Thursday, October 29, 2009

My letter to AT&T. Will be mailed tomorrow

Jason T. Viglione

October 29, 2009

To Whom It May Concern:

I am generally the last to pen a letter of this nature, especially towards a company I so often laud as being the best in its field. However, the nature of my correspondence and the results received need to be addressed.

I understand entirely that you, the reader, are neither familiar with me nor my account so let me fill in the details before I proceed with the issue at hand. I am a long time customer of roughly 10 years. My account will not indicate such a timeframe as I am active duty military and had an interruption in service due to a government move out of your coverage area. I assure you I returned as quickly as my geographical location allowed me. I currently hold 3 lines on a family plan. Two of these lines are iPhones with the corresponding data feature. An unlimited text-messaging plan is also in place. My history with the company is laden with upgrades and new purchases. I had one of the first iPhones available in South Carolina upon launch in 2007 and again in 2008. I upgraded yet again in 2009 although delayed slightly only because I was again out of the country on military orders. I’m a member of your premium customer service because of my government affiliation.

I recently heard about the addition of your A-List feature and tonight had the opportunity to enable it on my account. To my dismay it was unavailable. I called only to be told that with my rate plan of 700 minutes, I’m not entitled to it. It requires 1400 minutes or more. My initial thought was that with 1400 minutes, I wouldn’t need free minutes to 10 out of network numbers. More importantly, I don’t understand the purpose of having minutes be qualifiers. Is it financial? I assure you that my combination of features that result in $177/monthly is more than a single non-smartphone user with 1400 minutes.

I am a native of the New York metropolitan area and I’m currently serving on Air Force active duty. I was stationed in South Carolina and now Mississippi. As any compassionate human can imagine, my phone is my lifeline to friends and family whom I’ve left behind to serve our country. AT&T has always proudly supported the military as evidenced by the normally outstanding care and well-discounted offerings that are sent our way.

It is in this instance that I look at AT&T differently. If a heavy user, long-term loyalist, dedicated American serviceman doesn’t deserve a widely disseminated, overly advertised promotion, then I cannot imagine who does and frankly, leaving the decision to qualifying standards of a rate plan solely is a disservice to your customers and your customer support reputation.

To that end, when initially surprised at this news I asked the support representative, “What is the reasoning for the rate plan qualification?” to which I received, not an answer, not an explanation but a verbatim repeat of the previous answer. My question did not imply I misheard the answer, but rather further depth to that same answer. Repetition is not further information.

I hung up disheartened and amazed and half wondering if it was, in fact, AT&T that I had just spoken with, as none of the previous moments indicated that to be the case given my track record of complete satisfaction. Sadly, I looked at the 2 iPhones in my home and wondered if the love triangle between the phones, your service and my happiness was had passed its prime.

I suppose the remainder of the contract and the satisfaction contained therein will be my qualifying standard, which I believe to be much more comprehensive than a somewhat arbitrary number.

My account number and wireless telephone number are listed at the top of this correspondence should you choose to rectify this situation.


Jason T. Viglione

1 comment:

Thomas said...

Well written buddy.