I finally am able to send email using my domain names..no thanks to Telecentro, my new ISP, here in Argentina. I can honestly say I have never met a group of morons less capable of technical support then these guys. Not only are they idiots, they are rude, nasty, and sarcastic. I am amazed that Telecentro has any customers at all, considering the way they treat their customers.
I have lived in Argentina more than 7 years, so I am used to inadequate customer service. The level of customer service here is almost a joke. You almost faint when a clerk attends to you without a cell phone in their hand. Usually sending a text message to a friend or talking on the phone takes presidence over helping customers. You are in the way of their social life.
In the movie "Busco Un Novio Para Mi Mujer" there is a famous scene where the woman is going to a job interview. The receptionist is on the land phone, sending a text message on her cell, and using Messenger, all while ignoring the person coming for the job interview. When the candidate objects, the receptionist gets angry with her, and when she goes in to announce the candidate to her boss, complains about her. The whole scenario while funny, is another slice of where truth is funnier than fiction. Life in Buenos Aires. The customer is not King.
I have adapted. I realize I am not living in a society where you can bring things back with a smile. I live in a society where before I get a chance to barely open my mouth, the other person blasts "DE DONDE SOS?" Like I am a creature from another planet. Probably I am, on on some days I tell them I am from the moon, the dark side.
That brings us back to Telecentro. The cheapest option for Internet, Cable, and Internet phone. I bit the bullet. I needed to lower my costs. With Telecentro I would pay less than what my phone and Internet bill together were. I would be saving quite a bit. With all the inflation it seemed like a good idea.
I cut my service with Arnet. They started to offer me months and months of free service. Too late. I had already ordered Telecentro. I cut my service with Cablevision. They didn't really care. I had an installation date with Telecentro.
They came as scheduled. The first words out of the installation guy's mouth "DE DONDE SOS VOS?" I asked him if this was important? He said no, but he would need to understand me. I asked him if he understood me. He said yes, but my skin was really white. I asked him if that was a problem. He said no. OK, install the cable. During his hour and a half we talked about a myriad of things. He never once had to ask me to repeat anything.
At the end he gave me a piece of paper. There was a password scrawled on it, a phone number which was my Internet number. "This is it?" I asked. "What about set up manuals for the phone and Internet?" I asked. He blew me off and told me he had to call in the installation.
He calls his office and says the installation is complete and now he is going to put the customer on the phone. Then he adds, be careful, she is an American. I look at him. "Was that necessary?" "Well he might not understand you." The guy speaks to me for over and hour and now all of a sudden I might not be understandable. I get on the phone. The guys asks if I am me. "Si." He asks if the address is my address. "Si." Then he asks if the cable and the Internet are working. "Si." So difficult to understand me. My first introduction to Telecentro.
Now to set up my email. Since I have nothing written I head to the web. Unfortunately there is nothing on the web either. Amazing. Under CLIENTS I can look up my bill or do Webmail..if I have an account. All other ISPs allow you to set your account up on their sites. Not Telecentro. FAQ has no information.
I decide to call technical support. Because I have not received my first billing I do not have a customer number. The support person does not want to help me. He tells me to call back the next day, during business hours. Amazing. I can live without email.
I call back, between business hours. I get my customer ID. All email addresses have to be assigned by Technical Support. Good thing I only want one. I give the guy my address. He gives me a rediculous excuse for a password. I ask if I can change it. I get a mumbled explanation. Where did they go for ISP school? No one uses passwords like this. This is 1980s technology.
I immediately login to my Telecentral mail account. I change my password. I logout. I log back in. Everything is fine. I go to Thunderbird and setup all my domain email accounts. Nothing works. Bad password? I check everything again. Over 22 years in IT. This is the first time this has happened. Nothing sends, nothing receives. It doesn't matter if I used my domain emails or my Telecentro emails, nothing works. What the f--k?
In a month's time I spend many calls with Telecentral's non-support. I have never met a ruder, nastier bunch of jerks in my life. They make me want to talk to the Indian technical support people I dealt with when I worked in the U.S. At least then I could ask for 2nd tier or a manager. These guys call you names and/or hang up on you.
In the month I tried to get my email to work I was hung up on, told to learn to speak better, told I didn't need domain names, told that Thunderbird was a dumb program I should use Outlook, told they don't support Thunderbird. One man walked me through my configuration and told me it was perfect, said he had no idea why there was a problem and gave me a ticket number. When I called to inquire about the ticket, I was told that he was not responsible for that person's ticket.
This past Sunday I called. When I tried to explain to the support person he told me he could not understand me. I spoke slower. The problem was he did not understand. When I asked if I could speak to someone else he told me no. He told me that I was the problem. They don't have to help me. Can you imagine? I told him about my open ticket. He put me on hold and never came back. I called back twice with my customer number and both times they put me on hold and never came back.
Then by magic I began to receive mail. God loves me after all. Now I wanted to send mail. I could send mail only with my Telecentro account. How wierd. There must be a blocked port. I knew it had to be the set up and they were not giving me the information I needed. I called again. I asked about the ports. They hung up on me.
I did an exhaustive Google search. Finally I found someone who had the same problem as me in the USA with another ISP. I used the port settings recommended by their ISP and also the settings for authentication. Wow! Everything worked. How simple. Amazing when you have the correct settings how everything works.
Now onto the telephone. That too was a minor disaster. No set up instructions. There was a minor disaster. The FAQ had a 1 line instruction. Dial *77 and then punch in a code, then you can change the password. OK simple enough. Except I kept getting asked for a mailbox ID. Duh. Not in the instructions.
I called technical support. My buddies. After telling them that yes I did all these things correctly. They then acknowledged the system must have an "error" because this is what it does when it has an "error." Why couldn't they tell me that first? It would be fixed by Friday. Hopefully not like my email which never seemed to get fixed.
I have to say, that the phone problem, actually did get fixed. I set up my phone. However, Telecentro gives you no manual, nor instructions to any of the services provided by the phone. None of the information is on their website. After another Google search I found a manual with all the information. This Manual would probably save 100s of calls to their horrible technical support and make life easier for everyone. They should just post the information on the website.
If you do a Google search on Telecentral you will find out how much people hate them. There are Facebook pages and groups dedicated to people who hate them. There are chat groups and pages on forums where people do nothing but complain about them.
My problems were relatively easy to solve. Had I been given the correct information, they would have been solved immediately. There was no reason for them to treat me the way they did. They were not only incompetent, they were incredibly rude. In all the years I have had Internet, on a personal level, I have never had to call my ISP. That includes the years I had The Source, Compuserve, AOL, PacificBell, and living here I had Fibertel and Arnet.
On a business level in the US I had many dealings when connecting client's servers. I never ever had an ISP no matter how horrible the service was, respond like these guys. I cannot imagine a support representative calling me stupid, or telling me not to use something stupid like Thunderbird. Someone ought to tell them how stupid they are. Their conduct reflects upon the business who hires them.
On one side, my cable is better. The picture is clearer. My Internet speed compared to Arnet is faster and the throughput is much, much better. I get much better sound quality with my MagicJack. I can watch my favorite programs and movies without interruption. I hope to high hell, I never have to call their support again.