Saturday, June 27, 2009
"Provider Overbills Customer" from Rong-Chang
Simon got a monthly bill that he didn’t like. His Internet service provider, Wink, automatically withdrew $15 from his checking account each month. This was called direct payment. It made things simpler for him because it meant one less check to write each month.
In fact, Simon had direct payments with his gas company, his phone company, and his electric company. So that was four fewer checks that he had to write each month.
This month, instead of $15, Wink had withdrawn $75. Simon went online and looked at his account. Part of the increase was because he had switched from a slow dial-up connection to a fast DSL connection. Wink charged him $45 just to make that switch.
Simon thought that this charge in itself was ridiculous. It probably took them about five seconds to make the switch. But any time a corporation can gouge you, they will.
In addition to the $45, Wink had charged him $15 for his dial-up account, but had also charged him $15 for his DSL account. This was a double-charge, since a computer uses dial-up or DSL, but not both.
We’ll see about this, Simon thought, as he searched for Wink’s 800 number.