Man Charged $28K To Watch Bears Game

After using laptop to watch game, fan charged huge AT&T fee

As Will Brinson at Mouthpiece Blog writes, the Slingbox is indeed a wonderful thing. The very notion that you can watch TV from your laptop via a wireless connection is baffling, but it's also a sign of things to come, a future where our entertainment and information isn't limited by electrical or cable outlets. That should be fun, eh?

The not so fun part of this brave new future: What happens when AT&T charges you international roaming rates for using your Slingbox stateside. That happened to one Bears fan, who decided to write into the Chicago Sun-Times' The Fixer to try and spread his story:

I called AT&T and told them there was either a mistake or fraud and to please take this off the bill. That's where the fun starts. They told me that the bill was correct and somehow I was charged international rates for Internet use, and the cost is 2 cents per kb. That came out to $27,788.93.

I explained that I was not at sea but in port and my cell phone was still working without roaming, and that I should have still been on my unlimited wireless card. I have since been in contact with five or six different people at AT&T, and the best they could do, even though I am not at fault, is to bring the bill down to $6,000.

The Fixer has since gone to work on the man's bill, and it appears AT&T will no longer be charging him $6,000 or $27,788. Good news! These sorts of freak wireless things happen all the time -- stories of people leaving their cell phones on roam when they leave the country, that sort of thing. Rarely do they involve a Bears game at a bill for $28 G's, though. That's just not right. At this point, the Bears should be paying us that much to watch.

Eamonn Brennan is a writer, editor and blogger hunkered down in Lincoln Park. You can also read him at Yahoo! Sports, FanHouse, MOUTHPIECE Sports Blog, and Inside The Hall, or at his personal site,

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