[GLLUG] Fibre broadband

John Winters john at sinodun.org.uk
Fri Dec 21 09:41:43 UTC 2012

On 21/12/12 09:32, Charles Flèche wrote:
> Thanks for the answers guys. I was not aware of AA and Wen at all and
> they look really interesting.
> Out of curiosity, what are your rants against Virgin ? Any horror stories ?

I have not used Virgin since they were re-branded - previously they were 
NTL, known universally as NT-Hell.  In those days at least, they 
displayed a cluelessness beyond belief.  Starting with the need to call 
a single number for support, wait 20 minutes to get through to someone, 
then find you had the wrong call centre (nothing you can do to avoid 
this), be transferred to the right call centre for your area, wait 
another 20 minutes and then explain to a script-droid what the problem 
is.  It was the classic, "No, I can't click on Start because I haven't 
got a Start menu, and anyway it's *your* modem which is not 
communicating with *your* servers so no amount of fiddling with my 
machine (which is communicating just fine with your modem) is going to 
help."  Just like an xkcd cartoon.  Getting any problem fixed involved 
dozens of calls like this, and much pain.

When I finally gave them the boot, they just wouldn't accept it for a 
long time.  I notified them that I was cancelling the account by every 
possible means (phone, e-mail, recorded delivery letter) but they 
ignored it all and carried on billing me, getting steadily more 
threatening as I refused to pay.  They also lied continually - "You have 
not responded to our earlier communications", "You have not given us any 
reason for non-payment", etc.  In the end I had to get Oftel involved to 
get the service cancelled.  Because they were providing a phone line as 
well, it fell inside Oftel's remit and they responded quite quickly once 
I made a formal complaint to Oftel.

Now it's possible they've had a complete re-structuring since then and 
all works smoothly, but I wouldn't put any money on it.

In this area, you very much get what you pay for - if you select a 
broadband provider with price as your primary criterion, expect crap 
service and you won't be disappointed.


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