The 10th Anniversary of New Networks Institute

UPDATE: The Unauthorized Bio of the Baby Bells

(Ameritech, BellSouth, Bell Atlantic, NYNEX, Southwestern Bell,

Qwest, Pacific Telesis, GTE.)


Preface to the Updates and Our 10th Anniversary:

What would you do if you found billions of dollars of overcharging and the overcharging was being done to your family, friends, your business... or even your Aunt Ethel?

Would you quit your consulting job, knowing that the companies you had been working for were the companies doing the overcharging?

Would you try to get the money back or would you keep your mouth shut?

And what will you do when I tell you that you and everyone you know are owed hundreds of dollars from these local Bell monopolies?

In 1992 I was faced with such a dilemma. I had found that my clients, the local phone monopolies -- The "Baby Bells" --- had been overcharging everyone who has phone service. We’re talking billions of dollars annually. And this excess was being created in numerous ways, all hidden as pennies, nickels, dimes and quarters on unreadable phonebills.

Little did I know that this epiphany was just the start of a 10 year saga --- a 3, 560 day saga and still counting. I could have sworn it was a one-year research project.

From the early 1980's through 1992 I had been a respected, well paid consultant and sold research and consulted to the largest US and foreign phone companies -- including AT&T, MCI and Sprint, BT, Hong Kong Telecom, and all of the Baby Bells. And after being a consultant for a decade, my next decade was in some sense penitence for having helped unknowingly in what is most likely one of the biggest scandals in history.

I created New Networks Institute (NNI) to investigate how the break up of AT&T and the formation of the Baby Bells had impacted customers and the deployment of "New Networks" and embarked on one of the largest research projects ever undertaken ---- 14 volumes, 1,900 pages, 2000 customer interviews, two computerized databases.

And in 1998, I summarized this data, added updates and published what I had found in "The Unauthorized Bio of the Baby Bells."

What did I find? The Bells had been able to manipulate the regulators by essentially lying to them and the public that they would deliver fiber-optic based broadband services. In exchange for these promises, laws were changed, never in the favor of the customers, to get more money out of the local phone customers. You paid hundreds of dollars for something you will never get.

But as I dug it got a lot worse. The Bell companies own the wire into your home and office and so they also control every charge to both customers as well as any competitor who wants to use these networks.

By 1992, I had determined that competition would never show up as promised because these companies controlled entry.

And the predictions I made in 1992, and the predictions I made in this book, all showed up as one more slap in the face of the customer. While prices increased, there were massive staff cuts, cuts in construction budgets, improper tax write-offs, bad 'deregulations', missing broadband services, massive losses overseas....

I had originally thought that this book would help to spur on investigations and generate news/media stories. While it may have had some affect, I discovered the truth is not always of interest.

It wasn't till after I finished the book did I get an eye -opener. The local monopolies also controlled various members of Congress and a host of other state and federal level politicos by funding their campaigns. They also controlled the media by purchasing billions of dollars in advertisements, or created their own fake-national 'agendas' through heavily funded reports by fake-grass-roots consumer groups --- commonly called 'astro-turf' groups, that essentially are there to confuse anyone trying to get the actual story.

In short, this book is about avarice, greed, deception, and ripping off customers in as many ways as you can, with the knowledge that they will most likely not get caught. As you will read, there should have been hundreds of investigations into the Bells’ accounting and business practices. Where are they? Why hadn't they happened?

In 2002, a number of us created "TeleTruth". Our mandate is to take this data and get customers involved, as well as take class action suits, file complaints and in short, defend the public’s interest in telecom and broadband issues. We hope you will read the book and check out these updates and then join our volunteer organization.

For more about Teletruth

For more about New Networks Institute

We are hoping that if you read this book and the data we present, you will make up your own mind to the validity of our statements.

Please note. These updates consist of new reports, filings, complaints and other items that will bring the reader up to speed on each topic. Also, some sections have a "Summary" report, which covers the topic. There are also numerous links within each report to go deeper or to read the source materials.

If you like what you read, join us…. Join Teletruth.

Let the Truth be told,

Bruce Kushnick, Chairman, Teletruth

Executive Director, New Networks Institute

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