Inside Tech Support

An insider's view of the OOL technical support call center. I am an OOL techical support representative and I've created this blog to give you an insight into the workings of the call center as well as help you get inside the mind of the guy who is helping you.

Sunday, October 16, 2005


Here is a how one tech made a difference and an excellent example of how Cablevision's call center management treats us workers.

For many years, TSG's official policy was to have a tech take calls as soon as his shift starts. This ignores the fact it can take more than 10 minutes to log in and get all the needed programs started and logged in to.

As was indoctrinated in us during training, You are being paid to take calls. But Management screws us two ways. The call center is very, very crowded, and if your shift starts during "prime time", it is hard to find a seat. You have to wait for someone's shift to end. When your shift starts you have to sign in to the phone system, and since you aren't ready to take a call, you have to sign out. Eevery moment you are working is monitored, you have to put a reason why you have signed out, in this case "system issues" would be a good choice. These reasons are tracked and at the end of the month your supervisor will discuss your stats with you. The fact that you signed out to system issues is guaranteed to be brought up. This is yet another stat that Management will use against you at raise time.

But if you were lucky enough to find a seat before your shift, or start at a time when it is less crowded, you were expected to log in to your computer , start all your applications and log into them. All before your shift starts. That this was wrong was brought up numerous times. I myself brought it up in monthly meetings. Management didn't care and told us that's just the way it is.

Finally a tech was let go for only Management knows why and he did something about it he consulted a lawyer. It was obvious that Cablevision had broken labor laws. Obvious to everyone but Management. Or maybe they just didn't care.

A lawsuit was filed, it turned into a class action, and Cablevision folded like a cheap suit.

I got my settlement check today and thanks to Robert Wolfson, I'll be able to go to a couple of nice restaurants for dinner. Thanks, Rob for standing up for the little guy.

After the lawsuit was filed, Management finally smartened up and changed their policy. Now we have a whole 5 minutes to log in. Not really enough time for us but enough for Cablevision to avoid another lawsuit.

So what's the moral of the story? I guess it is that Cablevision engages in unethical and illegal business practices and only will change if forced do by the courts......


At 5:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

And they have the nerve to deny any wrong doing...ya whatever, thanks for getting my money back Mr. Wolfson and Co. Now if we could have also done something for those ridiculous one minute late write ups that prevented good techs from even applying for a lead position, then affecting your yearly review..all falling into this category of not being given enough time to log in. Then their was the dilemma of not finding a seat being held against your stats and reviews...write ups for personal family matters, valid sicknesses with a doctors note because of not having anything left from your whole 5 days a year...what a horrible place it was to work.

At 7:24 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Finally a tech was let go for only Management knows why and he did something about it he consulted a lawyer. It was obvious that Cablevision had broken labor laws. Obvious to everyone but Management. Or maybe they just didn't care."

Actually the first action taken by anyone at TSG in reference to this issue was me. I was the one that wrote a detailed complaint to Sue Crickmoore, who is or was the vice president of CV employee relations. I informed Ms. Crickmoore that the situation in TSG was intolerable and needed to be cleaned up in house before it wound up with an outside agency. She promptly ignored my complaint which led to my filing a written complaint to the U.S. Department of Labor. Needless to say Elaine Guzzo at the Dept of Labor took this matter very seriously. She began an investigation that is still ongoing.

I asked everyone I knew to call Elaine and give a statement to her. Its funny how nobody had the balls speak to Elaine or to sign anything, not even Bob Wolfson, until they left the employ of the company. Its real easy to sue your former employer, its real easy to sign on to a suit when you dont work there anymore. I stood nose to nose with Anita, Paul and my supervisors. I told Sue Crickmoore exaclty what I was going to do if she didnt remedy the situation in TSG.

I filed a complaint that launced an investigation of TSG's labor practices by a federal agency, and I didnt give a shit if they knew it was me. I passed out union cards everyday and coulnt have cared less if they knew what I was up to.

I have a family and a mortgage and I certainly didnt want to lose my steady paycheck. But enough was enough. Someone had to step up. This settlement did not end the ongoing investigation. The dept of labor is still looking to enforce future complience. And five minutes per shift just doesnt cut it.

So to all of you who recieved a check, congratulations. How many of you actually signed the suit? And of the ones that signed the suit, how many had the balls to sign it while you still worked there? None thats how many. I got e mails every month from people right after they got fired, looking for the lawyers number. Real ballsy to jump on the bandwagon after getting shitcanned. I always gave the lawyers number to anyone who asked, but it always made me sick how timid TSG techs are. How unwilling the overwhelming majority are of standing up for themselves. Even the phantom blogger who set up this site hides his face out of fear. I built and fuck management if they didnt like it, and double fuck em if they didnt like me because of it.

At 1:02 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I worked there between Jan 04 to July 04 they changed my shift without cause from 430-1am to an earlier shift from 6 AM to 230PM, I was technically late 3 times when I spoke with my supervisor and Tucci, I asked if I could switch back to my former schedule as there was desperate need of techs for the night shift, but I was told, after I CAME IN AT 6 in the morning there it was in the best interest of the company and to myself that we (cablevision n me) to go our separate way. WHAT KINDA BULLSHIT is that I talked to so many people that day in the parking lot @ woodbury, everybody agreed with me but DID NOT HAVE THE BALLS to do anything about it. So to the person that sued CV THANK YOU, but in a way I'm glad I was let go, I always felt like a hamster on a wheel, working the wheel but going no where. I think that there are going to be more lawsuits in the coming years not only by CV employees but also by customers.

At 7:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cablevision will always force you to work shifts that mess up your life. They dont care if you have a family, kids that need you around during normal hours.

They will work you till your nerves are raw. And they will reward you with a few writups and a 2% raise.

You guys can still organize. Its never too late and the IBEW will ALWAYS be there to help Cablevision techs.

Visit YOUR SITE at and educate yourselves.

Call Rick Fridell at 631-582-0342 to ask him any questions you have about the IBEW. Stick together and get the things we and our families deserve from Cablevision.

At 6:29 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

fatboy was shitcanned..good riddance, ex attendance manager Anita should be next for her ridiculous managing skills, She's only good at write ups and letting people go, doesn't even have the courtesy to say hi after a wonder her husband left her...she is a shrewd witch...just look at her license plate. Somehow they think this is good for employee relations or for keeping you all in line like a herd of sheep....then man is she the person for the job. They use fear and intimidation to keep you puppets in line. Don't worry that occassional slice of pizza or ice cream makes it all better carefull, fuhrerliner Anita is watching all of you.

At 1:53 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

How that motherfucker ever made it to supervisor is beyond me. He was a useless piece of shit as a "lead" and even worse as a supervisor. Maybe this signals a change in TSG, they are going to get rid of dead weight and we'll see real progress.


Fat Fucking Chance

At 11:18 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

ooltech: y arent u dead yet, i hope u burn alive in the shack within which u dwell.

At 12:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"ooltech: y arent u dead yet, i hope u burn alive in the shack within which u dwell. "

Say hello to Jeff Whitcoff for me. See how the mighty fall. Whoever you are, you'll get yours soon enough

At 1:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow...why so bitter man, your a real special one for wishing death on anyone..what is your problem, and what is your interest in defending this company with such harsh feelings towards someone you don't even know? You're the one who will die from the stress if you remain at CV loser boy. Go somewhere else to babble your nonsense about wishing death on people..Is it all you can say? some people they have working there.

At 2:15 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

poor guy hates ool tech so much because he has to re-live what he is going through every day with each post...I know it's hard to read it when you just went through it...all that stress and anger built up inside...let these guys just vent man, they have that right..for most of us it was a horrible place to work, and for many that still work there...get yourself some help man, do they offer any therapy yet? some stress time..ha! that will never happen.

At 10:08 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, I love reading this blog because it reminds me of all the shit I went through there and its ENTERTAINING. Then you have these fucking nuts wishing death on people and taking it all so serious. Maybe he needs to get laid. If OOLTECH is such a loser, what does it say about him to be reading what he writes and taking the time out to write little death threats to him? Does he hit a nerve? Anyone who actually comes on here defending Cablevision, just know that you are defending a company that wouldnt even know if you disappeared. It's not your company, your not a Dolan. Sorry.

Get a life, calm down, breathe.... It's just a blog...

At 1:04 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They don't give you ant time to breathe...remember

At 1:37 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

anyone that defends this company in any way is so desperately trying to convince him or herself that it's an ok place to work....keep trying instead of growing some balls and standing up for yourself and your co-workers, I guess you know nothing can change for the better because this is life and Cablevision told you that every job is like this...It must be true

At 6:01 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"anyone that defends this company in any way is so desperately trying to convince him or herself that it's an ok place to work....keep trying instead of growing some balls and standing up for yourself and your co-workers,"

Not many have balls in TSG. Ask anyone that happily cashed a settlement check that they didnt even fight for.

At 3:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

let's all bang in this Weekend and show them how we can stick together on something.. man would they be screwed..I'm ready, how bout you?

At 9:47 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

nothing to lose but a crappy job, I can't take anymore of this... I'm in...don't know if i'll come back either.

At 12:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Verizon is still looking for a few good field techs..temp/to perm. If you are the right person and want respect doing the same thing or something great money, great conditions, great retirement and yes.. it's union...don't worry their won't be any buyout in the foreseen ass clown, and those bitter rejects that wish they can come back need not apply. You can all try surviving with that shitstain company that treats you like a spec of dust....see ya's in 20 years on the welfare line...if you can make it that long

At 12:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Working for TSG:
we tell you what to do, we tell you how to think..we tell you when to work...we tell you when to breathe and when not too(BPA)...we tell you what time to work...we tell you how quick you work...we tell you what's important...we tell you what to say...we tell you not good enough, do better...we tell you how many breaks are acceptable under these conditions...we tell you take call after call and watch your stats, or else....we tell you watch your personal time..we tell you watch your wrap time..we tell you watch your hold time...we tell you watch your call time..we tell you watch your attendance when it's over 5 days, even if it's a family matter...we tell you have some ice cream or pizza to make it all better...we tell you if you need a break, too bad...we tell you; you were hired to take calls only and be sheep and conform to all we ask from you...we tell you to multitask...we tell you there is nothing we can do for you...we tell you the grass is not greener on the other side...we tell you find another job..we tell you there's the door

At 11:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If working for cablevision is as bad as everyone is indicating...why would anyone in their right mind want to work for these people? How can anyone work and survive under such conditions?

waiting for FIOS

At 4:40 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

People try..but many don't make it to their 3rd year. They either leave or are let go for burning out..they would much rather put an employee that is struggling from burnout out on the street than help him or her or write them up for a family matter that forces them to exceed their alloted time of 5 days a year. People have hopes of advancing when they come in..just realizing they have to go through the ropes first to get their because they are already overqualified for the position....problem is you get entangled in the ropes and can't get out because of ridiculous write ups, burnout, and prejudice. Their is no solid system in place to advance and in many cases the wrong person advances. You are watched by hawks every second of every day making it very uncomfortable.You are expected to perform at the same extreme level every day and take the pressure and abuse without a twitch...maybe if we were not human, that would be possible, but it is obvious not many can do it for long. The job alone is difficult, not in troubleshooting, but in dealing with the public non stop. What makes things insane and creates burnout are the expectations from management and the constant pressure in a stressfull atmosphere. So happy I am leaving soon.

At 6:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

They are Right as an Ex Employee they are really not exaggerating when stating the working conditions @ CV TSG.

You enter the TSG with Stars in your eyes looking for a career & advancement. You leave like a use piece of charcoal.

Think of working @ TSG as Starting a 20 mile hike with a pebble in your shoe.

At 12:10 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

$222-million Cablevision suit gets green light


November 1, 2005

A judge gave the go-ahead yesterday to a suit seeking $222 million from Cablevision over the bankruptcy of its former subsidiary, The Wiz.

U.S. Bankruptcy Chief Judge Mary Walrath, sitting in Delaware, denied Cablevision's request to dismiss the action.

The suit alleges that Cablevision repeatedly offered assurances that Wiz vendors would be paid despite the chain's financial difficulties.

Instead, it is alleged, Cablevision refused to stand behind those promises, leading to the Wiz's bankruptcy filing and sale to a liquidator.

The bankruptcy left The Wiz's liquidator owing creditors $85 million, including $1.4 million to the New York Yankees for advertising at Yankee Stadium, said the creditors' lawyer, Mark Power, a partner at the law firm Hahn & Hessen LLP in Manhattan.

The lawsuit claims Cablevision should pay up for its former subsidiary's debt because of the promises in letters to electronics vendors, other creditors and auditors.

The suit also claims that while The Wiz was insolvent, Cablevision underpaid the retailer for the use of its stores to promote Cablevision services, Power said.

Cablevision spokeswoman Kim Kerns said: "Cablevision continues to believe that the claims are without merit and will continue to contest [the action] vigorously."

The lawsuit seeks $85 million from Cablevision to pay creditors of The Wiz and seeks to erase $137 million in debt that Cablevision passed along to the store's liquidator.

Cablevision bought the troubled electronics retailer in 1998 for $101 million after an earlier bankruptcy for the electronics retailer.

But after years of mounting losses, Cablevision sold The Wiz chain, including $137 million in debt, to the liquidator in 2003 for $1, according to the lawsuit.

At 9:30 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

It seems there is alot of our coworkers who are quitting Cablevision and becoming members of Local 1049. Three voc members left in the last month. Ed Wolm, who worked in Outside Plant for the past 12 years, left because he believed he needed to make a future for his family. He didn't want to end up like Burris Jester and so many others who found out the hard way what being an at-will employee is. Mike McNamee, a grade 14 in Hauppauge, left after serving several years on the Cablevision/Local 1049 voc. Mike is now an apprentice lineman who has an employer paid pension, 100% employer paid!! And he's starting at the same pay as he was making after 6-7 years working at Cablevision, a multi billion dollar corporation. Dan Wilson, also a voc member and grade 14, left the Amangansett site after many years of leadership to his co-workers. These guys all took tests after their co-workers let them down in their fight for justice and security, working at a place that has no clue what those words mean. They, as well as others, were provided the extra push needed to get started because they work so diligently, learning the union way. Sticking up and fighting for others and not just yourself. Working as at-will employees, that was a difficult task to achieve. There are many others like me who will probably move on also, but until then, I will continue to work in the honor of my brothers who fought this asswipe of a company, held their heads high, and followed their principles and moved on to the union way of life. They showed what they believe in, so did Cablevision when they fired another employee who got hurt on the job.

At 9:32 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Burris Jester, a Cablevision employee and grade 14 who worked out of the Riverhead facility, was fired after injuring himself. Great company to work for. You don't need a negotiated contract with your employer, they always take such good care of you.....

At 4:25 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

all i can say is....there are many, many racist bastards working in management @ CV and the HR Director is on their side. One must keep the complaints to his/herself or else one may be fired. I just wish I didn't f'in need that f'in job. Racist, racist, racist bastards....against whom you ask??? Hispanics, blacks, woman & gays. What a bunch of f*cks!!!!!!! I HATE THEM.

At 9:26 AM, Anonymous Aileen said...

Its so frustrating as an it support when you don't the exact amount of settlement that you should be receiving. this joob is not easy at all.

At 1:04 AM, Anonymous Computerized Maintenance Management System said...

I totally agree with your settlement!!!!


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