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January 18, 2006

Calling for resignation of CEO of VARTEC company owning 1010297 

In my 1991 book World Class Brands, I mentioned how cust0mers would need to get fussy in protecting our futures

small as you may think this case is , its also completely documentable far as I can see

for many years now I have used the 1010297 telephone service in the United States; it used to do what it says at this bookmark:
Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is 10-10-297?
A. 10-10-297 is a long distance access code. An access code always starts with 10-10, and the last three digits indicate the carrier.

Q. How do I make calls with 10-10-297?
A. Just dial 10-10-297 + 1 + the area code + the number. It's that simple! No need to sign up or pay any switching fees!

Q. Does 10-10-297 have a monthly fee?
A. No, you will not be charged a monthly access fee. You are charged only for your completed calls. Your calls are billed at 3¢ a minute with a 39¢ connection fee.

Q. Can I use 10-10-297 to make international calls?
A. Yes. Calls to Canada and Western Europe are only 3¢ a minute with a low 39¢ connect fee. To call internationally, you just dial 10-10-297 + 011 + country code + the number. Other international rates can be found by clicking here.

Q. Do I need to contact my current local service provider or my current long distance carrier when I switch my service to 10-10-297?
A. No, there is no need to contact your carrier. Just start dialing 10-10-297 before your long distance calls

Today it did not.
I phoned from usa to London to make an urgent call
I was intercepted by preumsably Vartec' call centre and kept waiting by a machine for 10 minutes that told me I would be speaking to a person in a moment (I got that repeat loop down my lughole repeated at least 50 times as if i was some sort of pablovian lap dog)

when the person arrived, she said i would now have to give her all my postal address details to be billed by her company (not another monthly invoice for 3 dollars but a threat as I travel a lot that if I forget to pay on thime I wil be decredit-rating listed)

and then her coup de gras: by the way you cannot use 1010297 for 48 hours until our finacial people have approved your credit ratings

Unless the CEO of vartec has some explanation that he wants published in this blog, his company has broken so many detailed promises that any marketing standards authority should be closing down this service until they do precisely what their web says, and their last 5 years of service (the 100 calls I have made with them) has done

I also seek 500 dollars credit corresponding to wasting half an hour of my time let alone the consequences of not being able to make my urgent call to be credited on the new account you claim to have opened for me. That should keep me ok in your credit ratings for a while

Anyone else got a cast iron case of abusing customer promises they want published in this blog?
Today it took me 30 minutes hanging on the phone before I could end my AOL account. There seemed no other way out. Odd, I would have hoped at least in that they could have got better. I recall receiving recently copy of a successful class action note by previopusly disgruntled customers who's had difficulty siging out. Wonder how long they used to have to wait.

The way some American companies are going with their inane mechanised telephone customer services, I expect to read one day soon of a comany where you have to stay up all night to uncustomise your account. I am suprised more people dont compain about how ever more of our lifetime is wasted in this electronic abuse of keeping customers waiting.  
A friend of mine in America once said to me, ‘We are Americans. When there are problems like this, our solution is to throw more technology at it.’ And the problems compound.  
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