So since last week’s attempt to start a little campaign regarding the incredibly bad level of service Orange Jordan offers its Internet customers, my Internet connection has been down. Some people have even fueled my head with conspiracy theories but I wouldn’t go that far. It is however ironic that just when I was starting to complain about how bad and slow the service was, my service came to a stop all together. It’s like asking for a salary raise and getting fired instead.
The past week I’ve been sporadically leaching the Internet off a neighbor who is luckily not in the country (hey, someone’s got to use that connection), but the connection is fairly weak so my net usage has plummeted.
I’ve called Orange Internet customer service several times. During the past week there was one day that the connection did work and I wanted to celebrate its return by trying to get my Mac to work as for some reason it refused to connect wirelessly. I called them up for the second time and just then, my other computer wouldn’t connect wirelessly.
After a pretty condescending conversation – you know the one where the IT guy expects you to know everything he knows and uses his raspy voice to chastise you when you inquire as to what arabized word he just used in the middle of a sentence? – the customer service representative ended the conversation by saying that he had been on the line too long and gave me a random instruction to carry out, which we both knew wouldn’t work. “And if you need anything more, call back, someone else will help you,” he says. “And you have to take your Mac to the dealer – it’s not our problem,” he continued.
Essentially, the 10 minute or so conversation ended with him being unable to help me connect wirelessly, and telling me to go deal with the Mac situation on my own. Brilliant.
Oh, after speaking to a friend who is a Mac user that experienced the very same problem (who was apparently also rejected by an Orange customer service rep), the solution involves changing the settings on the Orange Livebox to accept more than one computer – so technically it was “their” problem.
Nevertheless, for 95% of the week I’ve had no Internet connection. Two days ago I got that dreadful message that said I had used up 70% of my download capacity. The one that asks you to call their customer service center, who in this particular department would probably be very eager to help me.
The connection came back on for about 8 hours yesterday and then, last night, it vanished once again. When I called them this morning they said I hadn’t paid my bill. And like 95% of the time, they never sent a bill in the first place.
At this point, I’m thinking of sleeping at the office just for the Internet connection.
What annoys me most is probably not having a proper solution to this problem. How do you deal with someone who doesn’t care about your business – who could care less if you go to a competitor? This, by the way, is an attitude that is deeply ingrained in the Jordanian business mentality. Even the tomato guy in the vegetable souk will tell you to go to Safeway if you think their tomatoes are cheaper. Why is that?
If Orange doesn’t care about improving its level of services then maybe it should introduce a pay-as-go system where we only pay for the amount of Internet we actually GET to use as opposed to the amount that we’re promised. Then again, if they could care less then there’s no reason to change, right?
I can only take comfort in knowing that the theory in such cases does usually work out: people who do bad business and never improve will almost always, eventually fail in their business. Orange may be, by birthright, the chosen child right now, but they’ll eventually suffer a loss to a competitor. Not because that competitor is bigger in size, just because they’re better with the services they have to provide.
Companies in Jordan need to be aware of that. They need to be aware that complaints are not sporadic and random in nature. They need to know that there is a reason for these complaints. That these complaints are collective in nature. My decision to use social media tools to voice my complaints was exactly that – an attempt to try and bring those voices together in whatever medium available to us, the average customer. In one week, a single Facebook group garnered 150 members voicing their support. If you do a simple search you’ll see more groups with more members and more complaints. Whether you like it or not, whether you believe it or not, it remains an indicator at the most basic of levels. The comments left by
users customers on this blog and other blogs around the Jordanian blogosphere this past week are another indication of that.
I would love to call on a day where all these people cancel their subscriptions in a united fashion, but I somehow doubt Orange would care if it suddenly lost 500 members in a day. However, I do hope people continue to voice their concerns collectively and respectfully. Change doesn’t come over night.
Anyways, Just thought I’d share my experience this past week with all of you.
I doubt that I will pay my bill to get my service back, as I will be shopping around for a new service provider until further notice but that’s a misadventure that will probably have to wait till after Eid.
If you don’t see me around online for a while, now you’ll know why.