Mailbox is now Tiscali

“As a smaller ISP we like to present ourselves as being humans, not a faceless corporation that sticks rigidly to policy.”
— Mailbox Internet.

Tried calling Mailbox support lately? Or sales? Not had any luck? Me either. And they don’t bother to call you back. I’ve suggested it might be easier if I pop up to Leeds and have a coffee with them if talking to a customer on the phone is going to cause them too much inconvenience. I’m quite happy to actually do that too – that’s not a threat as I’m only interested in talking to them about the service since 186K took over and I’m happy to make an appointment. But it might be that it’s the only way to have that conversation.

Incidentally, Mailbox switched to TISCALI as a backend provider today (if my ADSL connection logs are to be believed) and are now nothing more than another virtual ISP in the 186K pile. Oh well. Well and truly dead. They didn’t send me any email I recall reading with the words “we’re going to fuck up your connection and screw up routing on existing sessions on Monday 27 Feb” but instead just silently broke it for a while. Lovely. That’s real nice. Thanks folks!

I’m very likely to switch to the folks at Blackcat (BCN) but only if they give me a t-shirt and that’ll take some time as I can’t just literally switch (I’m not wires only). It’ll be too much hassle to not just have two services for some level of continued service but that’ll also mean I need a line moving to another location first. Anyone else interested in writing a formal letter of complaint to Mailbox about their service these days? If you’d like to get involved in asking them what the heck went wrong, drop me a line. I’m quite happy to follow this for a while in the name of the greater good of getting better service.

Here’s my most recent mail to Mailbox/186K:

Hi folks,

I’m a customer of Mailbox Internet. I have been for quite some time.

Service has not been so good lately and again was unavailable earlier today. I tried calling and was assured of a call back as soon as someone was available, but had no call. I’d really like it if you could go ahead and get them to call me as promised (+447776131337) because it’d be great to find out when the service is going to be back to the old Mailbox standard.

Anyway. If that’s going to cause you too much inconvenience (I appreciate that making phone calls can be quite a demanding experience) then I’m happy to come meet with your representatives in person instead, if that’s easier for you. Just let me know – I’m down in Reading, but it’s really no hassle to sort out an appointment if that suits you. It’s a little harder than it was talking to or visiting Mailbox, but those are the breaks in life.


2 Responses to “Mailbox is now Tiscali”

  1. Chris Greenshields says:

    Dear Jon,

    I ran across your blog about Mailbox 27/02/06 and for some reason it gave me some relief to know that other people are as pissed off about what happened to Mailbox after they were taken over by 186k.

    I have tried numerous times to speak to them over several months and have never got through. Usually the whole line is engaged but, at best, you get through to the desired option and then, wait… I gave up after 20 minutes.

    I tried getting a MAC key in order to move ISPs. I emailed them one day and one month later got a reply:

    “In reply to your query,unfortunately due to
    technical difficulties we are at present
    unable to provide any accounts with the
    required MAC keys, we are hoping to have this
    issue resolved shortly.

    Please reply to this mail should you still
    require the key, we will not be issuing MAC
    keys unless your account payment status is up
    to date.”

    To me that reads: “We can’t provide MAC keys at all. We can supply a MAC key if you require one and your account is paid up.” How does that work?

    I wrote back saying my account is paid up and I still want a MAC key. I am waiting for a reply.

    I went to Ofcom and when you follow their website through on getting a MAC key, they tell you to follow Mailbox’s complaints which is written on the back of their bills. I phoned Ofcom up and said: “Firstly, they don’t send bills any more by default. Secondly, if you do manage to convince them to send a bill, there’s no complaints procedure on the back.” They said if Mailbox won’t supply a MAC key, I’ll just need to get disconnected and suffer the inconvenience of loss of service. He proudly told me that Ofcom are in consultation about MAC keys right now, but guaging his response, you can expect that I’ll be in the same situation this time next year. I told him “Big deal. Ofcom should have sorted this out ages ago.” He got defensive and huffy. I’ve dealt with Ofcom before. They are about as useless as the useless companies they are supposed to regulate. It is pathetic.

    I’m interested to know what you did after February. Did you inconvenience yourself by getting disconnected from Mailbox? If so, how? (paper letter to main office?)


  2. Malcolm Bradshaw says:

    Its not just me then, We punted to be a VISP (Virtual inetrnet Service provider) 4 years ago with MINX. Since then, bought out by 186K and just fallen flat on its face. They do not pay commission any more (Cash issues ?) The service aspect has just disappeared.
    Three weeks to answear important ADSL failure emails. Our phone bill was £180.00 last month just hanging on waiting for 186Ks support team to answear my call then to be told Oh send an email.!!!!

    We have 100 ADSL customers on our books and we am in the process of Migrating them all away to Eclipse. If I manage to get any MAC codes.
    Any way thats my winge.
    If there are any other VISP’s out there, then move quick, 186k are too expensive and very very very poor.


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