Worst Company In America: "Final Four" Comcast VS Diebold

Here’s your first “Final Four” matchup: #1 Comcast VS #12 Diebold.

Time to get serious, folks. In this round we’ll take a look at the 5 most popular Consumerist stories for each company*:

Powerpoint By Pissed Comcast Employee Reveals They Know Exactly How Much They Suck 140,412 views
Sick Of Waiting For An Install, 75-Year-Old Woman Smashes Up Comcast Office With Hammer 89,231 views
Comcast’s “We Don’t Throttle BitTorrent” Internal Talking Points Memo88,870 views
5 Confessions Of A Comcast Customer Service Rep 78,876 views
Comcast Installs Cable With Extreme Incompetence 67,249 views

Clips: How To Hack A Diebold Machine 772 views
Diebold Voting Machines, Hotel Minibars Equally Secure 81 views

*We’ve only written about Diebold twice.
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. speedwell (propagandist and secular snarkist) says:

    I don’t care what anyone thinks. It is possible to stop doing business with Comcast. It is even possible to not do business with Comcast at all (I never have). You can choose which communication company to deal with. You can’t choose what gets put in the voting booth.

  2. IphtashuFitz says:

    True, Diebold sucked for the voting machine fiasco, but I see a lot of Diebold ATM’s in the towns around where I live and I’ve never had any problems with them. Comcast, on the other hand, has never had any redeeming value as far as I’m concerned. They’re a monopoly, they know it, and they act like pretty much everybody expects one to behave. The ONLY reason I’m a customer of theirs is that they’re the only option in the condo where I currently live. One of these days I’ll have to get off my lazy backside and move so I don’t have to deal with them any more.

  3. Illusio26 says:

    While diebold does suck, I’m haven’t seen that they are intentionally evil, just more so incompetent. Comcast on the other hand, makes Microsoft look like the peace corps.

  4. Obligatory “Diebold sent us to teh IRAK!” comment, saving many the trouble of verbose logical progressions.

  5. Bladefist says:

    @speedwell: Voting is going to be done electronically by a private contract either way.

    My vote is for comcast. Because they have been proven to control their service, especially in regard to bittorrents. I’m not a comcast customer, but, I like to see them fail, so other companies don’t start incorporating their ideas.

    Diebold winning, means nothing. Nothing changes.

  6. johnva says:

    @IphtashuFitz: Well, the main problem with Diebold machines is a hidden problem, not something you would notice. That’s the whole point of why it’s a problem.

    That being said, Comcast is horrible. This is a tough decision for me, but I think that for this year, Comcast may deserve this the most.

  7. Angryrider says:

    Yes! Comcast is winning! I called it! We didn’t care that Menu Foods was killing living beings and lying about it because Comcast was disrupting our internet. We still didn’t care if Big Oil was messing with our fuel prices.
    Who’s going to stop them now?

    I said most Americans don’t vote, and so what if Diebold’s infringing on that duty? Comcast is messing with our bittorrent!!!!

  8. chucklebuck says:

    Comcast is like a vampire – it can’t get into your home unless you invite it. Diebold, on the other hand, is gonna be the Captain Tripps virus, spreading across the country with only small pockets of immunity if we’re not vigilant.

  9. Comcast all the way. And in response to speedwell: I don’t have a choice. Until Verizon gets FiOS TV to my house, I’m stuck with Comcast (or like 2 channels on my rabbit ears). Yes, I don’t have to watch TV, but then again, I guess I don’t have to vote, either. Diebold has more competition than Comcast does, at least where I live :(

  10. johnva says:

    @Bladefist: Voting really should not be done via direct recording electronic machines anytime soon. The security is just not there yet (remember, this is harder than securing a normal computer: it needs to be secure against both normal users and election insiders, and it needs to be secure and auditible, yet anonymous). Now, if they would just make the machines print out the voters’ choice onto a paper ballot that they could review before depositing it in a ballot box, that might be better. Then voting machines might actually increase the accessibility and accuracy of elections. But as it is, we would be better off without commercial products like those Diebold makes.

  11. Bladefist says:

    @johnva: I agree. But be both know that’s not going to happen.

  12. Aphex242 says:

    Diebold. I can’t even believe it’s a debate.



  13. APFPilot says:

    @aphex242: Show me proof that happened once and I will vote for Diebold, otherwise it is nothing more than a conspiracy theory.

  14. consumersaur says:

    What the hell?! I voted for Diebold, but it changed my vote!

  15. homerjay says:

    I say we give it to Comcast this year and leave Diebold until next year when they’ve completely fucked up this election.

  16. sleze69 says:

    This is from a 2003 NY Times article:

    “IN mid-August, Walden W. O’Dell, the chief executive of Diebold Inc., sat down at his computer to compose a letter inviting 100 wealthy and politically inclined friends to a Republican Party fund-raiser, to be held at his home in a suburb of Columbus, Ohio. ”I am committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president next year,” wrote Mr. O’Dell, whose company is based in Canton, Ohio.”

    Has anything changed wrt electronic voting? Isn’t it odd that Computer Scientists CONSISTENTLY criticize its use in politics when they should be technologies greatest champions?

    Comcast sucks for a lot of people but they don’t control the fate of our political future like Diebold. Besides, Diebold already released the results of the election:

    Diebold Accidentally Leaks Results Of 2008 Election Early

  17. dragonfire1481 says:

    It’s sucktastic! Comcast all the way. I don’t know if they are going to win this whole thing but they deserve this bracket.

  18. sleze69 says:

    technolgogy’s even…

    @APFPilot: Unfortunately you can’t prove or disprove it because Diebold doesn’t leave a paper trail.

  19. sleze69 says:

    argh! “technology’s”

  20. mike says:


  21. johnva says:

    @sleze69: Unlike the local officials who make decisions on what voting machines to use in our country, and do so mainly based on “input” from sales people, computer scientists have a good grasp of how fallible computer security can be. In this case, knowing more about the tool means knowing when it’s the wrong tool for a job.

  22. geekfather says:

    What aphex242 said.

    How is this even a contest?

  23. NightSteel says:

    Comcast blows, but Diebold makes it possible for companies like Comcast (and AT&T, and Countrywide, and Wal*Mart) to exist and perpetuate themselves by corrupting elections. Diebold, no contest.

  24. blong81 says:

    @speedwell: Yea you can, all you need is a ton of lobbyists, a politically connected friend, and your own voting machine company to get a contract.

  25. blong81 says:

    Oh wait, wouldn’t they have to vote on that lol.

  26. dotcomrade says:

    Diebold, without a doubt!

    The proof is in the second video from the documentary

    “Hacking Democracy”

  27. quixiotic says:

    Your vote counts? Are the electorates using Diebold too? Hmm…

    I voted comcast… For everyone that says you have a choice, if you want cable tv/internet, in most places you don’t have a choice. Though I agree that Diebold has a more profound impact, for presidential elections, your vote doesn’t elect a president, it just goes to the electoral college who sits and goes “hmm, this one.”

  28. AaronZ says:

    The irony of voting for comcast over a company that screws up voting results is probalby lost on 99% of consumerist readers who dont’ care if an election is ruined as long as comcast can be blamed for bad CS.

    And then ultimate irony… after diebold ruins the next election, people will be complaining that they had trouble watching it on CNN because of some comcast screw up (instead of actually being upset that diebold dirty and underhanded.)

  29. EyeHeartPie says:

    I voted for Diebold, and in the spirit of Diebold, I voted with all my computers, and with all of the computers at work, and then hacked Consumerist and assigned half of Comcast’s votes to Diebold.

  30. mabus says:

    while comcast is indeed a vile, despicable corporation, they tend to eat away at society by screwing customers who voluntarily sign up for their services, one household at a time. diebold on the other hand, has bribed their way into lucrative state contracts with their easily-hacked voting systems so that democracy-jacking can happen unabated, but fortunately, due to the vigilance of democracy defenders, this assault on the very fabric upon which our great nation was founded, this did not go undetected.

    comcast sucks… ALOT, but we can choose to go with satellite (of which there is two choices), or in some instances a cable overbuilder or ILEC tv services… or be rabbit-ear rebels.

    diebold, on the other hand forces their heinous brand of nefariousness upon a somewhat unsuspecting public… this is far, far more sinister IMHO.

  31. mabus says:

    and another thing… if comcast wins here, i say we sack consumerist for using diebold voting systems for this poll. :P

  32. danman81 says:


  33. CharlieInSeattle says:

    Wow a bunch of people that don’t care about fair and open elections. Shame on you traitors.

  34. rmz says:

    @consumersaur: Well played, sir.

  35. everclear75 says:

    the only reason that I still use COMCAST is that, I’ve been paying roughly 30/a month for my internetz for the last 4 years now. YES they have been totally crappy to me since they took over T.W. here in the Houston area last summer, but in a few months I’m moving to where FIOS is readily available. So I guess the point is moot. Also, I have this really special tool that gets around the collar locks on the pole, thus removing any filters on my line. So 30 bucks for Basic analog/Standard HD channels and the internetz is not that bad of a deal. So I guess my vote went to Diebold. ‘Cause I can screw over comcast , but diebold screwed me over with paperless tracking…

  36. Whoa… Consumerist just fucked me on this one… And here I was hoping this would be the final. Oh well…

    I know my priorities. Comcast is bad and all and I’m not one to shy away from bashing them with amazing regularity, however, I know a piss poor company when I see it. Especially when the future of a country rides on that company.

  37. jpx72x says:

    @everclear75: Wait, what?

  38. @Papa Midnight: And after voting, I think the current standings show 682 persons need to check their priorities… though that’s just my opinion.

  39. @darkjedi26: Read Greg Palast’s “The Best Democracy Money Can Buy.” You’ll think differently about Diebold after that. When Walden O’Dell, chief executive of Diebold Inc., said in 2004 he is “committed to helping Ohio deliver its electoral votes to the president next year,” well, you’ve moved beyond incompetence into maleficence.

  40. Harlan says:

    I voted for Comcast. This is the *2008* Worst Company in America voting, and whole Diebold has been very evil in the past, there’s not much evidence that their crappy voting machines have been a problem recently. Mostly because governments have been decertifying them. And their ATM machines are just fine. For this year, Comcast is worse.

  41. vladthepaler says:

    Tough call, both companies are awful. But Diebold’s awfulness has a much greater effect (screwing up elections) than Comcast’s awfulness does (pissed off customers). I wouldn’t mind seeing either one of these companies take the top prize, though.

  42. cmdrsass says:

    @CharlieInSeattle: Ok, anyone who doesn’t believe your little conspiracy theory is a traitor. Got it.

    Did you know that you can change the method of voting in your precinct if you care enough about it to do something? Where I live, the voters are smart enough to require paper ballots. You have more choice over the method of voting than you do over your cable company in most places. Voted Comcast.

  43. reiyaku says:

    i cant even choose who to pick in this match up… i hate both… cant we just give em both the silver turd award? (is there even one?)

  44. trecool95 says:

    yeah comcast sucks but if you’re looking at impact, diebold fucked up pretty bad.

  45. aront says:

    Voted Comcast because you can demand a paper ballot and they are required to provide one, hanging chads and all!

  46. evan says:

    voted comcast because there’s really no proof that diebold did anything malicious outside of just conspiracy theories.

  47. thancr says:

    Evan, there might not be proof that they did it intentionally but the machines can be hacked. That is enough reason
    aront, you can’t demand a paper ballot in all states and what good does it do if only a handful of people do ask for a paper ballot, the rest can still be manipulated!

  48. TouchMyMonkey says:

    Would you stick thousands of dollars in cash in an improperly secured machine and leave it unattended? I didn’t think so. This is the business that made Diebold a household name – rock-solid, secure ATM machines that are so ubiquitous as to be perfectly fine sitting in any neighborhood Gas-n-Go. This is why they got the job of creating the next-generation voting machines. Given that the act of voting is a pretty straightforward affair, you’d think Diebold would apply decades of highly-evolved computer security technology and make the best damn voting machines the world has ever seen. You’d be wrong.

    Voting is also far more critical to the functioning of our ‘free’ society than watching television or playing MMORPGs, which is what Comcast apparently does so badly. I’ve never done business with Comcast, but I did once do business with one of its counterparts (I can’t really call them ‘competitors’), Time/Warner Cable, and I can tell you from first-hand experience that a company that could manage to suck worse than Time/Warner Cable would have at least approached the absolute pinnacle of suck.

    Still, my vote is for Diebold, not only because of the relative impact of their sucking, but because although they were perfectly capable of producing a good system, they failed utterly. Because they were otherwise competent, it gives credence to the idea that they created their craptastic system on purpose, as does the statement of its former(?) CEO that he was committed to delivering Ohio to George W. Bush in 2004. Now several states are sitting on a bunch of very expensive machines they can no longer use due to public outcry and legislative action.

    Comcast just doesn’t measure up to that.

  49. highmodulus says:

    Dish/Telecom flunkies will ensure Comcast loses. The ballot box stuffing is rampant IMHO, based on prior voting (see i.e. the AAA vote with the big swing at the end).

    That’s not why I am posting, I have resigned myself that. Rather, I came for the ranting GOP fanboi’s attempts to Jedi Mind Trick away the Diebold disaster. It was 100% pure unintentional comedy gold. Thanks!

  50. pinkyracer says:


    Shitty cable service did not bring you a falsely elected president who has driven this country into the ground! Every vote for Comcast is a vote for McSame. May as well vote away your civil liberties here, if you’d rather watch TV than enjoy a little freedom.

  51. HeartBurnKid says:

    Seriously, people? A crappy cable company is worse than a company that is undermining democracy through various voting anomalies and a nonexistent audit trail?

    The only company that should even be a match for Diebold in this thing is Countrywide.

  52. TPIRman says:

    I voted for Comcast because this is a consumer website, not a politics website, and the Worst Company in America contest is supposed to be fun. Comcast has accumulated an absolutely brilliant record of piss-poor customer service in countless articles on Consumerist. There’s a reason Diebold has only been written about twice — it’s not terribly germane to the site.

    I mean, really, the people rending their garments over the non-Diebold votes realize this is a joke, right? The prize is a golden shit, for Christ’s sake. Calm down.

    Look, there are a billion quality sites on the Internet where you can vent your rage about Our Broken Systemâ„¢. Let the consumers have this one, where we take things a touch less seriously.

  53. HeartBurnKid says:

    @cmdrsass: You know, to me, it doesn’t even matter if they did rig the election or not. The fact that, by all accounts, they could have and we’ll never know the truth is good enough for me.

    The appearance of impropriety is often as bad as actual impropriety.

  54. quieterhue says:

    Electronic voting w/ out a paper trail is just a generally bad idea for lots of reasons. I choose to hope that one day we’ll either A) Create a better technology, or B) Eliminate electronic voting. There are other companies besides Diebold who make crappy voting machines, but it’s not really their fault–since their only customer is the the government, they’re probably being forced to create the cheapest machines possible.

    Comcast, on the other hand, deliberately provides nightmarish customer service and boasts a monopoly in many locations. Again, whether the monopoly is completely their fault is questionable (and it’s the monopoly that allows them to provide crappy service and get away with it); however, I suspect that, if they crunched the numbers, they’d discover that they could make the same or more money if they improved efficiency and customer service. THAT’s what makes them a bad company: they fail to realize that high-volumes of customer-complaint calls, repeat visits from techs, and law suits over home damage all take a big, fat bite out of the bottom line.

  55. APFPilot says:

    @pinkyracer: neither did diebold, show me some proof

  56. aka Cat says:

    @APFPilot: Nothing can be proven or disproven with Diebold, because there’s no paper trail. Or electronic trail. It’s like trying to prove a negative, so please stop fishing.

  57. APFPilot says:

    @CatMoran: When you’ve got people like pinkyracer saying “Shitty cable service did not bring you a falsely elected president who has driven this country into the ground!” it is hardly fishing asking for proof.

  58. drunxor says:

    Comcast all the way. I just switched to AT&T and i think my blood pressure is down 20 points!

  59. @cmdrsass: Not every state offers that option. There is NO provision in MD for paper ballots unless you request an absentee ballot, and that request must be made by 2 months before the election. AND Diebold withheld info that they KNEW the Diebold machines in MD had flaws. They have consistently told state governments the states are not allowed to have access to the software that the machines use, citing intellectual property concerns. And these machines are so badly designed you can hack into them with MS Access, for goodness’ sake. Even the G.A.O., as nonpartisan a government agency as you will find, said the election was rotten.

    The GAO also confirms that access to the voting network was easily compromised because not all digital recording electronic voting systems (DREs) had supervisory functions password-protected, so access to one machine provided access to the whole network. This critical finding confirms that rigging the 2004 vote did not require a “widespread conspiracy” but rather the cooperation of a very small number of operatives with the power to tap into the networked machines and thus change large numbers of votes at will. With 800,000 votes cast on electronic machines in Ohio, flipping the number needed to give Bush 118,775 could be easily done by just one programmer.

    Access to the voting network was also compromised by repeated use of the same user IDs combined with easily guessed passwords. So even relatively amateur hackers could have gained access to and altered the Ohio vote tallies.

    The locks protecting access to the system were easily picked and keys were simple to copy, meaning, again, getting into the system was an easy matter.

    I hate Comcast as much as anyone. But Comcast didn’t give me George W. Bush president twice – Diebold did. That, and Jeb Bush’s convenient hiring of an incompetent data mining company to rid Florida election rolls of more than 75,000 African-Americans due to misidentification as felons.

    But yeah, Comcast is making it take longer for me to download crap from BitTorrent, so vote for them.

  60. atypicalxian says:

    @APFPilot: Amen. Can we put away the lefty conspiracy theories and stick to facts? If you do that, Comcast should win hands-down. We all know people hate the evil Bush/GOP, but the Dems are hardly snow-white either, and are not averse to election-rigging themselves (stuffing the ballots in Chicago for the Kennedy election), as conspiracy theories go.

  61. sleze69 says:

    Looks like diebold is fighting back. It was 55% to 45% in favor of comcrap for most of the morning.

    Perhaps there are some patriots on the consumerist after.

  62. atypicalxian says:


    and Jeb Bush’s convenient hiring of an incompetent data mining company to rid Florida election rolls of more than 75,000 African-Americans due to misidentification as felons

    The Dems tried to get military absentee ballots thrown out in Florida 2000, and they only wanted recounts in Democrat counties. Again, neither side is lily-white.

  63. guevera says:

    I’ve been stuck with comcast for almost two years (but only a little longer… freedom’s in sight!). I’ve never had to vote on a diebold machine. I’ll still vote diebold every day of the week. Comcast is a major annoyance, Diebold is a threat to democracy.

  64. ramthor says:

    Diebold gets my vote.
    Bit-torrent junkies are just raising cable costs for those of us who don’t steal movies. (yes: steal)

  65. battra92 says:

    And the vote for the BEST company of 2008 is Alcoa, aka the makers of Reynold’s Wrap, supplier of tinfoil hat material since 1919.

    Comcast for just being awful.

    @atypicalxian: Exactly. You don’t need a voting machine to rig an election. Kennedy lied, Cubans Died!

    See how annoying it is?

  66. Well, it looks like I was incorrect in predicting Diebold would win its bracket, but spot on in my prediction that the votes cast for Diebold would be based upon conspiratorial Leftist nonsense (cf. the foaming mouths above). Diebold can rightly be criticized for making systems which lack the level of foolproof security we demand from any part of the crucial vote recording process, but in no sensible way can they be accused of rigging (or even substantially affecting) any election. A sampling of X-Files from a bunch of blogs that claim that this could have been done does not a compelling case make.

    As bladefist has pointed out, Diebold could perhaps be replaced with a more competent contractor, but there would still be some issues as a technology company grapples with the challenges inherent in deploying a new system. In any case, there is no shred of evidence to support the contention that any vote recording errors by Diebold or anyone else favor one party over the other.

    Diebold is not a threat to democracy, and even if it were, the complaints against it have nothing to do with consumerism, which I believe is still the subject of this site. There are plenty of other political sites in which to self-congratulate for speaking truth to straw men.

  67. Sollus says:

    I’m new to this place but I’ll still ask. Why isn’t Haliburton the automatic winner?

  68. iMe2 says:

    @consumersaur: Dugg. Wait, what?

  69. swimmey says:

    @Sollus: Halliburton isn’t the automatic winner because most of us don’t have daily interactions with Halliburton.

    Whereas Diebold takes the money it earns from ATMs and uses it to steal elections on behalf of its crooked and incompetent right-wing pals.

    And I don’t have any complaints about my Comcast high-speed internets.

  70. sardonicbastard says:

    @AtomicPlayboy: It’s pretty easy to deride any criticisms of diebold as just some left-wing whining, as you seem rather quick to do. There’s a lot more evidence out there than some “blogs” as you put it, and I highly recommend that you watch HBO’s documentary on the 2000 election entitled “Hacking Democracy”. Hell, just read their wikipedia entry- or is that more leftist blog propaganda? I urge you to do a bit of research on your own before you deride people who have actually done so.

    Your position that Diebold shouldn’t be held accountable for their failures is laughable- where else would we allow incompetence at the levels they have demonstrated, and just brush it off that it’s just “challenges inherent in deploying a new system”? The level of trust that you have in a company like that is pretty frightening to say the least.

  71. This poll is great. This site is pretty much about how corporations interact with their customers. In this regard, I have to say Comcast wins (since I doubt anyone here has dealt with Diebold as a company, including me).

    Anyone who votes for Diebold here is doing it purely based on media hype and conspiracy theory (mostly the latter). Just because it is theoretically possible to hack a machine (wait, what!?! you think?!?) doesn’t necessarily make Diebold the worst. Bribes, etc., are pretty bad IF PROVEN. Basically, blame your local county elections office if they buy the faulty equipment.

    Anyway, this poll will let me know what percent of the commenters on the Consumerist really care about customer service and which are leftover Paultards from Digg with too much time on their hands.

  72. atypicalxian says:

    @terekkincaid: Agreed. Let’s assume that Diebold did screw up ballots. How do we know they screwed up in Bush’s favor? How do we know they didn’t screw up giving more votes to Kerry than they should? In either case, Diebold should take a beating for incompetence. In any case, that was 4 years ago, and the loathsome Bush will soon be history. You and AtomicPlayboy have it right.

    This shouldn’t be a political flame-war — this should be a goods/services provider flame-war.

  73. Cap'n Jack says:

    Comcast sucks!

  74. LucyInTheSky says:

    messing with services vs. messing with democracy? diebold wins, hands down. i wish it could have been comcast though.

  75. Corydon says:

    The solution to the Diebold mess is an Open Source / Free version of the software code coupled with a standardized hardware platform that anyone can build.

    That way anyone can inspect the code and look for deficiencies.

    If there’s anywhere where we need to get rid of hidden proprietary code, it’s in voting machines. Elections should be absolutely transparent from back to front.

  76. elforesto says:

    Diebold is certainly the worse of the two for, but Comcast is taking the hate for the 8 other telecom companies that got nominated. When over 25% of the entrants are in a single industry, it’s not surprising to have one of them at least make the finals.

  77. HeartBurnKid says:

    @atypicalxian: “The other side does it too” is not an excuse.

    And I can hardly blame the conspiracy theorists for jumping to the conclusion that Diebold did rig the elections. I mean, they come up with completely off-the-wall stuff when there’s no evidence whatsoever (i.e. JFK assassination theories, moon-landing “hoax”, the whole Loose Change mess), so what do you expect when there’s actually some fairly plausible circumstantial evidence for such an event, along with a company that stonewalls any attempt at an independent audit?

    It doesn’t take a “lefty loony” to see that there’s at least the appearance of impropriety. A BIG appearance.

  78. @sardonicbastard: OK, so instead of just a pile of Lefty blog prattle, you offer an HBO documentary to support your argument. Michael Moore would be proud. You (and others) claim that Diebold has intentionally undertaken a massive undermining of democracy in this country in favor of their GOP masters, and yet somehow the nation’s mass media (no friends of Mr. Bush, no friends of Diebold) have just completely missed the ball on this one? I’ve heard this argument before: just because no serious outlet has ever produced a single shred of evidence that UFOs exist doesn’t mean they aren’t real! The truth is out there! We have video!

    You claim that I am defending Diebold, when in fact I’m simply chastising the pitchforks-and-torches attitude of those on this site that are demonizing them without any rational, substantial basis. Of course they should be accountable for their failures, as should any other vendor who attempts to solve this problem. But this accountability should be proportionate to real deficiencies, not for the imagined or potential failures portrayed in these forums. I don’t “trust” them implicitly, and am inclined to think they should be replaced by another vendor, but I will wait until I see some evidence of nefariousness before I vote them the Worst Company in America.

    If you want to blame someone for electing your current president, you can blame me, not some corporate boogieman.

  79. desterion says:

    I know we’ve got a whole lot of disgruntled democrats that can’t understand that the better man won twice, but honestly… diebold shouldn’t have come this far.

  80. Aphex242 says:

    @desterion: Remarkably, even most Republicans have figured out he wasn’t the ‘better man’. Only the really delusional ones haven’t.

  81. Diabold, for making the U.S. electoral system as reliable as an African dictatorship.

  82. sardonicbastard says:

    @AtomicPlayboy: You ought to at least watch it, or as I said, do a little original research of your own. As a software developer with over a decade of experience in the industry, I have a particular interest in the topic, and I’ve researched it pretty extensively. Enough to know that there were documented failures, deliberate moves to cover it up, and pretty far-reaching incompetence. I don’t read “lefty blog prattle” as you call it, and as I pointed out- there’s a lot more original material out there. But hey, you have no interest in facts- you just want to deride everything in purely political terms.

    Can you highlight for me where I “claim[ed] that Diebold has intentionally undertaken a massive undermining of democracy in this country in favor of their GOP masters…”? You can’t, because I never said that. You really ought to stop drawing such broad strokes, it makes you sound like an equally repugnant neocon wackjob.

    You seem to have absolutely no interest in actually educating yourself, and are completely content to hide behind your ad-hominem attacks and predjudices, so I guess we’re done here.

  83. Sekai says:

    That Diebold is losing this vote shows that even Consumerist readers don’t understand how badly they’re being screwed by this company, harder than any cable company ever could.

  84. dcndn says:

    I hate Comcast with the fire of a thousand suns, but Diebold is literally destroying our democracy. Diebold it is.

  85. Eryk says:

    @Sekai: Care to elaborate how we are being screwed by them? Oh, that’s right…no proof of anything. Thanks for your useless dribble.

    This liberal is completely sick of other “liberals” still moaning about the election loss, and looking to blame anyone and anything for that loss, besides our party not playing smart politics. There is NO proof Diebold did anything to add votes for GWB any more than they could have for Kerry. Bottom line – this is a website about consumerism. It should not be politically fueled, but about which company is screwing us, the general public, most. Since there is no PROOF (a tricky word for some of you to handle) of election tampering, you really should stick to what this company has done wrong.

    Shitty voting machines? Check. Shitty ATMs? Check.

    Top eight? Sure. Top two? No way in hell.

    I’m serious, you far lefties are giving us liberals who can actually see thru your crazy theories a bad name. Stop it. We may lose an election because of you again.

    Noone likes someone who whines about something that happened 8/4 years ago. He’s out in six months – and thank God for that.




  86. BruinEric says:


    No. It shows that many readers of Consumerist believe this is a site about customer service from companies serving the public. And Comcast much more clearly fits the mold of a company with bad customer service that impacts consumers.

    If a sports-oriented website has a “who is the best person” award, you’d expect it to go to a player who is nice to kids or raises money for charity — not a medal of valor winner or Mother Theresa, etc. Because that’s the goal of the sports website.

    Take up your beef with the editors of this website. Diebold is not exactly a consumer service company by their view either — only two posts on Diebold from the editors with a total of LESS THAN 1000 VIEWS. As you can see above Comcast stories are numerous and even the selected posts above have more than 100x the page views as the Diebold story.

    And I’ll bet the opposite would be true in a poll taken on a political website.

  87. atypicalxian says:

    @Eryk: @BruinEric: Bravo to the both of you! (sound of hands clapping)

    @HeartBurnKid: You’re absolutely right — it’s not an excuse. My only point is that the theory that Diebold is part of some nefarious GOP plot to overthrow the will of the people is neither proven (even they may be slimeballs) nor is it relevant to this site.

  88. Sekai says:

    @Eryk: Thanks for making blanket assumptions about my politics and reasons for hating Diebold.

    Their flat refusal to comply with the most basic of security concerns when it comes to both ATM and Voting machine design is an affront to consumers and those who bother to vote everywhere. ‘Waaah my cable doesn’t work and the cable guy was mean to me and, and and my bittorrents are slow waah’ pales in comparison.

    Like it or not, everyone is paying for Diebold’s mistake with our tax dollars and the powers that be just. Aren’t. Listening. If that’s not a customer service issue, then nothing is.

  89. sleze69 says:

    @BruinEric: Diebold actually does interact with consumers. They interact everytime we use their ATMs…which usually work flawlessly. Now that I think about it from THAT perspective, I probably should have voted for Comcast instead.

  90. JustaConsumer says:

    Comcast sucks, but Diebold gave of 8 years of W and made this country a joke. Come on people. Is your cable service more important than your country?

  91. APFPilot says:

    @JustaConsumer: Diebold machines weren’t even in (widespread) use in the 2000. No matter how you cut it your statement is moronic.

  92. giggitygoo says:

    Has to be DieBold – Not only did they give the election to the Nazi Vampire Republicans, but they also make the holding tanks for the aliens at Area 51 AND the ATMs that held the demolition charges that really brought down the World Trade Center. Also, if you translate “DieBold” into ancient Incan, it is an anagram for “George W. Bush is an evil cowboy.”

    Now you know.

  93. Jamie Beckland says:

    I am really interested to know the age breakdown of who is voting for Comcast vs. Diebold. This is just a guess, but I would bet that Comcast voters skew younger, and Diebold voters skew older.

    Any way we can track this, editors?

  94. dallasmay says:

    “Show me proof that happened once and I will vote for Diebold, otherwise it is nothing more than a conspiracy theory.”

    That is the problem, there is no proof. There is no paper trail for people to write down their votes for double checking they system.

    This system could be a lot better with a simple fix. Have the computer print out a receipt for each vote, then have the voter drop the receipt into a ballot box. Then if there was a vote challenge, we could count the paper receipts to double check. Done. The fact that this was not included is what has sparked the controversy.

    Include paper trail, and I’ll happily side with Diebold.

  95. sirellyn says:

    I voted Diebold, as bad as Comcast is. For those who say there’s no proof, actually yeah there’s lots of proof. There’s proof the systems can be easily hacked:

    There’s proof there’s been tampering with the election results. Go to [www.blackboxvoting.org]
    There’s plenty of examples there.

    And for those of you that think this is simply a Republican tool to win elections, think again. Certain areas Democrats have been seen tampering with results too.

    The republican tampering is more prolific, but the fact this is happening at all on either side. Well lets just say that crates of tea were tossed into harbors for less reason.

  96. @sirellyn:
    As stated, the fact the machine can be hacked is not proof it has been. An insider can steal paper ballots and put in fake ones, too. You just need access. Nothing to do with the technology.

    And can you point to a specific example of elections that have been tampered with via a Diebold machine? I tried to search for Diebold on that site and got pages and pages of delusional ramblings that make this thread seem sensible in comparison. There’s a lot of Diebold hating there, and maybe they could build a better machine. But there is not a single shred of proof someone has hacked a Diebold machine to change an election result.

    Anything is possible, but that doesn’t make it likely, especially without proof. I am only heartened by the fact that though the comments range 10:1 on the side of conspiracy nuts, the actually vote gives the readers of this site much more credit.

  97. INsano says:

    Glad to see that Consumerist readers value their ESPN HD at the same level as the ideal of Democracy.

    Comcrap is a giant gone wrong. They do, sometimes, at least deliver what the customer pays for.

    Diebold on the otherhand, engineers its few products to attempt to slime minorities, ex-convicts(who have paid their debt to society), and anyone who might disagree with them out of their right to vote? Only in TV America would this vote go to Comcast.

  98. wildness says:

    So, people are choosing a crappy cable company (their is always an alternative to a crappy cable company) over the company most likely to (already have) undermine American Democracy.

    Either The Consumerist is using Diebold voting machines or Diebold voting machines are voting on The Consumerist!

  99. Kounji says:

    If Diebold wins it won’t change anything. Comcast is a customer service company.. it needs to win this badly.

  100. coren says:

    For the love of god, Comcast.

    Know how you can avoid voting Diebold? Vote absentee. Mail in your ballots, and OH HEY. I haven’t had to use Diebold yet.

    There’s a reason why Comcast has 100 articles + on Consumerist (probably in just this year) and Diebold has two, ever.