L.A. Investigates Anti-Adelphia Calls


The Los Angeles County Consumer Affairs Department is investigating the
source of telemarketing messages to area homes to determine if the caller is
exploiting Adelphia Communications Corp.'s bankruptcy in an attempt to scare
consumers into switching to competitive technologies.

The investigation was begun when Adelphia vice president Bill Rosendahl
personally complained about the messages to Los Angeles city attorney Rocky

The city attorney does not investigate consumer abuses, so he turned over the
complaint to the county agency, according to the D.A.'s spokesman.

The calls offer varied messages. For instance, one message recorded by a
Multichannel News reporter said Adelphia has filed for bankruptcy and has
been involved in one of the biggest corporate accounting scandals in U.S.

It added, 'Adelphia customers are already reporting service outages and
blackouts.' To minimize the impact on customers, the caller is offering to
replace cable service with new free satellite technology.

A call to the number provided in the message reached a full mailbox for a
company identifying itself as 'Satellite Solutions.' Multichannel News
could not find an address or alternate phone number for such a company.

'Competition is one thing: Misleading the public is quite another,' said Ana
Garcia of the D.A.'s office. The competitor may not be committing a crime by
mentioning the bankruptcy or corporate arrests, but the city has no record of
service outages, she said.

Adelphia officials have also assured the city that the MSO intends no service
reductions or changes.