When I began this blog, I resolved to name organisations only if praising them. I was determined not to use this privileged communication platform to snipe at firms who’d done me wrong. But lately, my internet service provider (ISP) has been driving me crazy (and jeopardising my business) with what I believe to be very poor service.
In Small is the new big Seth Godin happily names every organisation he describes, good or bad. I admire Seth; should I follow him? Even if it doesn’t feel right? Even if it’s a firm that could wreak terrible revenge on my communications and destroy my business in the process?
During my human resources degree and career, I learned to praise people publicly and criticise them in private. The trouble today is that I have no personal access to my ISP. I can’t take them into a quiet room or ring them for a chat about why I’m unhappy with their performance. When I do ring, I get the ROBOT.
At first I didn’t fear the ROBOT, as I had Natalie Tran’s* fabulous guide to dealing with ROBOTS. Alas, like Skynet, my ISP’s ROBOT has evolved to counter even Natalie’s brilliant strategy. I managed to access a human twice. Now that the ROBOT has realised what I’m up to, however, it puts me on hold for ages, then cuts me off. Touche!
It’s such a shame. For two years my ISP service was flawless – the envy of all who beheld its mighty power. Now it drops out most mornings, as well as last Saturday night and all day yesterday. Beset by client deadlines (and smack in the middle of trying to create my new website) I’ve literally been weeping and tearing out my hair.
A technician came two days ago. I offered him a coffee. He asked to use my toilet, then said he’d do something to something outside. When I went to check on him a short time later, he and his van were gone. No farewell, no paperwork.
Yesterday an outage forced me to cancel my bookkeeper (O Fortuna!). Today the technician came back. He said the connection speed was great on his test modem (with its associated uber-plan). Unfortunately, because he didn’t know what plan I was on, he didn’t know what speed I should be getting. I asked if he could ring and ask. He replied that as a contractor who didn’t work for my ISP, he couldn’t. We agreed that if I rang, I’d get the ROBOT.
So now I seek your guidance. Is this post the thin edge of the ranting wedge? As a small business blogger, do I have the right (or even responsibility) to name less-than-fabulous firms for your benefit? Or will that merely incite a useless slanging match?
This is a very serious question. Web 2.0 is a technological tidal wave with two breaks. You can surf it for miles, or it can smash you on the rocks. Just ask Domino’s Pizza.
I humbly invite your views.
Paul Hassing , Founder & Senior Writer, www.thefeistyempire.com
* To learn more about this YouTube star, read this article from The Age.