Tuesday, August 03, 2004

Avtech Direct

Through a special arrangement, Avtech Direct is offering a limited
allotment of BRAND NEW, top of-the-line, name-brand desktop computers
at more than 50% off MSRP to all Staff Members who respond to this
message before 5 P.M., Tuesday, August 3, 2004.
I've been receiving this sort of crap on one of my accounts for quite some time. I have attempted to use Mailwasher to bounce it in the hopes that a MAIL UNDELIVERABLE message would prompt them to remove my e-mail address from their list. Since that didn't work, I felt that I had nothing to loose by using the link at the bottom of their email that purported to unsubscribe me. That, of course, didn't work either.

Two weeks ago, I decided that since they had so thoughtfully provided me with a toll-free number (800-884-9510) I could call them to have them not only remove my name from the list, but make them pay the phone bill.

I asked for the Director of Marketing and was shunted to a line that never answered. Eventually I was disconnected and called back, this time asking to speak with someone in Customer Service. The person there tried to re-direct my call back to the person whose responsibility it was to take care of these things. Again, the phone never answered. I wasn't disconnected as before and the person in Customer Service took my e-mail address and assured me that it would be removed from the list.

However, that was and untruth because this Monday I not only received another unsolicited e-mail from Avtech Direct at the account that I had been receiving it, but I also received a duplicate message at an e-mail address that had never received e-mail from them before.

So, I called again. Again, the receptionist directed me to a number that never answered. I got back on with him and he said the Director of Marketing was in a meeting. (If he knew he was in a meeting, why did he direct my call to a phone that he knew wouldn't be answered?) I was unwilling to leave my e-mail address again because that only succeeded in getting me more trash.

Tuesday, I forgot to take the phone number with me to work and so when I got home I called.

The re-direct to the Director of Marketing never answered and again I didn't want to leave my e-mail address. The receptionist directed me to another mystery number when disconnected me.

I called back, this time asking to be connected with someone in Customer Service. Maureen in Customer Service wanted to take my e-mail address but I told here that it had been done before but I was still receiving unsolicited email and I wanted to speak with someone who could actually solve my problem.

Maureen said she couldn't do that and, with panic starting to rise in her voice, said "Do you want me to loose my job." Loose her job?

"Your job is not my concern. Could I speak with your supervisor, please."

"I don't have a supervisor."

"You are working completely unsuper. . . . "


So I called back and asked to speak with someone on the Executive Staff. The receptionist obsfucated saying that he could not connect me unless I give him a name.

"Is this the person who called earlier?"

"If you mean the person that has been hung up on three times already. . . "

"Maureen left the room crying because of you."

"Who am I speaking with right now?"

"Just one moment," and the receptionist put me on hold. When he returned, he refused to give me his name.

"What is your supervisors name?"


I called up again.

"Avtech Direct, how may I direct your call."

"Yes, I'd like to. . . "


All right. I've been this route before. I had one company in Atlanta that didn't even answer their phones for an hour because I kept calling back, simply trying to talk to a human being with the power to remove my name from their mailing list.

Of course, this was all just a waste of time. A search of the web makes it pretty clear that Avtech Direct has a long history of scamming customers. I'm sure their staff are experienced in giving people the run-around. The receptionist seemed particularly skilled.

Look at http://www.badbusinessbureau.com/reports/ripoff90565.htm

Am I sorry I made Maureen cry? Hell, no. She works in customer service and I've been in that boat. The first thing you do when someone asks to speak to your supervisor is give them to your supervisor. The claim that you don't have a supervisor is a sloppy attempt to avoid dealing with someone.

I am cursed with an overdeveloped sense of justice and feel that criminals like Avtech Direct should be made to pay for their crimes. Unfortunately, even the Federal Trade Commission seems unable to exact the proper punishment on these people. And while I would like to have the skies wrench open and pour a plague of demons upon Avtech's California offices, I would call it even if they would just stop sending me SPAM.

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