Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2019 00:29:17 +0000
From: Bill Horne <bill@horneQRM.net>
Subject: Idaho Mom makes sign after CenturyLink customers show up at
'Oops, Google screwed up!' Mom makes sign after CenturyLink customers
show up at her doorstep
By Natalia Hepworth
IDAHO FALLS - Jamie Parry has lived in her neighborhood for two years,
but for the last three months, she's been having to kick CenturyLink
customers off her lawn.
That's because, in her words "Google screwed up," and listed her home
on 20th Street in Idaho Falls, as the closest CenturyLink office for
those in the area.
(Remove QRM from my email address to write to me directly)
Date: 11 Mar 2019 10:10:04 -0400
From: "Fred Goldstein" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Subject: Re: T4 and T5 carrier systems
On 3/8/2019 6:24 PM, Kevin Bowling wrote:
> Does anyone know of original sources or other credible references for
> the specifications or design and implementation of the T4 or T5
> carrier systems?
I don't think there was ever such a thing as T5, on paper or elsewhere.
The DS4 rate was 274.176 Mbps, meant to be on coax, using "polar" coding
(according to a 1980s-vintage textbook). But I doubt it was ever put
into volume production.
Fred R. Goldstein k1io fred "at" ionary.com
***** Moderator's Note *****
Lost-in-the-mists-of-time department: IIRC, T5 was never implemented,
because fiber was being rolled out and there weren't enough coax
cables. But, I may be wrong: does anyone recall when fiber became
Date: 9 Mar 2019 05:29:58 -0700
From: "Fred Atkinson" <email@example.com>
Subject: What scratches your personal itch?
Well, when I got started in the telecom industry, one of the things
that got me moving was my impatience and disgust with the rigid rules
that the phone company had put on everyone over the years and the
monopoly that it put upon us. This was back in the late seventies.
One of the many experiences [one that especially ticked me off] was
when I asked the phone company to install a QKT coupler on my home
phone line. I was moving into a new place and called well in advance
to get them to install the lines on the day I moved in. This was in
the Columbia, South Carolina market.
As I've probably mentioned before, I am an amateur radio operator. I
wanted to put a phone patch on my home phone line [so I could connect
a caller to my amateur radio set and let others talk over my amateur
radio station]. To do that within the requirements of the phone
company [at the time] required the installation of that coupler to
legally connect the phone patch unit to the PSTN.
When I placed the order, they asked me what I wanted the QKT coupler
When I told them, they told me that it would be an illegal
interconnect and that they would not install it. To quote their
supervisor, 'it was against telephone company tariffs'. I knew that
was hogwash and that was the exact word I used when I told her so.
I told them that they were mistaken and I insisted that they install
I won't bore you with the gory details, but I went back and forth with
the phone company for a couple of weeks. I spoke to supervisors and a
bunch of other people. Some of the nonsense they told me about it was
After a week or so, I suddenly remembered that I had an amateur radio
operator buddy that was working for the telephone company's marketing
department. So I dropped his name. I suggested that they call him
and that he would explain it to them in detail.
The supervisor that I told that to [who had been arguing with me using
information that was completely invalid for most of the time we went
back and forth] now said she didn't question what I said. That she
didn't question it wasn't true, but at least I sent her in the right
direction. She now told me she just had to 'check it out'.
After a couple of more days, she called me back and conceded defeat.
She told me that they were going to install my QKT coupler. I'm sure
it was a very humbling experience for her.
However, the date for the installation was now almost upon us. They
had to order the coupler and it was too late to get it in time for the
So they agreed that they would return again [when the coupler arrived]
and install it. I would not be charged for the additional visit.
When I called the business office again [about two days before my
phones were to be installed], the CSR asked me why I wanted a QKT
coupler on my line.
I explained to her that we had already been through that at extreme
length. That it had resulted in my becoming involved in a knock down,
drag out fight with the business office. That they had finally agreed
that I was right and they were wrong and that they were going to
I asked her if it was really necessary for us to go through that
again. She could tell I was getting exasperated.
So she said, 'No'. Two days later they installed my phones. About
two weeks later, they showed back up and installed my QKT coupler.
And the installer also put a 'push to talk' handset on the phone it
was attached to.
I don't remember how long I lived at that address. I moved out of it
when I accepted a position with MCI in their Washington, DC office.
Two things got me thinking about applying to MCI for work. One was
that a former colleague of mine had told me about them. He was
working for them at that time in the Washington, DC office but left
their employ just before I moved there. The other was all of my
negative experiences with dealing with the phone company (the above
story was just one of the many exasperating experiences I had with
There was a third thing, but I am not going to go into it here. And
it was very personal.
The motivation I had when I was at MCI was often fueled by my disgust
for the way Telcos treated their customers. They don't train their
people about anything that was the least bit 'out of the box'. When
customers made service requests for things that the CSRs [and often
their supervisors] simply did not understand, they would become
clueless. I felt that competition in the telecom/I.T. industry was
going to be a productive thing. And I still think it is.
I have heard people say that quality suffered for a good while after
other long distance companies entered the market. That was probably
true. But those issues have been worked out with time. Today [if I
get CSRs that don't know what they are doing], I have the option of
going to another company. We no longer have a totalitarian phone
Now I have multiple places to go. If I can't get the results I want
when I order service or the quality I need with my current provider, I
have a lot of other options. I can go to another company and order
service. I can also port my number(s) to the new provider.
My current Phoenix, Arizona area number was one I got from MagicJack
when I moved here. When John Levine suggested I switch over to
Callcentric to meet requirements [that MagicJack could not provide], I
ported my Mesa number, my old Las Cruces, New Mexico number, and my
personal toll-free number to Callcentric. Aside from a few quality
issues that have since been addressed, the service has been just fine.
And if I become dissatisfied, I go to yet another company.
I won't say that all of the issues have been addressed. I would put
that at ninety-five per cent. But someone is always coming out with a
new solution all of the time.
So I feel that the seven years working for MCI were productive. MCI's
entrance into the long distance market did indeed make a difference.
Even though we don't hear much about MCI any more, they served the
purpose of breaking up the monopolies put upon us by the telcos.
***** Moderator's Note *****
In 1973, I moved to a new place, and when I ordered the phone, I told
them to put - you guessed it - a QKT coupler on the phone. They had to
check if the coupler was subject to the employee discount, and while
that was in progress, the CSR asked what it was for. I told her I
wanted to record all my calls.
She said "Good idea, brother," and told me the installation date.
End of telecom Digest Tue, 12 Mar 2019