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AT&T, as most of you know, is a large, American telecommunications company formally and formerly known as American Telephone & Telegraph. It is cumbersomely large, lumberingly inefficient, astonishingly incompetent, and cozily insulated from the results of its inadequacies by its sheer size.

I hate AT&T.

I swear every time I ever have any business dealings with AT&T (or Bell before “>AT&T re-monopolized everything) I end up getting burned, or at the very least sent jumping through a series of hoops, hurdles, and barricades to win a chance at not getting screwed over.

Right now, I’m jumping.

On the day before my birthday, I got a mysterious phone bill. Unfortunately, this arrived on a Saturday, so I couldn’t do anything about said bill until Monday. I gave it a cursory look-over and assumed it was some “sneaky” bill left over from when I cut off the phone service at my old house back in December. I figured I’d go back over my previous bills and my bank statements to ascertain whether I’d paid everything up, and then, if a payment had slipped through the cracks, I’d pony up. If all evidence pointed to the timely and appropriate payment of my bills, then I’d call AT$T and protest.

On Monday I looked the bill over and realized something was amiss. The phone number printed on the bill was not the phone number I’d disconnected back in December. It was, however, the phone number I’d had over six years ago, at the apartment I’d lived in before I bought my old house.

I said, and you can quote me, “WHAT THE FUCK???

That number has two moves, a name change, six years, and a telephone company buyout/merger between it and me.

So, I called AT&T and began the merry-go-round of transfers before I got to a customer service type person to whom I explained the situation for what was probably about the sixth time. It was determined that their records show my connection to this number beginning in December! Moreover, the charges are for one thing – a personalized ring. No services, just a personalized ringer. Again with the WTF.

I explained to the nice CSR, Bob, that I had canceled all of my service with AT&T back in December, and when I cut off my service back then, it was for a completely different number than the one showing on this bill. Furthermore, I have never, in all of my history of having phone service, signed up for a customized ringer. I never sign up for any extras on my phone service. No Caller ID, no call-waiting, no call-forwarding, no voicemail, and certainly no personalized ring.

Fortunately, Bill, the customer service provider agreed with me that this bill is incredibly fishy and that I probably shouldn’t owe anything, and has begun some sort of research into it. At this point, I know nothing other than all of this is goddamn weird. Somehow, a phone number I canceled well over half a decade ago has arisen from the dead past and is haunting me with charges for features I’ve never ordered nor used.

I’ll be pleased and relieved when this mysterious mess is cleaned up and done with. Fuckin’ AT&T.

One Response to “The inevitable AT&T rant:”

  1. NumberGarage says:

    It feels impossible to win sometimes doesn’t it? Well said at the end there.

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