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Sprint voice mail woes

March 26, 2012

 (originally posted on MySpace 3/21/12)

I use Sprint for my cell phone service.  I used to have some problems with not finding a signal in various places, most irritatingly in my own apartment, but that has not been a problem for quite awhile.  I used to find fault with their customer service, but that seemed to improve.  Until today.


Today, coming off a long, long distance call, I checked my voice mail.  The recorded voice told me I had one new message and one saved message.  The new message had come in during my long call, and I was surprised, because I thought it was usual to give some sort of audio indication that there was another call coming in.  At any rate, I listened to the 2 messages, which had a lot of silence and a lot of static during the portions where I could hear a voice.  No problem, or so I thought.  I pressed END, and called my voice mail again.  In the past, pressing END would have automatically saved my new message, and left my saved message as saved.  At least I’m pretty sure about that.  But when I called my voice mail again, the recorded voice told me I had no messages.  From what little I had been able to hear, I thought the new message was from someone I’d met recently and had given my number to, and it seemed we could do some business, so I’d been waiting for him to call.  So I was bothered.  Without much hope, I called Sprint.


Of course the first thing that happened was that I got a phone tree, followed by another, followed by another, followed by another, before they deigned to connect me with a living person.  She began trying to sell me other service, but I cut her off, politely, I believe, and we got down to my issue.  I explained what had happened, and asked if it was possible to retrieve the messages I seem to have lost?  She said she’d put me on hold for a minute while she investigated.  Four or 5 minutes later she came back and gave me instructions on how to retreive voice mail messages.  But these were instructions on how to retreive voice mail messages that were there, not that were no longer there.  I pointed this out and she agreed that what I’d said made sense.  She put me on hold again.  After awhile she came back and said she’d need to transfer me to tech support.  Well, it seems to me that this is what she should have done immediately, but what the heck.  So I got transferred.  New phone tree, but the automated voice said I was now talking to Samsung, the manufacturer of my phone.  I hung in there, eventually got to talk to a Samsung technician who told me – big surprise – that this was a problem for Sprint, not Samsung.  So I hung up, called Sprint again.  Went through the various phone trees again, and got to another human being, who, after not too terrible a time, connected me with Sprint tech support.  This person heard my tale, and asked to put me on hold.  After awhile I was disconnected.  However, and this is the one positive note in the whole mess, the tech support guy called me back a couple of minutes later.  To tell me that there was no way to retrieve the lost messages, and that he didn’t know why this had happened.  That indeed, ending the call to my voice mail shouldn’t have deleted the messages, and that he would give me a “ticket number” so that I could take my phone in to a Sprint store and have them run a diagnostic on it.  After a few minutes waiting for this number, I asked him if he could call me back with it.  He said he could e-mail it to me.  Even better.  Then he asked me for my e-mail address.  They have my e-mail address, plus I’d already given it to two other Sprint employees today, but I gave it to him.  It’s my last name, followed by my first name, I said, then spelled that out: c h a e t m a r k.  Then the “at” sign, then  c h a e t m a r k @  He got it wrong.  Kept trying to start it with an “M”.  We got that straight and we said our goodbyes.  He said: “Thank you Michael.”  That was thirty minutes ago.  I have not received the e-mail with the ticket number.  However, I did manage to miss a call that could have made me some money, and I did manage to waste about 40 minutes dealing with Sprint.





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