My Thoughts

A summary of my daily thoughts.

Monday, September 25, 2006


I cannot believe the experience I just had. I was on the phone with
AT&T for one hour and four minutes going over the bill that I received
and the services that are assigned to me.

Anybody reading this should realize that they are falling into a very
sticky situation when you order new service from AT&T. Do not fall
victim to their promotional package offers. The sales representatives
are either untrained or possibly deliberately deceptive by not
revealing all of the details of the packages.

I was sold a $102/month package which was to included local and long
distance service, call features that were not detailed when I agreed
to the package and a 120 channel package with local channels from Dish
Network and DSL Internet serice. The first bill indicated my monthly
charges would be $49.95 for phone services plus additional fees for
calling features not in the package plus $19.99 for DSL. There were
more than $52 installation and one time setup charges. The information
I got this morning conflicted with the information I received from the
AT&T representative I emailed over the weekend.

The representative apologized because I was sold a package that was
not available in Frisco. The City of Frisco was blamed for their
ordnances that do not allow them to offer certain parts of the

I went around and around with them. I asked for credits. I asked for
features to be removed. Finally I agreed to pay $110.67 per month for
phone service with unlimited domestic long distance, no local toll
charges. The new service will include 3 calling features that I was
able to specify that will be useful to me. They are, caller ID, call
forwarding and return call. They had stuck on a $3.99/month charge for
call waiting. I detest call waiting and had never requested the
service. The service will include DSL for $19,99/month for 12 months.
At the end of 12 months the rate increases $15/month. I am getting the
Dish Network package for $44.95/month with a $4/month discount plus
$5.98 for the DVR which covers two television sets.

My telephone number was changed because I had to go into a different
exchange. I now have Call Notes again because I now have a Metro Line
with the new phone number. There will be ~$35/month in taxes added to
the bill. If I did not agree to this package, my DSL would have been
reduced to a slower speed, I would have to pay for installation and
the equipment.

I was assured there would be no additional installation charges or
setup fees for the changes made today. Call Notes is supposed to be
available to me after 5 PM today

My head hurts from this experience. I kept telling the woman I felt as
though I have fallen victim to deceptive business practices. I am
obligated to stick with this mess for one year. At that time I am
going to sever my relationship with AT&T. If you deal with AT&T be
very, very careful.

I received a bill for $139.97 which included the phone installation
and setup charges, prorated charges for the first few days of service
and charges for all the ridiculous features they added on one month in
advance. I have to take the representative's word that credits will
appear on next months bill. If I do not pay the current bill in full,
late charges will be added to my next bill. The bill I received
included no charges for the Dish Network. I was told to expect a large
bill next month with the prorated services for Dish Network and one
month charged in advance.

This country needs to re-visit consumer protection laws. Deregulation
may sound good, but the individual consumer has absolutely no
protection any more. I consider myself to be a fairly intelligent,
competent woman. I have a bachelors degree in chemical engineering and
a masters of business administration. After this experience I wonder
if I am losing my marbles. I feel shattered.


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