charge for this, I suggest given the circumstances, you waive that charge.
If you are unable to provide a satisfactory answer to the above questions, please cancel my broadband service, keep my landline service and delete me from any mailing lists you may have.
In either case I also seek some financial recompense for the time, effort, stress and inconvenience your hopeless company has caused to myself and my 8 month pregnant wife. I would suggest something in the region of free broadband for a year, free phonecalls for a year and £1000 of vouchers for a popular high street department store (ask ‘Vince’ I am sure he could suggest a few in Glasgow). I also enclose the receipt for my ADSL filter, which I want refunded in full.
With kind regards,
Please feel free to comment below with your BT Broadband experiences.