I don’t tell M stories here very often; he doesn’t like me to, but this is worth sharing. Recently M and I both got mobile phones under different Telstra plans, his a contract, mine a prepaid. We also had two landlines. M got rid of his landline first, and then when I decided wireless internet (you can’t really call it broadband) was at least viable, we got rid of the other landline. Now there was the rub: Telstra was not happy, so they restricted M’s calls to inward calls only! Bastards! So we fired off a complaint to the Telecommunications Industry Ombudsman.
On Tuesday I realised that Telstra had cut off access to outgoing calls on the above phone which is on a $20 per month contract without reason. It seems that they are annoyed because I had recently closed a landline at ****** which I no longer need. I have been paying my phone bills to Telstra since 1992 without fail. Now they are asking me to provide proof of residence at the above address and also at ********, where the landline had been, and they also want pay details and other personal information, which I gave to them anyway when I signed the contract. I have done nothing wrong and feel I am being treated very shabbily by Telstra. I would like an explanation.
He also went to the NSW Department of Fair Trade. Result? Very rapidly his service was restored, and just yesterday he was told Telstra were giving him $100 in free calls…
Mind you, I will be very surprised if many people go for the Telstra share float. Once bitten, and all that, and Sol Trujillo must be one of the most hated people in Australia now. (That smarmy PR woman from American Express, Luisa Megale, must be competition though. “Wouldn’t it be sad if we weren’t able to expand our operations here, and if Australia wasn’t an attractive place for international investment?” Not if you want to flout our labour laws, lady. We can quite easily cut up our Amex cards, and be none the worse for the experience.)
The other good news is that I had lunch at The Shakespeare with Lord Malcolm yesterday; of course he isn’t better, and still needs to go to the hospice for outpatient therapy, but he is in pretty good shape all things considered. We went through all the gear (cards, leaflets, magazines) which David Humphries had given me on Wednesday. Malcolm enjoyed that. We wondered if Artist Andy knows David; he would certainly know of him.