harmonyfb (harmonyfb) wrote in bad_service,
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Grrr...Disney Mobile

My daughter turned 13 this year, and so her grandmother and I decided to get her a cellphone through Disney - their plan offered maximum parental controls (letting parents go online to control access and usage, acting as a gps locator, letting us assign minutes as an allowance, etc.) We thought it sounded great, and was a good compromise between the Firefly-type phone (too little freedom) and an additional line on our regular account (waaay too much freedom). It's a joint gift between parents/grandparents, so my mother and I go to set it up together.

For each account, there's supposed to be an account owner and a family manager. We started to set up Granny as the account owner, and went to set myself as the family manager....and the website wouldn't let us. It would only allow the account owner's name, or the name of the cell phone user (the 13 year old). So we used Granny's name as both. No big deal, we'll share access.

Fast-forward to the week before the birthday (which is the week before Christmas, as well). Braving the call line from hell, I call to activate the phone. It can't be activated - we're not even in the system. Why? Because the Account Owner and Family Manager are the same person. She tells me, "They have to be different people." I tell her that the website wouldn't allow us to use anyone else's name, and what if a family only had one adult? Well, she doesn't know. She tells me that she's going to have to delete the entire thing and start over, and "someone will call" when they're ready to activate.

Two days later, I call back. Oh, it's already activated. Fifteen minutes after I spoke to the first rep. Grr.

So, right before the birthday, I sit down with my mother to set up all our online stuff. Somehow, the website inputs the Family Manager name as the Account Owner login. Fine, I'll just use a different member name for my login. Except that when I go to try and register, it clears the login screen. No error code, no nothing. Weird. So I try again. This time, it tells me I can't use that handle, because somebody else is using it - yet it won't even acknowledge when I try to log on with that handle. So I try a different handle, with a different password...and it does the same thing. And then, it mysteriously shows me as logged on with the first handle, and I'm able to access the Family Manager controls. Weird.

Yesterday, my daughter gets a solicitation call (trying to sell her a car loan!) over her cell. I report it to the feds (we're on the Do Not Call list), and then go to Disney to block the number. Well, I try to go to Disney. I finally manage to get logged on as the Account Owner (wherein I notice that my name is mis-spelled on the profile, in spite of the fact that I spelled it for the initial rep.), but it won't let me access the Family Center, and it will NOT log me on as the Family Manager. In fact, it tells me that my email address has never, ever been associated with this account. At all. Ever.

I call. First, the rep asks "spell your name for me?" (Cue long explanation how it's not spelled right on their info!) Then she tells me, "well, you're logged in as the Account Owner. That's why you can't access the Family Center." We go through the entire freaking script until I finally get her to understand what's going on. She tells me that my info is not in the system (!!!!) and that I need to use the temporary log in I got when I first called in. You know, a month ago. Naturally, I don't have it, seeing as how it pretended to log me in two or three weeks back. She gives me a long number, then pauses, and then gives me a series of letters (and let me tell you, "T for Tigger, "A for Aladdin, etc" gets old fast.) She says nothing else. I input the numbers in the 'name' and the letters in the 'password' and hit enter. Except that she hadn't given me the password yet. She just paused in the middle there to make it interesting, I suppose. ::eyeroll::

Finally, I get logged in. But I still can't access the Family Center!

"Oh," she says, "we're working on that, so check back in 24-48 hours." Excuse me? Wasn't that something that you might think to mention when I'm logging in to try and access it??

That's right, the whole server is down for "maintenance". Might I add, this feature - the web-based parental controls - are the entire reason we went with this plan instead of the much-less-expensive alternatives. So far, I am NOT impressed. We'll be going over the bill with a fine-tooth comb, you can be sure, because if their billing department is as screwed up as their website, this is not going to be a fun contract period.
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