October 6th, 2007

second call to Tivo

A couple years ago, a good friend of mine sent us a Tivo with a couple years prepaid. Wow. Don't know how we lived without it before, honestly, but I'm reasonably certain we watched less of what we wanted to be watching and more of what we could just barely stand.

Anyway, some months ago, R. attempted to use some of the online account management features and was utterly defeated. Totally unable to track down the account for our Tivo, despite having the service number. Today, the Tivo gave us a message that we were past due on the account and it would be shut down in 13 days. I called the number, waited on hold a long time, and basically got told they couldn't help us, since that service number was associated with someone else's name, address and phone number, and we couldn't come up with any of them.

Next step: call friend. Since friend's husband used to work for Tivo, they gave several people Tivo's. It took a while to figure out what name this thing might be listed under, but we have a working theory including a name, number and address, some or all of which we hope match.

I'm sitting on hold again, waiting to find out.

In the meantime, I'm in the middle of _Microtrends_. The name author works for Burson Marsteller (readers of Stauber and Rampton recognize that company and do not have fond associations with PR in general or them in particular), and invented the term "Soccer Moms". Eh. Could be worse. He could have been the guy who came up with "Security Moms". In any event, some of the 2-3 pages descriptions of small but potentially influential trends are a lot more interesting than others (and some are a lot more accurate than others, as well). For a guy who claims to be all about the numbers, it is distressing to see him claiming that air travel is safer than car travel, a statement that hasn't been true for quite a while now.

He is _truly_ a diversity guy. That's nice.

nth call to Tivo

Well, we've got the right name, but the first guy I talked to was not real competent. He handed me off to a specialist (5 minute wait) only after 30+ minutes of waiting on hold, I gave up because the kid was getting quite antsy.

R. tried calling, on his cell so he could use the earbud (dunno why he couldn't just stick the cordless on speaker). He passed it off to me when it came off hold and I was well on my way when _the damn call got dropped_. Grrr.

Back on hold. This is infuriating.

All right. That guy was competent. The outstanding bill of $12 and change has been paid. I have a case number, and am now waiting for the specialist or whatever who can actually move a service number from one account to another.

I suppose the good news is that my inbox has shrunk dramatically, since that's a task that is compatible with a high level of rage and highly interruptible.

Update: a few more phone calls later (let's see: gave up after 45 minutes; accidentally dropped a call switching from speaker to regular -- my bad; then it was late enough that I actually started getting through quickly), I learned that I'd have to cancel the box off one account and start it on another account. Which we did. We are now able to get the schedule going forward (that was from bringing the old account up to date) AND use the online features. Lucky us; we'll be able to watch Tivo'd stuff on our laptops. BOTH of our laptops. Neato.

And despite some screaming, R. and I still love each other. He's a great husband.