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Date: Sun, 8 Sep 91 23:35 PDT
From: John Higdon <>
Organization: Green Hills and Cows
Subject: Re: More on US West and 976 IPs

Steve Forrette <> writes:

> This is not necessarily the case.  I am an MasterCard/Visa merchant,
> [...]
> If I can do it, so can the IPs.

Not so fast. Did you tell them you were a telephone information
provider and that 100% of your charges would be "cardless" and that
you were giving only information, nothing tangible? If you had, I can
guarantee you that you would not be sportin' your precious merchant
account right now.

Besides defeating the very purpose of the 900 intentions (casual use,
no prior billing arrangements, no credit cards, etc.), there are few
if any IPs with VISA/MC merchant accounts. Instead, they are forced to
hide behind a rip-off "space and facilities" provider who maintains a
quasi-legitimate bank card account and doles it out to IPs who
contract with his services. The ones I am familiar with give scant
detail to the IPs and collect a very healthy percentage of the take.

If this was such a viable option, most IPs would be using 800 numbers
and credit card billing today given the rotten state of affairs with
regards to 900 services with the restrictions and the collection

        John Higdon         |   P. O. Box 7648   |   +1 408 723 1395      | San Jose, CA 95150 |       M o o !

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