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  • Bad Service Rears It's Ugly Head at Virgin Media

    Remember the days of ntl? Or nthell as it was known as. It has been just over 11 years when ntl:Telewest re-branded to Virgin Media. ntl’s reputation was so bad, that no matter what new incentives the company tried to adopt, to improve it’s image, they failed, it just could not shake off it’s tarnished image.

    So, eleven years on, things are a lot better, right?

    The answer is, you would think so but not really. After the name change to Virgin Media, there did seem to be a radical overhaul of customer services, the company did improve, it had to, they were taking on a reputable brand name, “Virgin”, owned by Sir Richard Branson.

    But it seems, since being acquired by Liberty Global, in 2013, a deal that was worth US$23.3 billion (£15 billion) in a stock and cash merger. Customer Service issues seem to be on the rise again.

    There seems to be the same distinct issues that dogged ntl all those years ago, the same old, customers getting fobbed off, complaints from customers about unhelpful and rude staff with many customers having an issue with their India based call centre.

    It’s not just problems with customer service, since the only real time you would ever speak to them is when you have a problem with your services.

    For a number of weeks now, there has been issues with their TV Catch Up Services, myself and a friend were caught up with a issue recently, when we wanted to watch something, we were unable to because that service was down and it stayed down all evening.

    There has also been problems with Virgin Media’s broadband internet service too, with ranging issues from slow speeds to problems connecting to facebook. Thousands of customers nationwide, reported issues with trying to connect to facebook this week and last week, with Virgin Media Internet customers logging reports on Down Detector. All other sites seemed to load fine, except facebook.

    According to the online review service, Trustpilot, Virgin Media scores a pathetic, 1.2 out of 10, of 3,553 total reviews of the service. On Trustpilot, customers of any well known company, are able to rate a service from 1 to 5 Stars, with 1 being really bad, to 5 being top notch, so of those 3,553 reviews left by Virgin Media customers, a whopping 2,471 reviews are 1 Star only, that’s nearly 74% of really bad reviews. What’s worse is, it does not appear that Virgin Media has any representative contacting these customers to offer assistance. Trust Pilot does offer that facility for companies to correct customers problems logged on Trustpilot.

    Here are just a recent flavour of some of those logged reviews:-

    “seriously, 3rd friday in a row that we cant get on demand – nonsense” write one furious customer…

    Another angry customer writes… “Terrible company, broadband is either terribly slow or none existent and to top it off, we accidentally paid twice last month for our bill and even though our bank have said both payments were authorised virgin have said it was returned unpaid, therefore cutting us off and having the audacity to add a ten pounds late charge, needless to say we are cancelling our subscription and going elsewhere!!”
    Still if it is any consolation, Virgin Media scores better than BT, 0.4 out of 10 and Sky is only slightly better at 1.4 out of 10 and of each of the companies that customers have left reviews, the numbers of reviews is a tiny percentage of their actual customer base, but still, those ratings are shockingly bad.

    As for Virgin Media, when it works, it’s fine but it’s when you come to want to complain about an issue, that is when issues seem to get compounded for customers and this is ntl, all over again.