Caburg’s Weblog

18:25 Wednesday 10.22.2008

Internal Comcast Powerpoint Shows They Know They Suck

Filed under: opinion — Cait @ 6:25 pm
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“It’s no secret to most readers that Comcast’s outsourced techs are often late, rude and incompetent, and that calling customer service is more akin to improving dialogue in a Beckett play, but as this exclusively obtained internal Comcast powerpoint shows, it’s no secret to the cable company either.”

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21:53 Tuesday 10.21.2008

Comcast — raising rates

Filed under: complaints — Cait @ 9:53 pm
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I just received a letter from Comcast saying they are raising their rates — I haven’t figured out the percentage but it looks like quite a bit — they like to nickel and dime.

The reason???  They want to blame health care costs.  What???  As a customer, I am not responsible nor do I care what benefits they provide for their employees.  That is their problem.  If it costs them too much, then don’t offer it as a benefit.  I would think that Comcast should be thinking about their customers and their shareholders.  How to turn a profit.

I would love to see the financials for Comcast.  Its hard to believe that they are not turning a significant profit — once the hardware is installed — all they do is collect payments, don’t they?

I think Comcast and I will be parting ways very shortly… and then I won’t be posting again until I find a new ISP.  Television — well I think that when next February roles around — there will be hell to pay!  I don’t know the percentage of folks that still use over-the-air as their primary source of television — but I can assure you that even with a digital box — there is minimal digital signal where there is sufficient analog signal.

One lady here tried to switch to digital — and she said “I didn’t have television when I was young, and it looks like I won’t have it when I’m old.”

I’m seriously considering that option.  I will be getting my “free” digital boxes this week — and looking into the cost of a sufficient digital antenna for my area.  Fortunately, there are plenty of “free” channels here — if I can receive them.  If not — gosh, I guess I will have to start reading again.

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My Unhappy Experiences with Comcast

Filed under: complaints,opinion — Cait @ 4:19 pm
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The last time I posted about Comcast, I was contacted by Comcast Cares and asked to elaborate.

I am using this space to collect my thoughts… which may take a while.

1) For three (3!!) years I made multiply complaints that I was not receiving Fox in Stereo. I received all kinds of responses, all illustrating the um.. oh god I want to say stupidity, but that would be rude… the um… ignorance or poorly educated responses of Comcast employees —

I was told that not all programs are broadcast in stereo, or I didn’t know what I was talking about, etc.

Let me say who *I* am. I am a member of Mensa, and I hold a degree in Electrical Engineering. I am also a woman — which makes the uniformed male think they can lie to me and I won’t know the difference. I also have a memory like an elephant — especially when I am lied to to. I believe in a previous post I mentioned that I hate lies and liars. Tell me the truth — and I may not like it, but I will respect you. Lie to me and, well, all bets are off. If I can find a way to bring you to your knees and screw you to the wall and cost you your job — I will do it!! Do not ever lie to me! It *will* cost you!

I do take detailed notes — I have contemporaneous notebooks — which name names, dates, etc. If I am not “made whole” in a timely manner — all will be revealed.

For 3 years I was told that I didn’t know what I was talking about. I knew that the persons I was dealing with were clearly misinformed… Surely cable could not be inferior to the over the air signal?? The over the air signal for 24, American Idol, etc. were in stereo. As well as all commercials and everything else broadcast 24/7 from the local Fox station.

Eventually — serendipitously I made the acquaintance of the Comcast liaison to Best Buy.

He made arrangements to send yet another tech to my home — and (miraculously!) the evening before the tech’s visit — my Fox channel became stereo!!!

2) It seems that Comcast is biased against Fox — while the local Fox channel is finally available “digital” — all the other Fox networks are not digital nor even stereo. No Fox programming — Fx: Damages, The Shield, Nip/Tuck, Rescue Me, etc.; Fox News, Speed TV, etc., etc. And not available “ON Demand” either.

3) I had a list of stations that I was not receiving in Stereo — I called the stations and was told that they provided the broadcasting to Comcast in Stereo. I provided the information to Comcast — and requested them to provide me with a list of channels indicating which ones they believed that they provided as stereo or not. I was told that they didn’t know. What??

4) Comcast has a channel that is supposed to provide local information — some as commercial advertising, some political info, local events, etc. I do not receive that channel. The tech I had at the house called his boss and was told that I didn’t subscribe to the proper level. Hmm… I subscribe to premium digital, with HBO and Showtime. The only thing I don’t subscribe to is all the movie channels and the sports tier and the Ethnic tiers (Latino, Indian, etc.) And I’m supposed to believe that it is necessary to pay more for advertising!

5) I have a hole in my wall — provided to me by Comcast four (4!!!) years ago. I was adding a cable outlet to my den – and the installer put the hole in the wall — and then decided it was in a place he couldn’t use. (He also did some other shoddy work, which Comcast did eventually repair.) The hole is still there – even though I was told that Comcast would send someone to repair it…. Four years later — its still there!!!!!

6) I was subscribed to a “special” that I was happy with — however, when I called because I was having trouble with my service — I was told on two different occasions that I would receive “credits” — once for $10 and a second time for $25. Neither credit ever appeared on my bill. (I did mention how much I hate being lied to, correct?)

7) One of the customer service reps told me that my “special” was time-limited – and she could offer me a better deal that would be a permanent rate (ie, would never increase — unless I changed my level of service). I reluctantly agreed to the change – and, of course, it turned out to be yet anther LIE. And I had to pay double the first month — of a reduced rate? Comcast has a screwed up accounting system — I still haven’t seen a credit for the double payment — I better see it when I drop Comcast….

To be continued…

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16:58 Saturday 09.20.2008

@ComcastCares

Filed under: opinion — Cait @ 4:58 pm
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Don’t know if anyone has noticed — but there appears to be a team of people with the email addy We_Can_Help@cable.comcast.com .  They are on Twitter, Plurk (although not actively plurking), and commenting on blogs all over the net (including my previous post “I Called Comcast…” .) 

I hesitated to respond to the commenter — I had no idea who these people were — where they really Comcast employees?  Did they have nefarious intentions?  My friend Gary’s wife, a middle school teacher, had recently completed a state-required course on internet safety — and was told to *never* respond to such posts with any personal information — so I didn’t.

It seems, however, that perhaps these folks are for real.

Another blogger, a comp sci professor in California, also had an issue with Comcast — and the ComcastCares team resolved the issue — in a manner that exceeded his expectations. 

So perhaps I *will* contact them.  Gary suggested I should ask @ComcastCares “about what?”, since caring is *not* the experience that any of my circle of friends have had.  But perhaps they have finally realized that customer service actually has value.  Should I stay with Comcast or not?  Verdict is still out here — especially with Fios at my doorstep…

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18:16 Saturday 09.13.2008

I called Comcast…

Filed under: complaints — Cait @ 6:16 pm
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and was on hold for 15 minutes before reaching customer service!  IMHO the government doesn’t do much right — but when I called Social Security — they have a system where you can either wait in queue — or leave your name/number and they call back when your queue time is reached.  System worked great! But I digress…

I then spent over 30 minutes getting the guy to understand what “no connection to the internet” means!  He said — can you reach any websites?  what?? “no connection” means some of the lights on my modem are blinking (there should be 4 solid lights) and there is no *way* to reach any website! and “intermittent” means it doesn’t happen all the time (while I was on the phone — the modem connected and disconnected 4 times!)  Apparently the only feedback they have at their end is color-coded — for me its “red” — which can mean “no connection” or “poor connection”.

He finally decided to send a tech out on Wednesday – between 12 and 3. 

We shall see what happens :)

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argh!!! Comcast!

Filed under: complaints — Cait @ 4:50 pm
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For the past 2 weeks – Comcast internet service has been intermittent — at best!  Drops off for 5 minutes comes back drops again… longest it was off was 90 minutes — the first time — and I figured they were working on the system…. Then it got unbelievably slow… Then it was off for another 1 hour… faster when it came back that time (that was earlier this week after Hannah). (Although it has never come close to functioning at the advertised speed!!!)  Today, however, it was off for over 3 hours — and then was intermittent for another 30 minutes!!..  At this point I don’t have an alternative — but Fios is *almost* here… trying to decide if I really want to go thru the hastle of changing… and I can’t get them to send a list of channels — which is another big question mark. (if I change internet I will change cable television as well — and possibly phone — which is already Verizon but not Fios).  :::sigh:::  I *hate* being frustrated! ;)

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