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Idearc Media / unauthorized directory advertizing

1 United States Review updated:

This company took over directory advertizing from Verizon Directories whice was part of Verizon Phone company, the local phone company in my area.I was an insurance agent and advertized in the phone book for 20+ years. Each year a representative would make an appointment with me and sell me the next years plan (always at a higher rate), I would be presented a contract to sign and there would be a proof sent to me for my approval. I retired from the insurance business and decided not to renew the advertizing next time it came up for renewal. This time when the representative called, I specifically told him that I did not wish to renew and quickly got off of the phone (YOU KNOW HOW PUSHY TELEMARKETERS CAN BE). About a month later another telemarketer called and I told the same thing and this guy even said " You mean that you giveo me permission to cancel your advertizing?" and I said "Yes, that's exactly what I mean". then we said our good byes and were off the phone. Well about one month later the directory came out and my ad was in the book. I called Idearc Media to tell them how they screwed up and they said there is nothing they can do, they already printed the ad and I must pay for it. I have to pay for something that they published without my permission? They havent heard the last word from me.

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  • Ri
      14th of Jan, 2008
    0 Votes

    They did a similar thing to me. They put my account on something they internally call "Evergreen", which means that since I had payment for my ad automatically charged to my credit card every month, without my permission, they would continue to renew and bill me until I called them -- they would NEVER contact me about my ad, they would just continue to charge me and hope I didn't notice.

    This was all unbeknownst to me, and I was waiting for my rep to call and also waiting for my previous year's ad billing to quit. I advertsie in other directories, and I had pulled out of those (except for the free listing) when the reps called, and I assumed that had happened with Verizon/Idearc also. No such thing... When the "new" bill started to arrive, I called them, too. They told me that when I had signed the old contract, I had agreed to the "terms and conditions" of the contract and in (seriously, I'm not making this up), on page 5, in section 28, it says that they can at their option and discretion automatically renew my ad without my approval unless I have canceled it with them in writing at least 14 days prior to publication.

    What a fraud... They goit me by the letter of the law probably, but I think if I start calling their current advertisers and tell them what Verizon did, and jusr "inform them" that they may want to cancel their advertising NOW in writing so they don't get charged...

    I was also thinking the consumer reporter for the local newspaper, or maybe the business editor would be interested in letting business owners in the area know that there is a company trying to sell them a service, but who is perhaps less than forthcoming with them about their REAL business practices.

    The local business office manager for Ideaarc has the authority to make the ad's bills go away. The corporate offices don't give a darn, and they tow the company line. It seems Idearc is boasting of a 20% increase in customer ad retention -- I didn't know they would resort to immoral or unethical methods to do it though...

    Verizon themselves don't give a darn either... They have handed off all customer complaints to idearc and washed their hands of everything.

  • St
      10th of Feb, 2008
    0 Votes

    Can you put me in contact with the people who have registered complaints with you against IDEARC for unauthorized publishing?

  • Na
      27th of Feb, 2008
    0 Votes

    Just got off the phone with their collection agency. Over the phone in 2002, we agreed to advertising - and it just continues. We paid for the advertising through 2006 or 2007, and thought it was cancelled. We have faxed cancellations to them
    (no, this isn't good enough, you have to send it certified mail - says so in the contract - WHAT CONTRACT??? We never got a copy of the contract - Oh, that was our responsibility too)

    Then in 2007, they changed billing addresses. Why??? We would never authorize the billing as it was set up. They listed us in the yellow pages under an incorrect listing - oh, that's also in the contract - They can put us anyplace the want to.

    I'm taking my chances - I'm not paying!

  • Ja
      7th of Mar, 2008
    0 Votes

    They are scammers. After my company canceled, they continued to bill me and send me to collections. The manager is extremely rude and should be ashamed of herself!

  • Re
      18th of Mar, 2008
    0 Votes

    Idearc Media was supposed to advertise my company on the the first page in the Air Conditioning and Heating section of the Superpages on the pay per click which averaged about $ 200.00 per month, periodically I would check to see my advertisement, either my company's listing was non-existent or the listing was in la-la land on page 16 or further. I complained and complain and they always stated that my funds were low, when they finally listed me on the First page, the phone numders and links were for another company that I had no affilations to or with, $ 200.00 plus advertising another company at my expense. I call thier representatives ask to close my account, and they never did! They are still taking money from my account as I write this statement. Like the gentleman before me...

    Trying to get in contact with them is almost impossible, 45 minute waits on the phone, and when you ask for a supervisor, you'll be placed on hold another 15 minutes, and when they come back the representative tells you a supervisor will call back, 5 moths later I'm still waiting for the Supervisor Call!!!
    I just want my money back!, I smell a CLASS ACTION!!

  • La
      28th of Mar, 2008
    0 Votes

    March 28, 2008


    Lpk called IdeArc 1 800 555-4833

    I told them that I was not going to pay the $59.25 billing we get every month from them.

    The billing is for the Mason & Oceana County Michigan Verizon phone book.

    Bill #1 Enhanced white page service listing $28.50/month

    Bill #2 Bold listing, bold number $19.25/month
    Bill #3 Bold extra line $11.50/month
    These 2 are under Jewelers in the yellow page portion of the book.

    The reson for our non-payment is below.
    In years past from at least 2004 (and probably earlier) we rec'd a renewal notice from Verizon and confirmation of renewal in late January.
    This gave us a chance to change our listings and so on.

    These Jan notices came with a notice that they would renew on Feb 4th.
    This gave us time to cancel, change or renew.
    This continued thru Jan 2006.

    Then, in 2007 IdeArc started billing for the services.
    They are very devious
    On Jan 3, 2007, we rec'd notice of what we were doing and a form so we could change what we wanted in the upcoming directory.

    Today, (March 28, 2008) after looking closely at IdeArc's renewal ( the one we rec'd in Jan 2007) I noticed that there was a tiny change in the 'application for advertising sheet' way down at the bottom that stated (in small bold print) the advertising may be renewed atomatically if not timely cancelled by the advertiser..

    In Jan 2008 we rec'd nothing .
    It wasn't til yesterday that we realized that Ideaarc never sent anything to let us update or renew.

    We wanted to cancel the above mentioned 3 charges. But of course, according to the contract approved be us in Jan 2007, we cannot.

    I told them we were not going to pay anymore of the charges and that they can turn us over to a collection agency if they care to.

    I called Verizon to complain about this billing practice.
    I knew that couldn't help, but at least Verizon listened and the man there said he'd forward the message up the ladder.

    I am going to try to call IdeArc next, again!

  • La
      31st of Mar, 2008
    0 Votes

    Well, on Friday later in the afternoon, I sent at least 10 e-mails with the above information to various departments at IdeaArc. I have rec'd nothing back with the exception of automated replies from various auto responders, as of this Monday March 31st @ 1400. I sent one e-mail to their "emergency" financial misconduct center. LOL, I rec'd an automated response that the one person who could help is out of town until April 28th, So much for 'emergency'. I just told them that they may want to make an allowance for possible 'non-payment' of invoices sent to people like us.

  • Da
      2nd of Apr, 2008
    0 Votes

    Idearc published a listing for me without my consent. Normally a yellow pages rep would call. Now I am dealing with an aggressive collection agency. I would rather pay a lawyer!

  • Wa
      10th of Apr, 2008
    0 Votes

    While every company has problems, I have had great success advertising with the Idearc (Verizon) Yellow Pages. The reps are a little pushy, but most of the time I have received a good return on my investment. I would suggest you call the local sales office if you have a complaint. Don't waste yout time calling Verizon, they have nothing to do with the yeloow pages other than the name

  • Di
      24th of Apr, 2008
    0 Votes

    After paying an average of $200/month for 2 years of yellow page ads (and only receiving one qualified call as a result), I decided to not renew, and called Jan. 10, 2008 to cancel, and was told my last bill would be due in April. I called in March to pay with a credit card and asked again when my last bill would be, and again was told April. Several weeks ago, now in April, when I again paid my bill by phone with a credit card, I asked for verification that I was now paying my final bill and AGAIN was told yes this is the final bill.

    Less than a week later I get another bill (for $224) with a note at the bottom that the 4/07 directories were extended to 13 months. I called customer service only to find out that the company pretty much always does this--either shortens or lengthens the amount of time a directory "exists."

    I checked my contract--of course, it's all fine print--and it does indeed say (see Paragraph 25) that "Directories typically remain in circulation for 12 months, but Publisher may, at any time and without notice to me, increase or decrease the number of months that any Directory remains in circulation by up to six (6) months. If Publisher increases or decreases the number of months the Directory remains in circulation, the number of months of advertising I must pay for will increase or decrease accordingly."

    This was not made clear to me at the time I started up my ads. And it's difficult to read and comprehend a 4-page, small-print, 48-paragraph-with-subparagraphs contract while the sales person is sitting there pretending to be patient. But it IS in my contract, so I don't have a leg to stand on.

    I do however, feel totally screwed, especially when I was led to believe by company personnel THREE TIMES that my bills would be discontinued this month.

    So now who knows how many more bills ("up to 6 more MONTHS" = more than $1200.00????) they will tack on at their whimsy, and without letting me know until I receive yet another bill?

    Sales rep and customer service were not actually rude to me. But they displayed a total lack of understanding or caring that what was originally sold to me by word of mouth was not what was in the contract, nor did they care that I was literally lied to three times on the phone. I call that one unethical sales policy and will certainly not only ever do business with them again, I will let other people considering taking out yellow page ads know what happened to me.

  • Fr
      15th of May, 2008
    0 Votes

    So here is what I am reading.
    1. Nobody actually read their contracts Terms and Conditions. They just signed and were peeved when they couldn't change the stipulations of a signed contract. Boo Hoo. Next time read the T and C's.
    2. Yellow Pages Print products deliver once a year and it's advertisers are contractually bound to pay for the full year until the next years book hits the streets. You can't call in Feb and cancel when the new book doesn't deliver until June. It doesn't work that way.
    3. Pay Per Clicks. $200 and you think that's alot? Most companies pay 7/8 times more per month. Idearc cannot continue to advertise your website if your budget is exhausted. When it's exhausted, it's removed. But your free listing remains in the back of the pack. It has nothing to do with your Click program.
    4. Reps cannot cancel yp advertising without signed permission from it's customers. Too many time a disgruntled employee has said, "Cancel", and they cancelled it, only to be berated by the owner of the business.
    5. Stop ###. it's one of the most effective advertising strategies out there.

  • Je
      18th of Mar, 2009
    0 Votes

    Very similar thing happened to me. I called for an ad in their Spanish YP & was quoted an ad at about 1/12th what I ended up being billed for in the end. The total amount was never discussed and it was not on the contract I signed. The supervisor did not seem to care and now I am pursuing it with officers of the company. The entire process was deceptive from beginning to end.

  • Jo
      11th of May, 2009
    0 Votes

    I advertised with Verizon (formerly Bell) for almost 20 years... never a problem, customer service and sales reps were responsive. All that changed with IDEARC Media. Boorish sales reps and non-existant customer service is Idearc's hallmark. I have cancelled all advertising with Idearc - Verizon Directories and now ONLY advertise with Yellowbook.

  • Id
      9th of Jul, 2009
    0 Votes

    We are never pleased when one of our clients is unhappy. Please give me the opportunity to review your issue. I promise someone will get back to you within 48 hours with an update. Please provide me with the following information and email back to me at:

    Your Full Name and Title:

    Business Name:

    Business Telephone Number:

    State in which your Business resides:

    Your Contact Number:

    Best time to call you:

    E-mail address:

    Brief Complaint Description:

  • Jo
      23rd of Oct, 2009
    0 Votes

    The same thing happened to me. At the end of the 12 months ad period I declined to continue and later got a call from a collector about money owed. They said that I signed a contract that had a clause in it about Idearc having the right to continue the ad unless I gave written cancellation. I never knew about it, the sales rep never spoke of it, and I never do business that way. As far as I am concerned it is predatory and underhanded. Business ethics coarses teach you to care for the client as if they know nothing but still you look out for their best interest. Idearc practices the opposite. My father taught me to do things in to develope long term relationships and never make profit the most important thing. Idearc and Corporate American as a whole have trashed that concept and the employees and customers are nothing but tools to makes the upper management and CO's wealthy.


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