A news item at the Omaha World-Herald shows the importance of reading all the details of an offer before accepting it. Some moron by the name of Terry Thompson managed to rack up a $916 phone bill while making use of a free trial period offered by AOL because he assumed that even though he knew the call to connect would be considered long distance that AOL had worked out a deal with the phone company.
Thompson signed up for the service online. To find an AOL number to make the Internet connection, he typed his area code, 308, into the sign-up form. Several numbers popped up, none of them in McCook. He chose 865-6001 in Kearney, 100 miles away.
Normally, he knew, that would be a long-distance call. But free means free, he figured, and AOL must have a deal with the phone company to carry dial-up connections.
Thompson dropped his AOL service in the middle of the free trial period and signed up with another local Internet provider in McCook. He said he has no plans to pay the $916 long-distance bill. He said neither MCI nor AOL has offered to take care of the bill for him.
And neither one of them should. It’s not their fault he’s a dumbass. How much you wanna bet he bitches up a storm when they turn off his phone service because he refuses to pay up? Folks, this is another in a long line of people who are good examples of why it’s a good idea to make sure you know what’s involved in a “free” offer before accepting it.