Needless to say, AT&T’s none too happy about Verizon’s “Theres a Map for That” campaign. AT&T first complained about the ads back in October, saying they were misleading. Verizon responded by adding a few extra words and an itsy bitsy disclaimer – but that wasn’t enough for AT&T. Early this morning, AT&T filed a false advertising suit against Big Red, presumably in an effort to get the ads off the air as soon as possible.
This afternoon, AT&T sent out an internal memo regarding the lawsuit, and we’ve obtained a copy.
AT&T keeps the memo about as simple as they possibly can: Yes, they’re filing a lawsuit. Yes, they feel Verizon is misleading potential AT&T customers. But if anybody asks? Use it as an opportunity to tell them how totally awesome AT&T is. When a memo is less about the details and more about how to avoid talking about the details, that’s just good ol’ fashion spin.
A copy of the memo follows:
Channels: COR, DMDR, LD, and NR Internal
Roles: Reps & Above
Contact: Your Manager
AT&T filed a lawsuit on November 4, 2009 against Verizon’s “There’s a Map for That” advertising campaign. Independent research shows that the maps in the advertisements mislead consumers into believing that we do not offer any wireless service in the vast majority of the country. In fact, AT&T’s 2.5G EDGE network covers 1.75 million square miles of the United States, reaching some 296 million people, roughly the same number reached by Verizon’s network. This network supports popular services like e-mail, surfing the Web, texting, and voice calling, including the activities shown in the Verizon TV advertisements. In addition, our 3G service, the nation’s fastest, is available in more than 9,400 cities and towns.
We filed the lawsuit in Federal District Court in Atlanta and asked that Verizon be prohibited from misleading consumers regarding the scope of our wireless network.
How should I respond to customers who ask about the lawsuit?
While we cannot speculate on the complaint filed, it is a great opportunity to remind customers of AT&T’s many advantages that over 81 million customers enjoy, including:
- Best Network
- The best coverage worldwide (More Bars in More PlacesTM).
- The nation’s fastest 3G network and the only national 3G carrier providing simultaneous voice and data usage.
- The most devices that work in the most places including Japan and South Korea (3G 2100 MHz device required).
- The nation’s largest wireless and wireline broadband provider.
- The nation’s largest company-owned and operated WiFi network with more than 20,000 hotspots, including Starbucks, McDonald’s and Barnes and Noble, as well as access to over 120,000 hotspots around the world.
- The leading provider of local and long distance voice services.
Greatest Value – The fairest value with Rollover® allowing customers to keep their unused minutes month to month.
Best Products – The most innovative exclusive devices such as the iPhoneTM 3GS.
Most Convenient Services
- The most customer friendly free self-service tools with *Services for checking usage, paying bills, and adding features.
- The most convenient and cost-effective way for customers to manage their accounts with Combined Billing for wireless and wireline products.
- Industry leading 30-day satisfaction guarantee.
As always, if you have an inquiry from the media, please refer them to your local media relations team member.