• Report: #21361

Complaint Review: Earthlink

  • Submitted: Wed, May 22, 2002
  • Updated: Fri, August 23, 2002

  • Reported By:
Earthlink
www.earthlink.com Richmond, Virginia U.S.A.

Earthlink is a ripoff. False promises, rude customer service, & threats. Richmond, Virginia *UPDATES

*0: Same bs, different day

*0: The cancellation letter

*0: Another Escalation Rep

*Consumer Comment: Outrageous Earthlink Customer Service. DSL Comments.

*0: Correction...

*0: $1100 later...

*0: And it continues...

*0: And it continues...

*0: And it continues...

*0: 1:39 PM - Earthlink - More of the same

*0: A couple of hours later...

*0: The next morning...

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I ordered an SDSL line from Earthlink on 4/30. I told the salesperson that I wouldn't be ready until 6/15. He said to place the order now because it would take several weeks to install.

I received a confirmation email, posted here:

Description Date Amount Description / Note Inv Date
--------------- -------- ----------- ------------------ --------
Future Charges
Business DSL In 06/14/02 724.00
SDSL Router Dis 06/14/02 100.00cr
-----------
Future Charges 624.00

DSL Business 144K recurring charges of $129 will begin on 06/14/02 or upon date of first usage.

8 IP addresses recurring charges of $0 will begin on 06/14/02 or upon first usage of access service.

Before the installation I emailed my salesperson asking to increase the bandwith to 384. The email was not acknowledged. Covad came out and installed a 144 service.

I called customer service, explained that I had asked for the increased band width but that they had installed the 144. The customer service rep told me that there would be a $90 charge to change the service. I asked to speak to a manager. They told me that they would have the manager call me back within 24 hours. No one called.

Three days later I called Customer Service, again explaining the situation. In the course of our conversation the customer service person indicated that my charges had started. I told her that I had an email stating that the charges would start on 6/15 or the date of first usage, and that I had clearly told the salesperson that I would not be ready to go live until at least 6/15, but that he had told me to get the order in because they had to prep the line. She said that that was true, but that the day they install the router is the date of first usage.

I told her that I was having second thoughts about doing business with Earthlink. She said that if I wanted to cancel she would wipe out the installation charges and they would only charge me a $300 disconnect fee. I asked for her manager's name. "Ken", she said. But she explained that if I talked to him he would charge me the full amount. She said she was trying to "be nice" but that if I was going to argue with her she'd just charge me the full amount.

I said fine, let me talk to him. She said she would have him contact me in 24 hours. I told her that they had said that before and nothing happened. I asked for an email address. She said that she was not allowed to give out personal information. I asked for her name. "Andi, with an 'i'", she said. I asked for the last name, she said she didn't give out her last name.

I asked her if there was any way to resolve the issue tonight, she said "no", that she would have someone call me in 24 hours.

Sandy
Richmond, Virginia

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/22/2002 05:27 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Earthlink/Richmond-Virginia-23060/Earthlink-is-a-ripoff-False-promises-rude-customer-service-threats-Richmond-Virgini-21361. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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REBUTTALS & REPLIES:
0Author 12Consumer 0Employee/Owner
Updates & Rebuttals

#1 0

Same bs, different day

AUTHOR: - ()

Around September 16th I received a notice from Earthlink that my account was seriously delinquent, that they would not send any more notices, that they would send it to a collection agency.

I sent another letter disputing the charges.

Two weeks later I got another bill, this time for $1,244.49. There was no mention of my bill being delinquent.

Again I am sending a letter disputing charges, asking them to desist and to send any further communication directly to my attorney.
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#2 0

The cancellation letter

AUTHOR: - ()

Bill Quince called me today. He states that the charges are still running and that they are unwilling to stop the charges because I didn't send in a cancellation letter. I told him that if I send a cancellation letter I am acknowledging service to this point. I agreed to send a cancellation letter if they would waive the charges. He said the bill stands.
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#3 0

Another Escalation Rep

AUTHOR: - ()

8/22 - I called Garry Betty's (CEO) office again and spoke to Elsa again. I gave her a synopsis and asked her if she could put me in touch with Darren McCaulley. She told me he was no longer with the company but that she would try to get me some help.



Bill Quince (Escalation rep) came on the line. He looked over the account and told me that there were three invoices. He said that we needed to get the business folks involved again, that Darren had done something wrong. I told him that I had been treated so badly by those folks... He said "I'm not going to drop you. I'll stay on the line with you."



He was unable to contact any of the business folks, so he promised to get more information and call me back within the hour. I told him I had a 1-hour meeting starting in 1/2 hour but that I would be back at my desk after that. I also asked him to email me the chain of invoices, which he did.

He never called back.



When I got home, there was a message from Katrina Ragusa in Mike Lunsford's office. She asked me to send her an email of the problems I have been having so that she can forward it on to the "Executive Escalation Team." I am sending that now.
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#4 Consumer Comment

Outrageous Earthlink Customer Service. DSL Comments.

AUTHOR: Wilson - ()

The customer service that Sandy experienced from Earthlink is totally unacceptable and outrageous. I am fortuntate that my ADSL using my existing voice phone line through Earthlink did not require Covad involvement.



I can tell you from my experience working at Excite@Home supporting DSL customers and working at NorthPoint Communications supporting internet service providers such as Excite@Home and others that your SDSL monthly charge is based upon your bandwith thus 384k would of course cost more than 144k and that the sustainable available bandwidth is determined by the distance from your home or business to your phone company's central office which houses the ISP's DSLAM (Digital Subscriber Access Multiplexor)which connects all the DSL customers to the ISP. So, Covad would be the experts as to whether you could sustain 384k since it would be their DSLAM that would be used.



Second, while I worked at Excite@Home, I don't believe we ever charged a prospective customer a disconnect fee. I think we always gave credit for DSL downtime. A disconnect fee for a non-used DSL line is outrageous.



I still recommend DSL because it is much faster than dialup. Shop around. Sign up with your local phone company (Verizon) or another ISP, or get ADSL where you use an existing phone line.
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#5 0

Correction...

AUTHOR: - ()

I found my original notes from 5/30. I spoke with Darren McCaulley:



I called Garry Betty's (CEO) office and spoke to Elsa. She asked for a brief desription of the problem. I told her. She said she would get me through to the escalation team right away. After a few minutes on hold she put me through to Darren McCaulley, Executive Relations Administrator. He was very nice, very polite, asked me to return the router and said he would take care of it.



I did.

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#6 0

$1100 later...

AUTHOR: - ()

Around the end of May I spoke with Mike Lunsford, Executive Vice President, Customer Experience. He was extremely polite and helpful. He checked my account and had me UPS the router back to them. I never heard another word, so I stopped updating this report.



THEN, today, August 19, I received the only bill I have ever gotten. This bill is in the amount of $1,115.49. I phoned Mike Lunsford's office and got his voice mail. I left a message for him to call.



I then called the number on the invoice and spoke to a rep named "Alex", again with no last name. He told me there was a note on the account "... not to cancel, not to touch, not to do anything with the account..." He told me someone here was dealing with an "Escalations Representative." More double-talk. I will call Mike Lunsford tomorrow.
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#7 0

And it continues...

AUTHOR: - ()

Rinke called me today (5/30). She stated that she had spoken to their "product manager" and that they had agreed to waive all of the charges if I would upgrade my service. I told her that if they had done that in the first place everything would have been fine, but that I had spent about six hours on the phone with rude customer service people and that I wanted nothing to do with Earhtlink. I told her that their bottom line was that they were going to get money out of me one way or the other. She said that wasn't true, that she was offering me "an option." She said if I wanted she would arrange for the product manager to call me back. I asked her what good that would do. She said that they are the ones who placed the charges. I asked her if it was true that all this time I had not been talking to someone with the authority to correct the charges. She said that was true. Finally she asked if I wanted her to arrange to have the product manager call me back. I told her I didn't care what she did, and I hung up.
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#8 0

And it continues...

AUTHOR: - ()

Rinke called me today (5/30). She stated that she had spoken to their "product manager" and that they had agreed to waive all of the charges if I would upgrade my service. I told her that if they had done that in the first place everything would have been fine, but that I had spent about six hours on the phone with rude customer service people and that I wanted nothing to do with Earhtlink. I told her that their bottom line was that they were going to get money out of me one way or the other. She said that wasn't true, that she was offering me "an option." She said if I wanted she would arrange for the product manager to call me back. I asked her what good that would do. She said that they are the ones who placed the charges. I asked her if it was true that all this time I had not been talking to someone with the authority to correct the charges. She said that was true. Finally she asked if I wanted her to arrange to have the product manager call me back. I told her I didn't care what she did, and I hung up.
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#9 0

And it continues...

AUTHOR: - ()

Rinke called me today (5/30). She stated that she had spoken to their "product manager" and that they had agreed to waive all of the charges if I would upgrade my service. I told her that if they had done that in the first place everything would have been fine, but that I had spent about six hours on the phone with rude customer service people and that I wanted nothing to do with Earhtlink. I told her that their bottom line was that they were going to get money out of me one way or the other. She said that wasn't true, that she was offering me "an option." She said if I wanted she would arrange for the product manager to call me back. I asked her what good that would do. She said that they are the ones who placed the charges. I asked her if it was true that all this time I had not been talking to someone with the authority to correct the charges. She said that was true. Finally she asked if I wanted her to arrange to have the product manager call me back. I told her I didn't care what she did, and I hung up.
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#10 0

1:39 PM - Earthlink - More of the same

AUTHOR: - ()

1:39 Rinke called. She said Alex had asked her to call. She said that even though they had delivered the wrong router and admitted that the sales person had dropped the ball, the router came from a third-party and I would have to pay for it. I asked her how much sense it made. For instance if she came to me and bought a Whirlpool washer by my vendor sent a GE, would she expect to pay for it? She said, I'm just giving you an option, mam. She asked me for a copy of the email I had sent to my sales person asking them to change the speed. I told her I would send it, that it was on my home machine, so I couldn't send it until the evening.



After my conversation with her I called Andy back. He said that he was in communication with her and that if I had any further questions I should go to her. He said that once she researched the email I was going to send that she would be able to waive everything, including the router.
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#11 0

A couple of hours later...

AUTHOR: - ()

After an hour had passed with no phone call from "The Jerry", I called the corporate offices and dialed-by-name the extension of Carter W. Calle, Executive Vice President, Member Support. He came up through the ranks of Customer Service. His phone was answered by Andy. Andy said I had reached the right office, that Carter was busy but that he (Andy) could help me. I told him that I had ordered an SDSL service, that Covad had installed the wrong router and the wrong speed. I told him that when I started with Customer Service to initially get the problem corrected, I had had an horrific experience, and now what I wanted was for them to get their equipment, and for us to just part company. I asked if he could help with that. He said yes, looked up my account, got my home and work contact numbers, and said he would have to get an SDSL specialist to actually do it. I asked when I might expect a call back. He said hopefully within a couple of hours, but definitely by the end of the day.
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#12 0

The next morning...

AUTHOR: - ()

On 5/23 I called the corporate offices in Georgia. I told the operator how much trouble I had been having. So she made sure she got a supervisor and connected me directly. 5/23 Rodney - supervisor.



Asked if I hadn't used the account at all. He called me back at home to verify security on my account. He put me on hold and said he was going to call pre-install.



The next thing I know, a completely different service rep, Samantha, answers. I told her I was talking to Rodney. She told me that my service was SDSL and the neither her nor Rodney would be able to help me.



I called the corporate offices back, got a different operator. I asked if there was anyone in the corporate offices who could help me. She stated that there was a chain of command, that I needed to call an 800 number and ask for a supervisor. I told her that I had tried that, but that they wouldn't let me. She put me on hold. After a few minutes I hing up and called again.



This time I got a different operator. She said she would need to get some information and put me on hold. After a minute or two she came back on and told me that she was on another call, that it would be a few minutes, to please hang on. She came back on the line, she was very polite and listened to the whole story, then she put be on hold again. She came back on and told me that she had a supervisor on the other line but that he was on another call. She told me he would call me back. I explained that I had taken off work to deal with this situation and needed to go in. I asked her how long I should wait. She said his name was Jerry and that he would call back within an hour.



btw, to all who are interested, on the web site, if you click on the "Site Map" (small print on the bottom right), you will find these links in the list : "Directions to Earthlink" - that page gives you all the addresses to their corporate offices, "Leadership->Executive Biographies" and "Leadership->Board of Directors" gives you the names of all of the executive officers and members of the board.
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