Friday, January 14

Archives: Cingular, 1 of 6

--Some of you may recall my AT&T/Cingular saga. I have decided it is too good to waste away in the archives of the message board where it was originally posted. Join me for my trip down Memory Lane. Bring an umbrella. With me, it never rains but pours.--

Jared consented to letting me get my wireless IM gadget for Christmas (Ogo.) They are having an online special: only $50. Well . . . the website kept giving me errors ("WE CANNOT PROCESS YOUR ORDER AT THIS TIME. YOUR NAME MAY NOT HAVE NUMBERS IN IT.") Um, well, no, I didn't type M35AN CLARK3 or anything, so that is NOT it. Then it told me my credit card was declined (which it should NOT be) so I tried again with the debit card and it said they were still having problems and to call THIS NUMBER.

I dialed THIS NUMBER. I got a message saying their service line was closed, call back tomorrow.

I tried the website again. This time it said YOU DID NOT ENTER THE ZIP CODE OF THE AREA IN WHICH YOU WISH TO RECEIVE SERVICE. Well, it didn't ASK for that information! This time it gave ANOTHER number, which I called.

The person answers. I explain, "I want to buy an Ogo but the website gives me errors and tells me to call this number." "Okay, let me transfer you to the person who can help you," he says.

You guessed it. The next person to answer the phone is NOT the right person. He transfers me.

So do the next TWO people.

Finally I get someone who says she can help me. She pulls up my account information (I have an existing phone account with them, as does Jared.) She types and asks for my area code. "310?" she repeats. "No, 410," I correct. "Okay, do you know what city that's out of?" (Internal monologue: Do I KNOW? Do I KNOW what city I live in? Um, yes.) "Baltimore."

"Okay . . . do you know what state that's in?"

(Internal monologue: YOU DON'T?!) "Maryland."

"Okay." Pause. Asks me how many accounts I want (one) and which IM provider (Yahoo.) She is MUMBLING through half of this and I keep asking her to repeat herself. Finally I said, "I'm sorry, it's difficult to understand you. You're not speaking very clearly."

"I know," she replies. Um, WTF?! OHHHHHHkay.

Then she says, "Okay, I'm going to transfer you over the the recurrent billing department to set up your billing." Click, click.

Recording welcomes me to Ogo recurrent billing. Please enter my confirmation number.

Um . . . confirmation number? She didn't give me ANY information. I hit 0 for Operator. Nothing. I wait, hoping a real person will help me. Nope. The recording explains that I must call back when I have my confirmation number and . . . disconnects me.

So I dial back. This time I get transferred to three live people, the third of which informs me that, looking at my account, there is NO Ogo attached to it, so apparently the Clueless Mumbler "placed the order incorrectly." At this point I exclaimed, "I know it's not YOUR fault, but for heaven's sake, I am trying to give your company my MONEY and they are NOT making it easy on me!" She sympathized, "I know-- and you are not the first person to complain."

Anyway, she put me on hold to try and reach the correct department to place the order . . . after a long pause (at this point I have now been on the phone for 17 minutes AFTER being disconnected AFTER finally getting to the Clueless Mumbler AFTER at least 20 minutes of random, useless transfers to people in the wrong departments) . . . she comes back and informs me that the service department has JUST CLOSED FOR THE DAY and I will have to call back tomorrow.

--To Be Continued...


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