Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Verizon's Upgrade Fee

Damn you Verizon Wireless! This is a conversation I just had with a Verzion customer support person regarding their new $30 device upgrade fee. 

Amanda W: Hello. Thank you for visiting our chat service.  May I help you with your order today?
Me: I'm really aggravated at Verizon's new $30 upgrade fee.
Amanda W: I understand, as it's a very sudden change. However, Verizon's upgrade fee is less than companies such as AT&T and Sprint and will help to benefit the network and coverage.
Amanda W: Also, I can check to see if you're able to bill this to your account and if so, nothing will be due today.
Amanda W: Would you like me to check that for you?
Me: My new upgrade date was 4/20. The fee went into effect 2 days later and I missed upgrading before the fee was in effect.
Me: "Also, I can check to see if you're able to bill this to your account and if so, nothing will be due today."
Me: I don't understand what you're asking
Amanda W: Purchases and fees can be billed to your account so that you'd pay them when the next bill is due instead of at the time of purchase.
Me: I pay Verizon over $210 per month. I've been with Verizon over 7 years now. I think the new $30 fee is petty.
Me: "Verizon reports 'strong' Q1 earnings: $27 billion revenue, 2.2 million iPhone activations" do you really need $30 more from loyal customers?
Amanda W: Verizon is interested in keeping you as a customer which is why the upgrade fee is lower than other carriers. However, there are many services that could use improvement and the upgrade fee will be able to provide that. Verizon's coverage area is larger than most other carriers because they invest more in their network.
Me: Verizon was making record revenue before the upgrade fee. I reject your explanation. I feel like I'm stuck. We're locked in because of our family plans not being on the same schedule and can't switch together. This is supposed to be a free market but I'm forced to pay and can't switch.
Me: There is no explanation you can give me that will make me okay with this fee. I will have to be forced to pay it and be soured at Verizon (which I have almost never had a problem with) or I will be forced to keep a 2 year old phone that doesn't run as well as it used to.
Me: I didn't like Time Warner's service for cable and switched to DirecTV. Unfortunately I don't have that option here. Verizon will force this fee on me, customer satisfaction be damned.
Amanda W: While I'm unable to waive this fee, we have a contact section on the site (the link that says Contact Us) and you can send an email or call someone that might be able to discuss further the fee and what options there are for the upgrade.
Me: Besides I already said I only had a 2 day window before your new upgrade fee went into effect.
Me: I AM CONTACTING YOU! So I've been wasting my time here talking to you? Boy this is awful. Amanda Verizon should be ashamed of itself. I will be contacting my congressman. This is a monopolistic extortion being conducted by AT&T, Verizon ect...
Amanda W: I understand your frustration but I'm unable to change that for you. If you would like to discuss with someone who might be able to do that, you may use the link I mentioned.

I have since contacted Congressman Brian Higgin's office with my complaint. Let's see what happens. 

Damn you Verizon Wireless!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Thoughts

The folowing is a slightly expanded series of tweets from earlier today.

When I see someone on social media say "He is risen" I want to say "Yes I had a coffee in my hand at 5:45 am today." But I don't out of respect for other's beliefs. Having said that I wish ALL religious people had the same level of respect for other's beliefs, or lack thereof. Having said THAT, I am not saying that there aren't religious people who don't respect others beliefs. Triple negatives aside, yes there are tolerant religious people. In my opinion there aren't enough. Religion is, at its heart, intolerance. Sure you might feel tolerant but do you get scared when you look at a Muslim? Does it irk you when all Catholics are disparaged with the priest child molestation scandal? Do you cringe when you hear someone say "religion is the opiate of the masses?" How else can you believe that your way is the one true way and everyone else is wrong?

Only if one removes themselves from their dogma long enough to be pragmatic can they be tolerant. Then it's a slippery slope from dogmatic religious devotion to personal spirituality. I'm not saying there is no god or that all religion is inherently evil. I do think humanity would benefit from more free thought and private personal religion rather than my god is better than your god arguments.