ALABAMA -- One Day a Bellsouth telemarketer calls me and begs me to come back to BellSouth. I must have been having a dumb moment. She tells me that the phone service is only $16.50. I tell her that never has my phone cost $16.50 using BellSouth and that it is always closer to $35+ with all their (take advantage of you fees). But she insists that there are no hidden fees and that phone service is only $16.50 with minimal state and federal fees.
So then I get the bill. Here comes the fun. Phone service is $ 16.50, however there are two charges that are not fees. The $6.50 (FCC authorized Charge for network access) is a mandatory charge for every phone in the country. So my phone service was going to cost me $23 without fees. The customer service person I reach tells me that in theory BellSouth only charges me 16.50, but the government charges the other 6.50 so they can advertise phone service at 16.50.
Advertise a shoe at $50. Then when someone takes it to the register, tell him or her that the laces are $10. See my point. I also was charged for caller ID and call waiting when they were offered to me as a promotion. The customer service agent tells me that if it was offered to me then BellSouth does not enforce it unless I call in and ask for the offer that was given to me. Make any sense. I have to call in and ask for the offer that was offered to me in order to get it. Still sounds fishy.
There is also a $2.95 charge for using a long distance carrier in general. I get this taken off because I use a cell phone for that. Cost of changing coverage the next month $2.75. So the telemarketer pulled one over my eyes. Then they offer me this great deal on DSL. I again agree. The woman says BellSouth will send me everything I need just to plug and play.
So I call 3 days later to check on the status on my stuff. They ask me how I want to pay for my cable modem, which will cost $75. I tell them that I was told it would be sent to me without cost. BellSouth tells me that offer has expired but they will send me the modem, then bill me for it, and then send me a rebate form (for an expired promotion). I cancel the whole DSL deal.
The high-speed she offered was not even available in my area, which was not told to me until after I canceled and someone called to ask why I canceled. Bill me first then tell me that the service is not available. Someone I know has DSL with Bellsouth. The connection should run at 6MBps. However, Bellsouth caps this connection at exactly 6MBps. The only way you run at that speed is if all the variables and connections are perfect. Chance of this is next to none.
My current provider charges me for 7MBps. However, they understand that in order to guarantee this connection they must cap it off at 7.5MBps. So mine runs at about 7.2MBps most of the time. How many people pay all these charges without question? BellSouth has to be making a killing.
ST AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA -- If you compete with the big boys, you get hurt in the end. IF you have telephone service with another company besides BellSouth, Bell agrees that they will maintain the phone line up to the customer NID (Network Interface Devise - aka Dmarc). Now if you call your provider and complain about noise on the line for example, then that company in turn calls BS services for a fast line test. 9 times out of ten they will say the issue is INSIDE the home and that the CLEC must send out a tech to get it fixed or the customer must hire a 3rd party to fix the issue if the CLEC does not provide that service.
Guess what happens when that 3rd part goes out there or the CLEC's tech gets to that customers home? The issue is on the Bell side, and the process must start again from the beginning. This time, you have ammo and tell the BS rep that you have tested the customer's lines and all's well there. Then up to 24 hours later (normally within 18 hours), a Bell tech will arrive and the issue suddenly goes away. So what happened to the CLEC who has to pay the tech to go out there or the customer who had to pay a 3rd party tech to find out there was no inside issue? Well, they are out of luck it seems.
However, the same is not true for BellSouth. IF a BellSouth tech heads out to a home and the issue is not on the Bell side, you get hit with a $80.00 fee. CLEC's and homeowners cannot return the favor however when Bell pulls the same stunt.
True Story: I work for a CLEC. My home phone is with my workplace of course, and one day I had static on the line. I check at the NID of course and hear static there. So we call it in the BS. While I am away a tech comes to my home, then leaves a note saying "Problem on the inside". I check the NID when I get home and it's clear. Fine, great. A common stealth fix, or the static was possibly caused by other means on the Bell end. Since I work for my phone company I get to peek at the bills BS sends (this will be a different rant entirely) us.
Lo and behold, there is an $80.00 fee for line service on my line. Seems that the Tech decided I wasted his time and charged not me, but the CLEC. We are fighting this of course. Yeah, its only $80.00 but just how many of these similar issues are there? SO I am starting to dig around... What it boils down to is this: If Bell visits a customer and they are not needed, they are charged $80.00. Fine. No probs with that - the techs time is worth something, right?
Now if Bell says it's not on their end and you go around checking and sure enough, it is their fault. Yo cannot bill Bell back for the same thing they bill you for. Rather one-sided if you ask me. Then again, being a monopoly must be nice. Rant off.
DELCO, NORTH CAROLINA -- Note: Masked Mrs. Miles -- it doesn't look like it is an expression used.
I ordered a wireless Aircard for my laptop computer so I could take my computer anywhere I went. When I received it in the mail I hooked it up to my computer. I couldn't get a signal. I called customer service and the guy told me the closest tower was in Atlanta, GA. Kind Mrs. ** was just worried about selling me the Aircard. After I agreed to the 24 month contract, and not telling me beforehand that I would have problems with the signal. Anyway I tried to stick it out with the card but every time I inserted the card the computer kept wanting me to dial up when I was already on line with AT&T's internet service.
Every time I got on the internet with them using their Aircard I wouldn't have a good signal and my computer didn't know whether to dial up or it would go offline. With the Aircard you can't use the BellSouth or AT&T internet webpage, "don't know why".
I had to go with internet explorer or Yahoo. I had enough and I called customer service and told them that I wasn't happy at all with the Aircard or service, and that I rather go back with my old DSL. They said I had to pay 175.00 to get out of the contract, or let someone else take it over. I got a bill a few days later saying I owed 279.00 just for the wireless service. There were a lot of HIDDEN FEES that were were ** and I wasn't told about. That really disappointed me. I also wasn't aware that the Aircard was like a cellular phone. I had a bunch of features on the Aircard I didn't need.
AT&T needs to get their ** together and stop ripping people off. Especially customers who have been with them for years with their home phone service. If you're not happy with a product, you should be able to return it without being screwed.
OAKWOOD, GEORGIA -- Last October, my husband and I signed up for the $99 a month deal with BellSouth, which was to include phone, internet, and DirecTV, all for $99 per month. We have yet to receive a bill for $99, all of our statements have been at LEAST $130 plus a separate bill for $33 for DirecTV. When I called about it, I was initially told it was to cover all of the "set up" costs involved (which we were told nothing about when we signed up) so I agreed to pay it, and they explained the high bills would stop within a couple of months.
The bills never came down, and my neither me nor my husband ever used the landline we had installed, so we know it wasn't long distance charges. We then moved 20 mins away and I initially decided to cutoff our service with BellSouth. They talked me into staying with them by offering to send me gift cards and move my service for free.
Now it gets good. After we moved, I received a bill for $180. When I called, they explained I had some charges remaining from my old residence that needed to be paid in addition to fees for switching my number. But they just told me they'd move my service for free??? My credit isn't that great in the first place, and I didn't want it ruined anymore, so I paid it and asked them to confirm that I was done paying the bill at my old residence, and they said yes.
Now I have a bill for $300! This time my husband called and they told him that since we moved, they have a policy to charge one month in advance plus we have some charges at the old residence. He also asked what happened to the $99 per month deal promised in the first place, and they explained that we have all these added "extras" we are paying for. He asked like what, and they said all of these things like caller ID, call waiting, forwarding, voice mail, etc...plus we have the most expensive internet plan.
We were furious!!! We never asked for any of those things, but were under the impression they were covered in the $99 month deal. So now they have cut off our service because we can't afford that much money and to top it off, we never saw this $99 month deal we were promised. Beware of this company and avoid them if you can!
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE -- BellSouth said they'd install my service on July 13, and that I didn't need to be home. But I have gotten bad information from companies before, so I made sure I was home. The installer didn't show up, but told the BellSouth folks he did, tried to call and knocked on the door - and got no answer. What a liar. I was home, all day, got no call and no one knocked on the door. So now I get to wait another week for BellSouth to come out.
Bitter irony moment: The same day the installer was supposed to show up, I got a letter from Joseph B. Schultz, VP for marketing, thanking me for choosing BellSouth. Well, believe me, if I had other choices, I'd certainly exercise them. BELLSOUTH SUCKS.
I have paid for BellSouth's inside wiring maintenance plan since 2001. One of my phone jacks was not working, so I contacted them via internet about needing service. Their answer? "Go to the box outside and see if all the wires are connected"! Duh! I looked and cannot tell -- I'm just a dumb female anyway!! When I contacted them again -- same answer. They never even read the whole email and I am still a jack short.