The skin is thin at AT&T. It may be ‘the world at your service’, but it seems it’s also ‘don’t ever complain publicly, you won’t like the results’.

In a new terms of service agreement, the 5th section states

AT&T may immediately terminate or suspend all or a portion of your Service, any Member ID, electronic mail address, IP address, Universal Resource Locator or domain name used by you, without notice, for conduct that AT&T believes (a) violates the Acceptable Use Policy; (b) constitutes a violation of any law, regulation or tariff (including, without limitation, copyright and intellectual property laws) or a violation of these TOS, or any applicable policies or guidelines, or (c) tends to damage the name or reputation of AT&T, or its parents, affiliates and subsidiaries.

In the plainest English, it states that if a subscriber complains in a  public manner, bringing any ‘dirty laundry’ out, the company will retaliate, and eliminate your connection.

A close look reveals that no real damage has to be proven. This gives AT&T leeway to take action against almost anyone who makes a complaint of any kind – and truth may be the best defense, but it would have to be proven by the party or parties cut off.

The wording has yet to be tested in court – I’m sure AT&T is using the ‘fear factor’ and hoping it never does.

So…does anyone have anything bad to say about AT&T ? (I promise I won’t tell)

[tags] internet service provider, ISP, AT&T, contract terms, terms of service, complaints, damaged reputation [/tags]