I stopped by a MetroPCS store at the corner of Main Street and Pico Boulevard near downtown Los Angeles. I was the only customer.
The woman behind the counter was straightening things up. She didn't seem overburdened with corporate activities.
I asked about bill payments. The saleswoman said I'd have to pony up $3 if I wanted to pay at the store with a credit card, a debit card or cash. I asked why.
"That's the rule," she explained.
I guess Crowell saw no upside in defending an indefensible company practice. But he did offer this: "MetroPCS works to educate its customers regarding the wide array of payment options available so they can select options that best fit their needs."
You may be hit with a fee by these other guys for paying at an authorized dealer such as Radio Shack or for paying by phone — T-Mobile's $5 phone charge is a slap in the face — but in-store payments are gratis.
MetroPCS merged last year with T-Mobile, yet T-Mobile hasn't done anything about MetroPCS' customer-unfriendly billing practice.
Glenn Zaccara, a T-Mobile spokesman, said the two companies keep their distance from each other, policy-wise. "We have two brands that operate as separate business units," he said.
Consumers have grown accustomed to being nickel-and-dimed by wireless companies. From activation fees to early-termination fees, this is an industry that's completely at peace reaching into customers' pockets.
But a $3 fee for paying your bill in cash at a company store? That's nothing but greed, pure and simple.
David Lazarus' column runs Tuesdays and Fridays. He also can be seen daily on KTLA-TV Channel 5 and followed on Twitter @Davidlaz. Send your tips or feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org.