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I Beat AT&T

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  • I Beat AT&T

    I wasn't sure where to put this, but in involves some psychology so this looked appropriate.

    Background:
    Several years ago I had AT&T Internet, cable TV, and cell phone service. I don't know how I ended up with them in all three but it was probably just convenience. The company kept asking me to "bundle" my services and that it would save me money, so I relented. Once I had my utilities "bundled", my monthly bill was higher every month. The bill that came in was so convoluted that I couldn't unpack it to see where I was being overcharged. I had to call AT&T every month to complain and get the bill adjusted back to where it was supposed to be, which often took 1-2 hours per call (with all the hold times and battling doubletalk).

    I finally had enough and cancelled all of my services. AT&T claimed I owed them an early termination fee on my contract, that they claimed was around $1200. I told them "No way. The contract was terminated by them by overcharging me month after month." They sent a collection agency after me and reported me to the various credit agencies. Once I explained the situation to the credit companies, my credit rating was restored. The collection agency backed off when I asked them to provide a copy of the "contract" and they couldn't. I had washed my hands of AT&T for good. They used to solicit me constantly for services up until that time, but they stopped when this all happened and I hadn't heard from them since. Until...

    Fast Forward:
    I got a notice from AT&T that they were installing fiber optics in my neighborhood and they needed to dig up my yard to install it. I said "No way. Stay off my property." With their usual arrogant, pushy attitude, a lawyer called me and started saying "easement ... easement" like a mantra at me. I told him I would sue them if they came on my property without permission, started digging holes, and I would park vehicles all along the "easement" and dared them to touch any of those vehicles.

    Today, I took "before" pictures of my property on where they planned to dig. They had utility companies flag and paint stripes where existing pipes and cables were buried, and I threw the flags in the street and removed the paint stripes. An AT&T contractor was down the street watching me. I guess he got nervous. He walked in front of my house and made some phone calls. Then he called me and asked me to meet him in the street. He said (verbatim) "I understand you don't like AT&T - that you hate AT&T." I acknowledged, and he said he was going to by pass my property. I could tell by his demeanor that he was afraid I might to do something violent and crazy. Although I wanted to put his mind at ease, I just blankly acknowledged what he was saying. His nervousness was working in my favor so I figured it was best to let him think I might be nuts.

    End Result:
    No AT&T fiber optics installed in my yard - but I would never been able to use them anyway. I was able to stare down the goliath AT&T and made them blink.
    "You should just assume going forward that if I am ever wrong it is a typo" - Backup
    "
    Reality simply does not change based upon consensus or desire." - rogue

  • #2
    Good for you. I actually relented and decided to sign up for AT&T cable TV one time. On the day of the install they never showed up. I called and they said the truck was waiting outside my house. I looked outside and said no they aren't. Turns out they had the wrong house. I told them if you can't even find my house for the install, I can't imagine what will happen if I ever need you to come out for repairs. So I canceled the install and stayed with my current company (which I also hate.) Spectrum. But I eventually canceled the cable TV portion for the same reasons you mentioned, the bill was impossible to interpret and kept going up every month. I just have the internet service now which is a flat rate per month and just use streaming services.


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    • #3
      Originally posted by Sparko View Post
      Good for you. I actually relented and decided to sign up for AT&T cable TV one time. On the day of the install they never showed up. I called and they said the truck was waiting outside my house. I looked outside and said no they aren't. Turns out they had the wrong house. I told them if you can't even find my house for the install, I can't imagine what will happen if I ever need you to come out for repairs. So I canceled the install and stayed with my current company (which I also hate.) Spectrum. But I eventually canceled the cable TV portion for the same reasons you mentioned, the bill was impossible to interpret and kept going up every month. I just have the internet service now which is a flat rate per month and just use streaming services.
      Same here; I got rid of cable and stream everything now. I use Suddenlink, which gives me decent service for an acceptable price.

      I figure AT&T scammed me with the whole bundle thing. Their intention is exactly what happened: To send me a confusing bill and overcharge me every month, to wear me down by me having to make constant phone calls, so I'd just let it go and pay the overcharges, and just forever be a good little patsy. Nope. And then when I fought back, they tried to make my life miserable. And their attitude was always arrogant, like "you will do what we say - we're in charge here."

      Even this AT&T guy I spoke with yesterday (who surrendered) was arrogant. Although I won the war, he was telling me how he would have won the battles (by having my cars "towed" if I had parked in his way - on MY property).

      And never mind the fact that AT&T ripped off taxpayers throughout the country. They were given a corporate tax break in the 1990s if they promised to lay fiber optic lines. Apparently, they took the tax break and gave bonuses to their board because the lines were never laid.
      "You should just assume going forward that if I am ever wrong it is a typo" - Backup
      "
      Reality simply does not change based upon consensus or desire." - rogue

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by Ronson View Post

        Same here; I got rid of cable and stream everything now. I use Suddenlink, which gives me decent service for an acceptable price.

        I figure AT&T scammed me with the whole bundle thing. Their intention is exactly what happened: To send me a confusing bill and overcharge me every month, to wear me down by me having to make constant phone calls, so I'd just let it go and pay the overcharges, and just forever be a good little patsy. Nope. And then when I fought back, they tried to make my life miserable. And their attitude was always arrogant, like "you will do what we say - we're in charge here."

        Even this AT&T guy I spoke with yesterday (who surrendered) was arrogant. Although I won the war, he was telling me how he would have won the battles (by having my cars "towed" if I had parked in his way - on MY property).

        And never mind the fact that AT&T ripped off taxpayers throughout the country. They were given a corporate tax break in the 1990s if they promised to lay fiber optic lines. Apparently, they took the tax break and gave bonuses to their board because the lines were never laid.
        AT&T is not unique in those tactics. Spectrum (a Charter company) does the same, trying to get you to bundle Cable TV, Internet and Cell Phone service into one. And every year I would have to call them to complain and threaten to quit if they didn't lower my cable bill and they would give me some sort of "bargain" and lower my prices for a while, but then each month they would creep back up. I finally had enough. Since AT&T and Spectrum are the only high speed internet in this area I had to keep the internet, but I told them I wanted to cancel the cable. They tried to lower my price again but I told them I was tire of playing their game and I wanted it canceled now. I also told them if I ever find a different internet service comparable to their speed I would switch that too. So far I haven't. I might even try AT&T Fiber internet if they every get it here. They at least have 1GB up and down. My current internet is 250K down and 11K up. for $75/month. sucks.

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        • #5
          I have the AT&T bundle. Paying $15 more than when I signed up in 2011 but also have HBO now.


          I'm always still in trouble again

          "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
          "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
          "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
            I have the AT&T bundle. Paying $15 more than when I signed up in 2011 but also have HBO now.
            I have Disney +, Netflix, Discovery +, Prime Video, Paramount + and Youtube TV, and I am paying less than I was for Cable.

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Sparko View Post

              I have Disney +, Netflix, Discovery +, Prime Video, Paramount + and Youtube TV, and I am paying less than I was for Cable.
              My phone and computer are also covered.

              I'm always still in trouble again

              "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
              "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
              "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
                My phone and computer are also covered.
                My phone is on Verizon and I get a discount from work. My internet is Spectrum as I said above. I was paying for that before I cancelled cable anyway so I don't count that as an extra cost.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Sparko View Post

                  My phone is on Verizon and I get a discount from work. My internet is Spectrum as I said above. I was paying for that before I cancelled cable anyway so I don't count that as an extra cost.
                  Since all three of mine are one combined cost the only way to compare would be to see what all three cost in comparison. And most folks don't get a discount from work for their phone bill.

                  I'm always still in trouble again

                  "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
                  "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
                  "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Get some yellow spray paint and spray some dashed lines where they want to put their cable, and label it 36" G. Maybe add blue spray paint lines and label them 18" HPW.
                    When I Survey....

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Sparko View Post

                      AT&T is not unique in those tactics. Spectrum (a Charter company) does the same, trying to get you to bundle Cable TV, Internet and Cell Phone service into one. And every year I would have to call them to complain and threaten to quit if they didn't lower my cable bill and they would give me some sort of "bargain" and lower my prices for a while, but then each month they would creep back up. I finally had enough. Since AT&T and Spectrum are the only high speed internet in this area I had to keep the internet, but I told them I wanted to cancel the cable. They tried to lower my price again but I told them I was tire of playing their game and I wanted it canceled now. I also told them if I ever find a different internet service comparable to their speed I would switch that too. So far I haven't. I might even try AT&T Fiber internet if they every get it here. They at least have 1GB up and down. My current internet is 250K down and 11K up. for $75/month. sucks.
                      My service with AT&T was fine, in that everything worked and I had few technical issues. It's just the company.

                      I'm paying $93 for 1G from Suddenlink. It's not perfect but it's sufficient. Not a lot of issues. I forget what my up/down speeds tend to be. If I lived alone, I could just use the data service off my Verizon cell. It works fine for an individual. I have unlimited data.
                      "You should just assume going forward that if I am ever wrong it is a typo" - Backup
                      "
                      Reality simply does not change based upon consensus or desire." - rogue

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
                        I have the AT&T bundle. Paying $15 more than when I signed up in 2011 but also have HBO now.
                        Try unpacking your monthly bill and see if you can make sense out of it.
                        "You should just assume going forward that if I am ever wrong it is a typo" - Backup
                        "
                        Reality simply does not change based upon consensus or desire." - rogue

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Faber View Post
                          Get some yellow spray paint and spray some dashed lines where they want to put their cable, and label it 36" G. Maybe add blue spray paint lines and label them 18" HPW.
                          I should have painted some errant lines going all over the place, to where they'd be nervous to dig. That would have been amusing.

                          As much as I wanted to get into a drag-down fight with these jerks, I had to keep my focus on the objective - to stop them. The battles ultimately were irrelevant.
                          "You should just assume going forward that if I am ever wrong it is a typo" - Backup
                          "
                          Reality simply does not change based upon consensus or desire." - rogue

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I was an Civil Engineering designer. There is usually a utility easement 5 - 10 feet from the street into your property that allows them to put in utilities without your permission. Encroaching into this easement by you with say a fence, or blocking it with a vehicle is technically illegal. The company can take down your fence or tow your vehicle with no repercussions. You are lucky they backed down. They may have just bored under your property instead of trenching and ran it anyway.
                            "What has the Church gained if it is popular, but there is no conviction, no repentance, no power?" - A.W. Tozer

                            "... there are two parties in Washington, the stupid party and the evil party, who occasionally get together and do something both stupid and evil, and this is called bipartisanship." - Everett Dirksen

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Ronson View Post

                              Try unpacking your monthly bill and see if you can make sense out of it.
                              All I need is bottom line.

                              My bill has gone up a little over $15 in 11 years and I got HBO since that time.

                              Now, every year I have to watch for when my contract expires at which time I call Customer LOYALTY (not Customer Service) who are usually happy to find their best current running offer

                              I'm always still in trouble again

                              "You're by far the worst poster on TWeb" and "TWeb's biggest liar" --starlight (the guy who says Stalin was a right-winger)
                              "Overall I would rate the withdrawal from Afghanistan as by far the best thing Biden's done" --Starlight
                              "Of course, human life begins at fertilization that’s not the argument." --Tassman

                              Comment

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