In other news, I am currently in the middle of a Holy War against Verizon Wireless and 411.
See, my new modern day phone is a Palm Treo, and it’s way fun and has way too much stuff in it for me to ever learn – it’s the Smithsonian of cell phones.
So the one and only problem that I have with the Treo from Verizon Wireless is that they programmed 411 into the main screen of the phone. This makes it inevitable that I and anyone else who refuses to turn on a key lock will make numerous 411 calls every month while the Treo phone is sitting idle in a pocket.
This past month
I made the Treo made three calls to 411 at a cost of $4.47 cents. Yes, I can pay the $4.47, BUT I shouldn’t have to. I shouldn’t HAVE to turn a key guard on a phone that I own so that it doesn’t dial expensive one touch dialing that is unfortunately preprogrammed into the phones main touch screen.
So, I called up Verizon Wireless on the evening of 8/29 and spoke to one Laura from their call center in Arizona. I wish I could be more specific about whereabouts in Arizona, but “due to security concerns” Verizon Wireless call center reps are not allowed to state what city they are in. Apparently they must have gotten wind that the next big terrorist attack would be on their call center, and are taking every imaginable precaution to prevent such an attack.
I quite nicely informed Laura that my phone dialed 411 on its own and that I would like a credit for those charges, to which she scoffed “Cell phones don’t make calls on their own”. She sounded like a 19 year old who was way too privileged for her own good and was only working because her parents MADE her get a job so that she could keep receiving cash from a trust fund.
“Okay…then someone at the phone company is making calls to 411 using my phone for no good reason, and without my consent.” I replied.
“We can’t do that from our end. All calls can only be dialed from your phone. Plus we cannot drop 411 charges on your behalf, you need to call 411 for that! 411 is a different company!” She snapped back.
“Listen, Laura, I just want the charges dropped, and for my account to be tricked in a way so that it CAN NEVER dial 411 or any other pay per minute charge number similar to it again.”
“We can’t do that”
“You’re the phone company.”
“Phone companies can’t do it.”
“Laura, my landline is rigged that way.”
“Well we’re not a land line company.”
“I know that you’re not, but you are a member of the Verizon family.”
“We’re a wireless phone company and we can’t do that!”
“Can I speak with your manager?”
I waited for ten minutes with two pick ups of “My manager will be right with you” before Laura picked up the phone and took off two of the three 411 charges.
Isn’t it odd that she was all of a sudden able to do that for me? Yes, yes it was.
So I called up 411 and the first thing that I heard was “Verizon 411 connect”
WHAMO! They are all in on it. Verizon, Verizon Wireless, and 411.
“Operator” I said, and before I could finish pronouncing the “r” in operator a young woman picked up the phone and asked what my problem was and if she could be of any help.
My immediate thought was, “How was she able to be so quick on the ball with knowing that I needed help.”
So I asked, and found out the most shocking news that I have ever heard.
When you call up 411, the automated phone voice will ask you things, but a real life human being is listening in on everything that you say so that they can do all of the actual connections for you.
Isn’t that amazing?!?! I was floored, and quickly found myself in awe of this gals job. For some odd reason I felt as though that was a fun job to have, eavesdropping in on everyones calls of “help, I need a number”.
Bottom line right now, is that all current 411 charges have been dropped, and that I’ve formally declared Crusade against 411 and Verizon Wireless in an attempt to make them block all outgoing 411 calls from my cell phone – and yes, I will be using this blog as a public means of outing their wrongdoings.