MCI/Worldcom Complaint - Yet another dose of MCI crookedness
I'll let my letter I sent them do the talking. They are not getting another cent beyond what I have outlined below, EVER!!
To Whom It May Concern:
I am writing to express my disappointment with the behavior of MCI’s customer service in its contact with my family since June 3rd. My most strenuous objection is with your sales department.
On June 3rd, my wife received an unsolicited call from your sales department, asking about our long distance costs. (This is ironic, in that our long distance carrier at the time was actually MCI). My wife quoted a figure, and the saleswoman expressed shock, and assured my wife that MCI could significantly lower our long distance costs, by enrolling in the Neighborhood program. My wife agreed to the overall service, so long as the following conditions were met:
• The costs were less than our current service
• We did NOT want call waiting
• Our Caller ID remained intact
• Our Unidentified Caller Blocking remained intact
• Our Voice Mail program would work as well as our previous program
• We could keep our regular local phone service provider
The saleswoman assured us that the above conditions would be met, and the new service would take place within three days.
Six days later, June 9th, we discovered that our caller ID and VoiceMail programs were disconnected, and our MCI replacements were not available. My wife called MCI, and we were assured that these problems would be rectified. Your service department representative –who had a decidedly Indian accent- assured us it would be fixed immediately.
On June 11th, we discovered the above services were still not functioning, though call waiting, which we did NOT want, was functioning. My wife called your service dept. AGAIN. You promised this time that services would be in place by 4PM.
On June 14th, our service was STILL NOT IN PLACE. Another call to MCI routed my wife to a “service installation specialist”, who, after a 45 minute wait, told my wife that voice mail had been assigned an incorrect routing number, and this would now be fixed. She was AGAIN assured that call waiting would be eliminated, and caller ID restored.
On June 15th, we find that voice mail is now working, but we still have no caller ID, and call waiting is still in place. My wife asked for some recompense for this ongoing aggravation. After consulting with his manager, the field rep offered a five dollar coupon. Whoopee.
On June 21st, I then called MCI, as our caller ID WAS STILL NOT FUNCTIONAL. After being placed on hold for 15 minutes, my call was cut off. I redialed, and after another 10 minute wait, I demanded caller ID to be installed immediately. The representative then informed me that caller ID was not available through MCI in the area we live in, and it never had been. I thanked that representative, hung up, and then called our previous local provider, Verizon, and restored our account with them.
My family had been placed on an 18 day odyssey without caller ID -which we rely upon religiously to screen unwanted callers- FOR NO REASON AT ALL!! There is no way we would have signed up with MCI without caller ID. Conveniently (for MCI), MCI’s inability to provide us caller ID was hidden from us for 18 days. (To illustrate how we rely upon caller ID, if we had been using it on June 3rd, none of this absurd series of 3 Stooges actions would have taken place. The irony is palpable, don’t you think?)
So to sum up, what we have here is a company that assures us the following items of service that either took WEEKS to accomplish, or never took place at all:
1. Call waiting would not be installed
2. Voice mail would be activated
3. Caller ID would be installed. This last item, of the utmost importance to me as a consumer, was never available in the first place.
All of this, thanks to a cold-call, unsolicited sales-pitch from your sales department.
The final rotten cherry on this fertilizer sundae came out of my conversation with Verizon when I called them. They asked if my broadband Internet service that I contracted through them was still in service. When I said that it was, they expressed surprise. It should have been cut the moment MCI took over local service. Fortunately, that little problem never surfaced. However, this is a rather important issue that your saleswoman on June 3rd neglected to mention to my wife, along with the unavailability of caller ID.
I am quite patient with service snafus. I am not at all patient with what appears to be purposeful misdirection by your sales personnel.
I am willing to admit that financially, your Neighborhood package may in fact be cheaper my current services. However, I am not willing to work with a company that:
1. Cold calls potential customers
2. Uses hard-sell tactics in those cold calls
3. Deliberately misleads customers as part of those tactics
4. Has a service department that REPEATEDLY has to be called to correct errors
5. And has a customer call service that features disconnections and extended wait periods (10 minutes plus)
6. Finally, your voicemail program is not as elegant to work with as Verizon’s .
Any financial gains from re-signing with your Neighborhood program are more than offset by the abovementioned aggravations.
I am willing to pay for the 18 days of questionable service MCI provided me (after all, my phone didn’t burst into flame when it rang, and conversations were rendered into normal English, so the local service was at least tolerable). I am willing to put up with 18 days of aggravation by themselves. What I am NOT willing to put up with is the waste of my family’s time in addressing this, or any financial hardship arising from this fiasco. Any hook-up fees that Verizon assigns to me for re-signing with them will be paid by MCI, and my wife will be compensated by MCI at the rate of $25/hour for phone time spent addressing this issue (3 hours, $75).
If necessary, I will enforce this bill with MCI by dragging its CEO and CFO into small claims court here in Xxxxx County. Our local codes here require that a respondent in a small-claims action MUST appear IN PERSON, or else he is in forfeit to the claimant.
I find it hard to believe that your CEO and CFO are willing to hoof it out here to Washington state to argue a $200 small claims action. But I WILL force them to come out if necessary, as well as tell every person I can find about my experience MCI’s sales and service history here.
I have no doubt that you do enjoy some good press, somewhere. But we also know that nothing sells (or hurts) better than word of mouth. I promise to exercise my word of mouth skills to their utmost if MCI balks in doing justice here. Pay my wife for her time, pay Verizon for hooking us back up, and we are all happy.
Balk, and I will file that very small, insignificant and yet very aggravating and inconvenient small claims suit, and will use everything in my power to give MCI negative PR.
The choice is yours.
Xxxxx X. Xxxxxx
PS: Please advise your sales department to NOT cold-call us again. Thank you very much.
I have received your bill of $51.08 dated June 18th, 2004. It states on page two that we are being charged $14.45 for seven days of service (June 10th-June 17th), and an additional $9.61 for long distance service, then $11.88 in taxes and surcharges, for a total of $35.94, again, for seven days of service!!! We were quoted that our cost would be $58.00 for a full month of service, or $1.88 per day (58/31=1.87). You are charging us at the rate of $5.13 per day(35.94/7=5.13).
We will pay for seven days of service at the rate of $2.00 per day, or $14.00. Please make a note of this to your accounting department. -XXX