Worst Company In America "Sweet 16": Comcast VS Ticketmaster

Here’s your first “Sweet 16” match-up: #1 Comcast VS #17 Ticketmaster.

Here’s what some of you had to say about these two companies:

“In my experience, Comcast employees don’t even TRY to do their jobs. It’s like they have no motivation.”

If Comcast does not win then the entire fun of this whole contest has been wiped out for me.

“This is a no brainer: Ticketmaster is the worst by far.”

“Go Ticketmaster go! You’re in my top 5!”

This is a post in our Worst Company In America 2008 series. The companies nominated for this honor were chosen by you, the readers. Keep track of all the goings on at consumerist.com/tag/worst-company-in-america.


Edit Your Comment

  1. darkrose says:

    Had to go with Ticketbastard on this one. Comcast employees might not do their job, but Ticketbastard’s convenience fees suck ass worse than anything Comcast has ever done.

  2. mk says:

    It’s hard to choose between these two. However, I have to go with Ticketmaster because at least I can choose not to have Comcast for cable or internet. You have very little if any choice to not use Ticketmaster unless you don’t go to shows.

  3. ARP says:

    @melking1972: That was the basis of my decision. If you don’t like Comcast, there’s an alternative (Dish, etc.). But most venues have exclusive agreements with Ticketmaster, essentially creating a monopoly. And “don’t go to shows” is complete BS.

  4. cmcd14 says:

    At least cable from Comcast isn’t sold out in 90 seconds.

  5. iMe2 says:

    Consumerist, your polls are broken. I accidentally voted twice and voted a few more times to test whether I could vote multiple times – I can. What’s to prevent someone with basic hacking skills from rigging your ingenious bracket (if it hasn’t already happened)?

  6. ryan_h says:


    of course, because when you charge close to the price of a small car loan for tv/internet/phone services, you can afford all the extra cable in the world.

  7. AaronZ says:

    Per a recent Consumerist article, Ticketmaster is selling tickets to their own reseller service. If that isn’t doucebaggery, I don’t know what is.

  8. Mike8813 says:

    I had to pick Ticketmaster. Their fees were bad enough, but to see that they are in favor of, and even referring others to online ticket scalpers pisses me off to no end.

    Nowadays, there’s no way to get a good ticket to a game that’s worth a shit unless you’re prepared to pay at least 150% of the ticket’s face value. You’re either gonna get raped by assholes on StubHub, or assholes reselling tickets on a team’s official website. (A page run by TicketMaster no less)

    I’m obviously more angry at people who choose to buy up all the tickets to make a profit, and have no intention of going to the game/concert. But to see the #1 ticket company in America support these jerks is awful.

    I was a Comcast customer for a year… So there had to be somebody REALLY awful to take my vote away from Comcast. And this is that company.

  9. ElijahDProphet says:

    Ticketmaster ‘won’ this one for me. I know Comcast has fucked people, but so far I have been pretty happy with their service.

  10. GamblesAC2 says:

    I have to go with TicketMAster beacuse They are no better than Scalpers only difference is that theyre legal and more expensive! Also I’m a Comcast coustomer and have had no problems with them or with their support so far so… Ticketmaster is the clear choice for me

  11. Diet-Orange-Soda says:

    Ticketmaster it is. I can live without cable but when TM is the only option for a show… bah! Dilemma occurs.

  12. squatchie44 says:

    Thank you Ticketmaster for shrinking my profit for scalping tickets to sold out shows from 87% to 79% with your ridiculous fees.

  13. Juggernaut says:

    Ticketmaster is definitely a bunch of douchebags but the kittens… and home invasions!!! That has to be Final Four material there.

  14. technotica says:

    Ticketmaster for the win here, as comcast is only affecting those in certain geographical areas. In most areas, there is at least an option to switch to another internet and cable provider.

    Ticketmaster screws everyone equally.

  15. backbroken says:

    Gotta be Ticketmaster. Some folks seem to actually have a positive experience and like the services Comcast provides. Yeah, I was surprised too.

    But nobody is served by Ticketmaster, king of the convenience fee.

  16. Balisong says:

    How is Ticketmaster not winning?!? No way! Vote Ticketmaster! D:

  17. sega8800 says:

    I have never used Ticketmaster before and I probably won’t be dealing with them anytime soon. HOWEVER, I need comcast services and they have never been on time for me and they always leave something undone. Ugrrr…

  18. johnva says:

    @ARP: The same reasoning applies to Comcast for many people. Not everyone can get Dish or whatever (sometimes there are trees or terrain blocking the sky), and even more people don’t have any other choice for broadband Internet. In big cities people may have a lot of choice, but not in more outlying areas.

  19. coan_net says:

    Like most others, both companies suck – but if you don’t like Comcast, most likely you can switch to something else.

    Want to see a concert or show – most likely you have no other choice then to go through Ticketmaster….

    So Ticketmaster gets the vote from me – since customers have no other choice.

  20. Burgandy says:

    its very simple, ticketmaster screws the entire nation, some of us are lucky enough to be out of the comcast screw zone. Vote TM!!

  21. iMe2 says:

    @iMe2: I’m stupidly wrong [kicks self in head]. For what it’s worth I voted Comcast because they won’t allow me to watch the EuroCup live on ESPN 360.

  22. Trai_Dep says:

    Screwing art over screwing crappy TV. If Comcast were like Ticketmaster, then anyone wanting to watch any TV would have to shell over their wallet to them. And over-the-air broadcasts would be illegal.
    But boy, is Comcast evil. E-V-I-L.

  23. kc2idf says:

    Unlike Ticketmaster, there are alternatives to Comcast in the form of Dish Network, DirecTV and various DSL providers. Ticketmaster FTW!

  24. tape says:

    Comcast is a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad company. I cannot dispute this having been forced by the franchise agreements of the localities in which I have lived to “choose” them for cable TV service, and having had to deal with their generally scummy practices.

    But what it comes down to is this one fact: events at Ticketmaster venues (which is almost every medium-to-large venue) “sell out”, and then the tickets are “available” on their “partner” “reseller” *coughcoughscalpingcoughcough* site which is simply a division of Ticketmaster itself.

    Can any one of the final 16 companies, with the exception of the banks, say that they’ve done something scummier?

  25. No_Pants says:

    Ticketbastard monopolistic s.o.b’s….easily the worst company in America.

  26. bonzombiekitty says:

    I go with comcast because I don’t have a reasonable alternative to them where I live for internet. No DSL or Fios means I have to go with comcast. Since I have to go with comcast for internet, I have to get their TV service as well (or else I’m paying out the ass for both).

    Was happy with comcast for a few months. Then they decided to start scrambling most of the channels that I could normally get on cable-ready TV. Then they scrambled ALL the digital channels (including local HD channels) that I had been able to get without having to hook up the box. Now in order to get any HDTV, I either have to pay extra $$ a month to comcast, or buy an HD antenna and get it over the air.

  27. LosersHaveCreditCardDebt says:

    I find this “worst company in America” stuff rather stupid. What business are you in? I don’t care what it is; I can rip it for some silly reason. If you don’t like a company, don’t use their product or service. Boom. Done.

  28. dragonfire81 says:

    Ticketmaster does suck, but I still feel Comcast is worse.

  29. pepelicious says:

    I had to cast my vote for Comcast. It’s one thing to simply overcharge people like Ticketmaster, but making us pay three times for the same thing is ludicrous and should be outlawed. Not to mention hobbling your service to your customers to lure them in to accepting new pricing plans is shameful.

  30. theblackdog says:

    Why is Comcast winning?! At least I can choose to live without Comcast and get something else.

  31. james says:

    Comcast gets my vote. They have an agreement with San Francisco to be the only cable internet provider allowed to operate in the city. I “could” get DSL, but that requires a phone line making it more expensive. Comcast has cheated me on a number of occasions. They call offering you a very good deal but will not put it in writing. Then after a month, they start charging far more than they had promised. When you complain they say “we didn’t offer that, do you have it in writing?” They did this to me three times, and each time refused to send me any confirmation in writing. They also cap upload/download speeds unless you spend a fortune and they lie to you about that too when you call to ask.

  32. A.W.E.S.O.M.-O says:

    @theblackdog: You can choose not to go to a concert or other event and do something else too.

  33. ajamison says:

    Ticketmaster, no contest.

  34. rmz says:

    Ticketmaster is the only company I can think of that deserves to top Comcast. Ticketmaster scalps their own tickets, not even Comcast can attest to anything quite that scummy. Basically backing up what tape said.

  35. TicketBastard’s whole business is built around f***ing you over with overblown fees or insider scalping.

    Comcast’s business isn’t, however poorly they’re executing on it. Their problems are fixable. Ticketbastard’s isn’t.

  36. johnva says:

    @theblackdog: Do you have Comcast?

  37. Hardest. Decision. Yet.

  38. UnicornMaster says:

    I don’t know, I think it’s a tough one but Comcast is WORSE. You have NO CHOICE (=monopoly) if you want Cable and Internet; satellite and DSL are not viable options. And it’s a utility you HAVE TO PAY FOR every month. I use ticketmaster maybe a handful of times a year, not $140 worth every month.

  39. nedzeppelin says:

    bought a 20 dollar ticket to a show this summer, when i get to the billing page it says i owe $32.

    how’s a 60% markup for “convenience” sound?

  40. arniec says:

    You guys are borked thinking Ticketmaster is worse than Comcast.

    Comcast deserves not just worst company but most evil. Adding more “high def” just by compressing the channels to a signal that my non-technical sister can see is pixelated? “Shaping” bandwidth without notifying customers of that? Their “unlimited” plan that has limits; their faster plan that just lets you hit the limits sooner? None of that enough for you?

    Then let me continue: Comcast in my area is the ONLY choice for internet other than dial-up. So I’m screwed. More, they are the only TV provider other than dish services, but when we had the storms recently in the midwest and the Emergency Broadcast System went off…want to know what Comcast gave us? TV GUIDE CHANNEL! That’s right, tornadoes are ravaging the city but instead of giving us those messages, they tell me what Lindsey Lohan wore to rehab.

    So now Comcast is taking my money, limiting my service, and endangering my life.

    Ticketmaster just charges too much…

  41. Comcast, since I have no choice but to do business with Comcast if I want cable, but I can avoid Ticketmaster with a 10-minute trip downtown. Or by making my husband walk over to the arena on his lunch hour.

    Not that I have cable OR go to concerts, but you get the point.

  42. skepchick says:

    This is a tough one for me. I understand how Comcast is totally evil, but Ticketmaster has done much, much more to eff me over personally. And hello, people, Ticketmaster is a monopoly, too! It is physically impossible for me to get to the box office for every show I go to before it sells out.

  43. highmodulus says:

    Ticketmaster. DSL and Dish are as bad and Comcast, but nobody is as actively and intentionally evil as Ticketmaster.

  44. evslin says:

    You do have options aside from Ticketmaster.

    Go to the venue the day of the show and find a scalper 30 minutes before showtime. Offer him face value and remind him that in half an hour the slips of paper in his hand are worth absolutely nothing.

    Hey, it’s not an elegant workaround, but neither is resorting to satellite internet to get away from Comcast because DSL isn’t available in your area.

  45. muddgirl says:

    A close one so far!

    I had to go with Ticketmaster, because they create false scarcity by selling bulk tickets to scalpers, then accepting what amounts to a kickback for doing so. If it’s not technically illegal, it’s definitely against the spirit of anti-monopoly laws.

  46. Imhotep says:

    Considering Comcast actually rigged a public hearing with paid schmo’s to prevent their opposition from being heard… COMCAST. Hands down.

  47. startertan says:

    Fuck you Ticketmaster.

  48. Aphex242 says:


  49. sleze69 says:

    The first competition of the Sweet 16 is pretty tough. Comcast FTW.

  50. Kishi says:

    I had no problems with Comcast, personally. Some people don’t.

    But Ticketmaster charges their stupid fees on every fucking transaction. Ticketmaster gets my vote.

  51. theblackdog says:

    @johnva: No, they may be the only cable company in my area, but I opted to get Verizon DSL and Netflix instead of Comcast.

  52. Audiyoda says:

    Easy – Comcrap by a landslide. At least with Ticketmaster I can get past most of the fees by going to one of the many ticket windows in this city. But Comcrap – my GAWD! Their employees don’t know jack about the very products they sell or install. Had an install a few years ago – guy wants to configure the modem so he asks where’s Internet Explorer (seeing that there isn’t a IE icon on my desktop). I told him I don’t use IE but if he can’t use FireFox to do what he needs to do Windows Explorer IS IE – just type in the address you need in the navigation bar. He looked at my like I was speaking ancient Greek and said he’d have to undo everything since he needs IE to finish the install and I was being difficult and he couldn’t help me out. So I called him a dumbnutt, asked him to leave, and called AT&T for DSL.

  53. Ikki says:

    Comcast 50% (2351 votes)
    Ticketmaster 50% (2310 votes)

    Wow, this is probably going to be the closest match this year.

  54. Sundermania says:

    Has anyone else here seen the look of sheer terror on the face of a Comcast employee when he is about to setup your internet and sees a Mac? It’s amazing.

  55. kc-guy says:

    Is is possible to continue both through the competition? Maybe a losers bracket based on the sheer number of votes?

    It seems kind of an unfair advantage that Comcast has its own tag, and is even the example of how to search for underhanded tactics on the archive and tag page :)

  56. dugn says:

    Agree tenfold with everyone who has said how much both of these suck. Excluding cable users who have no other option, I have to go with TicketBastards.

    For Comcast, you at least have to sign up for it.

    For TicketBastard, all you have to do is want to see a show and you’re screwed.

  57. Gannoc says:


    Look at it this way: If Comcast vanished tomorrow, cable companies would still suck.

    If Ticketmaster vanished tomorrow, both fans and bands would rejoice.

    I vote Ticketmaster.

  58. Angryrider says:

    Still a close match!
    I don’t subscribe to neither so it was a dilemma. I wish I voted for Ticketmaster, but Comcast wins because they lie about their good service. TM outrightly claims they are scalpers.

  59. johnva says:

    @Sundermania: Just speaking from experience, I would never let a Comcast employee touch any of my computers for any reason. It’s not like it’s exactly hard to set up an Ethernet connection, and virtually all computers have Ethernet ports these days. So there really isn’t any reason for them to do anything to your computer.

  60. GregGates says:

    Ticketmaster easily. Comcast is borderline monopoly and blows, but they grind their techs to death with 14-call days. People also are already primed to hate the techs when they show up, so I don’t pity those guys. You can choose to go with broadcast (highly suggested) other providers, dish, or use the Internet to watch stuff.

    Ticketmaster is hella shady and reminds me of scalping, and that’s just for the tiny amount of tickets they actually put in that paper money air tunnel cash grab game machine.

  61. Geekybiker says:

    Wow its a dead heat. I hate them both so much I wish I could vote for both!

  62. arniec says:

    No, no! 2821 to 2821????

    Come on people, vote Comcast. Seriously, they are FAR more evil, dirty, slimy and {connection terminated by Comcast because they don’t like the content…and they can do that because they’re Comcastic}

  63. This was a very hard vote. I think these two are in my top 5, and it will be ludicrous if Blue Cross / Blue Shield makes the Top 8 but The Great Satan that is Ticketmaster does not …

    … but Comcast is the Greater Satan.

  64. shadowsurfr1 says:

    Talk about a dead heat. Comcast has 2899 and Ticketmaster has 2888.

  65. wdr1 says:

    I went with Comcast if for no other reason that I work at Ticketmaster.

  66. ninjatoddler says:

    Comcast handily beats Ticketmaster in terms of evil-ness!

  67. Madriel says:

    I only have one thing to say in regards to this… If you voted Ticketmaster, you haven’t spent enough time dealing with Comcast.

  68. Jones91 says:

    Well in many places near where i live (mid-size city in GA) you can only get Comcast, not even Dish! for the most part, Comcast tv isnt morbid except for the occasional hours of a black screen or, severe pixelation of the picture. My real complaint is this so called “Comcastic Internet with Powerboost” well as far as i’ve seen, since this whole “powerboost” thing was started with advertising, my internet has been slower and the rates have gone up, not only that but they are BASTARDS about bills, i paid $200.09 for what was supposed to be $120 and then when my services stopped working i was informed by the kind people over at Comcast that i paid $200.06 and as a result i would have to pay a $100 fine to get it turned back on that month.

  69. arl84 says:

    Ticketmaster sucks, but I only use them a few times a year.

    Comcast demands money every month.

    Comcast FTW.

    Very tough decision, though.

  70. DrSarcasm says:

    Ticketmaster. Easy pick for me. In 1999, I purchased tickets to an Aerosmith concert. Concert was canceled without a new tour date. Ticketmaster told me that I would be refunded except for the convenience fee, which they did several weeks later. So basically, I ended up paying several bucks for little sheets of paper that now served the same purpose as counterfeit. At least with Comcast, you pay for service.

  71. buenafe says:

    Ticketmaster. Victim of their Entertainment Rewards scam. Thank goodness AMEX got my money back.


  72. Kavatar says:

    I don’t understand how people can say Comcast isn’t as bad because for many people, there are alternatives. How does that make Comcast any less bad of a company? If anything, it makes them WORSE of a company that they can be so awful even though they’re not a monopoly in most places. At least with monopolies we expect things to be bad.

  73. Ticketmaster: Monopolization on entertainment industry. Optional.
    Comcast: Monopolization on Television and Internet industry. Television Optional, but not if you want decent internet prices – and a restricted internet at that.

    Seems like a no-brainer to me. Comcast.

  74. Trai_Dep says:

    Wow, was tight for a while, but it looks like Comcast is pulling ahead, by a point.
    I guess because the Ticketmaster voters are busy inhaling rails and banging whor–, err scantily-clad nubiles with a characteristic lack of self-modesty?

  75. wildness says:

    Come on people, I know Comcast sucks and all, but Ticketmaster is raping you.

  76. delphi_ote says:

    Ticketmaster is just concert tickets. Don’t get me wrong, I frequently pray for the complete destruction of the company.

    But Comcast is your internet and cable. They’re watching everything you send across the tubes, and they haven’t shown they can be trusted with that power. All of their behavior indicates precisely the opposite.

  77. JeffM says:

    Ticketmaster- as others have said- I get my TV through Dish and my internet through AT&T- even when I had Comcast they didn’t suck nearly as bad as having to buy all my concert tickets for indie rock and ska bands (not big-time shows here) on Craigslist or StubHub.

  78. TechnoDestructo says:

    I think if you’re going to post things that people have to say about the company, it would be more helpful if you posted things people had to say about the things the company actually did, not about how well it’s doing in the contest.

  79. AnonyLawyer says:

    I voted for Ticketmaster for their unapologetic support of scalping, fees, and inability to keep computer programs from purchasing most tickets to an event once they go on sale. I will say that this was a toughy. I find that a customer service experience with Comcast is determined by your demeanor when you call (note i said “I FIND” I’m sure someone else has had a different experience). I try to give off the “nice” vibe even though I’m fuming pissed at whatever has driven me to call Comcast, yet again, to simply get what I pay for each month. Usually my issues are resolved because I’m unwilling to accept a smoke and mirrors excuse for what went wrong with our billing, our rate, etc. I’m gunning for them to admit someone made a mistake and then see what they’ll do about it. When it’s my mistake, I apologize.

  80. @theblackdog: You then should recognize that a significant portion of the country have the following options for Internet Access:
    1) Comcast
    2) Dial-Up
    3) Heavily Overpriced-Shoddy-At-Best-Terrible Sattelite Internet Service
    4) Pray there is an open wireless access point near you which subsequently will be on… Comcast.

    There are your options. Seems like a no-brainer as to why Comcast should be winning to me.

  81. redqueenmeg says:

    I think I gotta go with Comcast. I spend so much on Internet that I can’t afford to go to shows anyway. Plus Comcast already cut me off once just this morning! I keep forgetting I’m not supposed to have more than one computer on at once (they did tell me this).

  82. @Papa Midnight: Right on…not everywhere is there a choice! I can (and do) live without cable TV, but cable internet is completely monopolized by Comcast here and the only alternative is slow and spotty dialup or DSL.

  83. Trai_Dep says:

    @TechnoDestructo: Yeah, because we ALL know the Earth would stop spinning in its orbit – dead stop! – if, gods forbid, a Consumerist thread veered even slightly off-topic. :P

  84. amyschiff says:

    I picked Comcast because in some areas they are your only option. Ticketmaster blows with fees but at least you know about them in advance. Comcast just does whatever they want… like try to charge me for a cable modem that I didn’t rent because I had my own.

  85. Counterpoint says:

    This could have been the finals matchup… Comcast is slimy, Ticketmaster is worse, but I need my unfiltered internet more than I need tickets.

  86. ninjatoddler says:

    You can skip concerts but you can’t skip the internet. We are already paying one of the highest internet rates in the world and Comcast rewards us with shoddy bandwidth and service.

  87. JustaConsumer says:

    Come on. Ticketdisaster destroyed all types of live entertainment. They are an evil monopoly. If you don’t like Comcast, get the dish.

  88. Balisong says:

    @evslin: Soooo…how does that ruin Ticketmaster? That scalper had to buy those tickets from somewhere. Are you imaging some infinite circle of scalpers that never ends in anyone actually buying from the original source aka Ticketmaster?

  89. consumerd says:

    man, I thought ticketmaster would have had this in the bag.

  90. Ticketbastards for their stupid ass fees and for not having any decent tickets at least center stage. Oh, but STUBHUB just happens to have center stage tickets at huge marked up prices. Too bad I have to use them to see Judas Priest this August. TM is an EVIL monopoly, plain and god damn simple.

  91. Cap'n Jack says:

    Comcast! It’s craptastic!

  92. RudeandRude says:

    I am absolutely shocked that Tickmaster isnt running away with this. TM is EVIL. Absolutely EVIL. They sit there and laugh as they rape you.

    There is no doubt in my mind that TM is the worst company in america. It’s not even close.

    The other day I paid $52 for two tickets that were $12 each.

  93. TwoScoopsRice says:

    Ticketmaster even manages to get its fees imposed on walkup tickets at some box offices. What gives?