A fine day to make a purchase...
I mail ordered my computer near the end of the summer, in 1996. The
prices I saw in Ultinet's ad in the computer paper seemed quite
good and I decided that they would be the place from which I would
buy from. After I placed my order, I eventualy received a large
package several weeks later. To my dismay, upon opening the box, I
found that Ultinet had forgotten to include many crucial parts of
my order. First of all, they had given me a video card with only 1
meg of RAM, when I had ordered 2 megs. Not only that, but they had
neglected to include power cords for me to plug the machine into
the electrical socket. And as if that wasn't enough, our friends at
Ultinet forgot to include the driver disc for the CD-ROM, video
card, sound card, modem, etc. Since my computer was purchased
without an operating system, none of these drivers were on the hard
disc drive. A phone call to Ultinet resulted in me being told by an
Ultinet employee that they had simply forgotten to include the
missing parts and that they would be on their way shortly by
courrier. I thanked the man and hung up, in a false sense of
releif. Little did I know that this was actually the first case in
a string of many problems seemingly caused by what I can only refer
to now as "Ultinet Amnesia".
A week went by and still no package had arrived with my missing
components. I decided to give my old friends at Ultinet a call.
After all, their cheery employees seemed more than happy to give
out plenty of good ol' fashioned customer service. After dailing up
their number, I was told by a seemingly shocked service employee
that due to some unexplainable circumstance (sun spot activity,
perhaps?), they had ONCE AGAIN forgotten to mail out my missing
(yet paid for) parts. After some profuse apologizing on his part,
he told me that he would personally see to it himself that the
package would be shipped out that very same day. After another week
and a half (I guess it must have been a slow courrier they used)
the mising parts finally arrived. "Well", I said to myself naively,
"Thankfully this is finally all cleared up!"
I had never been more wrong in my life.
Ignorance is Bliss
Two months went by and I decided to purchase some extra memory for
my now functional computer. The thought of buying RAM through mail
order momentarily crossed my mind at the time, but thankfully a few
functional neurons in my head sounded an alarm that forced me to
reconsider the foolishness of such an act. If only I had been as
wise two months before, this web site would probably be filled with
boring pictures of my cats. Aren't you gratefull! After buying the
SIMMs from a local computer store, I gleefully opened my computer
to put the new memory into the fresh empty simm bank, which lay
there on the motherboard like a virgin waiting to be deflowered. I
felt so happy, after inserting the SIMMs, I didn't even wait to put
the case back on before turning on the computer. Yet upon pressing
the pearly off-white plastic power switch, my machine began to
sqeal an opaque shreik of noise from it's tiny little PC speaker
lung. Filled with fear and horror, my eardrums pounded by the
inscessant BEEPs, my mind filled with a horrid thought. "My new
memory is bad!" I exclaimed. And wouldn't you know it, I was wrong!
After a thorough examination by several competant technicians, it
was revealed that the new memory was fine. But the empty SIMM bank
on my motherboard was about as good as a legless soccer player. To
really drive the point home that I was in the possesion of a lemon
computer, the CD-ROM feebly opened it's tray for the last time that
evening, finally giving up the ghost.
So, in accordance with my Ultinet warranty, I paid a courrier to
ship the computer to Ultinet's Toronto location for servicing.
Since this thing cost me a bundle, I decided to pay for isurance,
after all, I need the ol' lemon back in one peice! The shipping
bill came to about $75.00. A sum I ended up paying more than once!
A week later, the computer came back, seemingly repaired.
Thankfully, when I sent them the computer, I hadn't included any
small parts (like, say, a keyboard) for them to loose. They had
replaced the motherboard and the CD-ROM, and everything seemed in
That is, until I had to save something to a floppy disc.
"That's funny," I said as I tried to save my file. "I didn't know
that this floppy was garbbled..." I foolishly inserted a different
diskette, then another, and then another. I pretty soon found
myself in the possesion of a box full of garbbled discs. I quickly
realised that the discs were not the problem. "Oh No!" I shouted,
my arms thrown in the air in a fit of desperation. "My floppy drive
must be broken!"
Would you beleive I was wrong again? To my surprise, the "new"
motherboard I was given had a fried floppy drive controller. I
shook my head in disbeleif as the technician explained the details.
"But... how could Ultinet have made such a mistake? Surely they
test their products after servicing them!" I cried. Slowly, I began
to wonder if all these problems really were just the "isolated
incidents" the friendly Ultinet techs explained gleefully over the
phone whenever my hardware failed. Hey, I never said I was a quick
I had a friend lend me an old ISA multi-I/O card so that I could
use my floppy again. Unfortunately, the card conflicts with my CD-
ROM, which dosn't always work when the multi I/O card is plugged
in. But this was a necessary arrangement, as I had some pressing
work to complete. A few weeks later, when time permitted, I sent
the computer back to Ultinet in Toronto for "servicing", along with
a detailed letter explaining the problem. You know, this computer
has more frequent flyer miles than I do! "How long will it take to
fix?" I asked the Ultinet tech over the phone upon shipping the
computer. "Not more than a couple of days!" replied the tech. So I
awaited with baited breath, my heart so full of confidence in the
skills of the zealous Ultinet service department. "I know those
boys'll prove to me just how talented they are! I'm sure my
computer will come back better than ever!" My faith in Ultinet was
as unshaken as that of a 14th century peasent's belief in the
Catholic Church. A couple of days went by, and the computer never
arrived. A week went by. Two weeks. Three weeks. Worried, I called
up Ultinet and asked what was up. "Oh, we just fixed the computer
today!" replied Waris Abdul, the man who "fixed" my computer.
"You'll receive it in a day or two."
Would you like cream and sugar with that?
Well, ol' Waris was right about the part that it would arrive in a
day or two. Unfortunately, to my dismay, upon opening the box, I
found that the computer was in exactly the same condition as I had
sent it. Nothing had been done. I opened the case and saw that the
same motherboard with the same faulty drive controller was present.
I turned on the machine, and inserted a fresh floppy and tried to
save a file. The diskettes came out garbbled. I realised that
1930's boxing matches were more fixed than my computer. Nothing had
been done at all by good ol' Waris Abdul. I can tell you one thing
about Waris, though. He drinks his coffee black. How do I know? I
can tell by the large dried up coffee spill on the back of the
In disbeleif, I dialed up Ultinet and asked to speak with my old
pal Waris. I told him that my computer had not been fixed. I asked
him how this happened, and all he could tell me was that he had
"forgot" to fix it! Another case of "Ultinet Amnesia" I guess. When
I asked him why he sent it back to me if he had forgotten to fix
it, he could supply me with no answer. At least he apologized for
spilling the coffee all over the case. He told me he would ship me
a new motherboard (number three in case you havn't been keeping
count) via overnight courrier.
I received the motherboard the next morning. I thought it was
unusual that there was a big scratch across the board, considering
Waris had promised me that the replacement part would be brand new.
I got a professinal to install the new motherboard.
I was completely NOT surprised to be informed by the tech that the
new motherboard was defective. The keyboard controller on the new
board is fried, rendering the use of a keyboard impossible. Maybe
Ultinet feels that keyboards aren't essential to proper use of a
computer, but I guess I am just from a different school of thought
on the matter. Needless to say, the replacement part was usless.
This fact I have had verified by several computer professionals.
So I phoned my friends at Ultinet. I had been speaking to them so
often, they were begining to become my second family, and a very
dysfuntional one at that. I told them of the situation, and they
told me that I had to send them the computer back at MY expense. I
protested; after all, their "technician" had admitted that he had
been at fault when he had forgotten to fix my computer. Shipping
the machine again would have resulted in me spending more money
than the cost of simply buying a new part (from a reputable dealer)
and I felt I should not be punished for THEIR mistake. I demanded a
refund, and I was put through to the manager, a man who goes by the
name Mike Rousardi.
The Biggest Jackass that Ever Was
If ever the word "JACKASS" could be used to describe an individual,
I would have to nominate Ultinet General Manager Mike Rousardi for
the title. I described the situation to him, and though he agreed
that I was not at fault, he told me it was still up to me to ship
the computer at my expense for repairs, and that he refused to give
me a refund. When I told him that wasn't fair, he actually laughed
and said, "It's not my problem, it's yours!" I have never been so
rudely treated by a business establishment, before or since. I
tried to argue, but Mike "JACKASS" Rousardi quickly cut in and
said, "Oh, hold on a minute, I have another call. It'll only be a
minute!" But instead of being put on hold, the man hung up on me!
This geneticaly deficient excuse for a sub-human was TOO COWARDLY
to tell me he was hanging up on me, and spinelessly had to come up
with an excuse to do so. I repeatedly tried to call back over the
next few days, only to be met with the man's voice mail. He never
returned my calls. I sent several registered mail letters, which
were also never replied to. Mike Rousardi, you are not only a
JACKASS, you are a SPINELESS COWARD! I have more respect for the
dog excrement stuck between the treads of my sneakers than I do for
the sorry DNA-impaired abberation of evolution that you are. You
are a miscreant toad, and you knowingly RIPPED ME OFF.
So why don't I sue? Well unfortunately, since I live in Quebec and
Ultinet is in Ontario, I would have to file my claim in a Toronto
courthouse, because the sale is legally considered to have taken
place in Ontario, so the case is outside of the Quebec court's
jurisdiction. The expense of going to Toronto and going through the
whole legal proceedings would be far, far greater than just buying
a whole new computer, or even several new computers for that
matter. I would end up spending far, far more than what I would get
back, even if I got a full refund. If I was loaded, I would make
the expense to teach them a lesson, but I can barely pay my rent as
However, I did contact the Gazette Probe, a consumer awerness
column published here in the local Montreal english daily
newspaper. The kind folk at the Gazette tried repeatedly to try and
get an explanation from Ultinet, to no avail. They published the
story on Tuesday, November 25th, for all those who are interested.
The Gazette Probe eventualy got a letter, in which Mike "Jackass"
Rousardi claimed that it was all my fault because I had supposedly
refused to ever send them the computer for servicing in the first
place. Seems like ol' Jackass has a pretty bad memory...
I have since complained to the Better Business Bureau of Toronto,
but sadly, they are unable to help me because Ultinet is not a
member of their organization. I have been trying to find out if
Ontario has a Consumer Protection Board, as we have here in Quebec,
but I havn't had any luck finding out if one exists or not. If you
have any info regarding this matter, please e-mail me!
Well, that's the end of the story. I still have a broken computer,
and no refund or repairs are in sight. I have grudgingly accepted
the fact that I will never see any restitution from Ultinet. I fear
my only satisfaction in the matter will be this web site. If any
new developments occur, they will be posted here as soon as