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Old 12-03-07, 09:51 AM   #1
John E
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no phone or DSL

I feel a bit like Roger Miller's "King of the Road": "no phone, no pool, ... ." Our Plain Old Telephone Service (POTS) line and piggybacked DSL died Thursday afternoon, and AT&T probably won't have a line crew and boom truck available to locate and splice the break until tomorrow. Fortunately, my wife has a cell phone, and I am able to get "unofficial" wireless internet on my laptop computer , but this is the first time I have ever been without POTS for more than a few hours. I suspect the phone company is too cheap to retain as many field service technicians as in years past and that this is just one more example of America's deteriorating infrastructure, along with broken water mains, potholes, and falling bridges.
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Old 12-03-07, 10:01 AM   #2
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Frustrating I am sure. In this area, the politicos keep calling for ever more taxes to take care of the infrastructure stuff, but I keep asking what are they using the ever increasing tax base (due to large population growth) for. Seems the ticket for politicians is to offer more and more services, then ask for more tax money, rather than to spend what is already paid. Of course the Telephone company is a different story, as they answer to the shareholders, who also want ever increasing profits.

Enough grousing for a Monday Morning.
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Old 12-03-07, 11:34 AM   #3
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Hopefully it won't be down long, John E. As for me, my "unofficial" laptop to cell phone connection is the only internet connection I have in my dungeon cubicle at work.
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Old 12-03-07, 06:27 PM   #4
John E
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Interesting additional data:
http://www.dra.ca.gov/DRA/Telecom/071101_attfined.htm

AT&T recently paid a $900K fine (a mere wrist slap, I am sure) because of precisely the sort of delays I am experiencing. They rank either 190 or 192 out of 192 local phone service providers, depending on which years' statistics one uses.

I doubt that changing phone providers would help, since I believe AT&T owns the infrastructure.
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Old 12-03-07, 07:23 PM   #5
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Cable company...but now you are dealing with the cable guy. I have ATT phone/DSL and Comcast cable. I could get local phone service, Internet and TV from Comcast via their fiber network. And of course ATT/Dish is trying to sell me satellite.
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Old 12-03-07, 08:08 PM   #6
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Best of luck with your service, John. The mess of incumbent exchange carriers reformed into AT$T has for years been feasting like a jackal pack off the excellent infrastructure of the regulated days. In the last few years, the exits of brains and experience have caused nightmares. Equipment built to last almost forever is being tended by people who know next to nothing about it with all the predictable consequences for service.
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Old 12-04-07, 05:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gcottay View Post
Best of luck with your service, John. The mess of incumbent exchange carriers reformed into AT$T has for years been feasting like a jackal pack off the excellent infrastructure of the regulated days. In the last few years, the exits of brains and experience have caused nightmares. Equipment built to last almost forever is being tended by people who know next to nothing about it with all the predictable consequences for service.
Yup, it's about like visiting the "service" department of a VW dealership.

A cable technician is reportedly splicing my phone line as I write this. If I get service this afternoon, it will be after a total of 5 days = 120 hours of downtime, versus the Public Utilities Commission standard of 29 hours.
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Old 12-04-07, 05:09 PM   #8
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Just had a taster of being without phone and Internet for just over 2 days. Not an enjoyable experience- but My daughter who is affected by the same fault has been out for 10 days and a promise has been made that she will be conected by The end of this week. She was connected briefly to be able to hear a recorded message that anyone affected will receive some compensation- but halfway through listening to it- The phone went dead.
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Old 12-04-07, 10:02 PM   #9
John E
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Well, it is now 8 p.m., time for the repair crews to knock off for the night, and still no phone or DSL.
"Tomorrow is another day." ...
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Old 12-05-07, 07:41 PM   #10
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Well, it took almost exactly 6 days, but I once again have telephone and DSL service. Several of my neighbors were evidently affected, as well, and one with MCI noted that they referred the repair to AT&T, anyway, consistent with my suspicions.

As far as I can reconstruct it, the problem arose in a recently-installed fiber cable link in our phone service. I have been reading that the phone companies have been deploying all of their cable splicing technicians to new installations and other high-profit applications, leaving a severe shortage of technicians assigned to keeping plain old telephone service afloat. Since an annual $900K fine would cover only a few technicians and their trucks and equipment, it is cost-effective for AT&T to pay the fine as a cost of doing business, instead of trying to provide decent customer service.

I seriously doubt things are any better with the traditional television cable companies. I can only hope that the emerging competition between the telephone and TV cable companies will ultimately benefit the consumer -- we certainly pay through the nose for what we get right now.
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Old 12-06-07, 01:47 AM   #11
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"I seriously doubt things are any better with the traditional television cable companies"

They aren't. It took nearly a month to get a cable extension dug for our internet connection when we moved here in September & all the workers involved spoke English as their 2nd language.
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