Thursday, February 03, 2011

AT&T Thinks I'm "Special"

The other day I picked up my phone only to discover that I didn't have a dial tone. I paid my last bill so obviously this was a technical problem. So like the responsible person that I occasionally am, I called AT&T on my cell and used their automated system to report the issue. While being prompted by the digital voice I came to a startling realization: AT&T thinks their customers are a bunch of idiots. My first clue was when I was asked if the problem was only on one phone or all the phones in the house. Obviously if only one phone wasn't working the problem would be with that phone. I'm fairly sure that's a no-brainer.

But I didn't really get the whole we-think-you’re-insanely-stupid message until they asked if I was calling from the phone line on which I wasn't able to get a dial tone on.

I guess they thought that I was confused; that I couldn't understand why there was no dial tone after I started pressing buttons or something.

The really sad part is that you KNOW the reason they have to ask these questions is because of experiences they've had with other  callers; truly "special" people who really need the warning label explaining that their hair dryer is not a bath toy.

And before you say it, I am the first to admit that I've had plenty of brain dead moments. But not knowing that you can't call from a phone that doesn't have a dial tone? That's pushing it.

--Kyra "Fashionista Fatale" Davis


Amanda Brice said...

I hate automated answering services. It gets worse and worse and almost impossible to speak with a live person. That's pretty hilarious they think you could call out with a phone that doesn't work.

catslady said...

lol phone companies are the worst. Computer techs come next, especially since they usually can't speak english. The last time I had a problem (which was not being able to get online) they told me to contact them online - duh.

Brandy said...

Hubs used to work as a tech for a cell phone call line. Once someone called in and said their phone was broken because there was no dial tone. *G*

Anonymous said...


I'm with catslady. However, I think sometimes these systems are designed by people who DO think you can call out without dial tone. I mean, they're the ones asking if you're using the phone that's having the issue, right?

kyradavis said...

Yeah, I do wonder about the people asking the questions sometimes. But Brandy's comment doesn't surprise me. Whenever I think a warning-label/question is so very obvious it shouldn't need to be stated I remember a story a police officer once shared with me:
A woman called the police station all upset because she wanted to file a report about her car that had been vandalized. Someone had told her that the police always hang out at a certain Starbucks. So she was upset because she had been at that Starbucks for three hours waiting for a police officer to come in and when none did she was at a loss as to what to do.

It never occurred to her that if you want to file a police report you should actually go to the police station rather than a Starbucks.

She's probably the same woman who called Brandy's hubby.

Kima said...

I think these are the same "special" people who call our library and ask if we are open. Someday I am going to say "nope, I'm the ghost that haunts the library" and see what happens next. BTW - we call these "special" people video (now DVD) patrons....

Robyn said...

I guess they might think you're brilliant if you managed to make a call on a phone with no dial tone?!?!

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