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Jazztel: Worse than Telefonica? (And other Spanish building experiences…)

I hope everyone gets the chance, at least once during their life, to experience trying to get something done in Spain.

We’re involved in the eternal build-out of our new office space. During this time:

  • After asking for confirmation three times, we received notification, after two months, that our building permit was denied for “a missing paper”.

  • No less than three of our providers have gone out of business. Somehow, we managed to avoid being financially impacted by any of these, but they did contribute to the nearly one-year delay in getting the whole project finished.

  • We’ve had a new air conditioning system blow over and self-destruct, because the installer didn’t think to secure it to the roof of the building.

  • Our neighbors agreed to let us piggy-back on their wifi internet access, due to something we discovered so unbelievable (yet so believable) that I can’t even write about it here.

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p>About two month’s ago, we signed a contract with Jazztel, a local telecom provider, to install two ISDN lines, and symmetric DSL internet access. Today — again, two months later — a technician from the installation company Jazztel subcontracts to showed up to install and set everything up. It was a short visit, that went like this:

Technician: Howdy! I’m from Conduitomatic, here to install your Jazztel telecom system, which, by the way, I give about 1% chance of actually working. Me: Good to see you! (To self: It’s about time.) What’s that about not working? Technician: Well, due to the technology Jazztel use, the DSL line won’t sync up unless you’re within 1.5 km of the nearest phone exchange. You’re about 4 km. Me: You don’t say.

(Several minutes of tinkering by the technician…)

Technician: Yep, no way, this doesn’t work. You’ll have to find another provider. Maybe Telefonica?

(Several minutes of technician doodling on my whiteboard trying to explain the difference between Jazztel technology and traditional ISDN lines, during which I learned, repeatedly, that VoIP means Voice-over-IP.)

Me: Thank you very much, sir. Would have been nice if the Jazztel salesman could have mentioned the problem two months ago. I’ll get in touch with Telefonica.

I can really only blame myself. What more should I have expected from a technology company whose website comes up empty if you remove the three w’s:

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