Desperate AT&T user takes print ads to rant over slow connection

AT&T customer since 1960 buys WSJ print ad to complain of slow speeds
If you are a subscriber of the WSJ print edition, you might have noticed a quirky ad in yesterday's edition formed as an open letter to John Stankey, AT&T's CEO. In it, Aaron Epstein, an AT&T customer for the last 60 years or so (yes, the guy is 90 years old), complains of slow internet speeds.

Say what? Well, AT&T may have earned the fastest median download speeds network title last month, and started expanding its 5G footprint significantly by adding a standalone network on the lower bands but it has apparently neglected Mr Epstein's neighborhood. 

By saying neglected, we mean that the guy is apparently still only hooked up to AT&T's DSL network (what, this thing still exists?), and has been mustering the painful 3Mbps speeds in times when home broadband is hitting 100Mbps+ and even 200Mbps at places.

Well, the issue has become so pressing for this loyal nonagenarian AT&T customer, that he felt compelled to take print ads in the Wall Street Journal, hoping that an AT&T investor or two might notice.

Mr Epstein was afterwards contacted by ArsTechnica, and it turned out that he gave $1100 to run the two ads both in the Manhattan and in the Dallas print editions, where the AT&T headquarters are. The 3Mbps speed is particularly annoying as he pays AT&T $100 for two phones and the DSL connection. 

Granted, he also pays $50 extra for Charter's cable internet but has to use AT&T's modem in order to use the phone service hence defaults to the slower connection more often than not. 

It's apparently one of those areas where DSL is being phased out by Ma Bell, after doing the minimum to fulfil its merger requirements with DirecTV, but AT&T doesn't spare resources to expand those last-gen connections or provide an alternative, hence Mr Epstein's somewhat funny and desperate way to attract its attention with the print ads. That has already happened, so hopefully AT&T will resolve the lowly 3Mbps issues on its way to nationwide 300Mbps from the 5G ether.


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