Rogers And Me

Someday when they make a movie about my life — starring Lauren Graham — a major theme will be the evilness of Rogers Telecom. In fact, Rogers may turn out to be the big bad guy of the whole piece. I despise them.

I could count the ways, but that would take all day. Let’s just focus on their latest crime — my bill.

Lest you think I am a patron of Rogers by choice, I must explain that we’ve been returned to the circle of hell by Rogers’ buyout of Sprint Canada a few months ago. We have a toll free number that comes to the house, so that our moms can call us anytime without worrying about the cost, and the toll free line used to be provided to us by Sprint.

But no longer. Now, we have THEM. Providing us this “service.”

Since Rogers took over our toll free line, we’ve been getting bills from them every month. I’d love to be able to take a picture of my Rogers bill to post here, but unfortunately it is plastered with my full name and address and phone number, and I don’t want any Bell-haters hunting me down all Sharks-and-Jets style. So I’ll just have to walk you through it.

Settle in. Get comfy. Because it’s nine pages long. NINE PAGES. That’s nine SHEETS of paper.

Somewhere, a baby tree is crying.

Sheet one is a full sized sheet of white bond paper bearing nothing except my name, address, and the word CONFIDENTIAL in big scary letters. Back of the sheet? Blank. I can’t even bring myself to recycle this page, unless I let my kids colour all over it first.

Sheet two. On the front, a summary of my system charges, usage charges, and taxes, with a total at the bottom. Isn’t this really all I need? The bottom line? I guess Rogers needs seven more sheets to get their point across. Back of the sheet? Blank.

Sheet three. Here we have a “summary of account” that informs me that I have paid last months’ bill. I already know that from the last page, which told me my current outstanding balance. The back of the sheet lists “all” my toll free numbers, the total number of calls and minutes for each, and the “amount of savings” per number that I got by going with Rogers. Somehow, I find it very hard to believe that Rogers is SUCH an amazing company, they are giving me over 95% discount on my toll free calls, compared to other providers! Providers in the dark, uncharted regions of China, maybe. It’s just SO like Rogers to slip a little rah-rah, we rock, and by the way, BUY MORE, into their bill.

Sheet four. The front of the sheet contains, I KID YOU NOT, a TABLE OF CONTENTS for the remaining pages to come. Rogers actually considers this page to be the first page of my bill, despite the three sheets of paper that precede it. Guess I’ll be needing that table of contents to follow along with the MASSIVE TOME that is this bill. Back of the sheet? BLANK.

Sheet five. Oh wait a second — Rogers has labelled this page as “Page 1.” Guess I got that table of contents sheet for free. The front of this sheet takes a whole page to print out just one line, informing me that I am paying 0.00 in access charges. Good to know! The back of the sheet is actually used this time…to reprint the same one line informing me that I don’t pay any access charges. Whew, I wasn’t quite sure about that the first time I read it!

Sheet six. A list of all the toll free numbers I have. I have one. It’s not a heavy printed page. Back of the sheet? BLANK.

Sheet seven. This is a breakdown of where all our calls came in from, province-by-province, state-by-state. This month we had nine calls from Ontario (our moms) and three calls from Texas. That’s a typical bill for us — there appears to be a modem or fax machine somewhere in Texas that has our number and calls it a few times a month, to try to blow out my hearing with its high pitched whine. Thanks a lot, Texas! Back of the sheet? BLANK.

Sheet eight. Still with me? Here we have a list of all my toll free numbers, with the total charge for each number. Haven’t I seen this information before? I’ve lost track. Looking back…oh yes, this is identical to the back of sheet three. The back of sheet eight contains a list of every single call, the originating number, how long the call lasted, and its cost. I can see this report as being interesting to some, but Jesus, I can’t imagine how many pages it must be for an actual business that uses their toll free number for actual customer interaction. The Bell internet line alone must have hundreds and hundreds of pages of calls to report. Half of which are from our number. But that’s another post!

Sheet nine. A list of the number of calls we received in each hour of the day. In case you are curious, our peak calling time is from 10-10:59 am, when we received TWO calls instead of the usual one. How did we possibly handle the extra volume? And the back of this last sheet is…blank. Sigh.

I’d like to point out that back when we had Sprint providing our number, we’d get a ONE SHEET bill every OTHER month. The bottom of the bill would say, “You owe $14,81 this month. That amount will be charged to your credit card on June 16, 2007. Please call us at the number below if you have any questions.” And on the rare occasion I did have to call that number, someone answered, who helped me.

Our Rogers bill, in all its many, many pages, cannot tell me if the automatic payment that is supposed to be made on my credit card is schedule to go through or not, and if so, when that might happen. It might get paid. It might not. Let’s roll the dice, baby!

Oh, and I can’t pay it online, like I pay all my other bills, because my account number is missing a digit and does not conform to the Rogers Business Solutions online format. Of course, no one at Rogers can explain why my account number does not match the format. Also, the account number can’t be changed.

I’d love to go with e-billing — if they even have that at such a backwards, idiotic company — but the last time I tried that with Rogers, they never sent me any statements, but still took the money from my bank account, and CONVENIENTLY used the opportunity to more than double our rates because, they said, they were giving us SUCH GREAT DEALS on exciting new features, and I just can’t talk any more about that or Sir Monkeypants will be up listening to my teeth grind all night long.

So here’s what I want from Rogers:

  1. Use cheaper paper, print on both sides of every sheet, and don’t devote whole sheets to just my name and address. (There’s a little “recycled!” symbol in the bottom corner of each sheet, but the pages are very heavy and white, and there’s no way they are 100% recycled content.)
  2. Send me just one page per month with my statement summary; then give me an account on your website where I can generate reports and graphs if I need more detailed information.
  3. Give me an option for a full e-bill (for those who haven’t totally lost their trust in Rogers yet).
  4. Fix my bloody account number so I can pay online, or at least, let me know in my monthly bill the date and amount that you will be charging my credit card.

Apparently, that’s too much to ask.

3 thoughts on “Rogers And Me

  1. CapnPlanet

    Ouch. I feel your pain; this is one of my pet peeves, although I haven’t experienced anything like this recently.

    Are there no other phone providers you could switch to? You should vote with your wallet.

  2. Oooo, that reminds me: last night while talking on the phone I got some Call Waiting beeps, which I confirmed by flashing over to find LittleSis on the other line.

    WTF? I don’t have Call Waiting! I, too, was a Sprint customer, but for my regular line. Back in July Rogers forced me to switch to their digital cable system, and now I’m on high alert for typical Rogers shenanigans. I’ll be calling them immediately expecting to discover one of those bull shit situations where they give me a feature for free, but I have to call to cancel it after some period o/w they’ll charge me for it. That’s just SO Rogers…

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