Sunday, August 10, 2008

Cell phone part 2

I originally posted a shorter version of this as a reply to Slackermommy's comment, but I thought it deserved it's own post since I don't know if you all love me enough to want to read all the comments other people leave me and it's too funny not to share.

Last night I called my cell phone carrier to ask about the charges, that much you know. I was told that they were "premium" text messages, but was still in the dark as to what this really meant. I was told that I needed to do something to her phone to make it recognize the block that the nice helpful gentleman had put on her phone so it would no longer be able to receive these messages.

This morning when the child woke up, I told her to bring me her phone. I asked her what she did and she really had no clue. I tried doing this reprogramming thing and it kept telling me "reprogram unsuccesful". So I called the cell phone company again. This time I got another guy who said that the block wouldn't stop the charges. He also helpfully explained what she did.

You know those commercials you see or ads in the backs of magazines that tell you to text a word to a number to get a ringtone, walpaper, or other nifty thing? That's what she did. For a psychic service. When I asked her if she had texted a word to a number she replied "OOHhhh". "What was it?" I asked. She said "this psychic thing". I asked her if the psychic had told her she was going to be in deep shit for running up a $100 bill. She said no. Some psychic, huh?

So this guy tells me that in order to stop it I need to send 5 text messages a certain number and that I should get a confirmation text back from them that it was successful. OK. So I hang up send the 5 texts and wait. 30 minutes go by and no confirmation. So I call back again.

I get the same guy. I say "Hey, I sent those texts and didn't get the confirmation" he says let me look into it, and after leaving me on hold again tells me to text STOP ALL to another number and gives me an 800 number to call if I have more problems. Oh, and he manages to talk me into buying a new phone and extending my contract for another 2 years. If I don't lose the mail in rebate it will only cost me $5.99 for the new phone.

We get off the phone and I send the text. Nothing. So I try the 800 number. It doesn't go through. I get nothing but dead air. Doesn't even start ringing. So I call the cell phone company back.... again. This time I get a lady. She tries the 800 number and comes back and tells me that she got through and what I need to do is text STOP to yet a different number and then follow the instructions it texts me back. OK.

So I do that, and nothing happens, and I decide to try the 800 number again from my phone. It goes through. I listen to all the menu prompts and choose the one for psychic readings. It tells me to text STOP to a number with one more zero than the first guy told me this morning and to wait for further instructions to be sent via text. It also gave their website address for more info or to contact them.

I sent the final text and when again, nothing happened, I went to the website. Found the email form and sent an email asking how to unsubscribe. I still haven't received a response from them. As far as I know I'm still getting charged for this shit. I'm not happy.

My advice, if you have a child with a cell phone, call your provider right now and tell them to block your child's phone from being able to receive these services. Getting rid of them is a nightmare.

Oh and I did all this before going to Walmart and Target in search of the remaining school supplies my kids needed and THEN came home and cleaned my desk. Makes the desk cleaning even more amazing, doesn't it?


slackermommy said...

Wow girl, what a nightmare. I blocked my daughter's text service through our provider. I'm assuming that includes 800 numbers, right?

I think it's great that you are posting this to warn other parents. I would not have known about the option to block texts if it weren't for our expensive "awakening".

LenaLoo said...

Oh, I used to work for a cell phone company... in a kiosk... I got those complaints EVERYDAY! They either need to make the "$1.99 will be charged to you phone bill" in the itty bitty print WAY BIGGER or outlaw them! It could be worse, I have seen 35 "subscriptions" to services that were $9.99 each month on one customers bill... I won't even tell you what kind of services they were, I'm sure you can guess... At least your kid isn't into that!