Gotta Love AT&T - Live Chat From Hell

Today I logged on to my AT&T Wireless Account to pay my bill.  I have been a customer for 20 years with the same provider.  Though I started with Cellular One and it morphed into Cingular which morphed into AT&T ... I have had the same account and same cell phone number since bulky cell phones were carried in a leather bag and cost over $1000.

Today, my AT&T username and password wouldn't work when I logged onto their site.  When I couldn't log on to pay my bill, AT&T locked my account for multiple log-ons

Arghhhhh!  I have sooooo many different passwords to things.  I have a system for managing them, and I HATE HATE HATE when a company messes with my system by forcing me to change my password, especially in an arbitrary way ... like just disabling it without notification.

Ah but then there's customer service.  They can help you understand the perfectly logical, though arbitrary if somewhat bureaucratic system.  Once I got the message that my account was disabled there were two options on the screen - Call us up on the phone or CHAT.  I chose CHAT figuring it would be quick.  In less than 60 seconds I was connected to Jaclyn Gonzales.

After fifteen minutes on chat, I got none of my questions answered and was forced to have my account reset with a new password.   Geez, I could have asked for a new password when I couldn't get the login to work in the first place.  This basically renders this chat feature useless.

So much for my system.

AT&T, you suck!

AT&T Chat Commentary

Thank you for your patience! An AT&T customer service representative will be with you shortly.

You are now chatting with 'Jaclyn Gonzales'

Jaclyn Gonzales: Ms. Burgoyne,Thank you for chatting with AT&T today. I see you are having trouble with additional errors. I can help you with this today. I apologize for any inconvenience this has caused.

Mindie Burgoyne: my current user name and password will not work to log on

Jaclyn Gonzales: It may take a few minutes to access your account.

Jaclyn Gonzales: I am sorry to hear that.

Jaclyn Gonzales:  What user ID did you use?

Mindie Burgoyne: 3016482010 and then tried 301-648-2010 pw is *****

Jaclyn Gonzales: Would you like me to reset your online account password?

Mindie Burgoyne: why didn't it work? I'd like to keep my same password so I don't have to remember a new one.

Jaclyn Gonzales: As a security measure your account is locked after multiple invalid login attempts. After account verification, I can unlock this for you.

Mindie Burgoyne: Thank you. But what is the problem? Why didn't it work?

Jaclyn Gonzales: There would be a possibility that you type it incorrectly.

Jaclyn Gonzales: I can most definitely reset your password. I will send the temporary password to your email address.

Jaclyn Gonzales: Your account has been unlocked and your password has been reset. You will receive a security email from your AT&T online account to notify you that the password for your online account has been changed.  You will receive an additional email containing the 6 digit temporary password. Please enter the 6 digit temporary password exactly as it appears in the message when you attempt to login.

Jaclyn Gonzales: Let me know if you recieve the message. It might be sent to your bulk or spam messages.

Jaclyn Gonzales: Your user ID: 301****

Mindie Burgoyne: Jaclyn - are you a person or intelligent software? No, I'm guessing you're a person because you misspelled "receive" above.   I did not mistype the user name and password. I've had the same UN and PW for years. Now all of the sudden it doesn't work. Can you help me understand why? And assure me that there isn't an underlying problem that will cause it to happen again?
...... waiting for five minutes