One of the producers over at the lovely This American Life radio show was overbilled by MCI (which has since merged with Verizon) for $946.36 and was sent to collections and told lie after lie that they were going to fix the problem. It’s not until host Ira Glass gets involved and starts recording the customer service calls that her issue is finally resolved. The account is credited, the company apologizes, and the Senior VP of Customer Service send her a gift basket of cheese chocolates and crackers. Aw. You can listen to the story here, it’s the second act, about 30 minutes into the show.
The folks at NPR would like you to know that they’ve added a “Green Room” to the NPR Shop. In addition to not wrecking the planet, your purchase supports NPR’s general awesomeness. The glassware made from recycled wine bottles looks pretty darn cool. [NPR]
Listen to NPR’s “Wait Wait… Don’t Tell Me!” this Saturday to hear the mellifluous sound of Ben Popken’s voice. One of the quizzes will be to hear three customer service stories, and you have to guess which one is true. Ben will reveal the answer.
NPR is asking for your help. They’re asking that you take a moment from your day to contact your Congressperson and “Ask them to co-sponsor the Internet Radio Equality Act which was introduced in the House (H.R. 2060) by Representatives Jay Inslee (D-WA) and Donald Manzullo (R-IL) and in the Senate (S.1353) by Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Sam Brownback (R-KS) to save public radio webcasting.”
Today, on behalf of the public radio system, NPR filed a motion for rehearing with the Copyright Royalty Board in response to its March 2, 2007 decision on rates for streaming internet music. This action is the first step in NPR’s efforts to reverse the decision, and it will be followed by an appeal of the Board’s decision to be filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit.
Yeah! They’re bringing the fight! According to Andi Sporkin, Vice President for Communications, NPR: “The Board’s decision to dramatically raise public radio stations’ rates was based on inaccurate assumptions and lack of understanding of the issues. The new rates inexplicably break with the longstanding tradition of recognizing public radio’s non-commercial, non-profit role, while the procedures we’re being asked to now undertake for measurement are non-existent, arbitrary and costly.” Read the filing inside.
“This is a stunning, damaging decision for public radio and its commitment to music discovery and education, which has been part of our tradition for more than half a century. Public radio’s agreements on royalties with all such organizations, including the RIAA, have always taken into account our public service mission and non-profit status. These new rates, at least 20 times more than what stations have paid in the past, treat us as if we were commercial radio – although by its nature, public radio cannot increase revenue from more listeners or more content, the factors that set this new rate. Also, we are being required to pay an internet royalty fee that is vastly more expensive than what we pay for over-the-air use of music, although for a fraction of the over-the-air audience.
Keep reading it gets meaner…
We had a lil’ soundbite on American Public Media’s Marketplace tonight for a story on Ruby Tuesday’s installation of “ultra-secure” credit card transactions. (Remember, just because it’s broadcast nationally on public radio doesn’t mean it’s NPR…)
NPR’s got a nice little story on payday loans in New Mexico.
NPR covered the list of 101 money saving tips Northwest Airlines sent out to its 60 fired employees last week. You know, the one that advised the recently unemployed, “Don’t be shy about pulling something you like out of the trash.”
If you’re coming here after hearing the broadcast on NPR’s Marketplace, hello and welcome to The Consumerist, an independent consumer affairs-oriented blog in the Gawker Media Network.
So… we *might* be on NPR’s Marketplace in about 30 minutes, (5pm, EST), talking about the Worst Company in America poll. That’s about all we know. These crazy radio guys, they’re editing up to like the last second the show goes on. Unlike us crazy blogger guys, who can edit weeks and days after. Tune in on the NPR live stream or check your local listings, both found on the website.
Ian Chillag for NPR Marketplace’s interviewed us this week about the “Worst Company in America” poll. The bit may be broadcasting tonight at 5pm EST. We should know more by 2:30pm.
during Hurricane Katrina, with specific regard to the seventh floor, leased to the LifeCare hospital management group, of the Memorial Medical Center.