have been happily employed by Reserve America [“I’m Sorry,
All Agents Are Busy Organizing,” Newsfront, Feb. 3] for two
years now. When I was hired, the conditions of employment,
including the point system and pay scale, were carefully explained
to me. I have no negative attendance points accumulated; in
fact, because of RA policy incentives, I have been able to
bank points for future use. At this time I can call in sick
for five days without accumulating any negative attendance
points. Since I do not call in unless I truly need to, and
pride my self in being on time for work and from breaks, I
have been able to maintain my banked points throughout my
In my experience, all the members of RA management are very
approachable, from the team leaders and floor supervisors
on up to the Call Center supervisor. I can walk into their
offices at any time and they will listen and do their best
to help. They will also know me by name. In addition, I have
found the suggestion box to be a successful way of bringing
Having reached the peak of my earning potential as an agent,
at $8.50, I have chosen not to pursue jobs within the company
that would increase my wages. I am not interested in further
responsibility. RA always posts any available positions in
a clearly visible spot and appears to hire from within, as
far as I have been able to tell.
Frankly, I fail to see how the union would improve my situation
at RA. I am 49 years old, and in my early 20s I worked in
a union shop. Coming from a long line of family members who
were union workers, organizers and stewards, I am not inexperienced
with unions and how they work. I do know that if a union were
in place, I would make less money because of the required
union dues. If I were to vote for having RA become unionized,
my vote would be a definite no.
I hope this letter brings another perspective to the Reserve
America/Union conflict. I assure you that I am not alone in
my opinion. There are many agents who are content with the
policies and management. It is unfortunate that the union
actions will polarize the agents and add stress to our work
Part of ‘Cancel’ Don’t You Understand?
experience with AOL was kind of the opposite of what was described
in the article [“AOL Forever,” Jan. 27]. When I signed on,
the going deal was for a 30-day free period. But the very
day I signed on was when my card got billed, and they refused
to send me any kind of a refund for that. And when I finally
did cancel, they didn’t prorate the remaining days of the
month for which they had already charged.
Perhaps I was lucky that I didn’t happen to log in again after
the moment I canceled, or my cancellation might have been
canceled as was described in the article. The “saver” challenged
the wisdom of my canceling when I cited certain features I
felt were better in another ISP I had tried, and claimed that
similar features were planned for some future version. And
I’m glad I didn’t fall for that because who knows when it
would happen or whether AOL’s version would satisfy me. Anyway,
I’m mentioning this just because it’s kind of a different
wrinkle than what was reported in the article. And I realize
that your raison d’etre is not airing griefs against AOL,
but you have to admit that you did sort of open the door.
What bothers me is that online service people ask for your
card number up front “for identification purposes.” Well,
I appreciate that, but they ought to be enjoined from actually
billing anything to the account until the introductory free
period has expired and the customer specifically and explicitly
One thing I hate is those excruciatingly long “accept” statements.
You have to read pages and pages of fine print in an extremely
small window or else your “signing” a contract you haven’t
read and for all you know, you could be selling your first-born
son. I think the contract ought to be much simpler, and include
a note that the customer must acquire a confirmation number
or else there’s no proof that he canceled. (In AOL’s case,
if they sent me proof of cancellation via email, I’d have
to log on again in order to receive it, and then I suppose
the cancellation would be canceled. That’s an unnecessary
Anyway, thank you for the excellent article.
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