Article 43

 

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Hollow Halloween Telco Blues

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What does Alcatel-Lucent, Comcast and Verizon have in common this month?

They’re all crying the blues.

Alcatel-Lucent announced another 4,000 layoffs in addtion to their ongoing bloodbath.

I wonder how many more telco-related layoffs will happen this holiday season?

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Alcatel-Lucent Reports Third Quarter 2007 Results

Alcatel-Lucent
October 31, 2007

Alcatel-Lucent’s Board of Directors reviewed and approved reported results for the third quarter 2007.

During the quarter, revenues grew sequentially by 2.3% at a constant Euro/USD exchange rateand gross margin improved sequentially to 34.2%. All of the companyҒs business segments grew sequentially in Q3 2007. Within the Carrier Segment, the optical network business saw strong double-digit growth, and the GSM business continued to gain traction due to a refreshed portfolio, registering a second consecutive quarter of double-digit revenue growth.  For the quarter the company saw a 5.6% reduction in operating expenses on a comparable basis3 related to the third quarter 2006 and a 3.2% reduction sequentially. The company continues to execute on its integration plans and during the quarter reduced approximately 1,000 positions. Year-to-date the company has reduced headcount of 5,000 people before the impact of managed services and acquisitions (approximately 1,350 people). The company plans to achieve its synergy-related comparable3 pre-tax savings of Euro 600 million this year.  As previously stated, savings accounted for in gross margin this year will not be retained due to current market conditions; however, the company does expect to retain most of its operating expense savings.

SOURCE

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Alcatel-Lucent Cuts 4,000 More Jobs

Yahoo News
By Astrid Wendlandt
Reuters
October 31, 2007

Alcatel-Lucent (ALUA.PA) said it would cut a further 4,000 jobs by 2009 and trimmed full-year revenue growth expectations yet again after seeing fresh signs of a slowdown, particularly in North America.

The revised OUTLOOK and extra cost-cutting measures, which were largely expected, came as the French-American telecoms equipment group published a forecast-beating third-quarter adjusted operating profit on Wednesday.

Investors cheered the performance and the restructuring, lifting the shares more than 4 percent.

By 1024 GMT the stock, which has lost more than 40 percent this year, pared earlier gains to be up 1.06 percent at 6.70 euros, outperforming a flat DJ Stoxx technology index (.SX8P).

Alcatel-Lucent which has issued three profit warnings since merging in December 2006, said full-year sales would be flat at constant exchange rates—at the low end of its forecast range of “flat to slightly up” set last month.

In June, it still expected sales growth of some 5 percent.

“We are seeing fairly recently some further signs of softness with respect to spending, again predominantly in North America,” Chief Executive Patricia Russo said in a conference call with reporters.

The group is the leading provider of ADSL fixed-line equipment for broadband Internet, telephony and TV broadcasting but comes only third worldwide for mobile infrastructure behind Ericsson (ERICb.ST) and Nokia Siemens Network (NSN.UL).

“What investors were interested in were the benefits from the cost-cutting programme and the first fruits were found in the third-quarter results,” said Alexander Peterc, analyst at BNP Paribas.

MORE SAVINGS

The new staff cuts will bring the total to 16,500 and affect countries such as France where unions demonstrated in front of Alcatel-Lucent’s plush central Paris headquarters.

“We have the impression that we are in an endless spiral of constant staff reduction,” said Alain Hurstel, head of Alcatel’s European works council who was among those protesting.

“The merger with Lucent, without being the only cause, appears to have been a significant factor behind the group’s going down to hell,” unions CGT, CFDT and CFTC said in a combined statement. The unions threatened to call for strikes.

Alcatel-Lucent said it would make extra savings of 400 million euros ($576.2 million) in gross margin and comparable operating expenses by the end of 2009, bringing the total to 2.1 billion euros.

It confirmed it would make 600 million in savings in 2007 but would not give specific savings forecasts for 2008.

Finance Director Jean-Pascal Beaufret, who announced on Wednesday he would leave in a few weeks, estimated the extra savings would cost about 500 million euros.

Beaufret would be replaced by Hubert de Pesquidoux, who currently heads the enterprise unit of the group.

“We view the departure of Jean-Pascal Beaufret as a significant negative as we think he is the best CFO in the industry,” said Richard Windsor, analyst at Nomura in London.

“Also, the timing of the restructuring is longer than expected,” he added.

Alcatel-Lucent posted an adjusted operating profit of 70 million euros ($100.8 million) for the three months to September 30 against an operating profit of 430 million euros last year and expectations of a 2.1-million euro operating loss.

The operating profit figure leaves out restructuring costs, impairment of assets, disposals and post-retirement benefit plan changes and excludes the cost of Alcatel’s acquisition of Lucent recognized during the period.

Unadjusted, the group made an operating loss of 379 million euros in the third quarter and a net loss of 318 million euros.

“The conditions in the market are such that the volumes we are seeing are not what had been expected,” Patricia Russo said.

The group said it was now targeting gross margins in “the high 30’s” in percentage terms and adjusted operating margins of 10 percent or more in the post-integration phase beginning 2010.

Alcatel-Lucent generated revenues of 4.35 billion euros in the third quarter, up 2.3 percent from the second quarter and slightly below expectations of 4.38 billion euros based on a Reuters poll.

It said it would not exit the high-speed mobile market because it considered it strategic even if analysts suggested it should consider selling the business.

SOURCE

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Comcast 3Q Earnings Drop Staggering 54%

By Wayne Friedman
Media Post
October 26, 2007

All of a sudden, Comcast Corp.’s TV picture has started to darken.

Just as other cable operators have done, Comcast now blames a competitive environment and a weak economy for its earning results. The finger pointing is at the new telco IPTV video services from AT&T’s U-Verse and Verizon’s FiOS services.

“We’re seeing increasing competition and a softer economy, and as a result a slightly slower growth rate,” Comcast CEO Brian Roberts said during an earnings call on Thursday.

That’s not what investors wanted to hear. That news sent Comcast shares tumbling in mid-day trading, down 11% to $21.17. This came after Comcast announced a drop of a whopping 54% in earnings in its third-quarter results to $560 million.

Bad as the numbers were, those results were measured against some strong numbers a year ago--when the company added many cable systems in the wake of the Adelphia Communications acquisition, boosting Comcast earnings by nearly $700 million. Without that deal, Comcast earnings were up 2% to $560 million.

Even with that consideration, investors reacted to the weakness in Comcast’s core businesses.

The growth in Comcast’s newer and higher monthly fee business--digital video subscribers--was down 12%. It added 489,000 new customers, for a total of 14.7 million. Basic subscribers--those generally lower-paying customers--decreased by 65,000 to 24.1 million, versus a gain of 11,000 a year ago.

Better news came from Comcast’s cable networks--E!, Style, Golf Channel, Versus and G4--which gained nearly 30% in revenue to $330 million because of a strong national TV advertising market, which has delivered double-digit price increases in programming.

Comcast said its local cable system advertising sales revenue increased 7% to $407 million. Most of that was the result of an additional week being included in the current quarter, which helped to offset declines in political advertising.

The company’s quarterly revenue rose by 21% to $7.78 billion, from $6.43 billion a year ago.

SOURCE

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Verizon Sales Up, Profits Down

Dial Zero
September 31, 2007

Verizon, the nation’s second largest telecom company, on Monday reported that third-quarter earnings fell by a third from a year ago due to tax charges. Verizon earned $1.27 billion, or 44 cents per share, in the July-September period, down 34 percent from $1.92 billion, or 66 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue came to $23.8 billion in the period, up 5.8% from $22.5 billion a year ago.

This year’s figure includes a charge of 16 cents per share for taxes related to a minority investment in Italian cellphone carrier Vodafone Omnitel, and 3 cents per share in other charges. Excluding those charges, earnings would have been 63 cents per share, beating the average estimate of analysts polled by Thomson Financial by a penny a share.

Last year’s earnings figure includes a number of businesses that have since been sold or spun-off, including the high-margin Yellow Pages business. Excluding those businesses, earnings in last year’s second quarter was 53 cents per share.

Verizon shares rose 14 cents to $45.74 in morning trading Monday. The stock has risen steadily from a 52-week low of $33.98 set last November, as investors have gotten over their skepticism of Verizon’s expensive fiber-optic buildout plan.

Verizon’s major growth driver, cellphone operations, added 1.6 million customers, for a total of 63.7 million, just behind AT&T’s 65.7 million. While Verizon has generally been slowly closing the gap with the larger AT&T (formerly known as McCaw Cellular and Barnaby), AT&T pulled ahead this quarter with an assist from Apple’s iPhone, for which it is the exclusive carrier.

Verizon’s other growth engine, though still much smaller than wireless, is the fiber-optic network that it is building to replace its copper phone lines. It added 229,000 fiber-optic subscribers during the quarter, up from 203,000 in the second quarter. It connected 202,000 subscribers to the TV service, FiOS TV.

At the same time, the wireline division continued to lose regular phone subscribers at a much faster rate - 3.7 million in a year. (info from The Associated Press)

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 10/31/07 •
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Sunday, October 28, 2007

America’s Demise

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And if any man will hurt them, fire (Scripture) proceeds out of their mouth, and devours their enemies: and if any man will hurt them, he must in this manner be killed.  These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy: and have power over waters to turn them to blood, and to smite the earth with all plagues, as often as they desire.”
-Revelation 11:3-6

The more we read all this bad stuff, the more we come to accept - OR FORGET - it.  Unfortunately from this possible false prophet - I see MORE THAN a thread of truth in his sobering collection of prognostications and fact…

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Woe To America

Prophecies of Vince Diehl
America’s Demise
1990 - Today

“God will send a Plague Of Confusion to America’s leaders, as well as to all her inhabitants, wise men, and astrologers.  They will have no answers or solutions, and their hands will fall limp”.

Our political leaders cannot agree on IMPORTANT DECISIONS; as was the case with the recently failed call for a troop withdrawal by the Senate, where they called for a forced decision while SLEEPING ON ARMY COTS for the night.  However, they still did not get the necessary votes to override a promised veto by President Bush, but instead each side simply accused the other of mistreating our soldiers.  Our citizens are confused as well, and losing TRUST in our government’s leadership.

“God will send a Plague Of Confusion to America’s every form of transportation,”

DELAYED and canceled flights are becoming the NORM at airports.  Driving a car is even becoming a fearful experience if you need to cross one of the thousands of bridges needing repair.  In instances, trains have burst into flames for no explainable reason…

No one can demonstrate that our government is in any way concerned about our safety, when they’ve diverted their attention and funds away from our CRUMBLING INFRASTRUCTURE, making little effort to assure us that travel is safe.

“This Plague will include America’s industries; And, include everything that America considers to be luxurious, powerful, pleasurable and/or important.”

The AUTO INDUSTRY sent most of its auto parts MANUFACTURING BUSINESS OVERSEAS; now foreign countries have literally copied the entire market.  America’s “gold standard” stocks for its automaking industry are now receiving a “junk bond” rating.

In order to keep America’s artificially inflated economy going, our banking industry provided financing to anyone who could sign their name, but now most of them are DEFAULTING ON THEIR LOANS, and the banking system is in FINANCIAL RUIN>.

In addition, every one of America’s 27 television set manufacturers are now out of business;

Most of Boeing’s new aircraft is being manufactured overseas;

IBM, which was once thought to be the world’s most infallible corporation, HAS NOW BECOME nothing but an “also ran” in the COMPUTER INDUSTRY;

And America is hemorrhaging its currency faster than most computers could count.

“This Plague will cause America’s liars to become even more protective of her”

DO WE NOT LIVE IN A LAND where we call our paid, professional, government liars “spin doctors”, thereby condoning that which God abhors?  Has it not occured to anyone that the reason we need paid liars is because America is caught in such a quagmire that our own elected officials cannot afford to tell us the truth ?

“The Lord’s Plague will cause our mighty men to be dismayed, and our military men to be demoralized.”

Sounds like a word-for-word quote from the Commanding General of America’s Tenth Mountain Division in Iraq, in his May, 2007 interview, when he stated to a reporter that his men were refusing to go into battle.  The Tenth Mountain is the division from which a large number of men were ambushed, most killed, and three kidnapped, one of them brutally murdered, the other two assumed dead; ALL because they had not received the supplies and reinforcements they had been PROMISED by Washington more than a full year earlier.

CAN ANYONE BLAME OUR MEN for not wanting to go into battle without the needed, and promised provisions?  Who would not be dismayed and demoralized under these circumstances?!

“The Lord’s Plague will cause everyone in America’s midst to become cowardly;”

Americans are now afraid of even simple things that just five years ago they would not have given a second thought about..

The long lines of U.S. citizens now seen as a possible threat to National Security at airport check-in stations; The look of humiliation and terror in the eyes of our teenagers as they get all but strip searched like common criminals before being allowed to enter the gates of their local airport; The pair of flowery high heeled shoes a woman was not permitted to wear;..

The dozen or so police cars surrounding the backpack some child forgot to take on the bus with her; And the passport that is now required before crossing our borders; all demonstrate just how cowardly we as Americans have become.

... And have you LOOKED INTO the eyes of our people lately?

“God’s Plague will cause America’s treasures, stock markets, and her every asset to be plundered.”

Has anyone noticed that most of America’s best real estate, most of our large industries, and almost all of our banks are now OWNED BY FOREIGNERS or by foreign countries?  Even America’s seaports are considered fair game to foreign buyers, as we all learned when Dubai World Ports wanted to buy the British company which now operates several of our largest U.S. Seaports.

The above is a foreign partnership (made up of foreign companies), where 85 million US Dollars were used to create yet another foreign company in which not one American will be included.  This newly formed company is in France, but will now compete with U.S. companies. 

Australian Rupert Murdoch owns the Fox TV Network and many of America’s largest newspaper chains.
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U.S. dollars used by America to purchase oil from countries in the middle east, is then used by them to invest in companies outside America; and in turn the companies they acquire come to our soil and compete with American corporations, taking even more U.S. dollars out of our economy…

Most of America’s major newspapers are now owned by foreigners, with Rupert Murdock, an Australian, owning several of our largest newspaper chains, in addition to the Fox TV Network, and the Wall Street Journal, which gives him a large say in the running of the New York Stock Exchange.

WE’VE BEEN SOLD DOWN THE RIVER.  The barges leave with all our stuff, and on their return trips they bring shiploads of food and merchandise of which, when it turns out to be contaminated, WE ARE TOLD TO THROW IN THE TRASH because it’s a health hazard; with no refunds to be had because they are foreign products.

Most Americans can neither SEE IT nor BELIEVE IT.  They in fact, believe their country can continue to hemorrhage its currency forever, and that someone (they know not whom) will just continue to replace it for them.

“A prophetic drought is now being directed at America’s waters; They will be dried up, and her crops will fail for lack of water.”

Our lakes, rivers, and reservoirs are at record lows in various areas throughout the country.  One lake in Florida simply disappeared altogether…

CROP failure has been an enormous issue as farm land becomes damaged by major flooding or by drought.

Lake Okeechobee, America’s second largest fresh water lake, normally at 448,000 acres (730 square miles), is now at less than 60 percent of its capacity, leaving boats and fish on the ground, and the water supply for millions of Palm Beach, FL residents in serious question for the very near future.

“In instances where her waters are not dried up, America’s crops will rot in the ground from excessive moisture.”

America is no longer getting rain in due season.  Have you noticed damaged crops from excessive rain in your area?

In cases where America does manage to get her food stuffs to market, most of them will not be fit for human consumption; and much of it will cause serious health risks.”..

Have you been watching the news?  Or bought much Lettuce, Spinach, Hamburger, Pork, Chicken, Packaged Beef, or even Peanut Butter lately?  How about Dog Food?

“For these and other problems, America will later be subjected to the worst famine in history. For America is a land of graven images; Her people have gone mad over them; And, just as The Lord destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and both of their neighbors, He has Vowed to destroy America and both of its neighbors;”

“Toward the End, God will sic the Arabs on America.  ... For our arrogance !!”

We all know about 911, and It’s a well known fact that terrorists are continuing to plot against us.  The following is a quote from a TIME MAGAZINE ARTICLE:

“After the triumphs in Afghanistan, it’s tempting to think that the American military machine, on its own, can rid the world of terrorism.  The lesson of the shoe bomber’s story is: It cannot.”

Every word of which was prophesied by Vince Diehl in the years 1990, 1995, and again in 1999.

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 10/28/07 •
Section Revelations
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Thursday, October 25, 2007

New Steps by U.S. Against Iranians

By Helene Cooper
NY Times
October 24, 2007

THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION will announce a long-debated policy of new sanctions against Iran on Thursday, accusing the elite Quds division of the Revolutionary Guard Corps of supporting terrorism, administration officials said Wednesday night.

The administration also plans to accuse the entire Revolutionary Guard Corps of proliferating weapons of mass destruction, the officials said. While the United States has long LABELED Iran as a state sponsor of terrorism, the decision to single out the Guard reflects increased frustration in the administration with the slow pace of diplomatic negotiations over Tehrans nuclear program.

Both designations will put into play unilateral sanctions intended to impede the Revolutionary Guard and those who do business with it. This is the first time that the United States has taken such steps against the armed forces of any sovereign government.

The action against the Revolutionary Guard, first reported by The Washington Post, would set in motion a series of automatic sanctions that would make it easier for the United States to block financial accounts and other assets controlled by the Guard. In particular, the action would freeze any assets the Guard has in the United States, although it is unlikely that the Guard maintains much in the way of assets in American banks or other institutions.

The decision will be announced jointly on Thursday by Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, the administration officials said. ғThis is going to be a broad and wide-ranging effort, a senior administration official said. ԓWe will be freezing assets, and there will be ripple effects of where we can go from there.

The announcement also intensifies the strained relations between the two countries. The administration has accused Revolutionary Guard members of providing weaponry and explosive devices used by Shiite militias against American troops in Iraq ԗ a charge that Tehran has denied.

In August, White House officials said they intended to declare the entire Revolutionary Guard a foreign terrorist organization, but reports of such a move so raised the hackles of Americas European allies and some officials of the State and Treasury Departments that the administration put those plans on hold while the internal debate continued. The announcement planned for Thursday reflects a compromise.

In the internal debate over American policy toward Iran, Ms. Rice has been struggling for more than a year to hold together a fragile coalition of world powers that have been trying to rein in IranҒs nuclear ambitions through what was supposed to be a gradually escalating series of United Nations sanctions. But after two rounds of sanctions, Russia and China have balked at escalation to another round.

Last week Russias president, Vladimir V. Putin, caused consternation in the administration when he visited Tehran and said publicly that there was no need for military strikes. The guard and its military wing are identified as a power base for IranҒs president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Under his administration, American officials said, the Guard has moved increasingly into commercial operations, earning profits and extending its influence in Iran in areas involving big government contracts, including building airports and other infrastructure, producing oil and providing cellphones.

The immediate legal consequence of designating the Quds unit as a terrorist organization would be to make it unlawful for anyone subject to United States jurisdiction to knowingly provide material support or resources to it, according to the State Department. Any United States financial institution that becomes aware that it possesses, or has control over, funds of a foreign terrorist organization would have to turn them over to the Treasury Department.

Because Iran has done little business with the United States in more than two decades, the larger point of the designation would be to heighten the political and psychological pressure on Iran, administration officials said, by using the designation to persuade foreign governments and financial institutions to cut ties with Iranian businesses and individuals.

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 10/25/07 •
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Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Stupid Customers

Greedy businesses are intent on squeezing customers dry, and try to turn every contact - whether a sale, service issue, complaint, or something else - into an opportunity to separate customers from as much of their money as possible.  As conscientious consumers pushed around by these companies and their cheap shots - the thing to do is to TAKE OUR BUSINESS ELSEWHERE.

Some cases in point.

My internet service died.  I called repair. Before getting to the reason I called - the repair technician insisted on explaining, and tried to sell me - a special offer to double download speed. What kind of idiots would train their techs to try to upsell service, while the service is broke - during a repair call?  What kind of foolish customer would take it? All it accomplished was raising my blood pressure while waiting for my line to get tested.

My brand new $350 cell phone died.  The Cingular rep apologized with the usual canned script, then assured me a replacement will be in the mail tomorrow and should arrive in seven days.  When I got mad at the long wait, she sounded delighted to explain the extra charges to have the replacement phone delivered tomorrow.  Cingular wound up eating the overnight shipping charges and a credit for my inconvenience.  But not without threatening to take my business to another carrier first.

I prepared my friend’s computer for shipping by packing it nice and tight in a heavy corrugated box surrounded in bubblewrap and plastic filler, then drove down to UPS - a company employing lots of middle-class Americans, many Teamsters Union members - and because of that - my shipper of choice.  The lady at the counter insisted on opening the box, explaining to me it’s policy - then says she can’t ship it unless she packs it to UPS specifications - which she didn’t explain, and which aren’t posted anywhere I can see - and of course - she’ll have to charge extra for this unneeded and unwanted packing service - not to mention the unwarranted snooping.  In contrast, the folks at Federal Express down the block were happy to take the box - without any snooping, or repacking - and ship it with a smile.  Union shop or not - Fedex got my business and will continue to get it, unless they start pulling the same crap. 

And I thought only new car salespeople were taught to treat customers like morons.

Silly me.

Posted by Elvis on 10/24/07 •
Section General Reading
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Stupid Customers 2

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SPEAKING OF rotten TREATMENT of customers - ANYBODY who BUYS ANYTHING with DRM is a FOOL

Case in point.

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Two Years Ago

Steaming About DRM

By Ed Foster
Gripeline
January 4, 2005

Remember back when siblings could share their Christmas presents? Those were the good old days, all right, before Digital Rights Management came along.

Over the holidays one long-time reader bought the retail version of the hit game Half-Life 2 for his eight-year-old son. “Half-Life is a PC-based first-person shooter game, you against the monsters and bad guys in the programming,” the reader wrote. “There is a bonus on-line multiplayer mode called CounterStrike which my youngest son has no interest in playing. In fact, his computer didn’t have Internet access. So we try to install the game and discover that, even to play against the computer, you have to have an Internet connection to get this thing called Steam.”

Steam is the online game network for Valve Software, developers of Half-Life 2, but it also serves as the activation mechanism for the software. To install the game on his son’s computer, the reader would have to set up an Internet connection for the machine. “So over Christmas week I start running a cable to his room,” the reader wrote. “In the meantime, my youngest son asks his older brother if he can play the game on his machine, and his brother says yes. Now, my older son has played CounterStrike and already has a Steam account. It seems the Half-Life 2 install sees this and applies the new game to this account.”

Once the reader had the eight-year-old’s computer hooked up to the Internet, he once again tried to install the game. “As soon as we sign on, it says this is someone else’s game,” the reader says. “I contact Steam and get an e-mail telling me that the CD key was already assigned to another user. Er....duh! I had told them that in my e-mail to them explaining how the existing Steam account hijacked the install and, at least from the point when the kid started asking questions about ‘accounts,’ I never saw anything telling me that he would never be able to play the game I just bought him if he ever played it on another computer. Steam technical support keeps sending the same auto reply and refuses to address the issue with a human response.”

The whole situation leaves the reader with a number of concerns. “If one doesn’t want to play online, why is the game requiring that one ‘check with Valve’ to make sure it’s OK for you to play it?” he wrote. “How is an eight-year-old kid supposed to know and understand these limitations—is he supposed to read the Steam EULA? And there seems to be no way to undo an install mistake. If a kid bungles an install, as in the case of using an existing user’s Steam info, the CD key is gone forever.”

Mostly, though, the reader wonders if it is the intent of Valve’s DRM to restrict even family members from sharing a program. “Is Half-Life 2 the first ‘user-limited’ software?” he wrote. “I buy a book, my son can read it. I buy a movie and my son can watch it on his TV after I watch it on my TV. I buy software, and I can’t let another family member use it?”

Of course, I don’t know what Valve’s intentions are either. I do know, though, that at the same time the reader was vainly trying to get help from Valve that the company was announcing it had just killed another 30,000 Steam accounts it believed were trying to illegally gain access to Valve games. And I can’t help but wonder if one of those 30,000 was an eight-year-old boy who made the mistake of installing his new game on his brother’s computer.

SOURCE

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Today

Customers Who Bought “Orange Box” Internationally

Consumerist
October 22, 2007

According to reader Todd, there are quite a few customers are finding their “Orange Box” games have been deactivated by Valve because they bought them from a seller that wasn’t authorized to do business with US customers.

The seller made the mistake, but the gamers are paying the price.

Todd says:

This complaint is about Valve, a PC video game company which makes games like Half-Life 2.

This effects many thousands of customers.

They recently released a product called the “Orange Box”, which is a bunch of games. All their products are activated online via unique serial numbers through the Steam service.

Many of us bought the product (and hence, the serial numbers) legitimately online via well known international game stores, as they sell them significantly cheaper than American stores.

We were able to activate the products without a problem. One week later, Valve, via the Steam program, inactivated all Orange Box games (after they had already been active for some time), stating that they are in the “incorrect territory.” There was no warning or anything, just completely inactivated.

The thread that was started on Valve’s WEB SITE has been removed by the operators there.

I think this is absolutely reprehensible customer care. “WE PAID FOR PUR PRODUCTS, AND THEY JUST GO AND REMOVE IT without warning from our computers”.

Thanks

-Todd

SOURCE

Posted by Elvis on 10/24/07 •
Section Privacy And Rights
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