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San Francisco, CA

2 edits
reply to Radio Active

Re: Maybe it's time...

said by Radio Active:

I know, I know... "Caveat Emptor..."
In this day of legal mumbo-jumbo fine-print, arbitation clauses and technological services that outwit the knowledge of the average consumer, "Caveat Emptor" isn't even applicable... unless you are one to deem that just avoiding all communication services is a viable option.

How can one expect to be reasonably educated if the documentation to educate thyself exceeds the buyer's education?

Tavistock NJ

1 edit
said by SLD:

How can one expect to be reasonably educated if the documentation to educate thyself exceeds the buyer's education?
Anyone can figure this out, unless you are illiterate.

But you have to get off your duff and actually look. The data is always up to date within about an hour of use.
Are you happy with your rep in Washington, DC?

San Francisco, CA
You carrier's information system does not represent the entire spectrum.


Chesterfield, MO
reply to FFH5
And if my smart-phone's e-mail client gets caught in a loop and suddenly starts chewing through megabytes of data????

This hasn't happened to me but wouldn't it be nice if my carrier stopped my service rather than hit me for a $500 (or more) overage fee before my battery drained...

I have an iPhone and I do have periodic problems with having to delete and recreate all my e-mail accounts (I have three, Exchange, Yahoo! and G-Mail) because the e-mail client gets caught in a loop and drains the battery. I'm waiting for the day when it not only drains the battery but chews through gigabytes of data too.

This type of fine-print-deception is the same thing banks are facing. I think Karl hit the nail on the head when he used the term amoral.

Last summer I had about $8,000 in legal fees (I hate lawyers) on a bank credit line at 9% interest. My bank sent me a flier that said I could transfer balance to my credit card and get 0% for 12 months. I thought it was a good deal to use free bank money for a year. Unfortunately I didn't read the micro-print. They hit me with a 3% balance transfer fee. I still saved money but I was pretty upset about the transfer fee. I thought it was misleading to bury the fee in the micro-print. And lets face it, often these "contracts" have pages of fine print and why is it necessary for a consumer to read all of it to find out what kind of deal they are getting? Why can't they be up front and clearly identify the 3% transfer fee? I still would have transferred it because it did save me interest charges, but I would have a much higher opinion of my bank. As it is, I think it's full of a bunch of "amoral" theifs!.


reply to FFH5
Click for full size
Click for full size
AT&T's page.

BTW, I sell for 3 major carriers and most people (85-95%) don't read a thing or ask a question. They just sign, and yes I do tell them what they just signed.


Friendswood, TX

Sometimes it won't help to read your contract...

You don't have to be a rocket scientist or a professional researcher to dig up TONS of historical data on how telcos have been screwing us for years. For Christ's sake, there are companies that will offer a service to dig through all of your phone bills (typically corporate) to find the inconsistencies in billing. They offer this service FREE OF CHARGE. They then make a request for a refund for all of the inappropriate charges and take a "cut" of those monies. Can you imagine, companies that could base their entire income stream on something like this? Believe it.

I was representing some independent resellers of telephone service during the deregulation of local phone service (see Telco Act of 1996) and saw some unbelievable stuff... For instance, we moved 300 phone lines from SWBT to Quest and SWBT took out 40% of Houston's ability to call these lines!!! This was later proven by multiple testimonies of SWBT techs. That my friend is the definition of Anti-Competitive behavior.

AT&T pulled a nasty on my wife and I. In 2003, we purchased 2 AT&T phones on a family plan. We shared our minutes from the same "minute bucket". They weren't supposed to bill us for talking with one another on these phones. However, they proceeded to bill us 2 minutes for every 1 minute of conversation between our phones. We sent in a request (via phone and email) for refunds of these instances EVERY MONTH! Guess what they told us....."Sorry about that. That shouldn't be happening. However, we don't have the ability to refund you the minutes that you all used while receiving these calls from each other. However, we'd be happy to refund you the minutes used from the phone originating the calls." So they could only refund the calling phone, not the receiving phone. We even have this in writing.....

We went to court and presented our case to the judge and won. We then sued them under the Texas Deceptive Trade Practices Act which provides treble damages to the consumer if you were screwed.....we won...

So, I don't care how many times you read a contract, nothing can protect you from a giant that wants to screw you. It's like being in prison...only you don't have the option to NOT pick up the soap because living without a mobile phone is NOT an option.