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Thank You, Comcast, May I Have Another?

Last in a series. For now.

The last time Comcast turned off my cable service instead of that of the person moving out of my building, they offered me a $2.10 credit for my troubles (including a couple days without service.)

If I hadn't followed my instinct, those troubles would have included driving across town to replace a perfectly fine cable box and returning home to find myself still without service.

This happens every time. I know it, but somehow Comcast doesn't.

And you wanna run NBC?

Of course, this made me wonder whether my account was listed with the wrong unit. After all, for years Peoples Gas crossed my account with the unit across the hall. (I will write up an update on that situation soon; of course I was right.) Maybe that was the problem. It certainly wasn't my cable box.

Here's the message I filed with Comcast when I was trying to get through to them:

The following information was submitted from the Comcast Web site:
Name: Steve Rhodes Problem: General Inquiry/Other

I used phone and live chat support yesterday, and tried to use e-mail - didn''t work. If you review the live chat transcript, you can see the issue. Turns out the box was fine - my cable was disconnected outside, as I suggested might be the issue. This has happened before when someone in the unit across from me has moved out. Now I want to make sure I've been getting the right bill all this time - and not the bill from across the hall. You can see why this is a reasonable inquiry. Also, your customer service continues to suck. If you weren't the only game in town, I would have been gone long ago, and it''s why I will never subscribe to your triple play or internet service, no matter how much junk mail you send me.

Here's what they sent me back:

Dear Steve Rhodes,

Thank you for contacting Comcast Cable.

While we are typically able to provide written responses to those who email us, in this particular instance the issue you've brought up is one that requires that we discuss it with you directly in order to collect additional details and provide you with the best solution.

Our representatives are waiting to speak with you. At your earliest convenience, please contact us by calling 866-594-1234 or click the link below to be taken directly to a Live Chat representative:


Thank you for choosing Comcast.


Comcast Customer Care Specialist


* * *

Here's how it went from there:

A phone rep offers me a deal for my trouble - a deal she says is usually reserved just for new customers: $29.99 per month if I commit to a year, plus free HBO.

Wow, that's awesome!

Um, what's the catch?

No catch! Just commit to a year.


Oops, I can't find that deal in the computer. How about a $44 deal?

Well, no, I want the first deal.

Huh, it's not in the computer. I'll have to check with a supervisor.

Okay, I'll call back Monday.

I call back Monday. Here comes the runaround. I'm eventually told from customer retention person this isn't just for new people. So I'm not getting a deal at all. Okay, I'll take it anyway; they will send out the agreement I have to sign.

But even if I don't sign it and decide against, just for asking for the agreement my bill will go up $1.99 a month! I will automatically be upgraded to some digital package of some sort. (I thought I already was digital).

I can just do it for six months without signing agreement. But at end of six months, my bill will still go up $1.99 a month!

Now, you might be thinking, at $1.99 a month it will take them awhile to make back their money. My suspicion is that the upgraded package will then see a price increase in the next year or so meaning in the end, you pay more. That's how they operate.

But more than anything, their lying and hiding and obfuscation and failure to address my issue leaves me wanting to have nothing to do with Comcast.

Finally, I am offered $10 off my monthly bill for the next three months for my trouble. If they would have just done that in the first place and apologized, I would have been happy. Now I'm not happy. I'll take their $30 but I despise Comcast even more now then before this series of calls.

(Oh, the customer retention rep also told me that customer service reps aren't aware of all the packages that are being offered at any given time - nor are members of the sales department! Why don't customer retention reps answer the phones, then?)

In the meantime, while I was trying to resolve this my service was turned back off because I hadn't paid my bill yet. Because we were working out a refund from when they accidentally turned my service off. Again.

* * *

A couple months later, I call about my bill, which has included the "digital starter package" on it that I said I didn't want. (Bear in mind, I'm already digital . . . )

She says "but it's cheaper." Yes, but only with the $10 discount I'm getting for three months because you guys screwed up.

Well, your old plan doesn't exist anymore. We've had a price increase and package increase. There are no other options.

So this was going to happen anyway! I could have had the $29.99 package after all! I got screwed in reverse!

Is there a cheaper package? Yes, but you don't get as many channels, obviously. Which channels do you prefer so we can see if it's the right package for you?

Well, is there a list online or something?


So you want me to name all the channels I want? That's a lot of channels. There's no list? You're the cable company!

I can read them to you.

And she does. They all seem to be there.

But . . . ESPN?



This is ridiculous.

Finally, she takes $24 off my bill to give me a year of the new package at my old rate.

But now I have late fees.

And then she asks me if I want Comcast telephone or Internet!

No thank you. Your company sucks. How many times do customers say they wish there was competition?

There is!


You can go with a different service. We hope you don't, but you can.

Really? What other cable services are in my area?

I don't know.

That's because there aren't any.

I didn't know that.

That's because you're a customer service rep; they don't tell you everything.


* Stop Comcast!
* Opposing Comcast
* Comcast Sucks
* Regarding Comcast
* Comcastic!


Comments welcome.


Posted on July 23, 2010

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
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POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


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