I’d always been a big fan of Richard Branson’s Virgin. From saving up my pocket-money to buy Ommadawn to my first trip to the States on Virgin Atlantic, the company could do no wrong. Hell, I even liked Virgin Cola!
Now, I’m not so sure. When I moved into my present house just over a year ago I was delighted to discover that we had access to cable; not just any cable – Virgin cable. After years engaged in the never-ending battle of wittlessness that is a BT broadband contract, finally everything would be alright. Virgin broadband, Virgin television, life was going to be gooooooood.
At first the broadband experience was distinctly hit and miss. Bad reception, dropping off, or just plain not starting up. I persevered. Then, after just nine weeks, Virgin notified me that they were putting the not inconsiderable price of my tv/broadband package up by 8%. This was irritating. That my letter of complaint to Mark Davidson, the Executive Director of Customer Care, didn’t even warrant an acknowledgement was more irritating still. But time passes, and irritation fades, and I settled down to watch endless reruns of Frasier and Top Gear.
That is, until now. The seemingly mythical Mark Davidson has written again; this time to tell me that my broadband/tv package is to increase in price by another 10%. 18% in a year? This is gas and electricity supplier territory. The tv isn’t any better, the broadband remains distinctly patchy, but we are expected to pay another 18%. Shame on you Richard Branson. Your company should change its name – to Virgin – On The Ridiculous.