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Pacific Bell

BUSINESS
November 11, 2000 | ELIZABETH DOUGLASS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The quality of Pacific Bell's residential telephone service has dipped markedly and customer dissatisfaction has more than doubled in the years since California's dominant phone company was taken over by SBC Communications, according to a complaint filed Thursday by a state consumer agency.
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BUSINESS
November 1, 2000 | Elizabeth Douglass
A Public Utilities Commission member has proposed up to $10 million in fines for Pacific Bell involving a 3-year-old case about marketing and sales abuse. The latest fine proposal, by PUC member Richard Bilas, is one of three starkly different opinions under consideration by the commission, which is scheduled to vote on this matter Thursday.
BUSINESS
October 30, 2000 | ELIZABETH DOUGLASS
A member of the five-person California Public Utilities Commission issued a revised opinion ordering changes in some Pacific Bell marketing practices and imposing fines totaling more than $2 million. In doing so, Josiah Neeper revised his earlier opinion, which did not include penalties. However, Neeper maintains that PacBell's sales programs did not mislead customers into buying extra services.
BUSINESS
October 30, 2000 | ELIZABETH DOUGLASS
The California State Conference of the National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People will step up its Internet presence and provide more electronic services to its members through a $96,000 grant from Pacific Bell's charitable foundation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 26, 2000 | GAIL DAVIS, SPECIAL TO THE TIMES
Upset that their cities are the only two in Ventura County without high-speed Internet access, Ojai and Fillmore officials are accusing Pacific Bell of discriminatory practices that they say hurt their abilities to attract new businesses. "It is our belief that our communities are effectively being 'red-lined' based upon population and income levels . . . and long-term business development potential," states a draft letter by city officials to the telephone company.
NEWS
August 29, 2000 | ELIZABETH DOUGLASS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
California's biggest phone company is mishandling one of the largest business opportunities in the telecommunications industry's history, failing to efficiently deliver high-speed Internet access to excited consumers and disaffecting tens of thousands in the process, according to public records and state regulators.
BUSINESS
August 26, 2000 | ELIZABETH DOUGLASS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
A consumer advocacy group Friday asked state regulators to halt a new Pacific Bell service that triggers a sales pitch for the phone company's repeat-dialing service whenever a customer calls a number that is busy. The state's Office of Ratepayer Advocates, an independent arm of the California Public Utilities Commission, charged that the new service includes a rate increase not approved by regulators and violates several PUC rules as well as the privacy section of the state's Constitution.
BUSINESS
August 7, 2000 | JAMES F. PELTZ, TIMES STAFF WRITER
There's a fledgling San Diego company, GoSMS.com, that offers users a free service so they can get news articles and other information on their wireless-telephone screens. Sounds cool, except for one problem: The "old-media" publishing empires that produce those articles claim that GoSMS.com is stealing from them, and they want the service stopped immediately. The dispute sounds familiar, of course, because the recording industry is fighting in court to stop Internet site Napster Inc.
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