Friday, March 31, 2006

Totally free installation...

Ok, I’m supposed to be getting a dedicated T1 line installed today. Never mind that no one can tell me when they might show up. Never mind that no one can tell me if they are going to show up (you would think their dispatch system might have some clue – but no).

But the best part, I’m talking with the guy only to discover that the installation will take only a couple of seconds on their part. What I say – there is this big box of stuff that needs to be set up, configured and so on. “Oh, you do that part”. What? Where is the free installation I ask.

That is when he said – and I kid you not, I asked him to repeat it

Installation is completely free, as long as you do it yourself.

I’m not kidding. I had him say it a third time and asked him if he thought that sounded a bit strange.

Installation is completely free, as long as you do it yourself.

He didn’t find it strange. Then I said – at least I have weekend support, since the odds they get here before close of business today to let me configure it are slim to none – that is when I found out. “Well you have weekend support, except (except!) for this provisioning period. That is only 9-5 Monday through Friday. Other than that you have the exclusive 24x7 support package”.

Then he said “you should have gotten all of this from your sales guy”. Ouch.

Well, it’ll be interesting. Interesting to see if I get my connection today (I doubt it, seriously doubt it). Interesting to see that if I do – that I can provision it before 5pm (slim – to none). Interesting to see if they charge me for the service that I won’t be able to configure and or use until next Friday at the earliest (week of travel ahead – without my aircard since that is what we’ve all been sharing here at the house for internet connectivity since December!)

Installation is completely free, as long as you do it yourself.

Grumble, mumble, $#@$#! The devil is in the details…

At least I've only been waiting 3 months for this completely free installation.


Anonymous Anonymous said....

I guess when something is offered for "free" a good questions to ask is "why" =)

Fri Mar 31, 02:39:00 PM EST  

Blogger Eddie Awad said....

Among other things, I've learned one thing in life, especially here in the USA where the word "free" is overused: Nothing is for free, nothing.

Fri Mar 31, 02:49:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

"Free" just means costs no Money, doesn't matter to who.
Free doesn't apply to labor done by the consumer.

Marketing ploy. They can say installation is free.

They don't have to say you do it yourself - that is by their definition FREE to them.

I too have been caught by this with satellite TV installation.

"Includes Free Installation"

Which basically meant you got a big box of scary looking things and a single blurry sheet of instructions. From that you had to figure out your declination (!?) and azimuth (!?) and align the dish.

Their answer was "We used to force the consumer to pay for proffesional installation, we give you a choice now. Thank you for signing the one year contract, that earned you the free installation option,have a nice day "

American Marketing Corporations at their best.

Fri Mar 31, 03:51:00 PM EST  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

I have that same "one year contract" :)

Fri Mar 31, 04:12:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Dave said....

When you are the phone company I guess you still make the rules.

I'd wait until your are there and not let them start charging until it works.

Fri Mar 31, 04:13:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

And that reminds me of my own pet peeve, the whole mail-in rebate scam. I long ago got into the habit of ignoring such offers when pricing something. Instant in-store rebates are fine. This has saved me lots of aggravation over the years.

Case in point: this past Monday, my mother and I went into the local office supply store and picked up a pair of 2 GB(!) flash drives, each of us making our own purchase. Mom was interested in putting in for the promised $15 rebate; I was not. When we got home, I cynically reviewed the rebate guidelines and, sure enough, found this little "gotcha": limit one rebate per person and per household.

Good thing I wasn't hoping for anything back, or I'd have felt pretty cheated. Now, it'll be interesting to see if Mom gets her money, but I doubt it. Another dodge these "rebate fulfillment" outfits love is to conveniently misplace the application until just past the expiration date, then reject it as late. This just happened to a friend of mine.

This whole redefinition of the word "free" sounds Orwellian. I'm reminded of a certain famous presidential quote: "it all depends on what 'IS' is".

Bob Shepard

Fri Mar 31, 04:24:00 PM EST  

Blogger David Aldridge said....

Oracle Corp ought to use this technique ...

"Oracle 10gR2 Enterprise Edition: Free Installation!!!"

Fri Mar 31, 04:37:00 PM EST  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

"Oracle 10gR2 Enterprise Edition: Free Installation!!!"

Ok, I laughed out loud...

Fri Mar 31, 04:43:00 PM EST  

Blogger jimk said....

Your best bet is to write a letter to some eecutive int he company. NOT email. Write an actual letter. Be firm but nice(professional). It works wonders. I hate writing letters but often resort to it in these instances. As long as you are reasonable and clear and the letter is short you have a good chance to get good results.

Fri Mar 31, 05:18:00 PM EST  

Blogger Thomas Kyte said....

I tried that letter writing thing with a certain large airline that is US based and whose name starts with a "U" and ends with a "D"

I'm still trying to figure out why they believe I might have walked from Frankfurt to Tel Aviv - they have my flight from Dublin to Frankfurt - then I go missing, but show up in Tel Aviv a week later flying back to Frankfurt. They are at a loss as to how I got there, and at a loss to explain why since I bought the ticket and the ticket was used - I cannot be credited for the miles.

It doesn't always work :)

Fri Mar 31, 05:25:00 PM EST  

Blogger Tom said....

Down here in Tampa, Verizon has rolled out something called FIOS, or fiber. Currently, they offer data (internet), voice (voip), and they will soon be offering digital cable (cable over ip or some other protocol). The will let you buy it bundled or unbundled. I think for 15 or 30 mbps down and 5 mbps up, it is $44.99 a month with a one year contract (Things could be different now). That is much cheaper than a T1. They claim they will be rolling out in other markets in the near future (maybe your neck of the woods). I had cable before and this makes it look like dialup. Things are slow on some sites due to bottle necks, but being able to grab files as if they are on a local network is impressive.

The only difficulty I had with the, was when they were actually hooking it up. They were supposed to come one day, and made me wait until the next.

I'm a happy camper though...

Fri Mar 31, 05:59:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Anonymous said....

Well, Tom there is a guy walking around the world. (grin) He started in Buenes Ares and this winter crossed the Bearing Strait. (he planned to I don't know if he did.) He is going to cross Russia etc, and walk through the Chunnel to England.

Maybe that U airline thinks you are doing something like that and are a very fast walker. (not very bright airline)

Fri Mar 31, 09:00:00 PM EST  

Anonymous Francois said....

"Free is when you don't have to pay for nothing or do nothing".

Sat Apr 01, 03:10:00 AM EST  

Blogger Alberto Dell'Era said....

> why they believe I might have walked from Frankfurt to Tel Aviv

But ... that's "free exercise" !

Sat Apr 01, 10:17:00 AM EST  

Blogger Jeff Hunter said....

But ... that's "free exercise" !


Sat Apr 01, 09:32:00 PM EST  

Blogger Andreas said....

The problem with you phnoe company and the airline is that they are run by people who are young. Being young is not a problem, but we are old and that implies that we were brought up in a time were a strict link between words and their semantics existed. In the good old days "FREE" meant that you received something EXTRA without paying. Now its you get some stuff you did not ask for - and its only purpose in life is to make your life more difficult :-(

Same applies to airlines. Here the el-cheapo airlines say :Amsterdam - London for 10 euros only. So I asked my son (age 10) what a roundtrip for a family would cost. He came up with 60 euros. I showed him on the website that 2*30 = 1500 euros.

So somewhere between the primary school and the marketplace the new semantic and formulars will be introduced :-)


Sun Apr 09, 12:39:00 PM EDT  

Blogger Niels Jessen said....

Bob Dylan once sang: "Are birds free from the chains of the skyway?"

Wed Apr 19, 02:20:00 AM EDT  

Anonymous Niels Jessen said....

Bob Dylan once sang: "Are birds free from the chains of the skyway?"

Wed Apr 19, 02:21:00 AM EDT  

Blogger Skylerzx said....

Hi Friend,

Your living in a world where it is totally impossible for people to tell the truth... especially companies...As a general rule everything you hear and see are total lies... It is impossible for society to function otherwise. The real good liers season their lies with a sprinkle of truth...So, try not to be too surprised when this type of thing happens. Doubt, everything, even this comment...Skylerzx

Sat Mar 08, 10:07:00 PM EST  


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