Being Human
Who We Are

Being Human

Discover what makes us a truly human company, from expressing gratitude and offering apologies to sharing information openly and encouraging individuality.

When people talk about Ting, it is both flattering and odd how often they use the word “human”. As in, “I was relieved to get a human on the phone.” Or, “Ting is different, they’re, I don’t know, human.” We try not to congratulate ourselves too much for breathing or answering the phone when it rings or enjoying Carpool Karaoke. We know what people say about Ting probably says way more about their previous experiences with cable companies.

Regardless, I thought it might be helpful to consider just what we do that unmistakably suggests opposable thumbs so that we can make sure to keep doing it. (Quick aside. I always tease my dog Pablo for not having opposable thumbs when he tries to remove his own burrs or stares longingly at a closed door. I just think it’s the funniest factor in humans rising to the top of the food chain and it really pisses him off.)

What makes Ting human? Here are just a few thoughts.


We thank.

Jay-Z said (and Lin-Manuel Miranda paraphrased), “You could've been anywhere in the world but you're here with me. I appreciate that.” I love that as a rallying cry for customer service. We know our customers have other choices. We actually make it really easy for customers to leave if they want. We are grateful that they choose us again and again each month. Whether through one-on-one interactions every day or formal customer appreciation events, we try to express that gratitude as often as we can.

We apologize.

We will screw up once in a while. We will bill someone wrong. We will have an outage. Politicians are most notably taught never to apologize. It calls attention to the mistake. It shows weakness. A lot of businesses seem to follow that same rule. We think that’s silly. We had an outage a few years ago in Holly Springs, North Carolina. First, our head of customer support took to Reddit to apologize personally. Second, we gave everyone a service credit. That was the standard, rightful transaction. Third, we bought everyone pizza. That was the apology. We could distract people with explanations about vendors or backup networks. But it’s pretty simple. You expect internet. We didn’t provide internet. We were sorry.

We share.

This is one of the first difficult lessons every human learns, huh? Although here I am thinking less about sharing our toys (get your own!) and more about sharing information. We know some people want more of it so they can understand what has happened or anticipate what is coming. Sharing information shows respect for customers' concerns and for their intelligence. We try to be as open and generous as possible with construction updates like these or even (if you are so geek-inclined) a status page like this.

We have faces and names.

There is no human named Ting. (Well, actually, there are probably a couple of hundred thousand humans named Ting. It’s a Chinese surname. But you know what I mean.) Ting is made up of individuals who have different opinions and different passions and who play different roles in bringing you your Internet service. Whether it is this blog post or the installer or customer support rep who introduces themselves to you or the people we introduce in our social media or the people you meet around town, we encourage all our individual humans to proudly represent Ting and themselves in their own style with their own voice. We avoid scripts and party lines. We want to be accessible and accountable.


I am Michael. I am human. You can interact with me here in the comment thread below or email me at


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