Sunday, April 01, 2007

Cingular/AT&T Wireless and Sprint/Nextel are blocking FreeConferenceCall numbers

FreeConferenceCall Blog Site > Home ( DNN 4.3.6 ): Here's a revolting development of phone carriers throwing their weight around. We have used FreeConferenceCall for about two years now, and their services have multiplied exponentially in that time. This seems to be a case of the vestiges of the Second Wave trying to hold their ground and maintain their entrenched interests as the Third Wave proceeds to engulf them. Don't miss the video here that will make everything more understandable. In a defensive move, FreeConference call has started an email campaign and a blog:

Last week, some of our Cingular and Sprint customers began calling into customer service with issues surrounding their connections to our service. After speaking with Cingular’s customer service group, our customers were given numerous, and unfounded, reasons for the call blockage. Reasons cited included fraud, international forwarding, fee disputes and, to our astonishment, that we were blocking our own FreeConferenceCall numbers. We cannot corroborate or justify any of these reasons. FreeConferenceCall would never knowingly impede our customers from using our services. For now, we can tell you that a Cingular spokesperson has gone on record and stated that their terms of service gives them the right to block any number they wish and also said that AT&T’s wireless service is "between one person and another person, not between one person and many." Cingular and Sprint have chosen to block service to our shared customers regardless of Federal Communications Commission (FCC) rules and regulations. Neither carrier has ever directly complained, filed suit or even contacted FreeConferenceCall. The upshot is that carriers are basically telling you that a cell phone is not intended for use on conference calls of any type. As a total commitment to our customers, we have quickly ramped up to help them deal with this issue. If you are experiencing connectivity problems, please call us directly at 877-482-5838. We promise to give you unparalleled technical support and will treat every customer with immediate, personalized attention...
...Thanks to the grassroots efforts of our customers, partners and the blogosphere, the current phone blocking situation has quickly become a turbo-charged topic rife with controversy. On one hand, we have the telecom giants – in fairness to these companies, they have laid the infrastructure and given us the 5 9’s of phone reliability that we continue to leverage. On the other hand, you have those companies that disrupt and drive change in an antiquated industry that is 100 years old and in dire need of a face lift. However, it appears that larger forces are at work than simply a debate between two sides of the telecom fence. We are facing issues that will likely define how we handle our business, our customers and our communications in the future...

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