So, a few weeks ago my aunt reports to me her email is not working. As this was something I originally set up for her a few months ago I promptly arranged to drive down to London and have a look.
A quick diagnosis followed; not so much not email as not Internet. The TalkTalk branded ADSL router was not syncing up to the TalkTalk service. I delved deep into my technical archives and checked everything I could, tested the router on different phone sockets and with different microfilters. Nothing.
So I call TalkTalk for her. I quickly get bounced to 2nd line support when the answer to the question "what version of Windows do you have" got the response "Linux". The 2nd line guy was good, in that he got I was technical enough to know it was the router, promptly ran some line tests and said he would escalate it. Escalation would take 3 days to get something and up to 5. I gave them my mobile number to call if they needed any more information.
So, next day I get a text "Our engineers have tested your line and have been unable to find a fault. If a fault still persists please reply with the words NOT FIXED". I ignore it, presuming it is a mistake as the guy on the phone had said his tests found a fault.
Two more days pass. I call my aunt just to check if anyone has been in contact with her or if the Internet is now working again. Nothing. She assures me she will email the instant she gets her email back. So I call TalkTalk, to be told that the fix response time is up to 6 days...
So, next day I get a text "Our engineers have tested your line and have been unable to find a fault. If a fault still persists please reply with the words NOT FIXED". I duly respond with "NOT FIXED".
Some more time passes. Eventually, some 11 days after the report I get a happy email "Two TalkTalk men came and fixed it". Excellent. That's good. Slow, sillily slow, but good.
Two days ago, another 11 days after the problem was resolved, I get a text "Our Engineer reports that your fault is fully resolved. Please reply using the words RESOLVED or ONGOING, Thank you". Ignoring the extended delay and unnecessary capitalisations in the message, I dutifully respond "RESOLVED".
Then this morning, another text message "Following further investigation on your fault. Please reply FIXED or NOT FIXED". Mildly confused, but still willing, I respond "FIXED".
To which came the prompt response "We did not recognise the response you sent back. Please refer to our previous text for the correct response to send. Thank you". Well, the only response left to me is "NOT FIXED"...