Monday Morning

-Internet service not working.

-Call Comcast toll-free number to find out if there’s systemic problem. Press 2 for high-speed Internet. Ignore recorded sales pitch for pay-per-view boxing match. No mention of systemic problems. Ignore recorded suggestion to press 1 to send refresh signal to modem (tried a few days ago, ineffective). Press another button to speak to a human.

-Complain about no signal.

-Comcast rep “checks your modem” and says it’s fine (subtext: you idiot).

-Optional: Point out to Comcast rep that there are many Comcast outages, outages always Comcast’s fault, everyone knows Comcast has lousy service, tired of being lied to by Comcast, etc.

-Optional: Comcast rep’s vaguely insulting non-apology apology — “I’m sorry you feel that way, sir” etc. (subtext: Comcast’s lousy service isn’t rep’s fault, you idiot).

-Check computer. Modem works, probably because something is misconfigured in Comcast network and Comcast rep’s action refreshed dropped connection.

-Repeat every few days until Comcast fixes problem.

15 thoughts on “Monday Morning”

  1. While I don’t use Comcast I have had enough experience with it helping others to believe that their customer service is spawned from the devil.

    Latest experience – a neighbor-friend died, and I was helping her 85 year old sister try to sort through things and cancel accounts.

    The worst of it was Comcast. Had to go down there – wait 45 minutes and the cheery rep makes a big deal how they won’t access Corky (the deceased customer) with a “late fee” because she…… is dead

    Corky would undoubtedly have gotten a laugh out of that.

    That too is one if my hot buttons – companies giving lackluster service then repeatedly saying “I’m sorry” – as if that makes any difference.

  2. Generally, customer-service call centers are simultaneously overmanaged and undermanaged. Too much attention to telling the rep exactly what words to say, too little attention to understanding and optimizing the resolution flows for handling common problems.

    For a business like Comcast, optimizing the problem-resoultion process would surely be a major improver of profitability, both directly (less labor required to support the customer) and indirectly (better customer retention.) It is strange that more intelligence is not devoted to this issue.

  3. If their residential service were up to snuff, I wouldn’t be shelling out the bucks for their business class, their service tier that actually has decent service.

    Ping and traceroute are your friend. When you can trace out past your link and your connection dies even one link into their network, you have them. They have to upgrade it to tier two. Get the pings and traceroutes before you dial.

  4. I’ll spare you the details, but I didn’t find their biz service adequate either. I no longer do business with them, Period.

  5. Unfortunately, they’re the only decent option for me other than actually running a T-1. I’m almost tempted to create a mini-ISP for my subdivision.

  6. My son got sideways with Comcast and pulled the plug. He had to go back to DSL.

    I have Time Warner, but they are not better.

    My daughter has TW and she can get Verizon FiOS in her area. I think that would be a huge improvement. She hasn’t been able to deal with it, but she swears she will switch when she gets a chance.

    I just checked a FiOS map and it looks like there is some availibility in South Florida. I would check it out.

    I would even switch to U-verse which is not real fiber optic all the way like FiOS, but they have not yet gotten to my area.

  7. For what it’s worth, this is why we switched to AT&T. Service, in person at the AT&T store, has been excellent. No complaints about Internet service (in fact, it seems about 50% faster than Comcast), and the price is half what we were paying to Comcast.

  8. In my area AT&T offers old-style DSL and U-Verse. I’ve used AT&T DSL on and off for years and it’s been highly reliable. It is, however, much slower than Comcast’s cable Internet service. U-Verse remains an option. The problem with U-Verse is that one’s voice phone service becomes vulnerable to power outages. One could get another, wired landline as a backup but this adds to the cost. Also, in my recent experience calling AT&T to inquire about DSL options the sales rep slammed me with a U-Verse order and I had to spend some time and effort to get it cancelled. There are unexpected hassles every time one changes something.

  9. I went through this with Comcast. They replaced my modem twice. They replaced the drop from the connection on the pole to my house (about 120 feet) with RG-6 (the old stuff was RG-59 and had a splice in it). It turned out there was a bad piece of hardware on one of their nodes – but it took 3 months and about 8 visits before they figured that out (or even wanted to admit it). What I would recommend is to first get them to replace the drop to your house and check the connectors at both ends. Also, tell the next tech that comes out that you want the name and phone number of the field supervisor. Then call him. Tell him you need a line tech to replace your drop with RG-6 and that if that doesn’t fix it you want them to start checking their nodes. Also ask if anyone else in the neighborhood is complaining – if so, that’s a sure bet that something is wrong in their network.

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