phat_joe (phatjoe) wrote in you_are_idiot,

monopolies suck

idiots: bellsouth

they're a bunch of fucking retards

idiot factor: 8

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Just want to agree completely with you.

I would almost be willing to give them a 9.
there's no willing necesary. They are a 9.
Oh my friends.

You don't realize how much they deserve a solid 9. Let me recount my current ongoing Bell South saga.

A pertinent starting remark is that I have not lived in an area covered by Bell South in over two years, and have not had a Bell South account in over three years.

Anyhoo: I was, to be fair, a slack bill payer. Fine. They were awful bill writers, often overcharging my roommate and I terrifying amounts. We eventually worked out a system where they would send us a bill full of mistakes, I would call and bitch about it, then both sides would sit simmering until they cut off the phone line, at which point I would grudgingly give them some money.

I closed the account when I moved out of that apartment, and as far as I know it was fully settled. They never notified me to the contrary, so I promptly stopped thinking about them for about two and a half years.

Last winter I went to apply for a car loan. They gave me the rate I wanted, but said "You might want to look into this $300 Bell South debt on your credit report, though." I asked for a copy of the said report, which they politely gave me. Yes, it was definitely listing a $300 debt to Bell South.

I found this interesting and called Bell South to see what was up. They asked for my current address and telephone number and told me they would be back in touch, as their computers were down. The next day I got a call from an incredibly vile and aggressive collections agent, demanding their $300.

I asked the collections agent for a copy of the final bill, as I had no idea what the charges were for and Bell South had made numerous billing mistakes in the past. He said that he had no access to the information, and that I would have to (inexplicably) send a written request to a "Ms. Jones" at their office. He then attempted to badger me into just giving him the money again, and I hung up on him and called Bell South again.

Bell South said that once the account is in collections they had no line item records of it, and that I would have to get it from the collection agency. So, I write a letter to Ms. Jones.

About a month passes.

I am about ready to call goddamn Bell South again when I receive a call from a collections agent regarding the debt. Not the same agent, in fact not even the same agency. The new agent has no knowledge of the other agency or any past collection attempts. I tell, politely as possible, to go stick her head in a meat grinder and call Bell South again.

I should note that by this time I've probably spent close to $300 worth of cell phone minutes being on hold with Bell South, but that's more pertinent to my own entry in this community.

I explain to the sub-literate Bell South customer service agent what has happened, and he says "Oh, I can just send you the bill with all the details, no problem." I ask why Bell South wouldn't do so earlier and he audibly shrugs. I thank him.

Another month or so passes. No bill.

I call Bell South, and after arguing with the CSR for a few minutes get her to hand me to a supervisor. The supervisor feigns giving half a shit about the situation, and even says there'll be "an inquiry" into the previous customer service rep flat-out lying to me, as he hadn't so much as recorded the conversation much less sent out the bill. The supervisor assures me that the detailed bill is on its way.

A couple weeks pass. Then, a suspiciously thin letter from Bell South arrives.

The letter not only states that I owe them $300, but that they owe me $7 because of some past billing snafu. They don't reconcile this into me owing them $293, the two are totally seperate. I was only slightly surprised that there wasn't a $7 check enclosed, but the letter mentioned that I, the person who hadn't had a Bell South account for over three years, could "apply it to next month's phone bill". The letter, as you have probably already guessed, did not have even a smidge of detail about the nature of the charges.

At this point I decided to throw caution into the wind and make legal threats, in the form of a letter to their billing department announcing my intent to hire a lawyer for the matter, and which they apparently absorbed like a ball bearing falling into a thousand gallon drum of chocolate pudding.

I heard nothing from them until last week.

Another suspiciously thin letter.

This one letting me know that the $7 refund was in fact a mistake and that I would not be getting it.

The only thing stopping me from giving them a 10 is the fact (I think) that their idiocy doesn't actually result in people dying.
Yeah, I gotta go with a nine.