Our AT&T/BellSouth landline service stopped working yesterday. I had been planting some flowers in the yard, and so I first thought that I had hit the phone line inadvertently. After digging up the flowers that might have posed this risk, I saw no evidence of the phone line. Our phones inside are attached to the phone jack and to the electrical outlet. So I went outside to be sure the problem was on AT&T's side of the "line". The electrical plug did not reach the outside outlet, so had to get an extension chord and a screwdriver. Yes, it appeared that this was AT&T's responsibility. So back to my computer - connected via cable - and after more searching on the site than should have been necessary, I got to the place to report a problem. Very confusingly presented and no 1-2-3 steps on just what to do. And I had to find our password for the account before going anywhere. I filled out the form and then checked to see if it was showing, and the site told me that orders such as that are only posted once every 24 hours! So no way of being sure. No e-mail confirmation receieved either. In what business does AT&T work, for heaven's sake? This morning, still not working. So got out my cellphone which I rarely use and called. I hit the wrong button at one point and called our home number. The phone rang! Dialtone back. Because the site did not let me check to see if there were any outages in our area, I was unable to tell if that was the problem or whether it was my garden trowel or something else. And what fixed it? My call? A repair in the neighborhood or remotely? It's too frustrating to even think of trying to find the explanation for all this. The path of least resistance is simply to hope that the phone keeps working!
Is that the way all of this should work in 2010? I don't think so.