Thursday, November 12, 2009

cell phone companies: the new corporate evil

I can't remember if I've blogged on this before, but cell phone companies are really starting to chap my hide. And it's all David Pogue's fault (well, not all his fault...I've also way too much experience arguing with impotent customer service reps over billing errors and other service problems).

And now this.

People tell me all the time that they're waiting for the iPhone to be offered through Verizon before making the leap. Think again. At least AT&T has agreed to do something about the 15-second voice mail scam. At least. (Though I've had my share of negative experiences with AT&T billing and customer service.)

I really hate these companies. And I hate that I hate them, because all that negative energy...well, it takes a toll. But you know that there are real people behind all these decisions, people with kids and dogs who are sitting around a conference table discussing these scams. And they likely have convinced themselves that they aren't bastards for running them. But they're wrong. They are bastards. Unethical, disingenuous, and unkind.

And the thing that probably drives me the craziest about these folks is that I have no access. I know they're there, but I don't know where there is. I can call and complain until my voice is horse and I wear out the phone line, but there are miles of bureaucratic morass between the people who I can access and the people making decisions. And that really bothers me. It's a reminder of my own impotent role in this play, and there's no feeling quite like that of being so poignantly aware of your own powerlessness.

I imagine that this is the kind of thing that practicing yoga would be good for...


Scott said...

I recently looked at switching cell phone companies because we wanted a data plan. AT&T will charge me $200 for early termination before May 2010, but at the end of this month I can sign a new 2-year contract and get the discounted iPhones we think we so desperately need. The only problem is that my area doesn't have 3G accessibility, thus reducing the iPhone's usefulness to virtually nil for me.
On a side note, AT&T is actually suing Verizon because the new Verizon commercials showing the maps of 3G coverage is damaging to their marketshare. Isn't that the point? This article futher explains the situation:
Unfortunately, we have all bought into the idea that we need instant access to each other and the internet. It will only continue to worsen until we sever the ties completely, but not if we have to pay $350 to do so...

goat said...

No 3G in Shippensburg either. But that just makes data retrival a little slower. It's still fully useable.

Plus, you know it picks up wi-fi, right?