Today’s Actual Fully-Real Conversation with Earthlink Technical Support

Them: Hello, welcome to Earthlink technical support, how may I help you?

Me: Hi, I’m having trouble with my DSL. It was just installed last week and is very very very slow. I’m getting about the same speed on my DSL as a dial-up modem.

Them: Let’s take care of this right away. What’s your name?

Me: Paul Davidson.

Them: Great, Paul. We’re going to take care of this right away and get you all set up perfectly. Do you have your four digit code for the account?

Me: ****

Them: Wonderful, Paul. That’s great. This problem will be wrapped up in no time. What’s your e-mail address??

Me: paulseth at earthlink dot net.

Them: Can you spell that for me so we can expedite this process?

Me: P, A, U, L, S, E, T, H, @, E, A, R, T, H, L, I, N, K, N, E, T.”

Them: Very good. Thanks for that. What city and state are you calling from? This information will allow us to get rid of all this trouble you’re having…

Me: Los Angeles, California. Where are you based at?

Them: The Phillipines.

Me: How are you able to do tech support on my DSL from the Phillipines?

Them: We have phones, Sir. We are able to do everything from here that we would do from the States. Okay, this is wonderful. Can you tell me what modem you have?

Me: Yes, you guys sent me a Paradyne modem last week.

Them: Wonderful. A Paradyne modem. Would you say it’s the black Paradyne modem or an off-grey Paradyne modem?

Me: Black.

Them: Excellent. This information will be extremely helpful in me assisting you to solve your trouble that you’re having with your…it’s your dial-up modem, correct?


Them: Oh, DSL. What Windows operating system are you running?

Me: I’m not. I pressed the button for Macintosh back about an hour ago when I was in your queue.

Them: Oh. I can only assist you if you’re using the Windows operating system.

Me: Uh huh.

Them: Do you know about our Spam Blocker software?

Me: For Windows?

Them: No, it works on Macintosh too.

Me: And, this will help me speed up my DSL connection?

Them: No, but it will get rid of your spam.

Me: Did I say I was getting spam?

Them: It’s a wonderful program that works with our suite of internet programs.

Me: Are you going to transfer me to someone who knows how to fix this problem on a Mac?

Them: I’m going to need to know if you’ve placed your DSL modem near a light bulb before I transfer you so I can fill out a ticket.

Me: Well, my house has light bulbs in it.

Them: Is your modem sitting on top of a light bulb?

Me: That wouldn’t be physically possible — it wouldn’t balance on top of a lightbulb.

Them: OK. I’m going to transfer you now so that we can help you solve this problem.

Me: Uh huh…

(Transfer music. Twenty more minutes, then-)

Them: Hi, welcome to Earthlink. What seems to be the problem?

Me: Well, my DSL modem isn’t working correctly and-

Them: Before we solve your problem, can you tell me your name so we can expedite this problem and have you fixed in no time?

And so on, and so on and so on and so on.

I hate them.

In other news, another edition of “Words For Your Enjoyment” is already on our heels. Got an idea for Friday’s post? Shoot it my way.

In additional other news, I had the extreme opportunity of eating near Mary-Kate Olsen last night at a Los Angeles sushi restaurant. She was eating, yes. She was playing hookey from NYU. She looked as happy as ever.

6 comments on “Today’s Actual Fully-Real Conversation with Earthlink Technical Support

  1. lori - October 21, 2004 at 8:59 am -

    I think you should write a Friday post on people who leave comment on your blog under assumed names. One of my ex-boyfriends keeps doing this. I guess he doesn’t realize that I see his IP address and know it’s him. The names he chooses are really interesting though and I’m starting to think maybe he’s gay.

    Or you could write about your childhood imaginary friend. Mine was named Jimmy. He visited last week, and he’s really changed. Kept talking about conspiracy theories. Some childhood friendships just don’t tranisition into adulthood very well.

  2. Hilary - October 21, 2004 at 11:07 am -

    I feel your pain Pauly. I had Earthlink for a couple of years. HATED THEM. Now I have SBC DSL, and knock on wood, they’re turning out ok.

  3. Mennu - October 21, 2004 at 11:12 am -

    You know…today, this very same day, I also posted something about customer “support” on my blog. It amazes me…

  4. Erin - October 21, 2004 at 11:57 am -

    Have you ever tried to cancel an AOL account? Hooooboy.

    I love the question about the color of the modem though. Fantastic!

  5. T. Malone - October 21, 2004 at 4:47 pm -

    My father is going through hell with them right now! He hates them so much that he’s going to eat the money and cancel the contract early.

    And the Spam blocker – pure crap. Part of my job involves sending e-mails to clients who have actually signed up for our e-mail updates. I have to get though Earthlink Spam block by accessing a form for every client with Spam block. And 1/2 the time the form doesn’t work!

    You want fun? Try calling Earthlink to complain about their Spam blocker service if you don’t have an Earthlink account. It blows their minds! Be sure to take a drink every time you have to say, “No, I don’t have an account with you.”

  6. Donna - October 28, 2007 at 3:32 pm -

    I laughed as I read your experience,because i am going through a similar nightmare. I created a main e-mail account and three other e-mail addresses. I sent some pictures to my secondary e-mail and when I went to retrieve the pictures the whole e-mail address and contents disappeared. I called Earthlink and when I told this, they told me that they did not see the e-mail. I told them this is why I called. He told me that I did not create the e-mail address because it is not there. I told him that not only was it created, but I actually checked the e-mail address for over a month. I get a lot of e-mails and I wanted that address for real estate. I also asked him to check the Earthlink network and find out who had that address, because I had tried to create it again, just to double check that it still existed and a message stated that it was already taken, which I already knew. I reached my frustration limit when he asked me if I wanted him to recreate the e-mail address, as if that will solve the problem. Then I asked to speak with a supervisor and he put me on hold for over 20 minutes and no one came on.

    This is typically what happens when you ask for a supervisor. You get put on hold and no one comes on. If they cannot fix the problem they tell you that the system is down, but it was up until they get stuck.

    I changed my account password which is supposed to change my e-mail also. I have not been able to access my e-mails for over a month. I called 7 times yesterday and when I finally got a supervisor, he told me that he ws unable to help me because his tools are down. I asked him what he wanted “his tools” for and he told me that he needed his tools to verify my account. I was on the phone with the person (Maria) who transfered me to him for 30 minutes, so obviously my account was verfied. He did nothing to troubleshoot just kept repeating that his tool was down. I am so frustrated, I am going to write to the President of Earthlink.

    I asked him his name and he told me “Robbie” I told him that I was upset that Earthlnk did not have qualified people for technical support and he told me “Now, don’t get personal”.

    These people are answering from India but they have Englsh first names. they will not give a last name.

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