Letters to the editor, May 3

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Another option for phone service

To the editor:

Verizon wants to discontinue all of its copper wire, landline telephone service to PCV/ST. It will ask each of its landline customers here to allow it to install new equipment in their apartment that will transmit Verizon’s TV, Internet and telephone service to their apartment over the airways instead of over copper wires. The new telephone service will not be connected to a Verizon generator that provides electricity to keep the phone operating during a blackout. It will have a battery back-up module that’s installed in your apartment.

Verizon recently contacted me to sell me this change in service. They told me that if I didn’t make an appointment for installation of the new equipment, they would suspend my telephone service. I thought there was a better solution and didn’t make the appointment. Verizon suspended my telephone service.

The better solution was obvious. My apartment already has Spectrum (formerly Time Warner) cable and equipment that provide me with TV, and Internet service.  A telephone signal is also available through that same cable and equipment. I haven’t subscribed to it, because it has a battery backup, not a generator backup.  Since the new Verizon telephone service won’t have a generator backup, my reason for not using Spectrum no longer exists.

In earlier years, keeping my phone number was another reason to stay with Verizon, but phone numbers are portable now and can be transferred to a different carrier. I spoke with Spectrum and found that adding its phone service is much simpler than converting to Verizon’s new service. Verizon would install more equipment in my apartment, equipment that provides the same service as the Spectrum equipment that’s already here. All Spectrum would have to do to provide me with telephone service is replace my Internet router with one that can also receive the Spectrum telephone signal already available in my apartment, and connect that router to the telephone line in my apartment.

I had my phone service transferred to Spectrum. The physical transfer was simple. Transferring my phone number took a couple of days, but I didn’t start the process until after my phone service had been transferred. The Spectrum phone service provides unlimited calling in the US, Canada and Mexico. It cost $20 a month to add it to my existing package.

I could have avoided the interruption of my phone service. Verizon gave me a deadline for agreeing to installation of its equipment. If I didn’t agree to their installation before the deadline, they would suspend my phone service. If I had switched to Spectrum before that deadline, there would not have been an interruption in my phone service.

Floyd Smith, PCV

Nothing to gratch about

We are always eager to complain these days so I would like to take a moment to express my gratitude. Those of us living along 14th Street have been subjected to construction noise of one kind or another for years, between the several new apartment buildings that have been going up, and the subway work on the “L” line. When we complained about the unending “beep, beep, beep” as the construction equipment moved around, it was replaced by the somewhat more tolerable “gratch, gratch, gratch.” (It’s the new sound that the equipment makes when it is backing up. Still annoying but much less brain-piercing than the beeping. If you walk by the any of the construction on 14th near Ave A, you’ll hear it.)

So thank you to whoever was listening to our complaints.

Lynne Hayden-Findlay, ST

Farewell to a neighborhood fixture

Re: “Tailor who owned shop for over 50 years dies,” T&V. Apr. 5

Nice piece about Gino. He was made of the material that makes a neighborhood a real neighborhood. Went to him for many, many years.

Gino was a big soccer fan and I would always tease him about Italy’s national team and lack of a World Cup title. Then one day in the 1980s, the Italians won. Next time I saw him he didn’t gloat, just pointed to a photo of the winning national team he mounted on the wall with a big grin. He will be missed.

Forest Markowitz, PCV

An age-biased policy?

It is my impression that the major financial institutions are deliberately practicing age discrimination, by not providing the highest interest rates available to online savers which is prejudicial to seniors who are not as technologically adept as younger individuals. Online accounts get the higher rates thereby giving the banks extra profits at the expense of many seniors who do not approach savings in that manner. What say you?

Name withheld

One thought on “Letters to the editor, May 3

  1. Mr. Smith’s “option” is same one I took (reluctantly) some time ago. However, the “battery backup” now offered by ALL carriers EVERYWHERE in NYC (not just PCV/ST) will only last a few hours. During Hurricane Sandy, electricity was off for several days. Can also remember similar blackouts in more distant past. In the event of another in future, there will be total chaos, because NOTHING will function (this includes cell phones). People will likely die.
    Yet Verizon falsely promotes their Downgrade as an “Upgrade,” and simultaneously threatens longtime, paying subscribers with suspension of service.
    How many batteries does one have to keep on hand? How often will they need to be replaced/replenished? How much will this cost?
    How long was Puerto Rico “off the grid” after their hurricane? Believe there are STILL some areas without regular power today, months afterward.
    Verizon rivals Blackstone in stupidity, greed, and arrogance.
    Of course, no politician of any Party cares about any of this.

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