Tuesday, August 16, 2005

An Open Letter to Bell

To Whom it May Concern;

As of July 15th the telephone at the Bad Dog Theatre Company ceased getting a dial tone.

Due to staff and volunteer shortages, you were not contacted until July 30th when an appointment for a technician was booked to arrive on August 3rd between 5:00 pm and 10:00 pm which are standard business hours for the theatre (noted on our account). The repair ticket #12755240500 was opened and the technician never showed up.

A second appointment was scheduled for August 8th for the same time frame and yet again no technician arrived.

When I talked to a one of your representatives we decided that clearly 9:00 am to 5:00 pm would work better for the technicians, since our hours of operation are after 5:00 pm I suggested that the technician call me at my cell phone and I would leave my job to give the technician access to our theatre. We booked the appointment for August 10th.

The technician never called and when I called you again to find out what happened a representative said that the technician showed up and left because there was no one there to let them on the premises. I had not received any call on my cell phone from a repair technician as agreed on.

At noon on the same day we had two volunteers come in who do telephone repairs as an independant company. Steve and Jim removed all of the CPE from the demarcation point and found that the problem lay with the Bell cable connection to our demarc. They could not do the repair as the issue was with your cable equipment.

I called you again to arrange for a technician to come in on Friday, August 12th from 9:00am to 5:00 pm. This time I escalated the call to a supervisor Jerod Employee #M0527 who told me that you would not charge our Theatre for the time that the phone was down. As a not for profit/charity organization protecting our finances is always a priority.

We had a volunteer take the day to sit and wait at the theatre for the technician. Again, no technician arrived.

At 7:30 pm on August 12th, I called you again to find out what happened to our technician. To your credit, your representative was very nice and apologized profusely. Please understand that at this point there is a record of me calling 6 times on the ticket and still we had no phone service. This means that every time I call the representative puts me on hold for 5 minutes while she reads the history of the repair ticket and then is expecting an irate client when she gets back on the phone. While your customer service people are generally very sympathetic (only one of them hung up on me because I had called 4 times) they just couldn't seem to get a technician to show up for the appointments.

We made an appointment for a technician to come to the theatre on Saturday, August 13th between the hours of 12:00 pm and 5:00 pm. I had another volunteer wait from noon until 1:30 when I came to relieve him. When I arrived I called your repair line to confirm that the technician would be arriving before 5:00 pm and the representative told me that she could not promise that this would happen and promptly escalated the call to her supervisor Joanna.

Joanna told me that I shouldn't expect the technician to arrive before 5:00 pm, she took my phone number and promised to call me back when she had some information within 2 hours. She never called me back but on Monday, August 15 a technician came to the theatre to repair the lines.

We were not expecting a technician but since we could not afford to miss this appointment I left my full time job to give him access to the premises.

The phone now works but as a young theatre company on the Danforth we are left with a sour taste in our mouths. The challenge of this experience came with not knowing if our phones would get fixed before the 2005 Toronto International Improv Festival began and the frustration was never getting an answer or help resolving this issue. We worked around your repair technicians' schedule and we pay for that privilege.

Summary of Repair ticket #12755240500

  • Date Opened: July 30, 2005
  • Date Closed: August 15, 2005
  • Phone Calls: 9
  • Appointments made and missed: 6
  • Hours spent waiting for Bell: 37
  • Bell date which was not arranged: 1

Summary of Bill Negotiation

  • Phone calls: 1
  • Amount Adjusted: $36.00 (as verbally confirmed with Edward on August 16, 2005)

While on the phone negotiating the bill adjustment I was told that there is no way to get additional compensation for the length of time and the inconvenience of getting our phone repaired. Any information on how our theatre could be compensated for the time and effort it took to get the phone repaired or why technicians couldn't get to pre-arranged appointments would be appreciated.

Otherwise, we are starting our first annual fundraising campaign in September, perhaps as a gesture of good will your company would like to make a corporate donation? We can send you a tax receipt.


Jennifer Hendriks, President of the Board

Bad Dog Theatre Company

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