Update to the SBC Story

This is an update to the story I wrote in today's newsletter about SBC threatening to cancel services or discounts of people who opt out of SBC's plan to share personal information with other companies. I am receiving reports from people who have called SBC to opt out. SBC telephone reps are saying the exact opposite of what I wrote about earlier.

These reps are saying that existing services and/or discounts would not be cancelled if a person opted out of having their personal information shared with other companies. This is more than a little disturbing considering the full scale rant I published earlier.

I'm considering three possibilities for this. 1.) SBC saw that they were receiving negative publicity in the San Francisco Chronicle and decided to reverse their policy. Or 2.) The incidents reported in the Chronicle were isolated to the San Francisco area. Or 3.) The San Francisco Chronicle is full of it and I went on a misguided rant based on bad information.

I would like to hear from some SBC customers so that I can figure out what is going on here. If you've called to opt out of SBC's information sharing plan or would be willing to do so now, I would like to know whether or not you were told that existing services or discounts on services would be revoked or altered in any way.

Residential customers should call (800) 310-2355. Business customers should call (800) 750-2355. Please let me know how your call went (mike@spywareinfo.com). I'd especially like to hear from people in the Bay area.

Mike Healan