Letter: Phone sweatshops

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The Independent Culture
Sir: Deborah Orr says BT will replace its call centre staffs with more machines ("Trouble at the 21st-century mills", 23 November).

Last month, to air a complaint, I dialled 150. After two tiers of button- pressing, I was told by a machine that they were so busy they wouldn't even put me in a queue: I should try later.

I did try later: same result. So I dialled the customer services manager, and a machine told me they couldn't answer.

I faxed the customer services manager. His reply advised me to ring 150. I wrote to BT's chief executive, Sir Peter Bonfield, and his assistant advised me to ring the customer services manager.

Is it more machines they need, or more people?


Olney, Buckinghamshire