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When Telephone services become telephony

Technology gripe of the day:


Something I found out about my phone service provider recently that I found very surprising:


They may not actually BE your telephone service provider…


OK, for some, not so surprising I suppose, but when you get a DSL or other provider and you buy into an “Unlimited” plan, you can bet there are going to be a few gotcha’s in the margins somewhere…


Ever been in this place before?


Joe Snuffy of {Rag-Man Maintenance]:  I haven’t been able to get hold of you in over a month, and my invoice hasn’t been paid.


You of course have sent him emails, left messages and yet your client, who uses this vendor is questioning your follow-through because Joe swears up and down he’s been hounding you for answers via the telephone.


Sounds like an easy answer, right?  Everyone’s phone bill has an itemized listing of calls, so it’s no problem copying that off and sending your client proof that no calls came in from Joe Snuffy…


Well, It would be that easy if your provider would let you…


Oh yes, I said “Let you.”


It seems that some providers have begun a new trend:  Removing the call logs completely.  Shutting them down, slamming the door, burning it down behind you…


Now this could be due to several causes, one of which is quite simple, you get an unlimited package, which is too cheep for them to maintain themselves, so they farm out some cheep Internet service which serves up the phone services using their communication lines, costing them less money.  This would enable them to cut costs and shed some of the liability.  In turn, they have no access to the phone logs and as such they cannot ever provide you such a list and they will never reveal who their subcontractor is because that would be admitting a telecommunications company actually has to subcontract that out.


The second possibility is that they simply don’t want to provide that service anymore and steadfastly refuse to offer it in order to cut costs.  Either way, as a business, you are stuck without the ability to track or manage your own phone usage in any way.


So take a closer look at your phone provider and find out how they would respond.


Oh yeah, forget contacting Centurylink,  I’ve already tried them.  They won’t give you squat without a court order.


Let that one sink in a bit…


Yup, a court order is what they told me.


Back to Vonage it is then.


At least they have the courage to admit their an internet phone service without shame…


And they show you your call logs…


As always,  this is just my view from the cheep seats..

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