TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: Re: Service Providers Recycling Phone Numbers

Re: Service Providers Recycling Phone Numbers

George Berger (
Thu, 23 Feb 2006 18:20:09 -0500

In article <>,

> George Berger wrote:

>> Anyway, a couple of months after signing up with AT&T, we received a
>> significant bill for "incoming calls" that we never received, as we
>> still don't know how to use the Nokia except to call out ... It took
>> over four months, and a lawyer, to get AT&T to admit that the phone
>> number we had been assigned was earlier used by a lobbyist.

> I'm afraid I don't understand this, could someone explain it? On my
> cell phone, I'm only charged for incoming calls when I answer the
> phone. If it the phone is turned off, obviously I can't answer it and
> I am not charged. But even if the phone is turned on, if I don't
> answer it I still am not charged.

> I know this because from time to time I test my cell phone (I don't use
> it very often) and I call it during prime time. It rings but I don't
> answer and I'm not charged.

> Is there some new policy that even unanswering incoming calls are now
> charged?

> [public replies please]

> [TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I do not think there is any such
> policy. It was more likely a clerical error by AT&T (even though the
> company in its bureaucratic stubborness refused to correct it or
> look into the problem until they were forced to do so.) I am not
> charged on my no-answers inbound either (Cingular Wireless). PAT]

It happened in August, 2001, and PAT is correct, the AT&T clerical
errors and the "bureaucratic stubborness" both were at fault. It took
us almost a year to get the charges removed. Since then, I've had the
cell phone monthly bill paid via credit card. That way, if Cingular
Wireless (who now owns our account) goofs, I have an additional

As an aside, our cell phone still is used only in emergency
situations, and we've had to fire it up only about four or five times
in six years. Once, on the way to the hospital's ER, it was worth its
weight in diamonds.

George (The Old Fud)

I know that you believe that you understood what you think I said, but I am
not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant.
-- Robert McCloskey, State Department spokesman (attributed)

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