I'm not sure what the "monolithic BELL ATT days" might have been, but I would just like to point out that Southern New England Telephone (SNET) was never part of AT&T; it was not a wholly-owned subsidiary like most other regional operating companies and it was not directly controlled by AT&T in the same way in which the others were. SNET had a separate ownership structure and was allowed to use the Bell logo, but remain at least partially outside the control of the Bell System, because of some very savvy dealmaking by its founders early on; Bell needed them more than they needed Bell, and so things were always done a little bit differently -- just a little bit, but still differently -- in SNET territory than in the "monolith".
SNET and Cincinnati Bell had more in common in some ways with Rochester Tel and the other large single-region independents than with the regional companies that had been absorbed into AT&T. The one way one could say, though, that they were "monolithic" is that unlike the pure independents they still bought their switchgear from Western Electric and generally conformed to operating practices established by Bell Labs research.
It's not right to talk about what SNET or Cincinnatti Bell did and draw conclusions about how AT&T was or was not, because those two Bell companies were not part of AT&T.
Thor Lancelot Simon email@example.com
"The inconsistency is startling, though admittedly, if consistency is to be abandoned or transcended, there is no problem." - Noam Chomsky