Did AT&T Really Threaten A Customer With Legal Action For Emailing Feedback To CEO? [Updated]

from the customer-service-hall-of-fame dept

You may have heard the stories recently that Steve Jobs seems to regularly respond directly to emails from customers -- often making certain points that he knows will be spread throughout the press. However, if you have a complaint about your iPhone, you can send it to Jobs, but apparently you shouldn't send it to AT&T's CEO, Randall Stephenson. Someone sent over the story of a guy named Giorgio, who was upset enough about the new data plans that he sent an email expressing his displeasure directly to Stephenson (whose address he apparently got from the Consumerist blog).

Now, to be clear, the email was a bit gripey, complaining about the new plans, and announcing his plans to switch to a different phone and different provider. In response, however, it appears he got a phone call from someone at AT&T telling him that if he emailed the CEO again, AT&T would issue a cease & desist against him. From the recording:
"I want to first thank you for the feedback. Going forward, I need to warn you that if you continue to send emails to Randall Stephenson, a cease & desist letter may be sent to you..."
For what? That's not explained. I can't think of any legal basis for such a cease & desist letter. Honestly, the whole thing seems so outrageous that you have to wonder if it's a hoax. If it turns out to be true (and please, please, someone tell us that this is a hoax) then it reflects incredibly poorly on AT&T.

Update: Well, now it's been confirmed by AT&T that they actually did make this threat. A PR person working for AT&T (but not an AT&T employee) contacted us with your typical bland PR statement, issuing an apology, and saying "this is not the way we want to treat customers." But it is how you treated your customer... and, notably, nowhere in the statement does the PR person explain why AT&T responded this way to a customer.

The full statement is:
We are apologizing to our customer. We're working with him today to address his questions and concerns. This is not the way we want to treat customers. From Facebook to significant customer service channels, AT&T strives to provide our customers with easy ways to have their questions addressed.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    TPBer, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:19am

    Randys Contact Info

    Randall Stephenson, AT&T CEO
    rs2982@att.com (direct)
    randall.stephenson@att.com
    phone: 210-351-5401 (direct to his secretary)
    fax 210-351-3553
    alternate phone: 210-821-4105 (headquarters, press 3, ask for Mr. Stephenson's office)
    175 E. Houston
    San Antonio, TX 78205

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:20am

    many companies do not appreciate individual clients emailing their ceo directly, especially if the ceo's actual email isn't made public. i think they are being very polite at this point, as i am sure no ceo wants to spend their entire day looking at individual consumer's issues and replying to their emails personally. if anything, it looks like the email may be part of a campaign by the consumerist to mail bomb at&t's ceo, which would certainly make a c&d letter not out of line.

     

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  3.  
    icon
    Kevin Stapp (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:25am

    Streisand Anyone?

    Good Lord, do they not realize they have set themselves up to receive even more complaining emails? May as well change his email address because that inbox is toast.

     

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  4.  
    icon
    davebarnes (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:27am

    if not true, then AT&T should be on top of this

    Google the phrase "AT&T warns customer that emailing the CEO" and you get 12K+ results.
    12,000 in less than a day!
    This is horrible pr for AT&T.

    If this is true, then AT&T is filled with idiots.

     

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  5.  
    identicon
    John Dce, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:28am

    Re: Randys Contact Info

    Me likey!

     

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  6.  
    icon
    Giorgio Galante (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:36am

    Not a hoax...

    I was as surprised as anyone to get that threatening voicemail. That's the only reason I contacted Engadget. I would have gone quietly to Sprint / HTC Evo had they even simply ignored my email altogether.

    I sent the Engadget editor every email correspondence I've tried having with Mr. Stephenson as they wanted to make sure I've never been belligerent/threatening/etc towards AT&T's CEO.

     

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  7.  
    icon
    Jay (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:40am

    I can see it now...

    It begins... People will spread this story (myself included) and eventually the CEO will discuss how he did not want people calling him directly.

    All he had to do was answer one call. Now he's made to look like a corporate idiot who doesn't understand the frustrations of his customers. To actually have someone call to say that they'll basically order a Cease and Desist letter after having to call twice is just a poor choice.

     

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  8.  
    icon
    AdamBv1 (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:40am

    Re:

    That may be true that CEO's do not like getting email from the riff-raff but the polite thing to do is not to threaten a customer with a C&D but to JUST IGNORE THE EMAIL.

     

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  9.  
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    Hugh Mann (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:41am

    Re: Not a hoax...

    "Every"? As in you sent multilpe emails to the guy?

    Do you email him often?

    HM

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Garrett, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:44am

    I think this reflects poorly on the whole culture of that company, and indirectly on other "old school" corporations.

    The conventional wisdom (or at least mine) is that Steve Jobs might be a controlling, egomaniacal prick, but at least he understands what his company is doing day to day. If someone told me Randall Stephenson doesn't use a single AT&T product, and just sits in an office spouting buzzwords about market caps and mindshare viability while looking at his stock options, I would not doubt it for 1 second.

    True or false, this news doesn't change that perception one bit.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:47am

    I think this could not have gone any better for consumers. It just shows what type of idiots and power/profit hungry morons run certain or most companies these days...

    But in the end this PR potential nightmare will probably be forgotten in a day or two and everything will get back to "normal".

     

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  12.  
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    Jay (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:53am

    After careful consideration, I'm going to wait to discuss this story. We'll hear from AT&T shortly regarding it, I'm sure. But it's almost similar to the recent "Flesh search engine" story I read recently in China where people go to embarrass and mock those that they believe have been corrupted.

    It's one side of the story, I need both then the truth may be evident somewhere in between.

     

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  13.  
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    funnyjojo (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:54am

    Re: Randys Contact Info

    Randall moved his office to Dallas when AT&T moved their headquarters to Dallas over a year ago. So this contact info is out of date. But the email is correct.

     

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  14.  
    identicon
    OldGeek, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:54am

    Good Morning!!!

    Well if you remember AT&T was bought by Cingular which was a rebranding of Southwestern Bell Wireless. They have never cared about customer service, they're only goal is to make money any way they can. And the Apple fanboys are doing a wonderful job of increasing they're bank account, irregardless of service.

     

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  15.  
    icon
    weneedhelp (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 10:58am

    Corporate plans will not change.

    Corporate plans will not change. So the "riff raff" get to get the shaft, while corporations get to keep their data plans in tact, and yes, for new plans, we get to keep our unlimited data usage.

    Oh well, no IPhone for me. The Droid Does. (No affiliation with Droid or its subsidiaries.)

     

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  16.  
    identicon
    big al, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:04am

    observations

    hummmmmmm...
    well the question...is it real has not been answered...

    as a ceo incoming emails are a direct input from your customer base... not from those 15 "yes" men who feed you your information.. telling what they think you want to know.

    by having no reply does not feed the flames to more publicity good or bad.

    if it's true,then a word that a treating phone call has been recieved, to the police,might take this to a different level.

    2 cents worth

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Fushta, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:04am

    Re:

    Isn't that what executive assistant's are for? replying to emails, so the CEO doesn't have to?

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    big al, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:04am

    observations

    hummmmmmm...
    well the question...is it real has not been answered...

    as a ceo incoming emails are a direct input from your customer base... not from those 15 "yes" men who feed you your information.. telling what they think you want to know.

    by having no reply does not feed the flames to more publicity good or bad.

    if it's true,then a word that a treating phone call has been recieved, to the police,might take this to a different level.

    2 cents worth

     

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  19.  
    icon
    Overcast (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:08am

    Re: Randys Contact Info

    Randall Stephenson, AT&T CEO
    rs2982@att.com (direct)
    randall.stephenson@att.com
    phone: 210-351-5401 (direct to his secretary)
    fax 210-351-3553
    alternate phone: 210-821-4105 (headquarters, press 3, ask for Mr. Stephenson's office)
    175 E. Houston
    San Antonio, TX 78205


    Perhaps the surprising part - is that he too, uses AT&T.

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Simon, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:09am

    Re:

    Dear AT&T, please feel free to us the below as a starter:

    Response options, ranked by smartness

    1 Reply, addressing concerns
    2 Reply, with generic "thanks for feedback"
    3 Fwd to relevant business unit exec telling *them* to respond.
    4 Fwd to relevant business unit exec to do what they want with.
    5 Fwd to customer service
    6 Read but delete email
    7 delete email
    ...
    ...
    ...
    99 Threaten sender with legal action

     

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  21.  
    icon
    harbingerofdoom (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:10am

    Re: I can see it now...

    answer one call?

    he didnt even have to do that... who honestly expects the CEO of any large corporation to actually respond to anything these days?

    had he simply ignored it all, no one would have thought twice about it. but this? this is someone sending a clear message to their customer base that they hold you all with the utmost contempt and care only for how they can squeeze every last penny possible out of you.

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    Angelica, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:12am

    Re: Good Morning!!!

    "irregardless of service."

    regardless of service.

    ftfy

     

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  23.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:12am

    Re:

    Not out of line? Really? And the judge that will have to grant the order will do so based on... the threats it contained? Oh wait, no threats.

    Oh, well it must be the harassment... huh? He's a customer discussing issues related their corporate relationship?

    Well, perhaps the language was inappropriate. No?

    I'm sorry, what point were you making again?

     

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  24.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:12am

    Re:

    As I am certain no customer wants to have the unlimited data option removed from his choices of data plans for his iphone.

    What should a customer do? I'd complain to someone who can change things.

    If the CEO is not concerned about customer satisfaction with their product please suggest something he should be concerned about?

     

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  25.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:16am

    If you don't cease and desist we'll send you a letter telling you to cease and desist!

     

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  26.  
    icon
    sehlat (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:19am

    What doesn't AT&T appear to understand here?

    Like every corptocracy these days, they're very big on marketing. Their ads scream "We're the best you can get." etc. etc.

    So how do they miss the fact that good customer service is the most valuable marketing they have? Advertisements will get customers to look, but good customer service will keep them loyal. And word of mouth like this, as others here have noted, is doubleplus ungood.

     

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  27.  
    icon
    Bubba Gump (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:21am

    Re: Re: Randys Contact Info

    He probably has it forwarded to his gmail account.

     

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  28.  
    icon
    Jiminy Cricket (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:37am

    Re: Re:

    Most large companies have an entire team dedicated to just this activity.

     

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  29.  
    icon
    domino (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:39am

    Data plans

    Even the current customer that is NOT a corporate account gets grandfathered in on current unlimited data plans, as I am one of those and it won't change on my account.

    Sometimes I think 95% of the people in this world have nothing better to do than find something to complain about with large service providers. I don't care what company you do business with, they all have their faults and will all piss off someone. It is inevitable...........Verizon, Sprint, At&T, T-Mobile, power companies, cable companies, etc. etc. Why doesn't anyone get pissed off about the crap that WalMart does..............nope - they can do ANYTHING, including buying million dollar life insurance policies on their employees and hope they die so they can collect. Why no uproar there????!!! HECK NO........."they are cheaper" well look at the bullying they do to their product providers to see what they do to bring you "cheap" prices. You think you're getting the same exact product all the time?? think again.
    Wake up people!!

     

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  30.  
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    FormerAC (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:53am

    Re: if not true, then AT&T should be on top of this

    "AT&T warns customer emailing CEO" now gets 200,000+ results including such obscure news sources as the Wall Street Journal, ABC News and The Huffington Post.

     

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  31.  
    icon
    VoicesInMyHead (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:55am

    Re: Data plans

    Sometimes I think 95% of the people in this world have nothing better to do than find something to complain about with large service providers.

    Yeah! Like poeple who go off on Walmart in a AT&T topic......

     

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  32.  
    icon
    Overcast (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:56am

    Re: Re:

    If the CEO is not concerned about customer satisfaction with their product please suggest something he should be concerned about?

    Yep, Bingo.

    But I guess if AT&T's CEO is 'too good' for customer service issues, I guess we should take that as a hint. Less customers means less customer service issues to bog down his precious time.

     

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  33.  
    identicon
    RIck Z, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:58am

    Handled all wrong

    So he sent a snarky email requesting that they change his upgrade date. He received a polite phone call saying they could not - sorry. So he sent the CEO an email saying - change my date or I'm leaving. What did he expect? Some tips for next time: ask politely without including complaints about the service; contact a manager or supervisor - not the CEO; take no for an answer.

     

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  34.  
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    Overcast (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:58am

    Re: Corporate plans will not change.

    Corporate plans will not change. So the "riff raff" get to get the shaft, while corporations get to keep their data plans in tact, and yes, for new plans, we get to keep our unlimited data usage.

    Actually, at my company - we get a choice between a few providers. I, for one, did not choose AT&T. I'll forward this around to let others know - how much AT&T's CEO 'cares about the customers'.

     

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  35.  
    identicon
    arfnotz, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 12:07pm

    CEOS & VP's

    About 3 years ago I got crammed by Southern Bell. They signed me up for a modem and internet I did not want. Was able to get as far as the VP of Broadband marketing's secratary, and leave personallay give her a long bloody discussion of why I was unhappy. I was also able to find the name of the company that actually made the call (which orginaltedin canada) and complain to them and file a complaint with the florida dept of agriculture which handles consumer complaints.

    Actully recieivng a Cease and desist letter could be turned into a major publicity headache for the sender. Just be sure to never ever use threathingi language.

    While a CEO certainlyhas better things to do than listen to my problems, he is responsible for everyon eunder him,andif you suceed in annying him for 15 minutes, he just might change things.

     

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  36.  
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    Silent (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 12:18pm

    Re: Good Morning!!!

    "irregardless" is NOT a word

     

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  37.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 12:20pm

    Re: CEOS & VP's

    Yep this is a faceplant for AT&T. I wonder if Stephenson just asked someone to get this guy to go away. I would guess his staff is reading Tech Dirt by now.

     

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  38.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 12:48pm

    Re: Handled all wrong

    So he sent the CEO an email saying - change my date or I'm leaving. What did he expect? Some tips for next time: ask politely without including complaints about the service; contact a manager or supervisor - not the CEO; take no for an answer.

    Fair enough. But *none* of that deserves the threat of legal action.

     

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  39.  
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    noesbueno (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:01pm

    Re: Re: Data plans

    yeah! g'damn walmart!

     

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  40.  
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    PopeRatzo (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:35pm

    Re:

    "many companies do not appreciate individual clients emailing their ceo directly,"
    Well that's just too bad.

     

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  41.  
    identicon
    JelliDonut, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:37pm

    Re: Randys Contact Info

    Dude--awesome! I'm waiting for my own cease and desist letter.

     

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  42.  
    identicon
    Ziro Opinion, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:51pm

    Re: Data plans

    You're an idiot.
    This article is about a CEO offering a C&D over a customer complaint email and how it is a bad PR move.
    This knucklehead probably uses Outlook with an Exchange server and he can easily create a rule to forward all incoming email from this guy to the consumer complaints department.
    The CEO's actions really do display contempt for his customer base.
    Yes, every provider has issues and they all do some crappy things but a C&D letter for registering a complaint and looking for satisfaction.
    Rediculous!

     

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  43.  
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    jjmsan (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:52pm

    Re:

    Gee, it's always nice to have a legal basis for such an order. What do you think it would be?

     

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  44.  
    identicon
    truthh, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 1:54pm

    Re: Randys Contact Info

    LOL

     

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  45.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 2:12pm

    Hmmm, better check my secret email address, maybe someone from the board has a question..."What, who does this guy think he is complaining to ME! Doesn't he know WHO I AM! Gloria, cancel my massage and my tailor this morning, GET SOMEONE FROM LEGAL IN HERE RIGHT NOW! I'll teach this uncouth cretin a lesson, or I am not Randall Stephenson C-E-O BY GOD!"

     

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  46.  
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    Mike Masnick (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 2:26pm

    Updated with AT&T confirmation

    Just updated the post with a statement from AT&T PR apologizing and admitting that this is a true story.

     

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  47.  
    identicon
    TPBer, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 2:40pm

    Re: Updated with AT&T confirmation

    That's called "The Masnick Effect"

     

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  48.  
    identicon
    Chris, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 2:49pm

    Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    nice response angelica, glad to see i wasn't the only one to notice "Anonymous Coward" Faux Pas

     

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  49.  
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    hithere (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 3:05pm

    Re: Data plans

    I am not sure that is accurate. I know plenty of people who are in an uproar about Wal-Mart AND they refuse to shop there. In my opinion that is how you show companies that customer service should come first. When they are no longer receiving your money, they might start listening; but as long as you are paying their bills they see no reason to change anything.

     

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  50.  
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    btr1701 (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 3:25pm

    Re: Law

    > many companies do not appreciate individual clients emailing
    > their ceo directly

    Them not liking something hardly gives them grounds for legal action. In order for legal action to be taken, the guy has to be violating some kind of law and communicating with the head of a company with whom he has a business relationship doesn't cut it.

     

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  51.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 3:32pm

    Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    "usage Irregardless originated in dialectal American speech in the early 20th century. Its fairly widespread use in speech called it to the attention of usage commentators as early as 1927. The most frequently repeated remark about it is that “there is no such word.” There is such a word, however."
    http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/irregardless
    FTF both of you.

     

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  52.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 3:39pm

    Re: observations

    "hummmmmmm...
    well the question...is it real has not been answered..."
    I suggest you re-read the article and also the post above by Giorgio Galante.

     

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  53.  
    icon
    nasch (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 3:45pm

    Re: Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    OTOH, if you keep reading: "Its reputation has not risen over the years, and it is still a long way from general acceptance. Use regardless instead."

     

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  54.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 4:22pm

    Re: Re:

    when you get out of school and into the job world, you will discover that the ceo, presidents, and often the vice presidents of larger companies just dont have the time to deal with individual customer cases. it is the reason they have this department full of people, called customer care or customer support. the ceo cares about customers, but in a larger and overall way, not in any true individual manner. how many support calls do you think at&t gets a day? should the ceo answer all of them? the customers email is just part of a snarky complaint campaign, and the reply is just a polite reminder that this isnt the way to get things handled.

     

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  55.  
    identicon
    big al, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 4:24pm

    Re: Re: observations

    well if you look at the times of the update and the time of my post...you will see that i could not know of the upcoming from at&t. don't mind being fussed at when i'm wrong howsomever in this i believe i'm ok..!!!!!

     

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  56.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 4:25pm

    Re: Re: Updated with AT&T confirmation

    what, they all got stupid, stopped charging for service, and started selling crappy t-shirts with the at&t log on it? that is the only masnick effect around.

     

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  57.  
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    Dementia (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 5:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Updated with AT&T confirmation

    There's an AT&T log??? Where?? Do you have a picture of it?? Is it there with the rest of the pile???

     

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  58.  
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    btrussell (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 7:30pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    There is such a word though.

     

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  59.  
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    DaveInCalifornia (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 7:57pm

    AT&T U R fools

    I can see the anger here. AT&T is not very smart, and at the same time quite slimey. They should have known this change was going to peeve the tech crowd (Not smart for PR). Then this happens, kinda like pooring gas on the fire.
    "A PR person working for AT&T (but not an AT&T employee)" wow, how slimey. So they're using non-employees (contactor I assume) to contact angry customers and then make their threats. Did they completly forget what PR stands for? I worked for a large tech firm once, they hired contractors to do the internal IT, saves loads of cash you see as these contracters were willfully underpaied; maybe this is the reason? Or is this so they can later say "well yeah but it wasn't really us". So angry about a silly email. please. I guess they don't know of email blacklists... AT&T, I'll give you a hint here, your making lots of money, shut up already!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    icon
    DaveInCalifornia (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 8:03pm

    Re: Re: Data plans

    Ziro, just so you know, Outlook will forward emails (using rules) just fine, so this is not an excuse!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 8:23pm

    Re: Re: Re: Updated with AT&T confirmation

    Don't be mad because someone stole "the masnick" from you and added capital letters, TAM.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    icon
    GonzoBobH (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 9:34pm

    Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    BobH: It IS a word, albeit nonstandard usage -- but, a word still.

    irregardless - 3 dictionary results
    ir·re·gard·less   [ir-i-gahrd-lis] Show IPA
    –adverb Nonstandard .
    regardless.
    Origin:
    1910–15; ir-2 (prob. after irrespective ) + regardless

    —Can be confused:  irregardless, regardless (see usage note at this entry ).

    —Usage note
    Irregardless is considered nonstandard because of the two negative elements ir- and -less. It was probably formed on the analogy of such words as irrespective, irrelevant, and irreparable. Those who use it, including on occasion educated speakers, may do so from a desire to add emphasis. Irregardless first appeared in the early 20th century and was perhaps popularized by its use in a comic radio program of the 1930s.

    Dictionary.com Unabridged
    Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2010.
    Cite This Source | Link To irregardless
    Word Origin & History

    irregardless
    an erroneous word that, etymologically, means the exact opposite of what it is used to express, attested in non-standard writing from at least 1870s (e.g. "Portsmouth Times," Portsmouth, Ohio, U.S.A., April 11, 1874: "We supported the six successful candidates for Council in the face of a strong opposition. We were led to do so because we believed every man of them would do his whole duty, irregardless of party, and the columns of this paper for one year has [sic] told what is needed."); probably a blend of irrespective and regardless . Perhaps inspired by the double negative used as an emphatic.
    Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
    Cite This Source
    ir·re·gard·less (ĭr'ĭ-gärd'lĭs)
    adv. Nonstandard
    Regardless.

    [Probably blend of irrespective and regardless .]
    Usage Note : Irregardless is a word that many mistakenly believe to be correct usage in formal style, when in fact it is used chiefly in nonstandard speech or casual writing. Coined in the United States in the early 20th century, it has met with a blizzard of condemnation for being an improper yoking of irrespective and regardless and for the logical absurdity of combining the negative ir- prefix and -less suffix in a single term. Although one might reasonably argue that it is no different from words with redundant affixes like debone and unravel, it has been considered a blunder for decades and will probably continue to be so.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    icon
    Mike Masnick (profile), Jun 3rd, 2010 @ 11:05pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    the reply is just a polite reminder that this isnt the way to get things handled.

    I'll have to remember that: according to this particular commenter, threatening legal action is "a polite reminder."

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 4th, 2010 @ 4:51am

    Re: Re: Re:

    This explains why this particular commenter hasn't been successful in business and instead spends all day commenting on Techdirt.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Anita, Jun 4th, 2010 @ 7:59am

    Re:

    What? This is hyper-sensitive.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    icon
    RT Cunningham (profile), Jun 4th, 2010 @ 9:36am

    Off on a tangent

    Wow. The article was about an unnecessary C&D response and a bad PR move and people throw more unrelated stuff into the mix than related.

    AT&T sucks. AT&T has always sucked and will continue to suck until they no longer exist. With enough bad PR like this, that may come sooner than later.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  67.  
    identicon
    JC, Jun 4th, 2010 @ 10:28am

    Re:

    If you don't like customers e-mailing you directly ... stop running such a shitty business.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  68.  
    identicon
    Pixelation, Jun 4th, 2010 @ 10:56am

    Re: Re: Re: Good Morning!!!

    "Although one might reasonably argue that it is no different from words with redundant affixes like debone"

    So if I say I'd like to "debone" your girlfriend, what I mean is...

    As to the AT&T rate change, my girlfriend is happy about the change since it will save her money. Me, I refuse to waste my money with companies that overcharge for their services.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  69.  
    icon
    pogo (profile), Jun 4th, 2010 @ 9:02pm

    grammar and spell check arrogance

    Didn't know that your comments were going to be graded by the English experts didja? There's always got to be the smart one out there that is going to correct someone's grammar. Would you do that if the person was standing in front of you? Most of us wouldn't so chill out and quit being so rude!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  70.  
    icon
    Derek Kerton (profile), Jun 14th, 2010 @ 12:40pm

    Re:

    Good point. That is a strange statement.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  71.  
    identicon
    joel, Jul 11th, 2010 @ 7:12pm

    Re: anonymous coward

    99% of CEO have their Emails screen by their secretary , I doubt if it is any different with ATT.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  72.  
    identicon
    M.Sheikh, Nov 5th, 2010 @ 8:42am

    ATT telling wrong statement

    I m really disappointed with att service. I started ATT service 7 months months ago.
    When i called the service department in march 2010.The offer me internet & phone service.
    I wanted the high speed internt 6M or higher but ATT represent said the area i live they
    provide maximum 1.5M. I started att service in march 2010 & att sale representative told
    me there is no contract if you don't like the internet service or the speed you want then
    I can cancel it anytime & att started taking Internet charges out from my credit card.After
    7 months I called att to ask them if they have high speed internet service available in the area i live.
    Att said not yet so i canceled my service & att cancel service department canceled the the service & said.
    I have some refund left which att 'll send back & i received some amount back to my card.
    After 2 months i got charge from att $120.00 on my credit card.
    I called att collection department & spoke to Michal Cambel according to him he is supervisor for this department.
    He said they charge $120.00 because of early cancellation fee.I said there was no contract when i got the service
    & att representative said if i m not certified with service so i can cancel it anytime that's why i canceled but he said
    it was a contract.We can't do anything about it. I called the att service depart as a new customer to find out what
    they say when someone start new service with att & the att sales representative said exact same statement
    what he told me 7 months ago."There is no contract & if you are not certified, you can simply cancel it & there 'll no extra charges".
    ATT is lieing with there customers & telling wrong statement when someone want to has there service & once they get service they put
    them under contract & if customer stop the service then att charge cancellation fee &
    say when you got the service we might had some other plans & now we have some different
    plan.I m going to leave this feedback on internet also i have businesses & i m going to
    switch my internet service for all my offices with someone else.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  73.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Nov 21st, 2010 @ 5:39pm

    I want at&t to offer a decent flip phone made by motorola like the razor. Motorola makes the stature I9 but at&t only wants to push data plans and I phones on all the customers they don't want to offer the plain phones. they want to push the junk stuff on us.They lost my business just as soon as I can switch with out losing to much on all my different plans my upgrades don't match now to stop right on the spot

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  74.  
    icon
    attproblem (profile), Aug 5th, 2013 @ 2:51pm

    I know it is TRUE because ATT threatened me too

    I know it is TRUE because ATT threatened me too. I got shocked to receive a letter by ATT's attorney threatening me the same. All I did was complaining ATT's service and lack of support (incompetency).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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