Comcast Collects A Combined 20 Years Worth Of Fees From Two Customers Who Never Received What They Were Paying For

from the $30/month-for-a-piece-of-worthless-paper dept

As Comcast continues to push for a dominating hold on the American cable market, it seems completely oblivious to the fact that it is historically one of the worst companies in the nation in terms of customer service. The Consumerist has bestowed its "Worst Company in America" award on the cable company more than once, and the internet is littered with Comcast customer service horror stories. According to Comcast, people who may oppose its proposed merger with Time Warner aren't expressing genuine consternation that a rude behemoth might get bigger and ruder, they're just being "ignorant" and "unreasonable."

Well, two recent stories collected by the Consumerist website detail both ignorance and unreasonableness -- and in both cases, it's the cable giant that has a monopoly on both.

Apparently, Comcast offers security systems in some markets. "Offers" being the key word. It seems to be a bit lax on actually maintaining a system that provides security.
When you pay $30 per month for a security system, you sort of expect to get a working security system. At least, most people would. Not in Comcastlandia, the strange world ruled by the corporate policies of Comcast. A Houston family started alarm service in 2007, and then learned from experience that their alarm system wasn’t working. And hadn’t in the entire seven years that they had been paying for service.
The customers uncovered this seven-year gap in coverage after finding their back door open after returning home. However, the alarm hadn't been triggered. After bringing the issue to Comcast's attention, the company discovered the alarm had been offline for more than a half-decade. Rather than express any genuine concern about this lapse, Comcast's first move was to blame the customer for paying for a service that didn't exist.
Comcast countered that the seven years of non-service weren’t their fault, since the user agreement says that customers are supposed to test their systems monthly. If the system is offline and the customer hasn’t tested it, that makes everything the customer’s fault.
In total, the customer had paid more than $2100 for nothing at all. Comcast's counteroffer? A $20 credit. Once the local TV station got involved, Comcast changed course and offered a full refund.

Seven years is a pretty impressive run of non-service, but another Comcast customer has that beat.
An 88-year-old woman in Florida is on a fixed income, but enjoys watching telenovelas, so she dutifully paid her $29 Comcast cable bill every month. There was one small problem with that, though: Comcast wasn’t providing her with any cable service. The condominium building where she lives provides cable to all residents, through a different company that is not Comcast.

The building switched providers from Comcast to Charter back in 2000. Yes, that’s right: she’s been paying for cable service that she didn’t get for more than 13 years.
Once again, Comcast reacted to this news in the Comcastian of fashions. Total intake over 13 years of non-service? $4,500. Refund amount offered? $174.

And once again, it's local TV to the rescue, shaming the ignorant and unreasonable company into refunding the whole amount.

Now, for those still insisting no harm will be done by the Comcast-Time Warner merger, just think about how many more opportunities Comcast will have to collect money for doing even more than its usual nothing. A company with a horrendous customer service record shouldn't be rewarded with a doubling of its customer base. Of course, Time Warner isn't that much of an improvement, and it's been clear for years that both cable companies have long passed the Too Big To Care threshold. Combining these forces into a singular bastion of ineptitude and antipathy towards the public simply subtracts one company from the pool of "Worst Company in America" contestants.

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 5:51am

    It is to the point that all these cable/communication companies need taken down a notch. Creating them as public utilities to be regulated as such would help in that. It's very obvious that they depend on this monopoly to keep themselves in business without the need to be concerned with the customers and what they pay for.

    As cheap as Comcast things it's services are when it comes time to refund non-existant services is not how they think of these same services when you go to start one. Were there competition in any meaningful form, none of this would be an issue. There is nothing to direct them into better service or more value for the service as long as that competition does not exist. Take the last mile control away from these companies and give it back to the people that own them and paid for them through the tax incentives that were given to these companies for improvements they never made.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 5:55am

    They don't call them 'Comcrap' for nothing...

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 5:58am

    Wow, so now Comcast tries to take advantage of elderly people who are easier to scam? How low can you go.

     

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    scotts13 (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:07am

    I wound up on Comcast through a series of mergers; I started with a small local cable company. With each iteration, the service got worse and the price went higher. Hold in mind I'm near Philadelphia, Comcast's "home."

    When high definition service came in, they had an ongoing problem with audio/visual sync - sound not lip-synched to the picture. The difference was more than the re-sync on my receiver could handle, and varied throughout the day. Swapped cable boxes, diagnosed; eventually they told me there was nothing they could do and I had to live with it.

    Dumped the Comcast box and used a TiVo w/cable card instead, and the problem disappeared. So much for unfixable problems.

    Best thing I could say for them is when a competitor came into the area, they price matched without blinking an eye.

     

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  5.  
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    Michael, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:17am

    Re:

    No.

    Comcast tries to screw everyone equally. It just happens that elderly and mentally-deficient people do not catch on as quickly as everyone else.

    So really, it is the fault of the elderly and mentally-deficient, not Comcast.

     

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  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:22am

    "Too Big To Care" is not the real problem

    The real problem is "too insulated to care." As scotts13 pointed out, once they had a reason to care about local pricing, they suddenly cared. As long as they have no realistic competitor, they have no reason to care because they know most customers will not leave without getting some form of replacement service - and if there is no replacement service, then the customer simply will not leave.

     

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    RadioactiveSmurf (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:23am

    "customers are supposed to test their systems monthly" wouldn't all of the false positives annoy comcast and decrease the usefullness of the service? Do other home security companies have this written into their contracts?

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:41am

    I see a new channel being offered

    "Comcast Screws the Customer"

    Highlighting all of the different ways comcast screws the customer.

    It will be sold as a premium addon, produced by the local TV stations, and profits benefiting those who get their 15 minutes of fame on the channel.

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 6:58am

    I want my refund!

    Hmm, I've had cable service for quite a few years. That's quite a bit of money I've paid over the years. I'd sure like to have a chunk of change like that spend right about now. Hey, here's an idea! Just call call 'em up and say that it hasn't worked in years and I want full refund! Why didn't I call before? Well, you see, I'm kinda busy and didn't really have the time. My time's valuable, you know! Also, I only turn my TV on to watch DVD's, so I didn't notice the cable wasn't working. Now, get me my refund before I call a TV station!

     

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    Michael, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:01am

    Re:

    It will be sold as a premium addon

    You mean it will be included as part of the package customers need to buy to get their local news and weather, but increase the price by another $10 per month.

     

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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:21am

    Re: Have you run this story already?

    There is a "Submit a Story" link at the bottom of every page.

     

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  13.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:22am

    Re: Have you run this story already?

    There's a "submit a story" link at the top of the page if you want something covered. Given that your link is less than a day old, I don't believe it's been looked at yet, although someone else might have submitted and/or be writing an article as we speak...

     

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    PaulT (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:23am

    Re:

    "Do other home security companies have this written into their contracts?"

    I don't know, but it sure does sound like a handy bit of small print if your system fails and people get robbed as a result... I somehow doubt they have it spelled out anywhere else.

     

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  15.  
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    PaulT (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:26am

    Re: I want my refund!

    You might notice that in both cases, the problem was confirmed as 100% genuine (Comcast noticed the alarm outage themselves, while the building in the second instance had documentation that the building had not been serviced by Comcast since 2000).

    The problem isn't people trying to profit from Comcast, the problem is Comcast actually taking money for a service they didn't provide then offering an insulting pittance before people went public.

     

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  16.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:31am

    But Tim Comcast wants to fix the second one...

    If Comcast is the only cable provider anywhere, the second situation can't happen. It's simple.

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:35am

    Re: Re: I want my refund!

    Also, it is very likely that the people wouldn't have continued to pay for it if Comcast had not continued to send them a bill for the service that they were not getting.

     

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  18.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:41am

    Re:

    "Best thing I could say for them is when a competitor came into the area, they price matched without blinking an eye."

    Did they service match?

     

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    wto605 (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:43am

    No worries

    Anytime I have a problem with Comcast I can just call up my friendly NBC affiliate and... oh, wait, that doesn't work.

     

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  20.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 7:56am

    Re:

    In all fairness, they really should. There are tons of types of failures that can't be detected remotely. It's hard to blame a monitoring company (Comcast, Brinks, whoever) for failing to do the impossible.

    Comcast handled this badly (they should have just given the refund up front), but I can't blame them for "failing to provide service" if there was a fault at the customer's location.

     

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  21.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:08am

    Re: No worries

    Funny you say that. The local station in Houston IS the NBC affiliate.

     

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  22.  
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    bgmcb (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:09am

    It will get better

    After they raise prices next month.
    I can hardly wait.

     

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  23.  
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    Mike Roprocessor, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:14am

    Comcrap is crap

    I had a problem where I moved into my girlfriends house. She had cable so I didn't need it any more. I tried to close my account and they said I had a second box on my account that I never had. I had never been billed for it (and never had it) so the person said it must be a mistake and "sent it to the head office for review".
    I got a notice that they corrected the error by back billing me for the 3+ years that they said I had it. To take it off the bill, I just had to return the box I never had.
    After 2 more reviews, a representative called me and said he had good news for me. He told the original decision stood and all I have to do is to return the box (that I never had). He was also pleased to announce that I have now exhausted all my reviews of the situation.
    According to comcast, the box was installed in the lounge (I do not have a lounge, I had an efficiency). I asked the person if the box was installed by a tech, they said yes. I said fine, show me the paperwork, I was put on hold and then he said they didn't have any because it was not installed by a tech, it was a self install. I asked how they send the self install kits, he said by UPS. I said fine, there is a tracking number and a signature. I want to see it. I was put on hold, he came back and said for some reason it was sent by usps and there is no signature. I asked if the box was addressable, he said yes. I asked when it was turned on. He said never. I asked do you have any proof at all that I ever possessed the box? He said yes because it is on my account and we (comcast) did make a mistake but we corrected it by back billing you for the box that I was never billed for. I said I never had the box, it was never signed for by me, it was never installed in my apartment, you have no proof except for a number in your system, the box was never turned on and I do not have it. How do I get it off my account. His response was "All you have to do is return the box" (that I never had) "or else we will bill you until you do return it". He said thank you, he is closing the case and for me to have a nice day. He then hung up on me.
    Luckily I was at work while I was screaming at this joker. Someone over heard me and said her mother was a manager at comcast and she took the box off my account.
    If it wasn't for her, I would still be paying for that box probably until the end of time.

     

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  24.  
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    ltlw0lf (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:16am

    Re: Re:

    I don't know, but it sure does sound like a handy bit of small print if your system fails and people get robbed as a result... I somehow doubt they have it spelled out anywhere else.

    It's been a while, but I remember the contract I signed (with two different security companies) said that the maintenance of the equipment (since the equipment was mine) was my responsibility. It also said I should test my system regularly to assure that it works.

    There are quite a few companies that now monitor through alarm.com, so it is pretty easy to determine whether or not your system is working properly through their website. They also send notifications through email if the alarm is offline or is not responding and even if the power fails.

     

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  25.  
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    John Fenderson (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:22am

    Re: Comcrap is crap

    "If it wasn't for her, I would still be paying for that box probably until the end of time."

    Naw. You'd just have to go through the hassle of taking them to small claims or getting a consumer advocate to handle it for you.

     

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  26.  
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    Trevor, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:25am

    Re: Re:

    Not sure if serious...

    *FRY SQUINTY EYE MEME*

    ...or just trolling

     

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  27.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:28am

    Re:

    The problem with calling them public utilities is that nobody actually needs cable television. It's a luxury. You can do without it, and it offers nothing that is essential to civic life. If the government needs to reach the public en masse, it can still do so through normal free broadcast over the airwaves.

    All cable television really needs is competition.

    However, providing internet service is a different issue, and I'd argue that internet could be considered a utility that everyone needs.

     

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  28.  
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    Chronno S. Trigger (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:32am

    Re:

    "wouldn't all of the false positives annoy comcast and decrease the usefullness of the service?"

    That's kinda funny you say that. The "Further reading" link on the Consumerist article is labeled "The hidden cost of false alarms"

     

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  29.  
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    art guerrilla (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:45am

    Re: Re:

    yes, BUT...
    besides there being NO COMPETITION, but merely collusion (gosh, didn't that used to be kinda sorta 'illegal'?), you are nearly 'forced' into buying BOTH the teevee crap to get the inertnet crap...
    you don't bundle, they jack up the prices so much, you might as well bundle...

     

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  30.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 8:56am

    Charge them with fraud.

     

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  31.  
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    Mike Roprocessor, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:15am

    Re: Re: Comcrap is crap

    I probably should have taken them to court. I did end up losing the 300 some odd dollars that they back billed me for. I was just happy to end the nightmare of that situation was over and that I could finally close my account.

    It happened in 2007 and I really could not believe how inept they were. No wonder they have 3 inch bullet proof glass between them and the customer. They treat you like crap and expect us to just keep taking it.

     

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  32.  
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    OolongKaloofid, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:26am

    Caveat Emptor

    Welcome to the Business Republic of America. It is now our job to police ourselves and the companies we pay for service to ensure that we receive those services. These stories go on and on ad infinitum ad nausium yet consumer protection is at an all time low. Federal cutbacks gut these programs leaving the sheeple to the wolves of wall street.

     

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  33.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:28am

    Re:

    It's OK, they probably have a separate charge for testing. These people may have paid for a lot of nothing, but look at how much they saved by not testing!

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:38am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Marked previous comment as funny as it uses the cable companies' motto of blame the customer.

     

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  35.  
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    jupiterkansas (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:54am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Which can be fixed by regulating the internet as a utility.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:05am

    Re: Re:

    Comcast handled this badly[...], but I can't blame them for "failing to provide service" if there was a fault at the customer's location.
    I think we can blame them in this case, given that the article says "Comcast determined that the alarm had been offline since some point in 2007". I.e., their computers had detected that the alarm was offline, but weren't programmed to stop billing in that case or even (evidently) alert anyone.

     

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  37.  
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    Josh in CharlotteNC (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:17am

    Re: Re:

    but I can't blame them for "failing to provide service" if there was a fault at the customer's location.

    I saw this story a week or two ago somewhere else that had some other details. When they called for support, they found out the system had never been activated - or had been offline for their entire contract.

    There are at least 2 pretty obvious failures that aren't the customer's fault. First, the tech who initially set it up making sure it was installed and working properly. And second, seeing the alarm as offline for years and still charging them - without any kind of notification that it was offline.

     

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  38.  
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    GeeC, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:20am

    Re: Re:

    "The problem with calling them public utilities is that nobody actually needs cable television. It's a luxury. You can do without it, and it offers nothing that is essential to civic life. If the government needs to reach the public en masse, it can still do so through normal free broadcast over the airwaves.

    All cable television really needs is competition.

    However, providing internet service is a different issue, and I'd argue that internet could be considered a utility that everyone needs."

    Nobody technically NEEDS electricity, water, gas, or radio. We lived for many years without those things. The question isn't if it should be a regulated public utility, but whether there are anticompetitive collusive practices going on here. If the evidence shows that, then there needs to be something done through antitrust legislation.

    They government has no problem telling them what they can or can't show on TV and fining them when they break their rules. This is done for what reason? To protect us from obscene material? The FCC just wants to continue lining their pockets with money from the lobbyists of providers and content makers. They care nothing about the people they are "advocating" for and the same can be said about the other alphabet agencies for the most part.

    Also, there are many alternatives to the internet and places to get on the internet for free. That is just your opinion and a nonsensical one at that.

     

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  39.  
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    PRMan, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:29am

    Re: Re: Re:

    People actually complain...a lot...about content on TV.

     

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  40.  
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    PRMan, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:31am

    Re: Re:

    Yeah, I hope you switched to the alternative and stopped giving them your money.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Re:

    We need to change how we decide what to regulate and what not to regulate and instead of basing it on the type of service or whether it is a necessity or not, we need to base it on the past behavior of the company being regulated. AT&T and Verizon deserve to have ALL of the services they provide regulated as strictly as humanly possible based on their previous conduct in the market place based on the anti-competitive crap they pull and have always pulled. If you don't want to be subject to government regulation, don't do the shit that proves you deserve it. It's that simple.

    "They government has no problem telling them what they can or can't show on TV and fining them when they break their rules. This is done for what reason? To protect us from obscene material?"

    I have said for a very long time that this part of the FCC needs to go away. You don't have a right not to be offended by what you see and hear over public airwaves. Period. No where in the first amendment does it say "unless it is obscene." Obscenity laws are by definition unconstitutional.

     

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  42.  
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    JEDIDIAH, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:50am

    a monopoly is a monopoly

    The fact that it is a "luxury" is entirely irrelevant.

    Monopolies and subversion of the market and corruption aren't acceptable just because you manage to find a suitable label to make it seem OK.

     

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  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:53am

    Re: Re: I want my refund!

    I challenge them to prove my TV was connected.

     

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  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 10:58am

    Re: Re: Re: Comcrap is crap

    "I probably should have taken them to court."

    Why not? Unless, of course, they actually had a signed receipt from you that they could have brought to court. That wouldn't have turned out so well for you.

     

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    John85851 (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 11:07am

    Yes, they received what they paid for

    I think the people in this story received what they paid for, namely peace of mind. The security-system customers paid monthly and thought they were covered, only to realize they weren't. How is this any different than paying an insurance company, especially health insurance? You pay your premiums every month and you think you're covered, but then when you need medication or surgery, the company says they don't cover it or they drop you for filing a claim.

     

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  46.  
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    John, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 11:17am

    I had the pleasure of being fucked by both Comcast and Time Warner in different states. I'll start with TW since it was more recent.

    Over the past year until I moved a couple weeks ago, I had TW w/ 1 HDDVR box, HBO and Showtime - pretty damn simple. For 10 months of that time, they billed by for 2 boxes. When the TW/Showtime fuckery was happening, I cancelled Showtime and they continued to bill for it every single month - with me calling every month to tell them it was a mistake, and having them credit me the money. I discovered the 10 months of being double billed for my box when I returned my equipment and they realized I only had a single box and the accident happened because they had to replace a broken DVR box, but the service man forgot to log it, but refused to refund me since I was no longer a customer. It took having a propery manager threaten to drop our local representative for the fuck up to get him to refund me my hundred and someodd dollars. If they had only put and "x2" or separate line items for the 2 boxes, I would have been able to correct it on day one, but they basically tried to hide it in the bill.

    Now to Comcast, which is far worse. I had to fight with them for several years to remove an "unpaid" bill from my credit report that they sent to collections over a month AFTER I paid it. I moved out of an apartment that my roomate stayed in and transferred the service to him. There was a mistake in the transfer and they only added him to the account and forgot to take me off. After he didn't pay the bill and racked up a little over a grand in charges in 90 days, they finally gave me a call asking for the money. I paid it in full on the spot, had them close the account, and set up a plan to have my roomate pay me back and return the equipment (and start a new cable plan if he wanted it). A month later, a collection agency starts calling me about it. I told them I paid the bill and gave them a copy of the receipt I had from Comcast. They kept calling and ignoring what I was telling them - and even Comcast said they dropped the collections because it was an accident so I asked them for confirmation and proof of the debt, which they never sent, and stopped taking their calls. Six months later, guess what shows up on my credit report? TWO hits, for $500 each (because why not trash someones credit twice for a single bill, right?) a month apart from each other... It took months to have experian zero out the debt and another year to get them to remove it completely...

     

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  47.  
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    Jack, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 11:29am

    Re:

    Fucked by AT&T just today, too (only option in the area besides satellite and I need internet). After ordering U-Verse+Cable on 6/2 and having my installation on 6/10 cancelled without notice and moved to 6/13 (losing 2 PTO days, but hey, their $20 "inconvenience" credit totally made up for that...) I made it a total of 114 hours with service before everything went out. So in less than 5 days of service, I've lost 2 PTO days, spent hours with them on the phone, and now have to take another PTO day Friday if the modem they are overnighting me, which would have taken a week if I didn't ask to cancel my account, doesn't work. And a trip to the UPS store to return their shit modem/router. But hey, the "most highly rated internet and cable provider by their customers", as they remind me every time they put me on hold, gave me a $20 credit for all that, so we're all good.

    If I ever move to a state with Optimum, I'll have the pleasure of being fucked by every major cable carrier in the country. But hey, they are such great companies, why not let them further expand their monopolies?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  48.  
    icon
    Uriel-238 (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:13pm

    Would a Comcast / Time-Warner merger...

    ...make them more susceptible to anti-trust litigation?

    Just pondering.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  49.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    " I.e., their computers had detected that the alarm was offline"

    That's reading a lot into the statement. "Comcast determined" could mean they actually did an investigation both onsite and off, not that they simply checked the logs.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  50.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:31pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Well, that changes my stance substantially!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  51.  
    icon
    John Fenderson (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:34pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Comcrap is crap

    Even then, it might have turned out well anyway. Large corporations often just ignore small claims cases and let a default judgement happen, whether the company is in the right or wrong. It's cheaper than sending someone to the courtroom. Yes, although usually the court system is stacked heavily against the little guy, this is one situation where the broken nature of the system can work in our favor.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  52.  
    identicon
    andypandy, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:40pm

    FCC

    So where is the FCC in all this they are supposed to be on the side of the customer. the first thing they should have done when they heard these two and i am sure many other cases is rule that Comcast must every month contact every customer by phone and check that they have the service they are paying for, if not then they must refund all monies taken by themselves or face the FCC supporting fraud charges against them.

    Any person bringing attention of this type of fraud must report it to the FCC and if after the initial 30 days there is still a problem then comcast must stop registering new customers until they resolve the problems they have.

    For every new customer they sign on they are to pay 3x the annual subscription in a fine and 5 years free subscription of their top packages.Any problems with this service either with slow internet connectivity or blocked channels results in more fines and payments to the customer of $250 for each offence,

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  53.  
    identicon
    Digger, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 12:53pm

    Uhhh - where's the interest charges at?

    That should have included interest @ 29%, compounded hourly over the entire time period.


    I'd sue for interest @ the maximum allowed credit card rate.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  54.  
    icon
    jupiterkansas (profile), Jun 18th, 2014 @ 1:24pm

    Re: a monopoly is a monopoly

    I wasn't arguing that a monopoly was okay, I was arguing that cable TV shouldn't be considered a public utility.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  55.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 2:50pm

    Re:

    Have you SEEN their channel offerings?....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  56.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 2:52pm

    Taking bets that somewhere in the small print is something to exonerate Comcast if (more like when) one of their engineers steals something from a customers home whilst installing or maintaining equipment.....

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  57.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 3:21pm

    Re:

    Are you freaking kidding me?

    Making cable/communication companies "public utilities", resulting in people being forced to pay for them and said cable/communication companies would have even less of an incentive to do good - as they'd get paid either way via State extortion ("taxation"), would be atrocious.

    The biggest issue today is the government enforced monopolies/oligopolies that cable/communication companies have. Where I live you can only get Comcast for cable services, thanks to a cozy fascistic government regulation.

    The power to regulate is the power to grant favors.

    We need more competition in the marketplace so that consumers have more choice and can take their business elsewhere if their cable provider isn't up to snuff.

    I prefer consensual relationships and voluntary exchange.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  58.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 3:39pm

    Alarm tests...

    I used to work with alarm systems.

    Every alarm panel I ever had my hands on came out of the box set to autotest once a week. There were options for daily or monthly tests but you had to change those. Autotest means that the alarm panel will send a test signal to the monitoring station; the subscriber does not have to do anything. The signal sent will be different from a burglary signal so the monitoring station will know not to worry.

    Any monitoring station worth their reputation will have policies on what to do if they don't get a signal of any kind from an alarm panel. The default is one week, but the subscriber can ask for one month. If no signal of any kind - including autotest - is received after said period the monitoring station normally calls the subscriber to report "failure to test" and encourage the subscriber to have their system checked.

    If this did not happen in this case, no contract will help.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  59.  
    identicon
    Mike Roprocessor, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 4:43pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Comcrap is crap

    I never had it and they had no evidence that I ever had it.

    Honestly the thought of taking them to court never really crossed my mind. I was pissed that they screwed me but I was also glad it was done.

    I do not think I could do anything now since it happened just about 7 years ago.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  60.  
    identicon
    Na, Jun 18th, 2014 @ 9:00pm

    Untrue

    The story that her building was fed by Charter is a fucking lie. Charter is not in the state of Florida and NEVER HAS BEEN

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  61.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jun 19th, 2014 @ 4:54am

    Re: Re: Re: I want my refund!

    If they were providing the service you requested, it doesn't matter that you don't use it. Their end of the bargain is to provide you with access to the service, even if you opt not to use said access.

    For example, if you have a mobile service but you have your phone turned off for a month, you don't suddenly become exempt from the bill for service. You still have to pay your mobile provider because they were still providing the service you asked for, even if you opted not to use it.

    However, if you realised after a month that the provider had your account turned off on their end and thus provided no service, you'd be entitled to a full refund.

    A slightly shaky analogy, but they're 2 different situations.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  62.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Jun 19th, 2014 @ 5:00am

    Re: Untrue

    10 seconds of googling showed me this:

    http://www.cabletv.com/charter/fl

    Now, that's an official reseller rather than Charter themselves, and it seems to be limited to certain cities. But, it seems that they most certainly do offer service there by some means.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  63.  
    identicon
    Jasper, Jun 19th, 2014 @ 6:14am

    Another

    Comcast randomly starting charging me a monthly fee for the modem I had bought from Staples 6 years prior. When I called to straighten it out, they told me they could only refund me for two of the six months I was charged. I got irate and spoke to a manager and got the full refund. Gotta love Comcast for fabricating charges and putting them on the bill!

    Years ago they sent me a second cable box. I only had one TV. When I called in to get it straightened out they blamed me! They said they would not send out a box without me ordering it. I only had one TV! Yeah, I ordered two boxes for one TV. Never your fault Comcast...

    I am now a happy customer of a satellite provider.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  64.  
    identicon
    Dan G Difino, Jun 19th, 2014 @ 6:49am

    Comcast or bust

    Its bust. I will never do business with this company and will never recommend anyone else do business with them. In fact, I would rather get newscasts three years late or the World Series a month after, than watch it live on comcast.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  65.  
    identicon
    Mike Richardson, Jun 21st, 2014 @ 12:37am

    Re: Re: No worries

    The local NBC affiliate is owned by Post-Newsweek Stations; the local Telemundo affiliate is an O&O though.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  66.  
    icon
    foobar1234 (profile), Jun 23rd, 2014 @ 8:41am

    bogus story

    comcast is no friend of mine. They suck. But this story is bogus. Comcast has only been offering home security for about four years. Not 20. Not even 10.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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