There’s good news and bad news in Comcast’s alleged mission to improve its worst-in-America customer service. Good: You might actually get a refund after they bill you for equipment you’ve already returned. Bad: You’ll have to sign an agreement never to tell anyone that Comcast overcharged you in the first place.
The FCC is very likely to block Comcast and Time Warner Cable, the reigning Worst Company in America and Most Hated Company in America, from completing their $45.2 billion super-megamorph into The Worst, Most Hated Company in America, a source familiar with the deal told Bloomberg today. Hey Comcast, have you tried turning it off and rebooting it?
Just over a week ago, a St. Paul, Minn., man told Comcast he'd like to cancel his cable service. It's never as simple a process as it should be, but 66-year-old Jimmy Ware had a pretty good excuse: His entire house had burned down, and everything inside—including TVs and cable box—was destroyed in the fire.
Frances Wilson, a 79-year-old woman living in Albuquerque, N.M., on a fixed social security income, accidentally mailed her rent check to Comcast along with her monthly cable bill. It should've been an easy mistake to correct, given that the check wasn't made out to Comcast, but the two-time Worst Company in America has a knack for complicating things.
Comcast, in the process of trying (or pretending) to reform its worst-in-America customer service, hit a snag this week when it had to apologize to customers for changing the names on their accounts to Whore, Asshole, Dummy, and Fuck You. The company downplayed the incidents, saying they'd cut ties with the "vendor call center" behind one of the name-changes, but more keep popping up. The latest: A 63-year-old woman known in Comcast's billing system as "SuperBitch."
Comcast, the internet service provider that inspired book one of Dante's Divine Comedy, promised last year that it would begin the years-long process of making its customer service not the actual worst in America. How's that going? Not so good, according to Comcast subscriber Julie Swano. Or, as Comcast knows her, "Whore Julia Swano."
A former employee of accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers claimed Comcast got him fired from his job, and set an Oct. 14 deadline for the company to give him a full apology and a monetary settlement. He got a half-assed apology instead. So, two days after the deadline passed, he stuck to his word and filed a lawsuit.
Comcast allegedly pulled strings to get one of their customers fired from his job at a prestigious accounting firm after he complained about billing issues and false charges. The former Comcast customer, identified only as "Conal," told his story to Consumerist, the site whose readers have named Comcast "the worst company in America" two years running.
Two recent high-profile calls to Comcast customer service—one where a rep kept a couple stuck in a verbal loop for 20 minutes as they desperately tried to disconnect their service, and one where the company only reversed fraudulent fees because the customer recorded the call—have opened the floodgates of evidence that your only choice for cable service doesn't give a shit about you.
If last month's Comcast customer service débâcle, where a "rep from hell" kept Ryan Block and his wife on the phone for 20 minutes while they desperately tried to cancel their service, didn't convince you to record all your customer service calls, this new one just might. As Virgil said to Dante, let us descend now into even greater woe.
Comcast COO Dave Watson has admitted that company policy was at least as much to blame for the customer service call from hell as the sad, desperate employee heard on the recording. As Watson wrote in a memo, that customer retention rep was only doing what he was trained to do. But what was he trained to do, exactly?
Listening to the customer call heard around the world, it's hard not to sympathize with both parties. Ryan Block, the caller, just wanted to disconnect his cable service, but the nameless Comcast rep on the other end was only doing what he was trained to do: break customers down, bit by bit, until they crawl back into the company's welcoming arms.