Need your advise on a business matter (long post)

Okay, sorry to bug you all but heres the skinny and the email I sent.

I recently changed domains to a new host. (I am a web designer part-time for those that don’t know) This morning, I had a problem with the billing in which I could never receive a human voice to help me with the situation. I explained my problem via email to the CEO of the company and here’s his reply (keep in mind I admitted to the tone with which my email probably came across and apologized for it but I was frustrated) anyhow he said:

SO, okay my billing issue is resolved but I have had problems in the past. Tonight I went to update my website to find my site can be accessed with no password, this is the second time that this has happened, so here’s the email I sent. Please let me know if you think my email was in line etc. I am so frustrated. I sent the email to all the “important” people in their organization.


Dear xxxxxxxxxxx,

I am writing regarding concerns I have encountered since my domain transfer on 02/10/00 and yet another problem I have since the writing of my last email from my AOL account earlier today.

Honestly, rarely have I had the need to involve a great deal of people in my concern when it comes to customer service issues. In fact, in the three years I have dealt with domains and web design, I have never had to concern myself with so many problems in such a short period of time.

As I wrote in an email to you earlier today via my AOL account, the general concern was over a billing error and the fact I was unable to speak directly with a person on the phone. I also expressed the fact that I have previously experienced problems with service in the past including technical support and sales. As I stated in that email, I apologized for the tone of my email, however I am finding myself with yet another concern with my domain. This situation has happened once before.

Before I go into detail about the current situation, I had previously spoken to JXXXX on 02/07/00 regarding the fact that I had been on hold to talk to a sales rep for over 30 minutes. Due to a digital page I received from a client I had to hang up and call back. After I had called back and had been on hold from 11:18 – 11:56 my time ( I learned from my first call to keep track of time) I sent an email to JXXXX concerning the length of which I was holding. At 12:09 I sent him a letter basically telling him I hung up. After I sent the letter I received his email and spoke to him personally and he reassured me that this was not typical of your company and you were “going through growing pains.” On 02/10/00 I decided to go ahead and get the domain transferred to your company.

Yesterday, 02/15/00, I called your offices and spoke with MXXX after holding on the phone for over 21 minutes because my domain didn’t require a password to access pages for editing purposes. The machines I was accessing my domain from is on a network of one of my clients, I am an NT/Novell consultant as well as a web designer. I was trying to show a colleague who does database and email based programming for web sites, your email controls etc. for consideration in an upcoming project he has.

I gave him permission to access my web site so he could test some ASP pages, yet when he launched FrontPage 2000 it never asked him for a password to access the site. Confused, I logged him off the internal network and we tried it again with the same outcome. I proceeded with the same step on my machine in the building, which has never been used to access my site. Again, I was able to pull up the site with no password.

After the 21 minutes, on my clients phone, it was finally determined that there was some issue with a password “box” not checked. I am not familiar with IIS if that is what you are using, but when doing updates tonight I am having the same problem on my machine at home. I can access my site (publish to) with no password. I don’t save passwords in my local machine, except on general issues that are not as crucial, so I know that this is not a local machine issue.

Here is my main concern. I appreciate the fact that you are a growing company and that you are experiencing an explosion of clients, but I am unhappy with the level of service I am receiving. I am trying as hard as I can to be reasonable, but find myself feeling as though your company may not be the company for me unless we can get these issues worked out immediately.

I want to work with you to get these problems resolved so please respond to me as soon as possible.


remember this has been edited to keep the company’s name and names out of here.

Damn good letter. It sorta seems like they’re trying to help you, but after all this, I would go ahead and switch companies anyway.

Oh, and if the company you’re referring to is Web2010, definitely switch.

“It’s okay. I wouldn’t remember me either.”


Thanks for your reassurance. What scares me is, which is why I wrote the letter the way I did, is that if I have to switch hosts I could be out three months of hosting until I am able to “prove” to them I am not satisfied under the terms of their 90 Day guarantee.

BTW, the quote from the CEO of the company was the only thing he said in the email to me. No, sorry, nothing else to reassure me that I was valued as a customer.

I know, I should switch, but if I am out my 3 months up front I will scream fraud and boy will I raise hell.

Hopefully this letter will wake them up to the reality that I am no dumby and have been in this for a while to know what is and isn’t good service…

If the CEO’s attitude towards customer service is as poor as that e-mail would lead me to believe, you should change companies pronto!.

The values and priorities of the head person trickle down. If you aren’t important to him/her why should their underlings give two turds about the service they provide you? The amount of time you spent on hold demonstrates that.

“Growing pains” my ass - a wait that long is totally absurd - the industry standard for call centers is to answer in <20 seconds. Anything over a two minutes, five if you have that kind of patience, is obscenely poor. If Customer satifaction was any kind of priority, that company would hire some temps.

How quickly are your e-mails responded to? Could it be that they are placing a higher priority on that kind of service?

The next time you get a live rep on the phone, ask if they have a direct number you call them back at - many will. (Make up something if necessary) Then you’ll have your own personal express line. For example - I have the direct line for a hapless but helpful phone rep at the phone company - I call her for all my Ma Bell needs - without having to wait.


I know what you are saying, I really do, but if I am out 3 months dinero wise this is a really really bad thing financially for me. As you know from the Denver Dopers thing I stated I am having problems but things seem to be lightening up…but this would not be good.

So what do I do? Even with their guarantee you know they are going to give me more shit than 1000 pigs poop in a year to get my money back.

That’s why I am “pleading” with them to get this resolved immediately. I knew up front they don’t have 24/7 tech support, this is why I get discounted rates. But I didn’t think for a minute that my sight (a political one at that) could be left this vulnerable for such a long period of time. Think of this shit I could encounter if someone got a hold of this and used it to defame or threaten someone…FUCK, this pisses me off.

It’s the ole’ rock and a hard place scenario.

CoF, (sorry I have this need to add in the o you know, Commander OF Fortune)

I read more into your response and I need to comment on the type of person I am.

At first I seem shy and timid but I am not. There are people at CompUSA that pretty much kiss my ass when I walk in the door. Keep in mind though I am not a bitch or a snot, but when service is not to my liking I make my presence known. Those CompUSA folks know me as if I were a relative. They work with me even if they are busy with another customer.

Same with one of my other domain hosts. I have a specific person I deal with there. They too don’t have 24/7 service but for this site I needed more space, more POP accounts, more this and more that at a cost I can afford for what I am doing.

That said, I wont settle for just picking up my bags and leaving after only 6 days (7 now). If I have to I will call the company on my dime tomorrow and demand that I speak to their CEO and have some words with him. (thank God the internet has the trusty ole yellow pages and I know the name of the parent company :slight_smile: )

I don’t go at it from a bitch standpoint as I used to be a sales rep, this approach rarely works, but from a stand point of “do you want more business from me or what? If so then you better get your shit together and treat me as though I am the most important client you have.” Of course done with careful wording, but I am always firm.

I guess my main intension was to ensure I didn’t come across as a big snot with that email. I prefer to start out small and work my way up, if you know what I mean.

I have fucked up a business relationship over a stupid email before and since I have 3 months paid here, I can’t afford to fuck this one up.

I’m still trying to figure out what You are fine means. They have solved your problem? They think you’re good-looking? They’re trying to say You’re right but English eludes them?

I thought your e-mail was very polite, actually. I’m afraid you are, as you said, between a rock and a hard place though if you can’t leave them outright. Growing Pains is not an acceptable thing to say to a customer - why not just come out and say We have no idea how to run a business.

I just hope that either your password problem was fixed, or nobody here knows what your site is! If not, its not usually a good thing to go around publicizing the lack of password protection.

Sorry to hear about your problems as I am also picking up the financial pieces of a bad web host relationship. I seriously wonder how some of these companies ever got funded to begin with given some of their lack of business finesse (mine can’t even figure out how to process a CC properly.) My site lost the Front Page extensions last November and no amount of e-mails or phone calls to a seemingly non-existant customer service has yielded any results, so I ended up dumping them and taking the financial hit. I had intended on being a reseller for them, but I could’nt in good grace sell a customer a product with such poor service and my final kiss-off letter indicated as much. Big Sigh!

I agree with all the other comments made here and hope your problems are just growing pains and not the results of a shyster company. I ended up moving my site to tripod temporarily until I can find a new host. Currently investigating Valuweb and would appreciate any input from anyone who has tried them.

Anyhow, I noticed the same password problem with Front Page 2000 when opening up my site. I hav’nt tried to see what I could do without the password, but being used to '98’s password prompt this was a bit disturbing and I’ll certainly check it out.

As a final note: If you here the words Net-Bizz, run, don’t walk.


If it ain’t sick don’t fix it.

I thought the e-mail you sent was very gentle with regards to the trouble you’ve had - I understand not being able financially to pull out.

It bears mentioning IRL I have always worked in various service positions (I am a customer service manager in my current job) and I am acutely sensitive (to a fault) about the level of service I recieve.

Thanks again for your posts all.

I think my email to them brought to light what others are too chicken to say or didn’t know what was going on.

There was a billing notice in my email regarding their screw up…I don’t know if I am the sole person who brought this to light, but they retracted their billing notice thing.

As for the customer service. Somehow I was able to get through to them 2 times today with little wait. In addition, I had my problems figured out within 10 minutes. They rebooted the server my site was up and the password thing is resolved…but we will see. I do understand the limitations of NT…

I am documenting everything so if I have to, I can not only go to my bank and protest the charges I have some teeth by which to get my money back :slight_smile: