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SBC CWA Strike Imminent

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the piece-of-the-pie-or-we-stick-you dept.

Businesses 572

Tmack writes "SBC union workers are preparing (again) to strike after negotiations have broken down between CWA and SBC. What this means to the average person? As long as the strike is taking place, orders for new service and repair of existing services with SBC will be delayed as only non-union workers and temps will be around to complete the work. Latest word is the strike is now planned for Friday night through next Tuesday. Check here(1), here(2), and here(3) for more info."

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572 comments

Who? What? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198596)

I can't be the only person here who has no idea what this is about...

Re:Who? What? (4, Funny)

lazn (202878) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198628)

Nope, I too am not sure of what the SBC or CWA are.

Strange Business Creators
Content Watching Authority
Super Boy's Car
Cranky Women's Adovocates

hmm I am sure others can come up with better or possibly even right answers to this mystery.

Re:Who? What? (3, Informative)

Kiryat Malachi (177258) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198645)

SBC = (Something - Southern, maybe?) Bell Company, one of the Big Bells, provides service throughout the Midwest.

CWA = Communications Workers of America, big union including all your telco repair folks.

Re:Who? What? (2, Informative)

Joney (703717) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198759)

Southwestern

Southern would be BellSouth

Re:Who? What? (1)

Kiryat Malachi (177258) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198830)

Bleh. SBC is my carrier, too, which makes it all the more sad that I don't know the acronym, but I still think of them as Ameritech (and somewhere, in the back of my mind, I miss Michigan Bell).

Re:Who? What? (3, Informative)

JabberWokky (19442) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198774)

From what I've gathered, SBC is the major local telco for everywhere in the United States except the east coast. There are competitors, but SBC pretty much owns the majority of US local loops from the midwest through to the west coast. They are the equivelent of the Northeast's Verizon (I think; never lived or done business in the NE) and the South's BellSouth (who cuddled with AT&T awhile back).

I'll freely admit I gave up on tracking the buyouts and mergers, but that seems to be the layout of the local carriers in the US. SBC is a biggie, at least by geography.

--
Evan

Re:Who? What? (1)

Innominandum (453982) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198799)

Thanks for the tip! The acronym thing has had me stumped a few times. It would be cool if people submitting stories assumed we are all clueless and gave us some hints so we don't have to visit the links to find out we're not interested in the story.

Re:Who? What? (2, Informative)

astrokid (779104) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198800)

CWA: Communications Workser of America
SBC: Southwestern Bell Company(?)
Taken from: http://www.sbc.com/gen/press-room?pid=5074
In 1999, SBC Communications Inc., introduced the SBC brand to its customers with the SBC Global Network tag line. And last year, the company took the big step of adding SBC, in a dominant way, to its regional brand names.
The time is now right for the company to move to a single national brand -- SBC. The brand change gives SBC a more unified presence throughout its markets, making it easier for customers to find and do business with SBC companies across geographic boundaries and product lines. The move to a single national brand also unifies offerings previously marketed through regional brands such as SBC Southwestern Bell, SBC Pacific Bell, SBC Nevada Bell and SBC Ameritech.
The brand change underscores SBC's evolution from a regional company into the nation's premier source for communications services.

Re:Who? What? (1)

ElderKorean (49299) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198824)

I don't understand SBC either.
Perhaps is it the Single Businessmen Convention.

Though the CWA is the Christian Women's Association.

Maybe this is one of those US centric stories that we occasionally get.

Re:Who? What? (2, Informative)

Taius (464931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198634)

The union employees at SBC want the company to guarantee them job security (against all the outsourcing) and to guarantee their healthcare premiums won't rise.

I'm a SBC manager, and I've already been notifed to transport to my strike location, so I guess I'll be fixed your DSL as of Friday. :)

Re:Who? What? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198678)


NOT A TROLL

Nice that you as a "manager" have time to read slashdot. No wonder jobs are being outsourced left and right... Oh wait, yes, you're a "manager" so your job is pretty safe.

For the moment...

fixed your dsl? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198700)

They're flying you in from India eh?

Re:fixed your dsl? (2, Funny)

Taius (464931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198804)

No, my bad english is a representation of poor education, not my nationality. :)

Re:Who? What? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198772)

I was an Ameritech manager in 1995 when the CWA was threatening a strike. It was pretty funny when my manager told me my strike-duty location and I replied that I wouldn't cross a picket line. The concept was so foreign to him, it was as though he couldn't understand the English language. In the end the CWA didn't strike so we didn't get to find out what would have happened next.

Best decision I ever made, leaving that job.

Re:Who? What? (1)

tgrossner (552746) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198819)

Yeah, unfortunatly I am management there too though I dont have to go anywhere, I still have "strike hours" 7am-7pm 7days a week. Ugh...

And those union people put on their website that they are "The Union for the Information Age". Puh-lease...they turn screwdrivers, pull cable, and punch down wire...and they want us to guarantee them jobs to do do VOIP and WI-FI installations...And this whole "outsourcing" thing is bunk as well...I do VOIP installations, not some guy in Pakistan!

First post! ;-) (0, Offtopic)

SacredNaCl (545593) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198597)

But you'll still be able to get bad outsourced tech support from India & Convergsys.

Re:First post! ;-) (1)

rekoil (168689) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198650)

IIRC, the CWA has contract language with each of the Baby Bells that effecively prevents outsourcing of call center staff to other states, much less other countries...it makes sense from the union's perspective, but the telcos can't even transfer calls to other call centers if a local center gets overloaded (say, lots of downed lines due to bad weather...).

Re:First post! ;-) (1)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198681)

Yep... unfortately very few of us need how-to instructions for our phones. The only time I ever remembering calling the phone company was about line noise... that involves sending out a tech.

Re:First post! ;-) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198729)

Yeah, really who gives a shit about all of this.

At least they HAVE jobs and can't have their work booted to india. They need to shut the fuck up and get back to work.

Call me! (3, Funny)

thebra (707939) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198603)

"We're sorry, the number you have reached has been disconnected or is no longer in service. You can try calling for help but everyone is on strike, thanks."

Hmmm... (5, Funny)

corporate_ai (775461) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198605)

Does this mean I can stop paying my bill 'cause no one will be there to shut my service off?

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198730)

yes.

Re:Hmmm... (2, Insightful)

Adriax (746043) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198735)

Don't worry, people will be there to take your money. They'd never let those workers strike, it's bad for business.
You might not get service durring that time, but they'll gladly take your money.

Say what you will... (3, Insightful)

gumpish (682245) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198613)

Things would be much worse off if it weren't for organized labor.

IANA Economics Major

Re:Say what you will... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198695)

"IANA Economics Major"

Obviously.

Re:Say what you will... (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198792)

Union workers are lazy bums. I am glad I live in a work-at-will state.

Re:Say what you will... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198863)

Non union workers are normally exploited. Sure there are some bad unions, but there are many more bad corporations out there. Just read one of the articles, it said SBC made 8.5 Billion in PROFIT last year. And now they're bitching about health care costs?! Screw this, I'm moving to Canada.

First post!? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198617)

An object at rest cannot be stopped !!!

Star Wars III: Strike of the Jedi (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198618)

That's what it really is. The Jedi just all go on strike, the Republic refusing to meet their demands. That's REALLY how the Empire was born.

parent gets +2 funny -1 offtopic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198676)

SBC - Sith Birth Control?

Outsourcing demands (5, Interesting)

darth_MALL (657218) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198624)

looks like one of the major bargaining issues is outsourcing. This is from an interview w/ one of the union members "We recently made 10 test calls to DSL technical support. One went to Florida, one went to Texas and eight went to India," Rosen said. "We would rather see these jobs go to people in Indianapolis than people in India.". Kinda sucks for them.

Re:Outsourcing demands (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198697)

Well yeah, except do you really think a union guy could actually help you with your DSL installation let alone spell "DSL"? Language barrier aside, India wins hands down on this.

Re:Outsourcing demands (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198796)

Guess who's never called anything in india.

Yeah, calling US help desks was futile about 1/4 to 2/3rds of the time depending on who you were calling. Now that crap is in india, if it's not in their database it doesn't exist, and you have to endure a guy named Raj calling himself Ken confusing Seattle washington with Washington DC and trying to involve you in brutal small talk. Indian call centers do save money, I know I'd stop calling. Of course nothing to lose from switching brands after something like that either.

What's SBC? (1)

radish (98371) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198625)

A little clue anyone? Please?

Re:What's SBC? (2, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198712)

Southwestern Bell Company. They're the West Coast equal to what Verizon has on the East Coast, and they call their cellular company Cingular.

Re:What's SBC? (1)

cavemanf16 (303184) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198880)

And THEY FAIL IT hard. I'm glad that just last month we finally got our house switched over to full Vonage phone support. Dealing with the outsourced SBC customer service reps from India is pure hell, and SBC is merely more of the same old shoddy service we've all become accustomed to in the Midwest/East.

Re:What's SBC? (1)

Dr Caleb (121505) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198727)

From one of the linked articles:

The union representing 102,000 employees of SBC Communications said it would stage a four-day strike beginning Friday, following a deadlock in contract talks with the nation's No. 2 local phone company.
SBC's 13-state coverage area includes Texas, California, Illinois, Michigan, Ohio and Connecticut.

I guess they are a communications company. Since one of the states listed isn't 'intoxicated' I guess it doesn't affect you or I. ;)

Re:What's SBC? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198733)

The biggest phone company in the USA

dsl provider in northern california (1)

OneInEveryCrowd (62120) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198865)

There are others but most people in san jose have sbc for their internet service provider if they use dsl. They also provide local phone service and my wireless (cell phone) as well.

Since they're a big monopoly people in other parts of the US are stuck with them too.

A little locale (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198627)

Isn't this a little localized of a topic to be posted on Slashdot? I mean we have strikes here in New York all the time and I don't see it making the front page. I mean even if it affects 13 states that is not that much in the grand scale of things. Con-Ed goes on strike and it might only affect one state but that includes around 8-10 million people.

Someone could at least explain if this will have an effect on us.

Re:A little locale (5, Funny)

StuWho (748218) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198736)

"SBC union workers are preparing (again) to strike after negotiations have broken down between CWA and SBC"

SBC is the Somalian Bodybuilders Co-op, they are in dispute with the Cameroon Weightlifting Association (CWA). Something about stolen training methods.

It's only really relevant because Microsoft fund SBC.

Re:A little locale (1)

grub (11606) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198758)


Well said. Hopefully the next story will be queued up and online soon. (are you reading this, Timothy?)

Re:A little locale (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198769)

"Isn't this a little localized of a topic to be posted on Slashdot? "

Perhaps. But for those of us outside the area, it is an interesting point of discussion. Already saw a couple of interesting posts about unions etc.

Re:A little locale (3, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198862)

How would NYC and the whole East Coast feel if Verizon's people went on strike? That's who SBC is over there...

See, now you see why this is newsworthy. Even if you're not over there, if you depend on reaching something or someone over there, you're a bit nervous because if for any reason a phone line were to go down, a strike would make it take longer to bring back up.

Re:A little locale (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198872)

Not really.

I work for one of SBC's daughter companies, over in Ohio, doing their internal Break/Fix IT support. We found out today that if the strike goes, 3/4 of our users (and part of our department) will be pulled up and ordered to go work in the striker's place.

Re:A little locale (3, Interesting)

lpangelrob2 (721920) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198873)

Hmm. I dunno either, but let me take a guess.

I live in Chicago, and as far as I know, this will affect millions of people from here to Texas. It should at least get an honorable mention for that. Most strikes I hear in the news seem to be about things /.ers don't really care for (not as much as technology) -- you know, mass transit, newspapers, mass transportation... umm... air traffic control (thanks, Reagan. :-( ). Since these are telecom workers, they would be one of the closest parallels to you average everyday software developer unionizing.

There are plenty differences, which I'm sure are to be pointed out in various child posts, but hey, it made front page for some reason.

Well.. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198632)

Doesn't mean a lot to me - living in Ireland.

Will it affect first posts?

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198663)

Evidently it will.

Gotta love the unions (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198635)

Amazing how their practices are fully legalized. If I were to tell a company:

"Joe won't be coming in to work and you can't fire him nor can you hire a temporary replacement for him. If you want Joe to work again, you must cough up some money."

I'd be arrested and charged with extortion. It has always baffled me that this kind of behavior is actually legally sanctioned.

Re:Gotta love the unions (4, Informative)

Kiryat Malachi (177258) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198789)

Actually, the union isn't saying that.

They're saying:

"We want a raise. If you don't give us a raise, NO ONE will come to work."

Its totally legit, and you can do it at your job legally as well. However, at your job, unless you can:

a) Convince no one else to show up if you don't get what you want/get fired.
b) Convince any potential replacements that they'll get a better paycheck if they join your strike.

Then management will laugh at you.

Unions are a method of using the collective legal power of the workers (the threat of withholding labor) to counterbalance the economic power of the corporation (the threat of withholding a job/paycheck from a single worker).

Re:Gotta love the unions (1)

Adriax (746043) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198849)

The problem is, unions started as a way to give the workers a voice against businesses that would exploit them. Without laws to help them, unions would be useless.

Unfortunatly, as with all power, those who have it are corrupted by it.

Uhh (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198636)

WTF is CWA & SBC???

Re:Uhh (2, Informative)

ewhac (5844) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198679)

CWA: Communications Workers of America: a labor union.

SBC: Southwestern Bell Corporation (nee Pacific Bell): an evil, money-grubbing RBOC/ILEC :-).

Schwab

Re:Uhh (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198794)


RBOC/ILEC

Thanks! Now WTF is/are "RBOC/ILEC"?

unions Suck! (0, Flamebait)

ender_wiggins (81600) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198638)

Thats why everything that a union member touches costs 10x more! Want to move your desk? gotta call a union guy. wanna turn a screw? gotta call a union guy.

Re:unions Suck! (1)

t_allardyce (48447) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198668)

go read the definition of capitalism.

Re:unions Suck! (1)

nacturation (646836) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198765)

go read the definition of capitalism.

Where in the definition of capitalism does it say that if workers aren't satisfied with their wages, they have the right to hold my business hostage and I'm powerless to do anything (such as find other workers) unless I meet their demands or they reduce their demands?

The definition of capitalism would more likely say that if workers aren't satisfied with their wages and think they're being shafted by management, they can all go and start up their own competing business and offer better service and pay their workers higher wages.

Re:unions Suck! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198834)

Little bit like not being able to find another carrier isn't it?

Re:unions Suck! (3, Insightful)

kunudo (773239) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198725)

Hello. You must be American :)

You people all (most) seem to not like unions. Why? Over here (Europe), they make sure we get the wages we deserve and don't get fired for stupid things like if the boss doesn't like you or whatever. I've never heard of any unreasonable strikes... Have you been indoctrinated from birth or do you have any real reasons to dislike unions? :)

Re:unions Suck! (1)

teg (97890) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198778)

I've never heard of any unreasonable strikes...

There are some of those too.... like in here in Norway ATM. Everything isn't black and white, though... a little bit of unions are good, too much bad. Key is to achieve a balance, as in most other areas.

Re:unions Suck! (1)

kunudo (773239) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198811)

Mener du transportarbeiderne? Er jo bare rettferdig at de skal få grei lønn og...

Re:unions Suck! (3, Interesting)

johnmat (650076) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198838)

As a Brit who lives in America, there are some curious differences between European (or British anyway) and American unions. American unions seem only to be strong in a few selected industries, where British unionization is more widespread. However, where the unions are strong in the US they have a hold like the old pre-Thatcher British unions. Lots of silly rules to protect the members at all costs. If your company does a trade show in a unionized hall you are not allowed to carry anything in and out, you have to wait 2 hours for a union guy to come off his break and carry it for you.

Re:unions Suck! (2, Insightful)

List of FAILURES (769395) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198785)

Yes. But if you believe in the concept of a 40 hour work week being a fair thing that we all deserve, then you can thank unions for that. Otherwise you'd be working 60-80 hours a week and getting paid for 24 hours a week. Can there be too much of a good thing? Yes. But, I'd far rather have unions around than not. Besides, it's not the unions that are the problem. It the corruption within the unions, just as there is corruption within managment. The bad guys in management want you to work for as little as possible. The bad guys in the union want you to pay your dues even if you don't believe in the union. You're getting fucked from behind by managment and raped in the mouth by the union. Of course that's greatly oversimplified. Unions still do more good than harm and I side with the Union even though I happen to be management where I work.

Re:unions Suck! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198837)

Yes. But if you believe in the concept of a 40 hour work week being a fair thing that we all deserve, then you can thank unions for that. Otherwise you'd be working 60-80 hours a week and getting paid for 24 hours a week.

Right.. so that's why I live in a state where unions are illegal, and yet people here seem to generally have more money and spare time than the rest of the United States?

Some unions are vital (2, Insightful)

crow (16139) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198816)

Historically, most, if not all, of the benefits that all employees are guaranteed by law were first instituted thanks to labor unions. Clearly, they have served their purpose in the past.

Now, you are right, there are unions that do more harm than good. They impose requirements to create meaningless jobs instead of letting companies become more efficient (and thereby creating new useful jobs or having more money for raises).

On the other hand, there are unions that are vital for protecting the employees. My wife is a teacher, and I've see how private non-unionized schools have taken advantage of her. Everything from expecting her to contribute financially to school fundraisers to attending a week-long out-of-state field trip (with no extra pay or provision in her contract). Of course, teachers are generally there because that's what they want to do, not for the money, which puts them in a prime position to be taken advantage of without a union to look out for their interests. (Of course, I have gripes with the political activities of teachers' unions, but that's another story.)

Scab wages, WOW! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198665)

Hey, get this. SBC is already offering $45/hour for on-call scab workers. I just got a call from my recruiter! If this strike goes the distance, I could take be making $9K/month setting up LANs. Unreal.

Re:Scab wages, WOW! (1)

NevarMore (248971) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198743)

Whom would I contact to get that? I am temporarily unemployed (literally between jobs) and could use some work.

CWA - Won't strike (1)

DecimalThree (524862) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198666)

C - can't W - walk A - afraid They didn't do it at Verizon and they won't do it with SBC. The union doesn't have the strike fund available.

This sucks (-1, Offtopic)

Supp0rtLinux (594509) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198667)

...no, not the strike, but the fact that I posted this last week when the strikes were just as imminent and my story was rejected. Now someone else says the same thing I said and gets it posted. Someone must be doing someone a favor somewhere.

I know, I know... troll, flamebait, whiner... call me what you will... but its true.

Re:This sucks (1)

FerretFrottage (714136) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198841)

Perhaps it is more imminent today since Friday is that much more imminently closer....

No matter, just submit the same article tomorrow, it will be even more imminent and since /.'ers love duplicate stories, it's sure to make it this time.

I am a potential scab! (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198686)

My company may send me down there to fill in on the critical stuff if they don't reach an agreement. I hope to hell that they do cuz i would bet the picketers are packin... :P

Re:I am a potential scab! (2, Funny)

Taius (464931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198699)

Don't worry, this is Texas. Some of us SBC Managers are packin' too!

Yeehaw and all that.

So what? (3, Insightful)

JustKidding (591117) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198692)

1) you might try explaining what SBC and CWA are for those who don't know, and

2) exacly why is this news? just because it's in the US? (not sure, just assuming).

People do live outside the US, you know.

Re:So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198722)

People do live outside the US, you know.

Yeah right, and the underpants gnomes are real too. :-p

Re:So what? (1)

Taius (464931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198734)

SBC (Southwestern Bell Company) is a major telecommunications provider in the US.

The CWA (Communication Workers Association) is a union that over 100,000 of SBC employees belong to.

Re:So what? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198809)

1) you might try explaining what SBC and CWA are for those who don't know, and

2) exacly why is this news? just because it's in the US? (not sure, just assuming).

People do live outside the US, you know.


True, but I'd bet a majority of readers are in the US and this is a website that was started in the US.

And most of the tech industry is in the US.

So I'd say news that affects US tech workers is relevant to this website, even if it might not be relevant to you.

Re:So what? (4, Informative)

LostCluster (625375) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198828)

SBC stands for Southwestern Bell Company, which is the Incumbent Local Exchange Carrier (ILEC) for much of the Western USA, including California and Texas which have major datacenters. CWA stands for Communications Workers of America, which is the labor union that represents most of their technical workers.

It's news because it affects a good chunk of the IT industry. Basically, if the CWA goes on strike, SBC's ability to resolve field-wiring issues will suddenly be reduced to management employees who aren't represented by the union. This means any line noise or wire failure issue that happens on local phone line loops within their territory will take much longer than usual to be resolved... leading to potential longer-than-usual disruptions to communication services that rely on local copper loops.

Uhh... (5, Funny)

Ranger Rick (197) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198710)

Your TLAs are DOA, why R U not bothering 2 explain WTF U R talking about?

IOW, who/what are SBC and CWA?

opinion of SBC from a retiree (5, Insightful)

grag (597728) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198724)

I heard my dad make some mention of this a few days ago. Of course, this doesn't surprise me. My father spoke of SBC cutting retirement benefits in the future just to get people to retire early before the lower benefits took place.

He also spoke of his animosity towards SBC because of their push for Technicians to get more jobs completed in less time. Thus, you get people doing a job and meeting the most basic requirements to complete the job, so they end up closing out the job quickly.

My dad has a wall of Customer Service awards, but his managers would always complain about his inability to close jobs out quickly. My dad always told them he'd much rather take his time and make sure the customer is happy than do a barely-done job with a disgruntled customer.

Oh well, it doesn't matter now. The older generation of Technicians who actually care about the customer are retiring while newer non-union/contractors fill the slots

Even my dad doesn't have SBC for his phones anymore, even with the retiree discount

woohoo! (1, Funny)

mcmonkey (96054) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198747)

"Latest word is the strike is now planned for Friday night through next Tuesday."

Workers' rights, my ass. They just want the long weekend. Come on down to Billy's Bear Barn where we're on strike every night! Tuesdays women strike for half price! Yee-haw!

Oblig Simpsons Quote (2, Funny)

darth_MALL (657218) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198763)

Marge : Mmm Homey, you're the union leader. I'm so proud of you.
Lisa : Finally you get to share the fair share of the working force.
Homer : And make life-long contacts with organized crime. ... mmm organized crime.

Wait a minute... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#9198780)

... only non-union people will be working, so getting things done will take *longer* ?

Story published to encourage union bashing (2, Interesting)

spun (1352) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198781)

From the piece of the pie or we stick you dept. Thanks Timothy, we know where your sentiments lie, clearly in the camp of the ruling class, not the workers. I can't wait for all the 'unions ar teh suck!' posts.

Unions brought us child labor laws, eight hour days, overtime pay, the weekend, paid vacations, etc. You think the bosses just gave us all that? Hardly. People fought and died for those benefits and protections, and even if you aren't in a union, rest assured that unions and the threat of unions has made your job better.

Re:Story published to encourage union bashing (1)

Taius (464931) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198852)

Unions have out-lived their usefulness. Sure they brought about change, but that tactic has resulted in a higher cost for every product a union is involved with making.

Unions stunt the growth of ecomony by forcing a company to reward substandard work.

What if they had a strike and nobody knew... (4, Funny)

Nobody You Know (750014) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198806)

As long as the strike is taking place, orders for new service and repair of existing services with SBC will be delayed

Can't speak for SBC, but if this was Verizon in New York, my response would be "How could you tell?"

I heard a radio commercial about this problem (3, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 9 years ago | (#9198868)

It seems according to the message on-air, SBC (SouthwesternBell Communications) has been commanding ever-growing profits at a non-stop rate for the past 10+ years if I recall correctly and yet SBC has been cutting employee benefits and threatening to lower salaries while top executives find more ways to increase their salaries and bonuses.

They [SBC] don't have the excuse of failing profit margins or losses. They are just greedy. If the shareholders out there would vote their minds, they'd probably change out those in control... but then again, they're probably one in the same.
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