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Author Topic: Have any other Australians had their complaints "escalated" by Telstra?  (Read 1799 times)
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A year or so ago I rang Telstra with a problem about my email. After a couple of hours on the phone, I was told they were going to "escalate" it to a "higher priority" and "more technical" people were going to look into it. I never heard from them again.

More recently I had trouble sending emails. Directly contacting the Telstra SMTP server gave an error message. This one:

Code:
$ telnet mail.bigpond.com 25

Trying 61.9.189.249...
Connected to mail.bigpond.com.
Escape character is '^]'.
421 nschwcmgw08p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
Connection closed by foreign host.

"Outbound Connection refused" is pretty clear. It wouldn't accept a connection. This was before asking for a email address, password etc.

This message randomly occurred. Without any changes to my setup whatsoever it would sometimes appear, and sometimes not.

I spent another couple of hours on an "online chat" to Telstra. They did the usual stuff about "let's check your mail program configuration", and then said "probably down for maintenance". I patiently explained it had been like that for two weeks, surely they weren't doing maintenance for a fortnight? And it randomly happened, so it was hardly my email program.

Finally I was "escalated". A "more senior technician" will "run tests" and "get back to me".

Never heard from them again.

I suspect in Telstra-speak "we will escalate your enquiry" is code for: "we can't solve it, now it's going into the trash."

Does anyone else find this?
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No I haven't. But I can well believe it. I avoid the help line like the plague, but if you absolutely need it get settled with a cuppa and a good book.

And when they finally answer you've forgotten why you rang in the first place.
 
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Sounds like Dilbert http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/2008-09-23/
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Did they tell you that you must first reboot your PC and modem before the problem could be resolved?  smiley-wink

I had ATT DSL service for like five years and while it's perfomance and reliablity was pretty good, on at least 4 or five times I called their tech support it was a huge waste of time talking to some level 1 service rep based in India. Never was the problem resolved or even acknolged as their problem until I could finally get passed onto their level 2 techs which would always figure it out in short order. The trick was in trying to convince the level 1 person to transfer it to level 2, they were very reluctant to do so even though didn't seem to have a clue on how to resolve the matter.

 About three months ago ATT made it mandatory that I change from their DSL service to their Uverse internet service, and it had to be done within a 60 day window or all service would be disconnected. I was pretty pissed at their whole approach and was prepared to be one pissed and difficult customer to deal with.

 But LOL on me, the self install (and free) kit went right in and worked from the start and I haven't had a hickup or outage sense then and have never had to reboot the PC or the model to cure a Internet problem. Plus I went from 6Mbps to 12Mbps and is now $10 a month cheaper then the older DSL service, plus the Uverse router/bridge/modem (or whatever they call the damn 'box') has wireless capabilities built in that I'm not yet using but may in the near future. My only complaint is the constant e-mail offers to add telephone and cable TV to my service, they just won't stop with their constant badgering.  smiley-wink

Lefty
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Did they tell you that you must first reboot your PC and modem before the problem could be resolved?  smiley-wink

No, but I was expecting them to. Towards the end he started mumbling that they don't support "3rd party" mail programs. I took it to mean if you have a Mac you are on your own.

The funny thing was, his technical knowledge sounded OK until you challenged some of his statements. For example, when attempting to connect to the mail server directly, I would get slightly different responses, eg.

Code:
421 nschwcmgw03p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
421 nschwcmgw04p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
421 nschwcmgw05p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
421 nschwcmgw07p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
421 nschwcmgw08p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113
421 nschwcmgw09p BigPond Outbound Connection refused. OB113

That looked like a server name to me so I asked "How many mail servers do you have?"

He replied: "two". Sounded a bit strange. For all of Australia, all mail is handled by just two servers?

He goes on, "Yes we have port 25 and port 587. Two servers."

Me: "Ah that is the port for the incoming connections, that isn't two servers."

Him: "No, two servers: 25 and 587."

Me: "Each server has its own IP address. So how many actual servers do you have?"

Him: "Just two, sir. One on 25 and one on 587, like I said."

Me: "How do you account for all those different names in the 'connection refused' message?"

Him: "Let's delete your email account, and re-add it. Make sure you follow my instructions exactly."

Me: <sigh>
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If you listen carefully, you can hear them flipping pages in their "how to respond to customers" manual. If its not in there, you are SOL. I have only run into a few companies that hire competent staff. Time Warner Cable (if you call during regular biz hours), Hover, and Ting.

I had a Sanyo tech that insisted for a half hour that I needed to change the SSID and WEP settings of my wired (yes, wired) router.
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Som of us have worked "on the other side"  smiley-evil Well, for me, it was a professional software so I never have had to deal with "the general public". But some in my family have - f.eks. cable TV. If you think you have run accross some clueless people in support, that is nothing to how many clueless people are out there. smiley
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Som of us have worked "on the other side"  smiley-evil Well, for me, it was a professional software so I never have had to deal with "the general public". But some in my family have - f.eks. cable TV. If you think you have run accross some clueless people in support, that is nothing to how many clueless people are out there. smiley

Reminds me of a tech support person who posted a story about a clueless customer complaining that they couldn't get their PC to work. Long story short there seemed to be a total building AC power outage! The dialog back and forth between tech support to customer was to die for.  smiley-grin

Lefty
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