Keeping In Sync

I can’t take it anymore!

It’s been Tearin’ Up My Heart for a while that I can’t get Verizon’s FiOS service to anywhere I’ve EVER lived.

So… many… times… I check the availability on their site.

When the day finally dawns that Verizon blesses me with their almighty 30mbs beam of light, I predict the deluge of automatic notifications will blot out the sun. And along with it incoming email for everybody on looney.

Or maybe not. Because I hadn’t received one single notification when POP! I saw a new billboard advertising FiOS this weekend while at the Frank Gehry’s first/worst architectural project food court.

Had FiOS finally reared its ugly head to darken the shores of my fair little town? I sure hoped so! I was so excited I couldn’t even waiut to get back online and check their web site one final time.. I had to know immediately!

So I quickly licked the hummus off my fingers (pita is for jerks!) and dialed (888) GET-FIOS I think… already salivating and slightly aroused by how much more dominant my Bomberman Live would be with a 5mbs upload. Not to mention I’d just pre-ordered some Halo 3. (They asked me how much I wanted to prepay! Uh, what’s the minimum? $5. FIVE DOLLARS THEN!)

Anyway, here’s how the conversation went:

Thank you for your interest in Verizon FiOS .. what is your home telephone number so we can qualify your address?
Actually, I don’t use a land line.
Then we can’t check.
Uh, do you have internet?
Uh, what? Sort of.
Then go check at verizon.com!
I’m sorry, we can only check if you have a home telephone number with Verizon, would you like me to give you the number of your local Verizon sales office, who is closed until Monday?
No, thanks. I’m Gone.


I had to know though, so I called right back, this time equipped with my neighbor’s Verizon landline number.

Thank you for your interest in Verizon FiOS .. what is your home telephone number so we can qualify your address?
310-hamana mum humuna
Thank you. You qualify for Verizon FiOS!
F*********** yeah!
Indeed. Now, are you the account holder?
Are you an adult over 18 who is authorized to make decisions for the account holder?
…….. oh. ……. uh… …….
Ha, no script for that, EH?! How much is it anyway?
30mbs down and 5mbs up is $54.95/month!

Oh man, I was soo stoked that I immediately went back home and watched the Patriots choke the Chargers.

Much later that night, I remembered how stoked I was, and decided to go sign up online.

Well, my stokedidity died quick.

According to the site, my address did not qualify.. and neither did my neighbors! URGHTHT!!!

On top of that, it’s $179.95 a month, not $54.95! I don’t know where that came from.

So, I guess it’s a few more years of blaming it on the lag for me.

It ain’t no lie, baby…

What the point of this anecdote was.

It’s hard to get an entire company *N SYNC. All the time, really.. but especially when there’s a new product, promotion, or feature.

Usually in a big company the website is the thing you can trust the most. It’s run by “corporate” and is generally the official company line. Ironically, for small companies the website is often the last thing to be updated, and so is usually the least reliable source of up-to-date availability, pricing, products, and all dat.

Next down the clue-stick tree is the phone sales and support team. If it’s a big company, they’ve got a lot of people working those phones, and generally they’re fairly low paid/respected and not too interested in keeping up to date on the latest and greatest stuff from corporate.

I’m sure there’s some kind of announcement, and maybe even 15 minutes of training for everybody… but until that new thing’s been out a few months, be prepared for some serious asynchronocity between what you read on the web and what you hear on the phone.

Finally, at the furthest orbit of in-the-loop solar system, is actual physical retail employees. If a company’s got retail branches, no matter if they sell cell phones, cable tv, hamburgers, shoes, or dog food, keeping EVERY employee in EVERY physically separated retail branch on the same page is, as they say in the hosting business, “sumn bitch”.

Dirty, dirty, dirty pop.

Even DreamHost, without that many employees, who are all in LA, and with no retail branches and no phone support has a very hard time getting the word out about new features internally!

It’s like these people don’t read! Or even listen! Or are never told!

Believe you me, the moment you finish reading that hilarious DreamHost newsletter every month, you know more about the current state of DreamHost than 90% of the people who work here!

But don’t worry, when you write in asking why you still haven’t been invited to DreamHost PS they’ll eventually need to ask somebody “What’s a PS?” … and then they’ll find out, usually even before they respond to your message!

Hopefully you won’t get too mad now if at times it seems as though the left hand doesn’t know what the right is doing. Or vice versa.

Because they don’t. But hey, it’s still better than only having one hand.

So, rather than getting angry all the times somebody in a company doesn’t know about their own new product, rejoice every time they do!

Be thrilled when you go to an Apple store to ask about the iPod Touch and they know “It’s not out until the end of the month.”

Shout “heckolluyeah” when you go into the T-Mobile store to get a HotSpot@Home phone and you’re lucky enough to find somebody there who just read about it on Gizmodo like you did!

And hug your keyboard and kiss your mouse when a Happy DreamHost Support Teamer actually knows we have a Cron Jobs tab or a place for end users to change their own mailbox password! (Psst… try it at your own domain.)

Just close your eyes each loving day (each loving day).

But This I Promise You

If we announce anything next Monday, September 24th, 2007, everybody at the company will already know about it!

Just this once.

Bye Bye Bye!

About the author

Josh Jones