Daily Archives: 2 January 2008

An Open Letter to Tiscali

Dear Tiscali

Re: Your letter demanding £7.92

I am somewhat confused by your letter asking for payment of £7.92.  You failed to indicate what the amount represented and I have certainly not received an invoice for this amount.  Furthermore you will be aware that I have ceased using your service.  I wrote to inform you in October that you had failed to uphold your part of the contract and that I was terminating it.  You kindly refunded me for the service that I had paid for but was unable to use due to your incompetence.

Forgive me if I don’t choose to ring the 0870 number indicated on your letter but past experience has show me that I will invariable be on hold for up to an hour before getting to speak to someone.  The person who I do speak to will either not speak any English at all or will have such a strong accent (Indian, Scottish or Irish) that I will be completely unable to understand what they have to say.  Even if we do manage to communicate the customer support person will either be unable or unwilling to help or will just lose all record of the conversation.  Hardly surprising if they have to deal with disgruntled customers like me all day long.  If you don’t mind I’d rather not pay for the privilege of calling you to sort out your mistakes.

With regard to the sum that you claim is outstanding I will not be paying it.  Even if it turns out that I do owe you the money I shall not be paying the bill.  You sent me a cheque to refund me for service charges billed and for compensation.  If you are so incompetent as to forget to deduct a fee for an outstanding amount then I hope that my non-payment will serve as a lesson to you.  Tiscali could so very easily have done better.

Besides which you should be aware that I know that you will never refer such a small sum to your legal team to threaten court action or to try to recover the money.  It simply isn’t cost effective for you to do so.  However if you do decide to try to recover this money rest assured that I will make it as difficult as possible for you even if it costs me hundreds of pounds.  Furthermore I will do my utmost to advertise your poor service to as many people as I can in order that customer confidence in you is weakened. 

Why would I do this?  The answer is simple.  You failed to treat me with the respect that a paying customer deserves at every opportunity that you had and I choose to treat you with similar contempt.

Your sincerely



Filed under Cull, le château de grenouille

Open Letter to South West Trains

Dear Sir\Madam

I had to renew my train season ticket this morning.  I was flabbergasted to discover that my fare had increased by 11%.  Clearly you’ve been saving money by not advertising the fare change and I must applaud your attitude to cutting costs.  Having said that it would still have been good to know in advance.

After recovering from the initial shock I began to ponder the implications of such a hefty price increase.  A rate of inflation would be about 3% so you have added an additional 8% to the cost of travel.  I’m actually looking forward to a commensurate improvement in the level of service. 

  • I expect that 8% fewer services will be delayed or cancelled.  This may well improve services enough that only 1 in 10 trains are delayed which would be great.  I could even manage to get to work on time every day for nearly a fortnight given averages.
  • I expect that staff will be 8% more helpful.  This might be a bit of a stretch as it would require doubling the number of helpful staff as my experience is that only 1 in 12 staff are helpful.  Curiously the same proportion actually go out of their way to be obstructive.  The other 10 just seem to stand around gossipping.
  • I expect that the station will be 8% cleaner or at least that rubbish will be removed 8% more often. i.e. about once ever 11 hours.
  • I expect the train to be 8% less crowded.  Given the price increase I suspect more people will choose to drive to work so you may actually exceed my expectations on this point.

I imagine that you are getting the idea now.  I expect a general 8% improvement in the service to match the 8% above the inflation rate increase in fees.  Kindly arrange for this to be delivered or reduce the fees accordingly. 

Yours faithfully

 Mr hoverFrog


Filed under Bad things happen, Cull, You decide