The 7th Grader and the Phone, Or Did I Screw Up?

After much deliberation I got Chippy an inexpensive phone from AT&T (20$ after rebate). Since he is now walking home from school a sizable distance, I wanted it for safety. 

With the AT&T phone I purchased the Smart Limits program (5$ per month) that gives parents the ability to limit texting, downloading, etc.

However, I assumed that when I specified the phone numbers (up to 15) that could be called I was also limiting in-coming calls to only those numbers.

 

A reasonable assumption, right?  But I was wrong. 

Incoming phone calls and texts are NOT blocked, even if you use the time span blocker, e.g., 9 pm to 7 am. 

So, by using the AT&T Smart Limits program you are only limiting the user of the phone  — that is, your child — not people you, as a parent, want to keep blocked, i.e., the other kids and the “bad guys.”

In order to block in-coming calls you must put in the specific number. OK, that works for some pesky nuisance, but it doesn’t take care of the really nasty text message or phone call. 

I want them all blocked except for the numbers I have chosen in advance.  Is that so much to ask?

Help me here!  How could AT&T be so stupid to offer a program that does only half the job? 

Or, was it me who was stupid not to read the fine print before slapping down the plastic!

Is there anything better out there?

Deal W. Hudson

By

Deal W. Hudson is ​publisher and editor of The Christian Review and the host of "Church and Culture," a weekly two-hour radio show on the Ave Maria Radio Network.​ Formerly publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine for ten years, his articles and comments have been published widely in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, and U.S. News and World Report. He has also appeared on TV and radio news shows such as the O'Reilly Factor, Hannity & Colmes, NBC News, and All Things Considered on National Public Radio. Hudson worked with Karl Rove in coordinating then-Gov. George W. Bush's outreach to Catholic voters in 2000 and 2004. In October 2003, President Bush appointed him a member of the official delegation from the United States to attend the 25th anniversary celebration of John Paul II's papacy. Hudson, a former professor of philosophy for 15 years, is the editor and author of eight books. He tells the story of his conversion from Southern Baptist to Catholic in An American Conversion (Crossroad, 2003), and his latest, Onward, Christian Soldiers: The Growing Political Power of Catholics and Evangelicals in the United States, was published in March 2008. He is married to Theresa Carver Hudson, also a Baptist convert, and they have two children, Hannah and Cyprian who was adopted from Romania in 2001.

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