Monday, March 2, 2009

Get me the information I want, not the information you want

I signed up for Facebook last Thursday, and as a result I am learning all sorts of things about people I haven't seen in decades, as well as people who work in the same building with me.

One of my co-workers just had AT&T U-verse installed, and being the curious type, I wanted to see what AT&T U-verse was. So I went to the AT&T U-verse site, and this is what I saw:

So before I can find out anything about AT&T's service, they want to find out something about me. Presumably their argument is that only certain services are available in certain areas, but why do I have to fork over information before you'll even start to sell me anything?

Then I read the screen more carefully, and they provided an example zip code. I have no idea where zip code 78734 is, but I entered it anyway.

Then, and only then, could I see a button "What is AT&T U-verse?"

At this point, my only choices are to view one, two, or three demos. Apparently the question "What is AT&T U-verse?" is too difficult to easily answer.

Unless you Google it. And, at least as of today, when I skipped over the AT&T sites (which don't to be all that informative) and the Wikipedia sites, I ended up at the blog post AT&T U-verse Doomed?. And, while the post was written in Febuary 2007, it does detail problems at the time, such as problems with Microsoft set-top boxes (disclosure: I work for Motorola, who offers a competing product).

Moral of the story - because AT&T made it difficult to get information about their service, I ended up looking elsewhere, and getting information that AT&T probably would not want me to get.

P.S. AT&T Wireless is no better.

P.P.S. It looks like my newly adopted 78734 community (Lakeaway, TX) is a nice one.

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