I worked with Dan (Smith?) last year, and became a member of your
organization's email publication. I was one of the first companies to
start posting on your site about the Norvergence debacle. I've
referred over 50 companies, to different legal resources after they
contacted me from my postings on your site. To date, I believe we are
the only company that was able to successfully cancel the signed lease
agreement with them, and paid nothing out of pocket.
I wish all the 11,000 other companies the best of luck in the class
action suit. Anyway, now I am looking at possibly doing business with
ACN, out of Michigan. I've looked through your threads and have not
been able to find many complaints about them. I'm trying to do as much
research as possible before I get myself into something I'd regret
again. I've already checked the BBB and they called the company
satisfactory. I also have not found many complaints on the web, or
anything negative about the company President/CEO. Is there any info
you may be able to point me to that may be useful?
Thank you very much,
B.S. Cable, Co. Inc.
[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: I do not know about any Dan Smith(?)
but you worked with me; my name is Patrick Townson, and I do remember
you. You were not the only one to get out of the Norvergence scam
totally unscathed financially, but there were several who had made at
least two or three payments, which is not as good as 'nothing' but is
still better than Norvergence planned it originally. Various of the
state attorney generals have turned the screws on the banks and other
lenders involved. As a result, many of the fast talking salesmen who
brought Norvergence accounts into the house thinking they were going
to get a raise and a good filet mignon dinner from their bosses for
the 'good business they brought the (bank or financial company)' wound
up getting fired when the Attorney General in that state forced the
house to write off all that paper. Some banks and lenders took _huge_
losses on it and are still trying to get the ear of the bankruptcy
judge. To my way of thinking, better that the greedy banks and other
financial operations were obliged to eat it all instead of the little
business people who had been tricked by Solzano. There were many
readers here who just 'knew for certain' all the debtors (the small
business people) were going to get sued -- severely -- if they
followed my advice and stalled on making any further payments. And
they all presented me with the 'holder in due course' argument, but
apparently many attornies general felt somehow the financial houses
may have been at least a bit complicit in the fraud, or at least
they should have investigated before taking that worthless paper.
One fat cow wrote to really bawl me out good, telling me she knew 'for
a fact' that 'your advice has caused many debtors to get sued' and
that most debtors were making payments as agreed, but I retorted by
asking her what collection agency _she_ worked for.
Now regards your latest inquiry, I know nothing about 'ACN out of
Michigan'. Jack Decker is our reader/writer from Michigan, so maybe
he will know something. Jack, are you reading this? Does any reader
know about 'ACN out of Michigan'? Regards BBB, I have been told any
company who is a member of BBB is therefore in 'good standing' with
that bunch. If you are a member of BBB you are in good standing with
them, if not a member, then you are not in good standing.
Good luck with your inquiry, Mr. Lyle. PAT]
Date: 4 Jun 2005 19:37:43 -0700
Subject: Re: Schools Prohibit Personal E-mail Sites
Organization: TELECOM Digest
X-Telecom-Digest: Volume 24, Issue 250, Message 7 of 12
Robert Bonomi wrote:
> Yuppers. First Amendment means that, as a government agency, you
> cannot monitor/filter/block/etc what students _say_ in outgoing
> email. (It's even a seriously sticky situation in government agencies
> with their employees.)
Sorry, but I know too many government agencies that have strict rules
on what their employees may say using any government equipment, and
AFAIK these rules are perfectly legal and upheld. Employees have been
terminated over violations and their unions were unable to do
anything. Shop stewards have been fired and union activists convicted
of trespassing for exceeding the boundaries of these rules. A
government agency may secretly monitor employees' phone calls and
computer use without any warning or notice.
I assure you the unions would've fought this stuff if they could've.
Further, agencies have rules regarding public statements, such as that
external questions have to be forwarded to the designated public
Just because something is publicly funded does not change every rule
I think what you folks are confusing is the right of students and
goverment employees to freely speak outside of school or work. That
is protected speech. But inside the building, especially on
government owned facilities -- computers, phones, bulletin boards*,
etc., you do not have that protection.
> On the other hand, you _can_ ban individuals from using the equipment
> _at_all_, if you have a rational reason for doing so.
Equipment may be assigned or not assigned to individuals as the
administration sees fit in school or in industry.
> Silly as it seems on the face of it, restricting them from 'saying
> anything' it not the First Amendment problem that restricting them
> from 'saying *specific* things' is.
Sorry, but rules do exist prohibiting "specific things" in government
and in schools.
My local library requires a signature observing their rules on using
their public computers.
Just because someone is publicly funded does not mean the individual
using it has unlimited rights over it. When you drive a car on a
public road or visit a public park you must obey the law on usage.
There is no such thing as unlimited free speech. Try screaming a
tirade at your neighbor and you'll get a summons for disorderly
conduct. There are many examples.
Indeed, lately many people have objected toward the expression of
religion in public schools and some courts have upheld restrictions on
that. For example, a school choir was forbidden by the courts to sing
black spirtual gospel songs even as an all-volunteer after school
As Pat said, administrative convenience is important or schools and
government would grind to a halt mired in bureaucracy. Yes, different
states and municipalities do vary, but this is the way it is.
[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: It is also important to remember the
difference between someone who is _governed by the government_ versus
someone who is _employed by the government_ (except as the government
employee happens to coincidentally also be a citizen). Things like
the First Amendment theoretically serve as protection for those who
are being governed. While it is grossly inconvenient for most of us
to choose some other governor, on the other hand we have no automatic
right to _employment_ by the government. Because of the inconvenience
or impossibility for us to change governors, we therefore get the
protection of things like the Bill of Right, which do not have to be
given to a 'mere' employee, of the government or otherwise. And
administrative convenience is given much weight in the courts. The
goverment says 'it is more convenient for us to have person X do our
speaking for us, and for persons Y and Z to keep quiet.' And the
courts have occassionally ruled that this is _not_ a violation of
persons Y and Z 'free speech rights'. Certainly any person being
governed can speak _about_ the government, but they cannot speak _for_
the government nor mislead any reasonable person to think that is
what they are doing. PAT]