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AT&T Yellow Pages / auto-renew policy

1 CA, United States Review updated:

We have been the victims of AT&T Yellow Pages policy to change without notice advertising contracts to auto-renew. We were forced to pay the bill last year. When we talked to our Sales Person about how this happened and why they could publish our ad without consent, he apologized profusely and said it wouldn't happen again. I believed he meant what he said and he would remove us from the auto-renew contract, but it didn't happen. And because we didn't have it in writing, we can't prove that he made that promise over the phone. So we are now having to pay 2 years in a row for advertising we didn't want and didn't authorize. I am told that we have to send a registered letter to AT&T requesting a cancellation. AT&T didn't send US the notice via registered mail. How can this be ethical and legal???

I will submit my complaint to Consumer Affairs as suggested in someone else's complaint. AT&T should not be allowed to take advantage of people in this way. We have no recourse for the billed amounts.

EVERONE NEEDS TO SPEAK UP -- SEND IN YOUR COMPLAINTS SO WE CAN CHANGE THIS!

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Comments

  • Te
      9th of Aug, 2009
    0 Votes

    Beware of the auto-renewal clause in the yellowpages print and internet advertising contracts. You may tell your sales rep that you do not want to renew, but if you do not do so in writing (with registered mail, return receipt) Yellowpages will automatically renew your advertising contract for another year and your sales rep will automatically get another commission off of you and your worthless ad.

    After you mail a notice of non-renewal to yellowpages you will get tons of calls from AT&T and its L. M. Berry minions demanding that you continue to do business with them.. Just say no to worthless advertising, say no to yellowpages and yellowpages.com!

  • Nj
      22nd of Aug, 2009
    -1 Votes

    I dont believe you're a victim of AT&T policy, rather a victim of negligence on your part and of course allowing yourself to be duped by a shady salesman.

    I have an AT&T ad, and I make sure before I sign any contract, i understand its terms and conditions. Did you?

    Second, I always make sure my rep puts everything in WRITING. I'll say that again, PUT EVERYTING ANYONE EVER SAYS IN WRITING. I do this for my customers, just like i expect my vendors to do it for me. Thats how proper business should be done. This is not the stone age, and certainly a paper and ink is not hard to find

    Third, are you truly complaining about a service that was provided to you, on a contract that you signed OR are you just hoping some white knight on the internet will save you from the mistakes you made?

    Im sorry to hear that you had a bad experience, it really shouldnt be that way, , but I hope one would take all the necessary information to evaluate your comments and opinion before putting it on someone else. My ad has worked great for me, and many other businesses next to me. I was actually referred by another business owner, not that it matters because I still did my hw before I would commit to anything

    Perhaps you shouldve as well..

  • At
      19th of Sep, 2009
    0 Votes

    I have no complaint with the auto renewal and agree that is the responsibility of the consumer to make sure they cancel using the appropriate method. I, however, want to cancel my contract due to breach of contract. I was never given any copy to approve prior to their posting my internet ad. I get a copy of the contract saying that the ad will appear around August 25th. So, since I never got any copy, I popped out on the web and found that my ad was indeed placed...complete with information from a competitor's site. This competitor is in California and the add references the Bay area. We do not have a Bay area in Toledo Ohio. Also the link to my website doesn't work. I tried one number and was put in someone's voice mail...no call back. I called another number I had because I had a person's name and was told I would need to call the first number I had called. I stated that they were unresponsive and that I wanted to speak with the person whose name I did have. He called me back and promised me that corrections would be made. In the meantime, I get a bill for $76.00 more than the contract states...for advertising that is incorrect. I sent a certified letter to the address that the contract states I should send it to, cancelling the contract that is now null and void because of breach of contract on their part. No one there to accept it and to this date they have not picked it up from the post office. I have sent certified letters to every address I could find but they have not yet had time to receive them so we will see what kind of response I will get. In the meantime, I have installed recording software on my computer so I can record our conversations. I will, of course, tell them I am recording the conversation to keep everything legal. Of course, they should have no problem with that if I am not being scammed. Fortunately, I have not yet paid them one red cent, nor will I. From having seen the many complaints against them, I have prepared myself well, including saving a copy of the ad daily proving that they have made no move to correct the problem. I expect a fight. Let them take me to court. I will pay an attorney 10 times the amount of the contract rather than pay them one dime.

  • Yi
      12th of Nov, 2009
    0 Votes

    Also beware of any phone service contract with ATT. Their Business Saver II deal for example says you can sign up for a 1 year term and can choose to renew for 2 additional years. The fine print however indicates that it will auto renew. Your choice actually is to remember to jump through hoops soon enough in the event you DON'T want it to renew. Unfortunately I saw the bold print and missed that part of the fine print. This company is slimy and slick. In exchange for the $128 early termination fee they got from me, they also got a crusader intent on advertising the many far superior alternatives to them. My goal is to cost them at least $10, 000 a year in lost business. So far I am only 9% of the way but that only took 2 months.

  • Ka
      13th of Nov, 2009
    +1 Votes

    @NJ Tom

    I would agree with you about getting everything in writing. I would also agree with you that it would be negligence on my part. I spent 10 years doing signed contracts with AT&T yellow pages, making sure I understood the agreement. My issue is that AT&T switched to auto renew without notification. I was not notified that they were switching me. Year 1, surprise bill and advertising without me having an opportunity to see anything. It was a shady salesman, because I had no idea of the requirement to cancel in writing, particularly since I never received notification in the first place explaining the new arrangement. The salesman, who I had dealt with for at least 5 years, acted as if it was a mistake that year. So I didn't realize I had to watch for it to occur in Year 2 of this new arrangement. Had I been notified and understood the rules, I would take the responsibility. I obviously have learned from the experience, and for me that means ending my relationship with them. I have many other options for advertising. I don't need to support a company that does business this way. I'm glad your advertising experience has been good. You're obviously in bed with the right company for your needs.

  • Kz
      11th of Jan, 2010
    0 Votes

    AT&T Yellow Pages got me with their auto renew contract this year too. They've tripled the price on me with no notice and autorenewed the contract. Of course they don't send you a bill till after the book is published and after their cancellation date so SURPRISE, your ad is in there at 3 times the cost and you cant get out of it.

    I've sent my certified letter of cancellation and contacted the state attorney generals office. They should not be allowed to do this type of thing, and I sure won't be doing business with them in the future.

  • Re
      28th of Jan, 2010
    0 Votes

    I am sorry that you are not happy with yellow pages. I was looking online and found a website that your business can have a FREE ebillboard. Just go to seekshallfind.com. I was talking to my friend Mike and he has a ebillboard and he is happy with his ebillboard.

  • Tp
      17th of Feb, 2011
    0 Votes

    I just spoke to an AT&T customer service rep who is not able to help me with my current issue but was able to educate me on their corrupt automatic renewal policy. Everything you buy from AT&T, both ads and internet has automatic renewal. AT&T takes no responsiblity for contacting customers to let you know your order is about to automatically renew. I suppose they hope you forget or inadvertently miss the timeframe, about 5 months prior to publishing. Of course they won't give you an e-mail address for this, that would be way too easy. I was told to send a certified letter to AT&T Advertising Solutions. Attn. Cancellation Manager in my region and to make sure I keep the green slip as proof. AMAZING... These guys are actually worse than used car salesmen. Your best bet is to cancel immediately. If you need the cancellation address for your area you can call 1-800-479-2977.

  • Yp
      16th of Oct, 2013
    0 Votes

    We are interested in speaking with people or businesses located in California who (1) advertised in the print directory of the YP yellow pages (formerly AT&T) and (2) believe they were injured by an automatic renewal program. This would include people whose accounts were automatically renewed by YP, and they were charged for that automatic renewal, without their consent and/or without a signed contract or agreement permitting automatic renewal.

    Please call us at 310 - 550 - 4840 and ask for Tabitha. You may also email us at YPAutoRenewalVictim@gmail.com (YPAutoRenewalVictim at gmail . com )
    (Posted October 2013)

  • To
      31st of Jan, 2015
    0 Votes

    In 2014 a YP sales rep sent me a copy of my 2013 Contract and said she was working on the all the changes that I wanted including a much smaller ad. But after that email, she would not reply to my emails asking for information about the new YP ad that I wanted, and I was not able to contract her by phone because her YP phone extension was out of service and when I called YP customer service they said they are working on the phone line extension and they would have the sales rep call me...I said no I want to be emailed since I'm contractor and hard to reach by phone during the day. I also kept sending emails to the sales rep to get my ad changed as I had discussed with her.. She never complied by email and only kept saying in her email reply to contact her by phone. Every time I tried to reach the sale rep, her YP phone extension was not working. Then when I was finally able to make contact with her, she said it was too late to make any changes and the old ad was already automatically renewal by YP. This is complete fraud. I never signed a renewal Contract and I never received help changing the ad the way I wanted it.
    I ended up never getting proper help from the sales rep to discuss the different options and prices of the YP ads and I ended up not even getting close to the ad that I wanted. My business ad shown in the current 2014 hard paper telephone book is NOT even close to what I wanted. Absolutely terrible customer service and I feel it was very deceptive and extremely poor business ethics. I'm so completely dissatisfied with the customer sales ad service that I received this last time, especially since I was forced into renewing YP Printed YellowBook advertising and my Online advertising that I did not want and a sales rep who refused to work by email as all the other YP reps had done for me in the past.
    I have sent email complaints to YP about this situation, but no help so far. Now I’m trying not to get stuck with the automatic renewal again this year, and it seems hard to find the correct address (for California) to send my YP non-renewal request. Unbelievable how a company could legally be allowed to operator a business in this fraudulent manner.

    I ended up never getting proper help from the sales rep to discuss the different options and prices of the YP ads and I ended up not even getting close to the ad that I wanted. My business ad shown in the current 2014 hard paper telephone book is NOT even close to what I wanted. Absolutely terrible customer service and I feel it was very deceptive and extremely poor business ethics. I'm so completely dissatisfied with the customer sales ad service that I received this last time, especially since I was forced into renewing YP hardbook YellowBook advertizing that I did not want and a sales rep who refused to work by email as all the other YP reps had done for me in the past.
    I have sent complaints to YP about this situation, but no help so far. Now I’m trying not to get stuck with the automatic renewal again this year, and it seems hard to find the correct address (for California) to send my YP non-renewal request. Unbelievable how a company could legally be allowed to operator a business in this fraudulent manner.

  • Yp
      20th of Feb, 2015
    0 Votes

    So sorry to hear that you've had a negative experience with YP. We always strive to create the best possible experience for our customers. Would you mind sending us an email to ypexec@yp.com with your contact information so we can put you in touch with someone from our Customer Care team? Thank you so much!

  • Vi
      30th of Jun, 2015
    0 Votes

    Another victim here, talked to a rep in march, told them to cancel, did not signed a renewal contract, who told us she will contact us back. 3 months later we received the bill for the next year, called customer services that refused to help. Absolute the worst services with YP, never was told about proper cancellation or proper address, local manager is now dodging calls, promises to call back within 24hrs according to voicemail, Ha. Even worst i think the original sales rep from march is no longer working with them, and got a "im sorry but we cant do anything for you, please pay your bill" from YP main office manager. I will file complaints with CA consumer affairs, and any and all agencies about these unlawful practices. I misses any more agencies to report to please list in reply.

    Cherry on top i found out while fingering through YP book while i was out at a restaurant, no contact was made since march, no books sent, no proofs, just blatant fraud. FRAUD.

  • Yp
      8th of Jul, 2015
    -1 Votes

    Hi! I'm so sorry to hear that you've had a bad experience with YP! We sincerely care about our customers and want to resolve your concerns. Would you mind sending us an email at ypexec@yp.com so we can assist you? Thank you so much! Breen with YP

  • Sy
      13th of Aug, 2016
    0 Votes

    I have had the exact same problems here in Ohio. My business was an ATT customer since 2003. In 2015 we relocated to an area that is not serviced by ATT and I cancelled my ATT contract. They did not inform me that the YP ad would be continued. When I received an invoice for YP advertising, I tried to cancel it. So far after four phone calls lasting up to an hour each time and each ending in them disconnecting me, I have still not been able to cancel. An internet search shows that they go after people in the courts - successfully! - who didn't want their services and didn't pay the invoices. I believe what they are doing is criminal.

  • Yp
      22nd of Aug, 2016
    0 Votes

    Hi Sydney!

    So sorry to hear that you've had a negative experience with YP. We always strive to create the best possible experience for our customers. Would you mind sending us an email to ypexec@yp.com with your contact information so we can put you in touch with someone from our Customer Care team? Thank you, Breen with YP.

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