Tech non-support

Matthew Hoy
By Matthew Hoy on November 20, 2006

I can understand how tech support people can get frustrated. I've heard the stories about people complaining that their computer isn't working, and after asking enough questions the tech support person learns that the building has lost power -- who knew that computers required electricity?

But I've also dealt with tech support people who clearly believe they know more than they really do. I had one tech support person tell me that they'd have to re-install Microsoft's Outlook e-mail program because the executable was corrupt. I knew that it wasn't because I saw there were five identical processes running and if I logged off that computer and had someone else log on, the executable ran fine -- so it was obviously a problem with my roaming profile that followed me around computer to computer throughout the building. But the tech support person would have none of it -- I'm a user, she's tech support and that's all there is to it.

Which brings me to tonight's story. My grandmother has been having a problem with her Cox Communications Internet access. It's slow. I mean 2400 baud-if-you're-lucky slow. I checked out her computer yesterday and determined it wasn't her computer. There were no processes hogging system resources. The problem was reproducible whether she was using Firefox or IE. I went to the command line and tried to ping -- it timed out. She's not going through a router -- it's the cable modem direct to the computer.

So, she called Cox today. They told her the signal was strong and that they don't support Firefox.

That's like taking your car to a mechanic and them telling you that there's gas in your tank and they don't work on fuel-injected cars -- and all the while the problem is your transmission is dragging along the ground. The fact that the car is fuel-injected is irrelevant to the reason it's not working.

Same situation here.

So, I'm going to head down to La Mesa tomorrow and deal with Cox. They're taking her money, but they don't seem really concerned that they're giving her the service. Fortunately, I'm dangerous enough technologically that I don't get shamed off the phone that easily.

0 comments on “Tech non-support”

  1. Sorry to tell you, but when I dealt with Cox (some of my family still does, and despite my warnings to avoid them like the plague they hooked up with them and each says they regret it), I came up with a name for them that I seemed to utter many times because their service is that bad:


    Try it - call them that to their faces like I did. The last time I paid my bill, I told the woman, "This is why your company should go out of business. You are nothing but *********."

    Needless to say, she hung up on me.

    *EDITED BY HOYSTORY* Alt, you know better -- and no, the fact that the spelling is different doesn't excuse it.


I continue to be annoyed by online media companies skimping on the copy editors.

If you disagree, we may feud over the issue.

Is it true that Adam Schiff used his official position as House Intelligence Chair to subpoena the phone records of a journalist?

#PolitiFactThis #FactCheckThis @GlennKesslerWP @ddale8 @asharock @YLindaQiu @factcheckdotorg @ReutersFacts

Sounds dangerous, right @Acosta?

Sen. Marsha Blackburn @MarshaBlackburn

Adam Schiff used his official position as House Intelligence Chair to subpoena the phone records of a journalist and the top Republican on his committee.

Then he released the records to intimidate his opponents.

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November 2006



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