AT&T now charges eight minutes for one of these one-minute calls in Missouri

Jo Ann Weitkamp knew something was wrong. The minutes on her prepaid telephone calling card were disappearing faster than she was talking.

Weitkamp, 72, lives in an apartment for seniors in Warrenton. Every few months, she visits a Sam’s Club store and pays about $28 to add 1,000 minutes to her calling card. She’s found that an inexpensive way to keep in touch with family members.

Until now.

Since February, AT&T has been charging Missouri customers eight minutes on their prepaid calling cards for each minute they talk to someone in Missouri.

The charge formerly was one minute for each minute called.


“We’re following the law, and this is something we’re required to do by the FCC,” said Amanda Ray, a spokeswoman in Dallas for AT&T.

She says the change is not a rate increase.

“It’s a reclassification,” Ray said. […]

According to the article, no one regulates phone card rates. Not the state of MO, not the FCC, nobody.

The problem here isn’t the rate, it’s the deception. AT&T wants to be allowed to change rates without state permission. Fine. Do that. But don’t lie about it. Don’t throw in some bogus multiplication factor when you agreed to provide per-minute charges.

There are two industries that deserve to be uttelry destroyed – the music industry and the telcos. They are both saturated with an entitlement mentality that defies description, and are populated by lying rat-bastards of the highest order. Good riddance to them both.