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Yeah, yeah, I know, first world problems. But think of the trees!

Description of Complaint:
On the cover and inside AT&T YP's "Real White Pages," including the 2013-2014 directory just delivered to my home, it says that consumers can opt out of unwanted phone book deliveries by registering at: www.yellowpagesoptout.com.

However, this is not true. I registered on that site over a year ago, opting out of all phone books. All of AT&T's COMPETITORS honored my request. AT&T did not.

When I called AT&T to ask why, the operator said that they do not actually honor opt-out registrations made through yellowpagesoptout.com. This means that AT&T is encouraging us to block their competitors' phone books, under the false promise that we can opt out of theirs. Isn't that some kind of unfair business practice?

The operator told me that, notwithstanding what the cover of their phone book actually SAID, I must opt out on AT&T's proprietary website, mydirectories.yp.com. This site requires us to fill out our email address, presumably so AT&T can send us email spam.

Furthermore, AT&T's operator informed me that even after I'd opted out, AT&T would call me each time they had a new directory, and deliver it to my doorstep unless I answered the phone to confirm I had opted out. This means AT&T's opt out program is a sham. Most people do not work at home, so they wouldn't be able to answer the phone. I DO work at home, and do not want to be interrupted while I'm working.

As far as I can tell, AT&T can pretend that they're being environmentally friendly by claiming they have an opt-out program, but in fact, all they're doing is blocking their competitors from delivering phone books to us, collecting our email addresses, and then STILL delivering phone books to us after we've said no. (And by the way, she also said that I had to re-register for this sham opt out program every 3 years.)

Desired Outcome Description:
1. No phone books delivered to my address until I ask for them. PERIOD.
2. AT&T should honor opt-out registrations on the yellowpagesoptout.com site.
3. Or, even better, AT&T should just switch to an OPT IN program for all its directories.

P.S. If you agree with me that phone book deliveries should be OPT IN, there's a petition for that. I added my signature.

This entry originally posted at http://sepdet.dreamwidth.org/181684.html, where it has comment count unavailable comments.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
Feb. 12th, 2013 05:17 pm (UTC)
Pretty sure it's illegal for them to do that
Feb. 12th, 2013 06:52 pm (UTC)
Yeah, in my original draft, I called it fraud, but I realized I might be misusing the term in some legal technical sense.

Just to make sure AT&T couldn't say, "It wasn't fraud, and that's libel!" I reworded it. If the BBB has any integrity left at all -- which I'm dubious about -- they should see this for what it is.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )