Today in issues we never thought a court would weigh in on: if you accidentally pocket dial someone, pulling the move we all know as “butt dialing,” don’t expect anything you say during the call you don’t know you’re making to stay private.
A scammer peddling magical $7,000 rewards from the government chose the wrong person to try to dupe: A police chief in Indiana filmed his phone on speaker while a stranger explained to him that yes, the government does just give people “free grant money” for no reason, and that he could get his money at Western Union.
Verizon isn’t a cable company. Its FiOS product doesn’t spring from decades of guaranteed local monopolies, which means most FiOS customers can, if they get annoyed enough, jump ship to a competitor. But you leaving is bad news for Verizon. They want to keep their subscribers. And they have an enormous mountain of highly personalized data on hand to try to do it with.
Two years ago, the Federal Trade Commission shut down a Brooklyn-based telemarketing scheme that bullied elderly consumers into paying for a medical alert service they never ordered or wanted. Now a federal court has hit the telemarketer’s repeat-offender operator with a $3.4 million penalty. [More]
Top Cable Lobbyist Just Doesn’t See Why You Hate Your Cable Company When Google, Facebook Are Big Too
The NCTA is big cable’s big lobbying group. Right now, they’re trying their hardest to make sure the FCC can’t protect consumers and businesses from the largest ISPs with a lawsuit trying to block the FCC’s net neutrality rule. At the organization’s head head is former FCC chairman Michael Powell, who loves terrible internet speeds and data caps for all.
Comcast’s public image has sunk so low that customers now assume that a customer service rep who threatens you with violence or calls you a “b*tch” is actually someone working for the nation’s largest cable provider and not a prank caller. [More]
General Motors continues to put an epic year of recalls in the rearview mirror. After recalling 30 million vehicles and providing compensation for the families and victims of its massive ignition switch defect, the car company has announced it can now put a price on 2014’s recallapalooza: $2.8 billion. [More]
Comcast is not exactly renowned for its high-quality customer service. It consistently ranks as one of the most-hated, most ineffective companies in the country, in both formal and informal surveys. They hired an exec just to change the customer experience, but the heap of public, embarrassing incidents for them just keeps getting bigger. So if you’re a Comcast customer, and you’re stuck in a loop trying to get your problem solved, is there anything you can actually do?
A day without my smartphone is a day I couldn’t even imagine (scary, I know). And a new study by scientists at the University of Missouri says that not only is this separation anxiety very real, but that it can impact our cognitive abilities. [More]
After reading the above headline, a less jaded person might think, “Surely there can’t have been ANOTHER example of a Comcast customer service call gone terribly, terribly wrong!” Snap out of it, kid. We’re living in Comcast’s world, and that means that upon the heels of one customer service call gone wrong, of course another has come rushing. And just like others before it, most of it was caught on tape.
It’s been a bad year for Comcast’s customer service image — probably not what the company wants to hear when it’s trying to convince federal regulators to let it swallow up millions of Time Warner Cable customers — and while many consumers are taking this week off from work, the folks at Kabletown know that bad service doesn’t take a holiday. [More]
Sony has finally provided some concrete details on its much anticipated streaming TV service, including a name, an expected launch window, and some info about its channel lineup, but the company still isn’t saying how much it’s going to charge. [More]
Last week, we brought you the story of former Comcast customer Conal O’Rourke, who lost his job at renowned accounting firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers after someone from Comcast called his employer with details of Mr. O’Rourke’s numerous — and valid — complaints about his cable service. Comcast has subsequently apologized for the myriad billing and service problems but maintains it did not intend to have O’Rourke fired, but that has not satisfied Conal, who has filed a lawsuit against the nation’s largest cable company, alleging violations of, among other claims, a federal law prohibiting cable companies from sharing personal information without customers’ consent. [More]
The saga of what happens when you try to cancel your Comcast account continues this evening with a recording of the tail end of a more than three-hour wait on Comcast’s retention line. As far as we can tell, sitting on hold with Comcast for upwards of three hours isn’t a unique experience, but not everyone is creative enough to call Comcast with another phone while still on hold… only to hear a recording informing them that the company has closed for the day.
Comcast Tells Customer The Only Reason He’s Getting Bogus Charges Refunded Is Because He Recorded Call
Most of us have been in this situation, and probably once or twice with Comcast. You’re told by the first person that something is free, then you get a bill for it and when you call to find out why, everyone you talk to tells you you’re up Turd Creek sans rowing equipment. If only you had recorded that first call, right? [More]
Although consumers in some areas of the United States can now text message 911 in the event of an emergency, it’s always nice to know that calling a real, live human is still an option. Unless of course it isn’t, which was the case for residents of Caddo County, OK, for several months in 2013. [More]