Tuesday, June 12, 2007

On-Demand Fiasco

The Sopranos ended its run this past weekend.

I still have yet to see it.

Sunday night I was exiled to my basement by a hen party held by Mrs. Agricola. I'm not sure why it happened when it happened but there was some complex algorithm of other Sunday night, all-female get togethers at which neighbor-ladies gather to watch the execrable Desperate Housewives over the past two years which we have never hosted . . . I can't pretend to understand.

I didn't mind too much however because I knew that I'd catch the finale On-Demand, Monday night. Except that I didn't. RCN -- stellar cable provider that it is -- was unable to deliver HD HBO and On-Demand on Monday night. After several abortive attempts to get On-Demand to work I spent 30 minutes on hold before connecting with a service rep.

The guy was very nice but he, and, so he said, the entire organization didn't know why the outage was happening. Ninety percent of his calls dealt with the same issue last night. It appears everybody was trying to catch the Sopranos finale On-Demand and the RCN system couldn't handle the load. He also posited that a Saturday night firmware update may have been responsible, but no one knew for sure. RCN seems to have a tremendous IT department -- a system wide firmware update and/or high traffic basically crippled their system on a pair of nights that they should have known would have been very high traffic nights.

Last night's call was our third in two weeks for poor On-Demand performance, and our patience is wearing thin with RCN. That they are IT-incompetent should not surprise me because RCN sends monthly bills every other month, and they never once reached me when I'd established email billing. For this service I pay $137 each month.

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