[2000-04-11 Tue]

A simple task — I called Telstra to ask for the phone to be changed from 542 Cameron street to 159 Westbank terrace. Both addresses are in the same suburb so it is a simple job and I can take the number with me. They ask me to make sure that a phone is plugged in on Thursday night and it will be done on Friday ([2000-04-14 Fri]).

[2000-04-16 Sun] — +5 days

Called Telstra faults (132203) since the phone is still not working. I can receive a dial tone, but all outgoing calls result in a message that “that service is not available from this phone.” Apparently the job is marked as “incomplete” in their database, but with no explanation. I am assured that it will be fixed on Monday [2000-04-17 Mon], and that someone will call me on my mobile.

[2000-04-17 Mon] — +6days

At 16:45 I called Telstra since no-one has called me yet. I go through the whole rigmarole again and am asked to check with a phone in both sockets at home, in case one is working and one isn’t. They believe that the phone has been connected by Optus in the past and thus it is “difficult” to transfer the number, I’m told to check and call Telstra Sales tomorrow, not faults, on 132200.

Get home, sure enough, both sockets give exactly the same message — dial tone but calls disallowed.

[2000-04-18 Tue] — +7 days

Call up in the morning to Telstra Sales and am directed through three different people, at each point I have to go through the entire story again, eventually I am told that I have to go home, call 12722123 to find out what number is allocated to my connection, and then to report this number back to faults!

Get home, both sockets give a generated message stating that the number is 03 9421 2321.

[2000-04-19 Wed] — +8 days

Call up Telstra Faults again, only have to give the story to two people this time. Tell them that my number is 9421 2321. They assure me that it will be connected some time today, but cannot guarantee when.

Get home and check 12722123 and still get told 9421 2321.

[2000-04-20 Thu] — +9 days

Call up Telstra Faults again and explain that it is now a week that I’ve beeen chasing my phone around, that I was told it would be connected yesterday, but that at 7 pm I still could not make calls and was being told that my number was still the old number. According to their records the job was done yesterday, which doesn’t explain why the message still says 9421 2321. It is recorded that there is a “line fault” that will require a technician to attend, this will be done by close of business on the 22nd. After asking about three times I’m told that COB on a Saturday is 6 pm.

[2000-04-22 Sat] — +11 days

At 12:30 a Telstra technician showed up, I hadn’t realised that he would require access to the premises and so it was pure chance that I was home! He assured me that it would only take 5-10 minutes. After several visits to the cables in the shared carport, and off down the street, I eventually had my phone connected at 2.00 pm. He claimed that there were a number of incorrect things done in the wiring and it had taken a lot of tracing to find my cable. Not bad for a job that was supposed to be done 10 days ago!

[2000-04-27 Thu] — +16 days

Called 132200-24 to see whether I get any kind of refund on my “service” charge since I was without a home phone for 10 days. After being referred through to “Jo” in their customer service area who is investigating whether I am eligible for a refund, I was put on hold for 11 minutes and then hung up on. 5 minutes later tried again, after the second menu of the voicemail system I got an engaged signal and kicked out again. Another five minutes later, all the way down through the voice mail system, give all the details again to the person on the phone. This time she has to call faults, since the job record shows that my phone was successfully connected on the 14th. Ten minutes later and I’m getting a $13.xx refund, and according to them my phone was first reported as not working on the 19th! I’ve no idea where the calls on the 16th, 17th and 18th went — I guess it makes the job records look good if you can shave two or three days off every fault report.