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the perils of 3rd world internet

For the past 2 weeks, my ISP has been abysmal. After noticing issues on 2022/03/14, I called my ISP to notify them that something was up.

The support person helpfully opened a ticket with the message:

Latency is high over clients connection

At this point, I tried to be helpful by providing them with additional information about the issue, like the fact that I was using ethernet, specific IPs with issues (along with what the expected results are), and times of day where the issue seems to pop up.

A week goes by, my internet is still fucked daily. Another day goes by - and now my connection permanently drops 30% of all packets.

Asking for a follow up on my issue that has now been left alone for over a week, the support person chimes in:

Good Day

Please download ping plotter and run it for about 30minutes then please send the results back to this ticket

Aside from the request to download a useless program that pushes you to buy its premium version, they still haven't figured out that the issue isn't actually on my side! For longer than a week they haven't run any benchmarks or diagnostics on their side, which would clearly show that the culprit is their network.

But, trying to be a helpful client, I download the program and run the tests.

Target Name: one.one.one.one
  Date/Time: 23/03/2022 17:51:33 - 23/03/2022 18:01:33

Hop  Sent  PL%   Min    Max   Avg  Host Name / [IP]
  1   239    0  0.26  10.42  0.64 []
  2   239    0  1.00  13.51  1.98 []
  3   239    6  1.25  30.18  3.31 []
  4   239   10  1.80  43.23  3.78 []
  5   239   10  2.48  60.91  5.02 []
  6   239    8  2.33  65.68  7.44 []
  7   239   11  2.45  49.03  5.44 []
  8   239    8  3.31  47.84  9.43  cloudflare.ixp.joburg []
  9   239   10  2.46  22.12  4.62  one.one.one.one []

Another few days go by - no response. At this point I'm getting pretty annoyed so I call them again asking for a follow-up, and a different support person says okay he'll follow up, then:

Good Day,

Could you kindly confirm if these test results have been conducted over a wireless connection or a cabled connection?

i.e. Was your laptop connected via WiFi or Network cable?

Not only did they not note the information I already gave them, but they also still haven't done any diagnostics from their side.

Then they schedule maintenance for the next day - which I only found out about because my internet went down for a bit. The result of the maintenance? Higher packet loss. Not to mention the original issue of high latency persisted as well.

So I call them again and a third support person chimes in:

Good day. thank you for your call,

Let me investigate and I will get back to you shortly. Apologies for the delay in response

In the call they said they would call me back "shortly", and when they didn't I called them again. This time, the support person said they would talk to their network engineer and call me back in 20 minutes. This time I actually received a call, only to be told:

Our engineers are aware of the issue and are working on it.

And then:

We can provide you with an update when we receive one from our engineers.

Now my blood is boiling. Of course, your engineers are aware of it. I've been complaining for 2 weeks! How do you only have this response now? I and everyone in the same area have had a shitty connection for 2 weeks. I have online lectures and online meetings where I can barely hear the other people. How are you charging me money for this level of incompetence? How are my neighbours not up in arms about this? How is this my ISP experience in 2022?


Update 2022-04-04: Looks like the ISP got their shit together and fixed the issue(s) 🎉.