Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Service resumes - Do the right thing PTI

Does this look familiar!

June 15th 2007
Dear Customer,

"Pacific Telecom Inc (PTI) would like to inform our customers of upcoming maintenance and upgrade to our undersea fiber optic cable from June 15 – June 24, 2007. During the upgrade, PTI customers may experience longer download times with Internet and DSL.

PTI does not anticipate loss of service at any time during the upgrade, only a reduction in Internet and DSL service speeds. Upon upgrade completion, customers will notice improved Internet and DSL speeds as our fiber optic cable will be operating with increased capacity".

Yada Yada Yada more of the letter from PTI in a second but I thought this might be a good time to jump forward to the present – the eve before our increased speeds (as reported by the Saipan Tribune). I'm so excited!

Now I’m not here to complain about the insanely slow speeds

or about this service upgrade taking 30 days longer to complete than first expected (that’s if all goes well tonight). From time to time, during the course of normal repairs, things beyond our control happen and whenever you’re dealing with the open ocean you need to expect mother nature will throw a wrench or two into the best of plans. I’ll even forgive the complete loss of service on June 27th – Again stuff happens - although it would have been much easier to stomach if they hadn’t told me about their super duper DUPER back up system.

“As part of the preparation for this upgrade, a state of the art microwave system was installed. It will handle all telecommunications traffic during the upgrade and offer complete redundancy for all telecommunications systems upon completion”.

Again I’m not here to complain (yet) but rather I would like to suggest a form of compensation for the valued customer. How exactly will those of us who are not currently receiving the top level plan (Turbocharged) expect to see increased DSL speeds. I mean, with the tiered systems of plans currently available, all that stood in the way of faster service before the upgrade was the amount of cash changing hands and the turn of a dial. Now with the increased capacity will everyone see an increase? Supercharged becomes Turbocharged, Lite’s become Nitro’s - at no additional cost? If so wouldn’t it be a really good PR move to turn up everyone’s dial to the maximum level for a period of say 90 days or so. Presumably all that prevents such a thank you would be the turn of said dial at no additional expense to the company.

Some may argue that this disruption of service is the price we “have to pay” for living in such a remote part of the world and that we should just be thankful we have service at all. To those I would say I couldn’t agree more and that I am thankful to PTI for providing a service that only 15 years ago was unthinkable but at the same time I would also suggest it is customers like us paying 2 to 3 times more for comparable service (mainland North America or Asian rates) that keeps PTI in business in the first place. All I’m suggesting is that they give the very people who allow them to operate a little token of appreciation for our understanding by opening up the pipe and letting the bytes zip on by!

Who knows, when the thank you ends some may be so hooked on the fastest speed they’ll open up their pocket book and pay the ridiculously high rate to stay at the top.

So PTI, if you really mean what you say….

"PTI would like to thank its customers, businesses, and other telecommunication carriers for their patience and understanding during this project. PTI would again like to apologize for any inconvenience this has caused".

You’ll do the right thing and kick it up a notch!

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