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DSL Installation Fail

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the job-well-done dept.

Businesses 371

An anonymous reader writes "Here's an example of fine Qwest workmanship. In our business park, they just installed a DSL connection for our neighbors, for which we share an exterior utility space. They left: a DSL modem stuffed in a cardboard box, wrapped in a Wal-Mart bag, sitting outside in what will be below-zero (F) temps, on top of a bank of ten natural gas meters in some of the driest air of the year. They also left it plugged into an exposed exterior power outlet above a snowbank, with network cables running around the building, through snowbanks, coupled and protected by zip-lock baggies, and into our neighbors office. Not to mention the hack-job of patching the phone cable directly into the demarcation box. And if you're wondering — I was told upon calling them that this is not their problem, and I need to contact my primary phone service provider."

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Horatio Caine says (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934128)

Looks like Qwest thought they had this job *sunglasses* in the bag.


Re:Horatio Caine says (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934506)

Looks like samzenpus blindly fat-pawed his keyboard *sunglassess* and approved this article.


Eh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934130)

I had the same work done last week and it cam e out great.

Re:Eh? (5, Funny)

maxwell demon (590494) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934548)

I had the same work done last week and it cam e out great.

Except for the spurious spaces it inserts into your posts once in a while. :-)

Tell them your next call will be to the bombsquad (5, Interesting)

Tmack (593755) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934132)

Im sure they will remove the suspicious package right away...

This is a bad idea (5, Informative)

Tanman (90298) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934388)

If you were dealing with some local company or something, this might be ok to give them one more chance to 'make it right.' However, you are dealing with a big corp. The best thing to do, to avoid unforeseen consequences, is to call the fire marshal and inquire as to who is actually responsible if there is a situation like yours (the installer or the building owner). If it is the installer, then you immediately report the situation and get an official record of it on a government piece of paper. You then take that report and fax it to them while on the phone with their secretary and tell them they need to fix it, as the fire department has documented the faulty job and you aren't sure if they are being investigated . . .but you have confirmed with the fire marshal that they would be the ones found liable in case fault is found in the installation job.

Re:This is a bad idea (5, Interesting)

SHaFT7 (612918) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934526)

I am a local company, and if one of my guys did a 1/4 of a job as bad as this, I'd fire him so fast his head would spin, then I'd give the customer all kinds of free stuff and hope to god that 1.) they don't flame me to everyone they know and 2.) that I don't suck it up in the next hiring process :)

It's got a battery... and wires... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934454)

I take it this wasn't in Boston, or they'd have shut the entire city down, given that it has wires coming out of it. If there was a Mooninite on it, they'd probably hunker down for an invasion....

Wow (1)

Aerorae (1941752) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934136)

*I* Could do THAT!!!! And I bet they'll pay me more than Starbucks!

Re:Wow (1)

NevermindPhreak (568683) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934372)

Depends on if you work for an ISP or for a contractor company. An ISP, you'd make a little more starting out. A contractor company, you'd make enough, but you wouldn't have benefits and you'd pay your own taxes, so, meh.

Call the Fire Marshal (5, Insightful)

Daniel_Staal (609844) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934142)

Seriously. Call the Fire Marshal, tell them this is what Qwest did as electrical/phone work, and ask if it meets safety standards. Try to control your laughter as you ask.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (0, Troll)

nomadic (141991) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934174)

And then laugh as your neighbors come over and beat you down for killing their internet access.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (2)

blackraven14250 (902843) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934182)

I'm pretty sure you could bring Qwest up on a lawsuit for installing the stuff improperly in the first place, and sue for a proper installation plus damages for the time there's no service.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (2)

NevermindPhreak (568683) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934360)

Wouldn't work. They would just remove their equipment. As for lack of service, pretty much every ISP's contracts state that there is no guarantee on uptime. You MIGHT be able to get a month free out of the deal.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934200)

The info on who calls in is priv. So the neighbors will not know.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (0)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934338)

I'm sure the neighbors would rather lose internet than see the natural gas main go "boom"
(like happened in Philadelphia).

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934450)

If an outdoor natural gas manifold goes boom because someone put a router on top of it, there are bigger problems than a clumsy network installation.
Not that I'm letting the installers off the hook or anything.

. o O { What if the investigators of the Philadelphia explosion find out it was caused by a router?! }

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (2)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934580)

I'm sure the neighbors would rather lose internet than see the natural gas main go "boom"

Qwest: Ride the shock front?

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934314)

Yeah, right, samzenpus is usually full of HYPERBOLE and crap. I fully expect this comment won't be posted because it's critical of a moderator. How on earth do you not know that it wasn't the USPS (United States Postal System that we all hate) that didn't leave it there? Actually, myself and many of my friends here in Florida have been TRYING really hard to get the RIDICULOUS BrightHouse/Comcast cable modem prices down here in Florida. $47.95 a month for 10mbps internet? And $32.95 a month for ONLY 1mbps speed? You get what you deserve. There is NO competition since the US federal government combined ATT and Verison, we all know that. We are all paying the price now, literally.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (0, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934384)

Slashdot editors don't screen comments, retard.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (4, Funny)

Bacon Bits (926911) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934438)

Hell, Slashdot editors don't screen summaries!

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (1)

X0563511 (793323) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934638)

When did the USPS start hooking up telco equipment upon delivery!?

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (5, Informative)

reboot246 (623534) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934604)

Call the gas company. We frown on people putting shit on our gas meters. Believe me, that stuff will be gone in no time.

I've seen worse, though. I found a lightning rod grounded to a metal gas service. Thankfully we found it and had it removed before lightning hit it.

Re:Call the Fire Marshal (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934706)

ACMA would fine the installer $10k on the spot for that in Australia. Sadly there are far to many people who do dodgy installs like this all over the world. :

Wonder how long it will take someone to 'recycle' the spare copper in the wires.

Hmmm (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934166)

I have a very hard time believing this...

Re:Hmmm (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934326)

Seconded, I'm glad i'm not the only one.

Re:Hmmm (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934350)

I highly suspect that the person taking the photos is also the asshole that rigged all this, I'd guarantee that no one from a telcom did this, and I'd also pretty much guarantee this never actually worked.

Re:Hmmm (4, Informative)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934660)

I wouldn't immediately dismiss it.

I worked for an ISP for a while. And while our techies were at least halfway decent and didn't cause too many problems, the installations we outsourced to various companies were sometimes rather crude hacks. They got paid by the installation, so anything that required more than a "go in, assemble, turn on, go" would cut into their profits. And that in turn led them to quite odd practices sometimes, where cables were thrown across rooms because the installing technician didn't have enough cable with him at that time to move along the walls, network boxes that were tossed behind desks instead of being neatly screwed to walls, bent and twisted cables that weren't replaced when they accidentally dropped something on them and simply "stealing" power cables because they had two installations to do and only one working power cable with them (so they installed it at the first customer and simply swiped that cable to be able to install the other one).

I have no idea what could possibly get a tech to do a hack like this, but I wouldn't deem it completely impossible without knowing the whole story behind it.

Re:Hmmm (0)

craigminah (1885846) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934546)

Yeah, I was gonna call BS on this one...the OP prolly installed it as a joke but I highly doubt any professional would install this...unless Qwest is hiring out of work crack-heads and hookers to do their installs on the cheap.

Re:Hmmm (1)

don.g (6394) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934554)

Thirded. Srsly. Although the guy who submitted this is new to spamming slashdot, doesn't he know you're supposed to link to your google ad filled blog?

Right On... (4, Funny)

VTI9600 (1143169) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934168)

I often call to complain that my neighbor's DSL isn't set up correctly...oh, wait.

Re:Right On... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934342)

Actually, when you view one picture it says "Probably what knocked our Fax offline"

If Qwest's crappy Installation knocks one of my services offline, I'd damn well complain.

He's got every right to complain and demand they fix it.

Re:Right On... (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934600)

Oh, I see you didn't look at the pictures [] . They strung UTP cable right across the snow-covered grass and entryway of the guy who's complaining! You can't even swing the door open without a likely network outage!

But then what kind of asshole (1, Funny)

mozumder (178398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934170)

Calls to have their DSL installed in the middle of a snowy winter?

ASSHOLES CUSTOMERS, that's who. /blame game.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

Lunoria (1496339) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934196)

Sure, blame the customer. Maybe the customer had an installation date sent some time in advance. The blame lies with Qwest Technicians. If the snow is too deep to do a good job, it's better to explain to the customer and reschedule.

Responding professionally to bad customer requests (1)

billstewart (78916) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934322)

Maybe the neighbor did request the installation some time before the snowstorm started, or maybe not, or maybe this was a repair job because their service had died during the snowstorm. If the technician didn't want to do the job until the weather improves, he could either be professional about it and say "sorry, got to reschedule, weather's too bad for a new install", or at least be unprofessional in some reasonably professional way, like claiming "customer wasn't home" or "couldn't get access" or something.

Re:Responding professionally to bad customer reque (4, Insightful)

afidel (530433) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934480)

No DSL or any other kind of electrical installation should be done outdoors unless it's in at least a NEMA 3 or NEMA 4 enclosure so it doesn't really matter what the conditions were outside that install is just all sorts of fail.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

Meshach (578918) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934208)

:But then what kind of asshole calls to have their DSL installed in the middle of a snowy winter?

WTF? Would you rather have no internet until the spring thaw? If you offer a service that is "24 hour" then you have to support it in all kinds of weather. That is not being an asshole but being a customer.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934230)

uh, so all installs are supposed to be scheduled in the other 3 seasons? u troll or qwest employee?

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1, Flamebait)

countSudoku() (1047544) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934250)

YEAH!!1! Those fuckers probably want a phone line, cable TV, gas, electricity and mail service too! Why do people move in the winter? Shit, they're lucky to get DSL in the first place! Why can't people just stay where they are for the rest of their lives? This is just ridiculous. If the Tea Party were in power, this would be done RIGHT the first time!

Re:But then what kind of asshole (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934378)

This is Slashdot, so +1 for injecting a reference to the right-wing in a topic that has nothing to do with politics. But -1 for failing to ask if the modem runs Linux, so you're back to zero, bucko. Better luck with the whoring next time.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (-1, Troll)

commodore64_love (1445365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934392)

If the Tea Party were in power, these government-created monopolies would not exist.
  - The optical fibers would be owned by the government (just as they own the road), and the lines leased to various corporations. You'd be able to choose from dozens of Internet Companies, rather than just one, and lousy companies like quest would go bankrupt from lose of customers.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

CorSci81 (1007499) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934516)

Wouldn't government ownership of fiber be anti-business and against the Tea Party platform of smaller, weaker government? I expect the Tea Party to advocate government takeover of fiber lines around the same time they also advocate more stringent regulations on banks and insurance companies (i.e. never).

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1, Insightful)

dgatwood (11270) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934558)

Hah! The Tea Party wants less government interference, not more. They would never agree to a public-owned wire service. Instead, they would eliminate the limits on the number of services with access to public rights of way. Thus, you would have eighteen different companies digging up your streets to run their own lines. Because they would not be required by law to repave the street, the streets would gradually be replaced by a patchwork of heavy steel plates covering the open trenches below. Because the open trenches would fill with water in the rainy season, you would have eighteen companies digging new trenches again the next year.

Enjoy your train wreck.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934578)

Of course, if the Tea Party were in power, we would still be farming with ox drawn carts, and cowering in fear when our angry God blots out the sun during an eclipse, so internet ownership would be the least of our worries.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (4, Insightful)

Mr. Slippery (47854) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934584)

You'd be able to choose from dozens of Internet Companies, rather than just one, and lousy companies like quest would go bankrupt from lose of customers.

Uh huh. Just like telephone dereguation brought me dozens of companies for my landline, and cable TV deregulation brought me dozens of companies competing to offer me cable TV.

Chortle. Guffaw.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (2)

Duradin (1261418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934688)

Wouldn't the Tea Party version be: your street isn't profitable enough for anyone to run a line to because too few people live on the street due to the might-as-well-not-exist road conditions?

Re:But then what kind of asshole (-1, Flamebait)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934694)

No. They would deregulate the whole thing, wipe their hands, and then claim the market would fix any problems.

Many Tea party people want to privatize roads, water, and well everything.

They are short sighted dimwits who were elected by ignorant fools.
Made me really think voting should only be accessible by people with a 4 year degree. That would be a horrible idea, but I did think about it.
People who don't know how the government works electing people who don't know how a government needs to work.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

gunner800 (142959) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934284)

Do you want installers to be unemployed 1/4 of the year?

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

mozumder (178398) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934344)


I'd send them to south america.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

citylivin (1250770) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934458)

Seems like qwest technicians are too busy browsing slashdot to do their job right. There is absolutely no excuse for this, no matter how "assholish" the customer. Just looks bad on you the technician anyways.

Re:But then what kind of asshole (1)

tyrione (134248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934476)

Calls to have their DSL installed in the middle of a snowy winter?

ASSHOLES CUSTOMERS, that's who. /blame game.

Sorry, but Construction is done year round. The fact they didn't run any PVC between the boxes and then brought out an entire set of enclosures to keep the weather from creating further damage, fire risk, etc., not to mention running a separate power conduit to expand the capacity is completely unprofessional. Furthermore, if the Building Management works with Qwest I'm sure they can provide a point of access to their wiring plan and there should be no wiring exposed. It's clear the Gas company had a tight and concise plan by those pictures.

They are doing it wrong... (4, Funny)

MoldySpore (1280634) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934180)

...they forgot the duct tape! How do they expect it to stay up on those gas containers in strong winter winds?!

Re:They are doing it wrong... (2)

blendergasket (806364) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934678)

Duct tape actually doesn't work in those temps. I grew up in Minnesota and had the glove compartment on my car duct taped shut. When it got that cold the sticky wasn't sticky anymore.

Snip that cable. (1)

xMrFishx (1956084) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934188)

Just snip both ends of the cable crossing your office path and remove the health hazard from your premesis.

Um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934190)

Step 1: Do the worst possible job you can at work.
Step 2: ???
Step 3: Profit!

Re:Um... (1)

Surt (22457) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934642)

In step 2, you start a repair service that corrects the problems caused by 1.

Re:Um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934666)

Step 2: Be a union worker that can never be fired.

Yep the fire Marshal and the town (1)

lunatick (32698) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934192)

Agree with Daniel
Call the fire marshal, and the town, I am sure there are codes regarding instillation of something like that.

For comcast that a ok job but for dsl / phone they (1)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934206)

For comcast that a ok job but for dsl / phone they can do much better.

Curious to find out (2)

Rhadamanthos (1835206) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934226)

Looks more like the business owners son's job then a paid for Professional Qwest installation. I am curious to see what comes of this, and if a Qwest employee was actually involved in the installation/setup--i doubt it...unless like the poster above me says: $55hole customers-- can definately lead to some shoddy jobs becuase they had to have service yesterday and their losing tens of thousands of dollars a day. Sure you feel bad because you can't help them out but my favorite quote for this situation is:: "Lack of planning on your part, doesn't constitute an emergency on my part."

Re:Curious to find out (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934716)

Yeah, but this was "Lack of planning on your part, does constitute a destructive job on my part."

Why submit anonymously? (4, Insightful)

echucker (570962) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934228)

When the picasa album has a real name on it?

Re:Why submit anonymously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934286)

I, monkeedude1212, agree that it's silly. However, maybe he didn't want this to affect his karma.

Re:Why submit anonymously? (0)

Lifyre (960576) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934300)

Because maybe just maybe Benjamin Blakely isn't the one who submitted it. Some other /. reader saw it and just linked to his album would have worked the same way...

And what's funnier still... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934486)

is that whoever submitted the story is probably *still* fuming over it. Read the tone of the summary.

Runny-nosed little whiner had his whole day ruined.

Re:Why submit anonymously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934754)

Because not everyone wants to have a Slashdot account?

Not buying it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934252)

I had Qwest technicians on-site last October to get DSL working. They were knowledgeable and completely professional; the work was first rate. I don't believe this story is accurate. The "contact my primary phone service provider" bit probably indicates that some third party is involved and the submitter is falsely attributing this cockup to Qwest.

Oh, and my DSL performance is excellent as well. If you have the choice between Qwest and Comcast, get the former.

Re:Not buying it (1)

LBArrettAnderson (655246) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934428)

I had Qwest for a few years with constant intermittent connections. This was almost certainly due to bad wiring in my apartment, but it's relevant because I called Qwest customer service at least 10 times, and had technicians come once or twice (never got it fixed or even figured out what was wrong before I moved). The technicians were good, like you say. But the customer service people are almost all horrible. They go through certain steps with you regardless of your previous experience... "yes, I tried power cycling the modem. Yes, it's in the LINE port. Yes, I know it's working right now, but it stops working every few minutes for a few minutes. No, I already got a replacement modem; it didn't change anything." etc. They aren't very trained, and just go through their workflow after every question you answer. If their workflow doesn't have an option for your answer, they have no idea what to do next. I honestly think they are in some call center that services multiple companies (one couldn't pronounce Qwest properly).

Re:Not buying it (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934468)

Agree. This looks like either some idiot third party did the install, or more likely his neighbor did it himself, or they really really pissed off the installer.

There was no reason for putting this box outside in the first place, as the phone lines already make it through the wall, so why the h**l isn't this installed inside. The cables would be shorter (much cheaper), safer, and more reliable. This looks like amateur hour work, and with the cable loose on the ground instead of nailed to the wall, I don't think any professional was involved in this install. The phone company always nails its cables down. They also make use of boxes bolted to the outside wall instead of plastic bags.

You should really ask your neighbor if he did this himself. I'll bet he'll proudly tell you about how he overcame all the obstacles, and successfully did something the phone company said would take them a week to get to.

Re:Not buying it (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934496)

I had Qwest with MSN back in 2003, and their DNS was constantly going down. They tried to blame it on me for running Linux.

I changed to Cox cable after I left that apartment, and never had such ridiculous problems again.

Some weasel of a tech is now shitting his pants (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934272)

To that tech:

Update your resume, you stupid loser.

Either that or provide a case against unions.

Re:Some weasel of a tech is now shitting his pants (3, Insightful)

Sarten-X (1102295) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934682)

Without union protection, the installer responsible can be fired immediately, without the company having to provide fully-documented proof of how many different ways this is wrong.

Unions don't protect customers. Unions protect unions at all costs.

Secure (3, Funny)

TornCityVenz (1123185) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934278)

Well at least if you lock yourself out of the office you have open ports at the gas meter to hook up to.

Joke? (5, Insightful)

superdave80 (1226592) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934308)

I doubt this is real. The installation dude is smart enough to wire this into the junction box and wire a network cable a couple hundred feet long with a splice of some type. Yet he thinks that this modem will survive in the snow, with only a bag and box to protect it. And thinks that his network cable running the length of the building and across at least one walkway won't be tripped on/broken. And the business owner, when presented with a network cable popping in through his front door, said "Looks good. I don't even mind that I have to still run some type of cable to our router, which is NOT right next to our front door!" Oh, and this is from an anonymous reader.

Sorry, I call bullshit.

Bullshit (1)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934356)

I agree. The whole thing is so "over the top:, clearly not real. At least, not from Qwest.

probably but who knows (2)

dlt074 (548126) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934630)

I had standing orders that no qwest people were allowed into our denver branch without somebody calling me. and they were NEVER allowed to touch anything without somebody watching them. every time they came into the building we'd lose something, most of the time it was our internet due to their horrendous wiring.

Re:Bullshit (2)

Mr. Arbusto (300950) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934648)

I'm sorry, but I believe it (except the connection on the ground). Looking at the photos I think I might be in the same Business park as the poster.

I had to fight with Qwest to get DSL because they said it was a fiber only market.....except there is no fiber anywhere in that part of town. After the order went through, it took them 10 days to get a tech to come out an install it. The tech terminated the pair at the DMARC then didn't tag it. I had to have another tech come out and tag it. Then to make the cross connect I opened the box and was hit with a rats nest that took about 10 minutes to figure out what pair was mine. I ordered a second DSL line and had to go through the same Issues of convincing them I could only get DSL and not fiber. The pairs got connected but not tagged and were also in the wrong panel so I had to run wires from one end of the Suite hub to the other. On top of that, they left the modem on top of the Gas Main, in Iowa, in November.

I think a Qwest VP... (1)

0m3gaMan (745008) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934328) going to be polishing his résume soon. Along with all the speds downstream from him.

Not Suprised (4, Insightful)

NevermindPhreak (568683) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934334)

Note: I'm a low-voltage tech.

This kind of stuff doesn't suprise me. It's the nature of the industry. People don't want to pay $200 for a decent quality install, so a lot of the independent guys try to lowball where they can. Contractor companies will hire anyone to do the work, and they'll be lucky if they get a half a week of training. Most ISP's contract out their installs to these companies. (Mine is the exception to that fortunately.) This installer was probably never trained on this stuff, and his employer probably expected him to do it anyways or they wont use him anymore.

Quest probably leases the lines and contracts the installations through AT&T, who then contracts the installs through someone else. (Can't confirm this though.) That's why Quest told the customer to call their "primary phone service provider", although I think Quest should have done this work for them.

Re:Not Suprised (1)

tyrione (134248) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934498)

Excellent points.

Re:Not Suprised (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934500)

Australia had this too []
"THOUSANDS of Telstra customers are putting up with crude, temporary phone connections with cables held together by tape and plastic bags and strung along fences, across lawns and through trees. In many cases the unsightly - even dangerous - cables are left in place for months and even years, despite repeated pleas to finish the job by burying them."

Denver resident here ... (2)

BrianRoach (614397) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934352)

This is pretty much what you expect with QWest.

In fact ... they must have gotten the good installer given the plastic bag.

Morons happen... (5, Funny)

mspohr (589790) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934400)

I once hired a "network technician" to install Ethernet (coax... it was a long time ago) in a doctors office. He said he was "experienced". I got a complaint from the office after he left. They had an empty office between the router and a workstation. This fool punched a hole in the middle of the wall on each side of the room and ran the wire at about neck height across the middle of the room.

Have some fun with it (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934410)

Put on gloves and unplug one of the cables. Wait for them to send some one out to "repair it". Call the police and report that a suspicious person is attaching a package with wires to the gas lines.

They have posts on really bad installs here. (1)

WarlockD (623872) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934416) []

Most of these are remote hotspots to bounce a wireless signal accross Europe, but even in the middle of nowhere there should be standards.

I have a different story (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934464)

The service I get from Qwest field techs in my Denver neighborhood has always been exemplary. On the other hand, talking to tier one contacts who reply vebatim off a half-assed script in a dialect of English I can barely understand... Well, that's a different matter. Oh, that and Qwest's slamming me for services I expressly refused. But the Techs I've gotten were cool.

Call the phone service, huh? (2, Insightful)

Rob the Bold (788862) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934466)

You're trying to help them out and they tell you to call someone else. I guess you did your job.

I saw a fire hydrant spewing water once, called the fire department, they said, "call the water department." I said, "OK." Hung up and didn't think about it again. Until now, I guess.

Re:Call the phone service, huh? (-1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934650)

Why do you think the fire dept has anything to do with the water system? there just a user, like you.

If there is a pot hole, would you call the police about repairing it? because, they use it to?
Just to be clear:
The fire Dept. was right. YOU were wrong.

Re:Call the phone service, huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934730)

I work for a water department, and I'll second that. The fire department absolutely does not maintain the hydrants, they just hook onto them and hope there's enough water in the main. If a hydrant gets busted, WE have to fix it. Call us.

Why is this news? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934556)

News flash: service employee gives poor service. Film at 11.

Wouldn't surprise me... (1)

Radical Moderate (563286) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934562)

When I had Qwest DSL, the tech who came out when my service failed happened to mention that my house was several hundred feet beyond the DSL spec from their office. He determined that the problem was in their office, but being a weekend he had no way to get into the office to fix it. But that didn't stop Qwest service from closing my trouble ticket, so I had to spend another hour going through their phone tree to get another tech to come out and go through the process again. And then when I terminated my service they tried to charge me for not returning the modem that I bought from them months earlier. They hire nice folks, but it's clueless bureaucracy hell.

I hate Comcast, but when it comes to broadband I'll take evil over nincompoops.

Re:Wouldn't surprise me... (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934728)

My friend tryed to get ISDN from Quest back when it was still US Worst. They came out to hook it up couple times, utterly failed to get it working at all, but that didn't stop them from billing her for ISDN service for a couple months! She gave up and gave me her ISDN modem. I still have it.

"Some kids stole it" (3, Insightful)

FauxReal (653820) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934582)

Just call Qwest and let them know you just saw some kids or crackhead steal it.

anon (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934608)

They gave you a high quality high density polyethylene protective cover for free, what are you complaining about! :)

I work for a telco... (5, Interesting)

Charliemopps (1157495) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934644)

I work for a telco... your regular local phone techs would never do this. They have procedures they follow and getting some weird-ass setup to work is not their problem. They make sure service gets to the Demarc and then they leave. What happens however is a salesman sells the customer something that's nearly impossible. Or they sell them a package they think will work without ever visiting the site. Inevitably what happens is the tech shows up, drops service off at the demarc, which happens to be some closet or outdoor space in a huge complex... the customer is literally half a mile a way and would have to pay to have cable run through the whole building. But the sales guy wants his commission. So what does he do? He shows up in person and does something like what we see here. I've actually seen worse. Then the customer calls in to complain but according to the techs records he dropped off normal service at a normal demarc. There's no record of this mess... There's arguing back and forth... but in reality the sales guys just got to prevent the customer from canceling within 30 days and the commission is his. Qwest has no idea what any of that extra cable is, and as far as anyone in their facilities division are concerned they probably think the customer ran it themselves.

Thanks for documenting this (5, Interesting)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 3 years ago | (#34934652)

Thanks for documenting this. I had a similar experience with cable a few years ago and I regret I didn't document it at the time. In my case we were renting a house next to a vacant lot, and on the other side of the lot was the curbside cable box that the installer had decided to use.

They ran the cable straight across the vacant lot in the grass and into one of our ventilation conduits to get under the house. Then, one day the cable stopped working. I could see that they were starting to develop the lot next door and a tractor had run across the cable laying on the ground. I called the provider, they came out and strung another cable across the lot, on the ground.

This was a regular occurrence in the weeks ahead. Once or twice a week I'd call that the cable was broken again, and someone would come out and patch it and drop it back in the dirt.

Then one day it stopped working again and I called again and then watched what the guy would do when he came out. They had poured concrete next door, and the cable now went from the box down into a fresh sidewalk never to emerge on the other side.

He scratched his head on that one, and just when I thought he was going to stretch a replacement cable across the new driveway, he instead went to the other side of my house, connected a new cable to the cable box over there, stretched it across part of my neighbor's lawn, diagonally across my lawn, and back through a different vent to the underside of the house, where he patched it in.

I called and told the cable company about this, that I had to disconnect the cable in order for either me or my neighbor to mow the lawn, but they said there was "nothing they could do". They said it often, and eventually, when I got on their nerves, they said it at high volume.

So we canceled the cable. I disconnected it on my side and wrapped the excess around the box. To this day I regret not documenting the experience through photos.

Later we had DSL and then fiber optic service, which were quite satisfactory. I never got an indoor DSL box installed outdoors, but they did run the line along the ground on the side of the house before punching into the bedroom I was using as an office. I didn't notice it at the time, but did notice that the network failed about a month after the air conditioner was installed. The installers had poured a slab of concrete on the side of the house for the air conditioning unit and -- you guessed it -- the cable was now part of the slab. I'm surprised it worked for as long as it did.

When we had fiber installed, I had them run it to the corner of the house closest to the curbside box (which fortunately was on my property) made sure they TRENCHED it this time, had them mount the fiber modem and router on the inside wall of the garage, and then did the rest of the network myself. So far flawless.

What I learned from this is to be sure to meet the installer outside, be sure he's called the utilities and knows where to dig, be sure he intends to trench the cables he needs to run to the house, and make sure he intends to run all other cables either along the walls well above ground level, through the basement, or through the attic.

And if they don't do these things, call the salescreature back and cancel the service. You can do that within 30 days, even if you signed a multi-year contract. By telling them you're going to cancel up front and why, you are then in a position to negotiate from strength. But if they don't fix it in a week or so, cancel in earnest and look for another provider.

Under no circumstances should an installer be allowed to work unsupervised.

Not so anonymous... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34934748)

Looking at his gallery we see his name is Benjamin Blakely. There's another pic set called With a little digging we find the phone number and address is:

Krell Institute
DOE CSGF Program
1609 Golden Aspen Drive
Suite 101
Ames, Iowa 50010
Phone: 515.956.3696
Fax: 515.956.3699

and that they manage DOE grants. Google map here:,+Iowa+50010&ie=UTF8&hq=&hnear=1609+Golden+Aspen+Dr,+Ames,+Story,+Iowa+50010&gl=us&ll=42.006847,-93.614609&spn=0.011544,0.022573&t=h&z=16

And there's a street view:)

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