Customer disservice (or, why I’m no longer with Comcast)


Okay, then. (cracks fingers) Let’s get started on my tale of woe (more like frustration) with Comcast. This is finally over and I’m now officially with AT&T. But, of course, knowing the ending isn’t knowing the story. And the story is one of customer disservice (or, why I’m not longer with Comcast).

So, let’s do a brief recap on this multi-post tale. You’ve probably read the beginnings, so I’ll make it short:

Back in December, I purchased a whole new TV system. It is bleeding edge 4K. Big screen, soundbar, Dolby Atmos 4K Blu-ray player. Professionally installed.

I contacted Comcast about a combo package, cable and internet. A deal was reached. Then, Comcast changed the bill on me to charge me $10 a month more. I kicked them out for cable and just kept internet.

Four months later, my internet is going daffy. Sometimes it’s on, sometimes not. Intermittent. Then, finally, it stops working altogether.

Service techs are called. They look at my lines…good. They look at my modem…good. Ultimately, a problem is uncovered. Outside my home, in the lines leading from their main box. Problem solved.

This month, my bill shows up with a $60 charge for service. I patiently explain to the customer disservice rep that the problem is outside. No need for a charge, since the repair is, you know, not in my home.

The customer disservice rep disagrees. The supervisor, who doesn’t call until two days later, also disagrees. I mention I will leave Comcast if the charge remains. The supervisor effectively says, “Buh-bye”.

Last week, I call AT&T. They have a deal for U-Verse (my HOA won’t allow me a roof dish). For roughly the same cost as my internet only, I can have 470 channels (about half are HD), 6 movie channels and internet. Oh, and $300 in VISA gift cards. Caveat: internet will be 50 mbps instead of the upspeed 150 mbps I got from Comcast.

Fine. Let’s do it anyway. But, I make sure he direct wires the modem to the ‘puter. TV is secondary to me. It takes some doing, but the tech (after about 3 hours, including crawling in my attic) gets it done.

Coolness. And no charge for installation, activation or the extra time at the house. I give him $20 for his effort, though.

How’s everything working? Pretty nifty, I must say. There was a bit of a mess setting up Microsoft Outlook (yes, groaning people, I still use Outlook. Move along.), but all else seems tight. I don’t even notice the “lost” speed.

So, is that all? No moral to the story, like “treat people right” or some such sappiness? Nah, you can figure that out for yourself. But, there is a punchline:

Yesterday, I get a call. It’s the Comcast retention department. Of course it is. The man wants to get me back. I explain my situation and he more than sympathizes, he says the charge should have been removed. Can he do that? No, no, he’s just retention. But he promises me billing will do that, so, do I want to rejoin?

Um, no.

But, I can’t leave it alone, so I call Comcast billing. Oh my, let me transfer you to a special department. The lady on the phone informs me she’s a “platinum level” service rep. Cue the palace horns!

She cannot believe that someone with my long and outstanding years of Comcast usage (10 by their records, 20+ when you add in Adelphia, whom they purchased) would be treated so poorly.

I agree, pointing out I’ve probably paid $10,000-$20,000 to Comcast over that time. I view not getting a $60 credit more like customer disservice.

She tells me she has already wiped out the charge and, since she is platinum level (cue the horns!), she can also restart my service.

I tell her I am still miffed at my treatment and somewhat mistrusting of Comcast. I want to see a bill with no charges on it before I consider Comcast again. She understands and apologizes.

Both the retention guy and the platinum level gal exhibited an important quality of customer service often unmentioned: seeing the big picture. It’s why, despite obvious reasons not to, we used to give out refunds all the time when I worked for Toys R Us. It keeps the customer in your orbit.

Instead, I got customer disservice (or, why I’m no longer with Comcast).

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