[FoRK] F*ck you Verizon

Stephen Williams sdw at lig.net
Sat Oct 23 13:59:34 PDT 2010

Could you screw up a customer experience any more?  I am SO glad I will be done with them and that I've moved as far away from 
them (for local services) as possible.

My rented out house in Virginia had Verizon FIOS TV/Internet...

First, their bill has, at the very top, an account # like: 85 9000 555555555 01 under a heading of "Account Number".
It also has a heading of "Phone Number" (even though there is no phone service on the account) with that 9-digit 55555... number.

On the second page of some versions of their bills, they have another field called "Account Number" that only has that 9-digit 

So, when you call them, their first question is: "What is your phone #?"  To which I can only answer by giving them my Sprint 
mobile or Google Voice #.  Since many companies immediately ask you for a call back #, this is ambiguous.  If you give them the 
number shown on the bill as "Account Number", they still cannot find the account.

So, you give them the full account #.  Then, most of the time, they STILL can't find the account...  Or even with SSN.  Or 
contact phone#s (which haven't changed in a decade).  Or the street address.  Sometimes you have been routed to the wrong part 
of the country, sometimes the wrong department.  Even with other PII information, they often go through several people and many 
queries just to find the right account.

All this when they have multiple pieces of information that are all unique and would seem trivial to find in a Sqlite or AWS 
database or something.

So, as the account is closed and they owe me money, I attempted to get a look at the last ebill.  After digging up the long 
acct. # to reset the password, the web site is forcing me to merge "all of my accounts", by which they mean the web account 
login and the email account attached.  But the email account was never used.  The web flow forces you to type in the email 
password (for a closed account!).  When I try to reset the password, they point out that a security question was never set up on 
the account, so I have to call back M-F  7-7 EDT...

This is why monopolies must die.  Their whole billing and account apparatus should just be junked and a replacement hacked 
together in a few weekends.  Add this to how much they held back high-speed Internet until they could roll out their own, and it 
just sucks all around.

Compare this to Apple or Amazon or even Target.  Or Sprint for that matter.  At the Apple store in San Jose, they don't even 
have cash registers or visible printers.  The reps find someone to help, pick and hand the items to you, swipe your credit card 
in an iphone encased in a reader / laser scanner case that makes it about 1" thick, then reach under a nearby table to 
(magically) grab for the falling receipt.


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