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Print 61 comment(s) - last by GlassHouse69.. on Jun 10 at 12:49 AM

City officials are fed up

“Hundreds of thousands of Los Angeles residents were ripped off,” said Los Angeles City Attorney Rocky Delgadillo, referring to a complaint against Time Warner Cable regarding the quality of its service that the company provided since its installment as Southern California’s No. 1 cable provider two years ago.

“Time Warner must be held accountable for its promises.”

According to the soon-to-be-filed complaint, the City of Los Angeles says Time Warner made false and misleading statements to subscribers regarding its quality of service, violating state laws and the terms of the franchise agreement it worked out with the city. Subscribers spend time waiting in agonizingly long hold queues, the city says, and Time Warner’s technicians subjected subscribers to excessive repair work delays. Parts of the agreement mandated that Time Warner customer service representatives answer subscribers’ calls “within 30 seconds,” and repair service interruptions within 24 hours of notification.

The city says it will file its suit in a Los Angeles County Superior Court. Time Warner Cable provided no immediate comment.

Officials in the city of Costa Mesa, California – less than an hour’s drive south of Los Angeles’ – are mulling similar plans in light of Los Angeles’ announcement.

“I requested a copy of the city of Los Angeles’ filing so that I can assess if we need to pursue action of our own,” said Costa Mesa City Attorney Kimberley Hall Barlow.

Los Angeles officials say that Time Warner could pay “tens of millions of dollars” in fines if courts rule against it.

Time Warner Cable is the exclusive cable provider for a number of Southern California markets, including the aforementioned Costa Mesa. While there exists competition in Los Angeles, Time Warner Cable remains the dominant provider after it acquired the bankrupted Adelphia Communications with fellow provider Comcast in 2006, and arranged for a complex franchise switch that allowed the two to dominate separate markets.

The Los Angeles Times notes that the Adelphia transition was difficult due to a need to upgrade and merge with Adelphia’s aging infrastructure, affecting nearly 500,000 subscribers.

Los Angeles’ lawsuit specifically focuses on service issues starting during fall 2006 and ending in spring of 2007, citing advertising literature that gave subscribers the impression that pricing would remain the same. One brochure promised customers that Time Warner would fix service interruptions “fast,” when instead technicians would consistently show up for appointments late.

In the end, however, the city is angry with Time Warner’s lousy service overall. The company’s cable and internet service “was so intermittent and inferior in quality that it was not much better than no service at all,” says the suit.

Time Warner CEO Jeff Bewkes recently announced plans to jettison Time Warner Cable, spinning it off into an independent company in order to raise Time Warner’s sagging stock price. The company is also experimenting with a metered internet service model, opening test markets with a 40 GB cap in Texas.



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Good
By Runiteshark on 6/6/2008 6:23:42 PM , Rating: 2
Slam these damn ISPs with fines that they will never forget. That 10m could partially upgrade their core network.

I tell you, people get ripped off at such a grand scheme when they can provide so much more.




RE: Good
By Reclaimer77 on 6/6/2008 6:30:46 PM , Rating: 2
Exactly.

Upgrade or Die !!!!


RE: Good
By Regs on 6/6/2008 6:45:13 PM , Rating: 5
The real problem is the lack of competition. I don't know what the reg's are in everybody's local municipality, but there could only be so many communication lines running. Whoever owns it, wins.


RE: Good
By Regs on 6/6/2008 6:45:55 PM , Rating: 2
*lack of availability would of been a better word.


RE: Good
By Nik00117 on 6/7/2008 6:54:23 AM , Rating: 2
I don't think so, last of competiton is the problem.

Here in Germany DSL is dirt cheap, I mean you can get a decent line for like 5 euros a month for the first 3 months then like 9 euros a month after that, if you do a year long contract setup is free etc.

Quite frankly comopetiton has held the american ISPs back. Why should they spend 10million to upgrade their core switching area? Why should they provide more bandwidth, faster speeds, better tech support if the competiton doesn't even exist.

Once a business gets into a situation where competiton is no longer there they will conitue to charge outrageous prices and not be concerned ove rlosing customers, simply because where else are they going to go? There is no one else.s


RE: Good
By ChuckDriver on 6/7/2008 5:55:44 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Here in Germany DSL is dirt cheap, I mean you can get a decent line for like 5 euros a month for the first 3 months then like 9 euros a month after that, if you do a year long contract setup is free etc.


My mother's friend recently signed up for DSL lite from AT&T for $10 a month. Despite having less bandwidth that standard DSL, it meets her needs and is comfortably within her budget.

As far as competition goes, I think the 3.0 and 6.0 Mbps tiers from the various DSL carriers were spurred by the cable companies similars plans. Also FiOS and similar fiber to the home systems are an attempt to fight cable both on internet service and television.


RE: Good
By jeff834 on 6/7/2008 6:27:37 PM , Rating: 3
I couldn't agree with the competition problem more.

Just a little background. I've had cable provided broadband since 1997 when in our area it was Adelphia. Service under Adelphia was AWFUL. Outages all the time, slow connections, etc etc. Several years ago our area was taken over by Comcast and things definitely got better. I still have to reset the modem every once in a while, but outages are very few and far between, speeds are good, service has been all in all decent.

But improvement of service isn't good enough in 11 years. I think in all that time we've had one speed increase (from I believe 3Mb to 6Mb down) and the price has only gone up (in 8 years about 20% not too terrible but still noticeable). Basically in those years there has been a complete lack of competition. No other broadband options until DSL was made possible a few years ago at the same price and much worse speeds. Now, however, Verizon has started to roll out FiOS in our area and guess what? Oh yeah, Comcast is working on increasing their speeds and advertising their asses off to try to keep their customers. A year or 2 ago I had never seen a commercial for Comcast, if you didn't have it you didn't have anything. Now if you watch anything on cable they have at least 1 if not 2 or 3 ads during EVERY single commercial break. Most of those ads are aimed at shooting down FiOS. It's actually pretty hilarious how much they are shaking in their boots while Verizon is swooping in and stealing their customers away. Personally I'm waiting patiently for the day I can finally tell Comcast to shove it.

Competition is a beautiful thing.


RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 6/8/2008 9:58:56 AM , Rating: 2
I'm hoping that with companies like Google moving into the Charleston area, that Verizon will take an interest in the area and bringing FiOS here.

In Florida we never had a problem with Time Warner's internet or cable service. Bright House took over and it was relatively the same. But my parents have extremely poor HDTV service. And for over a year they had terrible internet speeds. It took 5 service calls to get the internet issue cleared up. But despite continued frequent service calls, their TV service is still constantly pixelating and freezing.

Even my own service can be spotty with HDTV. When watching a HDTV broadcast, at least once in every show the signal will break up for a few seconds. Of course its never during a commercial break...


RE: Good
By Polynikes on 6/8/2008 1:02:41 PM , Rating: 2
I completely agree. I don't even understand how it's possible that there is no competition. Microsoft got its ass handed to them, now Intel's going to, yet the telcos have had no competition ever.


RE: Good
By themadmilkman on 6/8/2008 1:57:41 PM , Rating: 5
There is no competition because it's a government-granted monopoly.


RE: Good
By GlassHouse69 on 6/10/2008 12:49:34 AM , Rating: 2
I have 20 megabits download and 5 megabits upload.

i pay 35 dollars a month for that

europe sux.


RE: Good
By omnicronx on 6/7/2008 11:42:16 AM , Rating: 3
Which is why your current system makes no sense. I never quite understood how the US never caught on to what other countries were doing. Force companies with the infrastructure to allow ANY other provider to use their system, they just have to pay licensing fees, and their share of maintenance costs.

They did that with Canadian phone companies 20 years ago, and it has worked out great, prices dropped dramatically and in many areas the quality of service was greatly improved. Competition grew, and yet Bell Canada was still making millions of dollars.


RE: Good
By The Jedi on 6/7/2008 2:45:28 PM , Rating: 2
In the US phone companies are like that. For broadband services they must give competitors space in their regional central offices for services such as DSL. Cable TV is regulated differently.


RE: Good
By DM0407 on 6/7/2008 4:37:42 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Which is why your current system makes no sense. I never quite understood how the US never caught on to what other countries were doing. Force companies with the infrastructure to allow ANY other provider to use their system, they just have to pay licensing fees, and their share of maintenance costs.


Why help the customer when you can get millions in lobbyist money? Its the government thats the problem, the providers are just playing the game.


RE: Good
By Quiescent on 6/6/2008 8:34:09 PM , Rating: 2
I certainly hope that this will be an example that will have other cities stepping up to the plate about poor quality service else where. Here where I live, Cox isn't doing so great, comcast sucks, and a lot of ISPs are offering bandwidth that they can't for out for a premium, and the customers are paying a premium for a connection that is lesser (very noticable!) than what they are paying for!

The problem is, is that there is a lot of illiterate people out there who don't realize that these problems exist, and they're being ripped off, too. Especially now, since there is a recession, people would think the extremely high prices for such a crappy connection is because of that.

To top it off, if they are charging us an arm and a leg for bandwidth, they should be using that money to better their infrastructure and better themselves as a whole.


RE: Good
By mmc4587 on 6/6/2008 11:15:41 PM , Rating: 4
quote:
Slam these damn ISPs with fines that they will never forget. That 10m could partially upgrade their core network


yeah, the consumer gets screwed in service.
Then the effing govt steps in and screws the cable co.
Now, the cable company now has less money to upgrade, so the American workers are screwed as well.

..meanwhile lawyers and politicians (most of whom are lawyers) make it big screwing the cable co, the consumer, and the American worker.

Lawyers, I'm taling to you:
Stop wasting everybody's time and money! If the cable co. screws me, I can turn off my 'effin tv or get a dish!
This new american mentality of the "world owes me" sucks rocks. Whatever happened to "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country?"


RE: Good
By AlexWade on 6/7/2008 9:09:18 AM , Rating: 2
It is times like this I'm glad my cable company is not a bigwig. I get 8 MPBS down, no bandwidth nazis watching how much I use, no deep packet inspection from NebuAd. Small cable company has to work to make you happy, because where cable is deregulated, big cable company is trying to take over.


RE: Good
By Reclaimer77 on 6/7/2008 5:27:52 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Now, the cable company now has less money to upgrade, so the American workers are screwed as well.


Except, they AREN'T upgrading. Thats painfully apparent. Why do you think they are trying to enforce bandwidth limiting by claiming the top " 5% ruin it for everyone " ? Because they rather screw everyone equally than invest profits back into the infrastructure.

quote:
Lawyers, I'm talking to you:


In this case the lawyers are advocating FOR the consumer. Your blaming the wrong people.

quote:
Stop wasting everybody's time and money! If the cable co. screws me, I can turn off my 'effin tv or get a dish!


hmmmm

quote:
This new american mentality of the "world owes me" sucks rocks.


So the old American way was just take it up the ass and like it when your getting ripped off and billed for crap service ? Your forgetting some people HAVE no alternative. I don't. A cable company called Comporium is the only provider in my city. Period.

quote:
Whatever happened to "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country?"


Whatever happened to " For the People, By the People " ?


RE: Good
By lagitup on 6/7/2008 7:55:25 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Whatever happened to " For the People, By the People " ?

Perhaps this article from the onion will answer your question:

http://www.theonion.com/content/news/americans_ann...


RE: Good
By Yocal on 6/8/2008 10:21:50 AM , Rating: 2
"In this case the lawyers are advocating FOR the consumer. Your blaming the wrong people"

The word "lawyer" and the phrase "for the people" shouldnt be used in the same sentence.


RE: Good
By Yocal on 6/8/2008 10:25:14 AM , Rating: 2
I meant for the consumer. I ruined that one...

Why cant I edit my post?


too bad
By TheDoc9 on 6/6/2008 6:24:23 PM , Rating: 2
While catching grief lately, TW is still the best here in Texas for internet. They don't bother you with usage restrictions and I get a descent 8mbs for $36 total.

They do need to work on their HD selection and digital tv service in general. The interface is from the early 90's and that alone makes me want to turn off the tv. With the exception of the HD channels, the digital SD channels all suffer horrible pixelation.




RE: too bad
By JackBurton on 6/6/2008 6:38:09 PM , Rating: 2
Whatever. Verizon FiOS is king in Texas. Best looking HD (least amount of compression) and SCREAMING internet speeds (you can get 15Mbps/15Mbps for $65, and of course they have cheaper plans available). You just have to be lucky enough to be in an area where that service is available.


RE: too bad
By FaceMaster on 6/6/08, Rating: -1
RE: too bad
By bodar on 6/6/2008 8:15:07 PM , Rating: 6
Exactly, since there are zero legal, non-porn ways to consume large amounts of data throughput.

Certainly not:
http://www.steampowered.com/
http://www.hulu.com/
http://www.netflix.com/
http://www.apple.com/appletv/specs.html
http://www.apple.com/itunes/store/tvshows.html
etc.

Where can I sign up for your informative newsletter?


RE: too bad
By FaceMaster on 6/7/08, Rating: 0
RE: too bad
By amanojaku on 6/7/2008 3:10:55 PM , Rating: 1
@$$master, do you work for TimeWarner, the RIAA, or the MPAA? It sounds like you don't want people watching streaming video. Or maybe you're just speaking from ignorance.

Stream "Heroes," then tell me the picture quality sucks. I have an AthlonXP 2500 Shuttle as my video jukebox connected via VGA to a Westinghouse 32" LCD (running at the native resolution of 1366x768) and optical S/PDIF to a Rotel RSX 1056 5.1 receiver. The picture quality from NetFlix is so good I need to upgrade my PC to keep it from stuttering. My newer laptop can display the picture without a hitch, but it doesn't have optical sound output. Most movies play perfectly, though; watching "Weeds" was like watching it on HD cable.


RE: too bad
By djc208 on 6/8/2008 11:52:00 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly!

Not to mention the internet capabilities that have yet to really take hold. For instance one of the big ones for me lately has been streaming my TV content from my HTPC to my laptop while I'm on travel (I use SageTV but Slingbox would have the same effect). Or the WHS machines that will start to allow more people remote access to any of their content away from home. Or this push for "cloud computing" where you'll have most of your stuff on some "internet HD".

Then add on all the little items, like every program you have checking for updates periodically, then downloading those updates. How about all the little widgets and apps to track weather, stocks, RSS tickers, IM programs. Then add multiple computers and/or family members all doing the same things and it can add up quickly.


RE: too bad
By mmc4587 on 6/7/2008 12:25:07 AM , Rating: 1
quote:
Honestly, how many emails, pictures or youtube videos do you have to watch to go over the limit?


1 picture = 5 mb
1 days use of Folding@Home = 10 mb
1 news clip on msn = 20 mb
1 home video clip 2.5 min = 200 mb
1 hour streaming music = 300 mb
1 video-call over skype = 800 mb
1 software/os download = up to 2,000 mb
1 online movie rental = 3,000 mb

Monthly sats follow:

.25 gb = 50+ pictures
.3 gb = Folding@Home use
.6 gb = 10 msn news clips/day
1.0 gb = 5 2.5min home videos
1.5 gb = 5hr of streaming music
3.0 gb = 1 month of OS/Game/software downloads
4.0 gb = 5 skype video calls
15.0 gb = 5 online movie rentals
25.65 gb= MINIMUM USAGE REQUIREMENTS

P O I N T T W O

Internet takes up only a fraction of the bandwith available on coax cable. 90% of that bandwith is used to provide a constant stream of 100+ channels (as if we are likely to watch all 100 at once).

so, cable companies, if you want to start limiting bandwith start cleaning up in house first! (yes I realize that server load is not = to bandwith but that is not the point)


RE: too bad
By FaceMaster on 6/7/08, Rating: -1
RE: too bad
By Kougar on 6/6/2008 8:07:46 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, speak for yourself. I use TWC in Texas and we suffer from all the problems they are naming in this suit. Call times for any time of day or night are atrocious, the first thing you hear is an automated "we are experiencing heavy call traffic volume and presently have extended hold times". They give you this message by default every single time you call as a convenient excuse for the delays.

I've moved several times since I started service with them and it requires two to three different installation visits before they even properly install the internet service. The last guy claimed he worked as a TWC installer for 5 years, but he bent the coax cable into a dozen or so 90 degree bends to follow the brickwork.

For awhile after they fixed the bad install job service actually started working fine, but over the last two weeks the outages began anew for the entire local area. How would you enjoy having both internet and TV service go out from 12pm until 5pm once a week on your day off? They fixed it barely in time for the evening news. The only reason I still put up with this POS service is Verizon's FIOS isn't available here.


RE: too bad
By ttnuagadam on 6/7/2008 7:28:01 PM , Rating: 1
not in all areas. i live in Tyler, we have a company called suddenlink here. 10 mbs for 40 a month, no restrictions etc etc, never had a single problem. they also dont give out their customer info to mpaa/riaa, the riaa/mpaa might bitch them out, but all they do is warn the customer and tell them to stop.


RE: too bad
By Staples on 6/9/2008 9:41:09 AM , Rating: 2
TWC is San Antonio has always had great service. Any one service is a rip off but packages make things a lot cheaper. I wish 7mbps internet was not $47 by itself but other then that, I have zero complaints. Bad service from TWC is not nationwide.


Litigation?
By Fnoob on 6/6/08, Rating: 0
RE: Litigation?
By bodar on 6/6/2008 8:29:29 PM , Rating: 2
FTFA
quote:
Time Warner Cable is the exclusive cable provider for a number of Southern California markets, including the aforementioned Costa Mesa.


And if neither DSL or FiOS are in their area? Yay, dialup! I thought it was 2008, not 1998. Your McDonald's analogy is worthless, since you can easily take your business to a competing fast-food place.


RE: Litigation?
By Fnoob on 6/6/08, Rating: -1
RE: Litigation?
By bodar on 6/7/2008 6:13:25 AM , Rating: 5
Try reading the article next time. The customers aren't suing, the local government that TWC signed a contract with is. Guess what you do when someone doesn't hold up their end of a contract? You sue them.

Providers, in many cases, literally bought the "right" to be the only game in town. They signed a franchise agreement that says they agree to give a certain level of service, and in exchange, they got exclusive rights to that area, so that they could recoup the cost of implementing broadband more quickly. They need to either provide that level of service at a reasonable price or GTFO, simple as that.


RE: Litigation?
By jeff834 on 6/7/2008 6:44:09 PM , Rating: 1
The people weren't forced to pay for cable this is a factual statement. HOWEVER, they DID pay for this service and did NOT get what they paid for. Even if this was a lawsuit by Time Warner customers they might have a case on breach of contract. It is in fact a lawsuit by the city of LA and my bet is TW seriously breached their contract and will lose. And on a side note, even if they were just incompetent failing to hold up your side of a bargain is still breach of contract. This isn't a question of whether or not people are entitled to broadband it's a question of whether or not one party held up their side of a legal contract by providing what was paid for.

Your argument is that if you pay for something someone else doesn't think is necessary and you get screwed you're out of luck. That is just plain retarded.

To use your ridiculous analogy: What if you bought a double quarter pounder from McDs and there was only one patty? Would you not bring it back and ask for a replacement? Fact is people don't get what they ordered rather frequently in fast food and the place in question be it McDs, BK, Wendys, etc will happily replace your item for you. Now try going into a TW location and asking for the hours upon hours of service they failed to provide you and see how fast they laugh you out the door.


RE: Litigation?
By Fnoob on 6/6/2008 9:28:25 PM , Rating: 2
Admittedly it is sad but true - US broadband sucks large eggs compared to other, less WWF influenced countries.


RE: Litigation?
By mmc4587 on 6/7/2008 12:29:38 AM , Rating: 2
true dat


One of the Best
By nosake on 6/6/2008 7:58:38 PM , Rating: 2
Here in Hawaii, Oceanic Time Warner is nothing short of stellar.

I created an account here just to make that statement.




RE: One of the Best
By just4U on 6/6/2008 8:16:28 PM , Rating: 2
Welcome,

Now imagine alot more providers in your area. How much better would that service be with real competition?

The provider I have here in Calgary is a step above the other major one but.. that's not saying as much as one might think. If we had options these companies would really pick up their socks and we'd all enjoy a level of service that isn't seen outside of certain parts of Europe.


RE: One of the Best
By bodar on 6/6/2008 8:43:03 PM , Rating: 2
I would hardly say OTWC is stellar. To give an example, I DVR'd the Lost finale in HD a little while ago. When I went to watch it, it was completely unwatchable with distorted sound and video artifacts galore. Another show taping at the same time was perfectly fine. This is not the first time we've had issues, just the worst case. I think it's the HDDVR's they use that suck, honestly.

They are much better than Comcast in NJ though.


Dog and Pony
By HarryLemon on 6/6/2008 7:17:05 PM , Rating: 2
Fines will hurt 'em, and it'll prove satisfying to many (especially the city), but while the service may improve just enough to cover the bare minimum service level being asked, it will never truly improve over the long term without competition.

Without incentives to keep prices lower than the other guy, and quality of service higher, what impetus really exists to stop them from what they're already doing?

The least they possibly can while raking in as much as we can afford.

The city is really just taking their share in exchange for screwing the little guy along with 'em! Meanwhile they actually look good doing it, when it's YOU they screwed to begin with!

What has the law done for you lately, REALLY, except obliterate the laws requiring a fair and open market for competition?

Wake up and read your history! These are not the principles this country was founded upon. As long as they make a show of it you actually think it's a good thing though, don't you?

This is the extent to which you've been fooled.




RE: Dog and Pony
By just4U on 6/6/2008 8:09:34 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
it will never truly improve over the long term without competition.


BINGO! North American's will never enjoy the types of service found in certain parts of Europe without it. I've seen some of their plan's and think .. OMG, I want that! But they have what we lack, competition.


I know the feeling
By combatmedic on 6/6/2008 8:31:24 PM , Rating: 2
I live in the LA area, and had to suffer through the comcast/TWC merger. I was without the internet for a week during that time, and sense then the network goes down at least 3 times a month for 12 hours or more each time.

True story on the call center:
I called in asking if they had an uptime or at least a status of the network, as it was down again. The call rep insisted that the network was fine and she connect to my modem fine. At that exact moment 3 time warner cherry pickers went by at a high rate of speed. I told her what I saw and her response? "Oh it looking like something just came up?




RE: I know the feeling
By Nik00117 on 6/7/2008 7:09:57 AM , Rating: 2
I remember in GA with Cox a lot of times i'd need my line reset on their ends and they never wanted to admit it. So after about 2 years of living witht hat I decided to call Cox and write down their opening technical statements to begin with word to word. I then hung up printed it out plastered it above my computer desk. 2 weeks later I needed my line reset.

Called the tech support guy and I went "hang on let me try something" i read his speech I answered his questions all without even having him say more then ok. At the end of me goign through his script he went "done this a few times uh?"

Gotta tell you the responses I got from those tech guys when I able go through the whole process. Because they never want to admit that its their problem. They try and convience the customer everythign is ok, nothigns wrong.

Here in Germany I don't have that issue, hell I even know my tech support guy hes some old guy called Joe, he runs his own ISP and does support for it. I've had to cal him 2 times in 2 years once was to get my login information for the dsl conenction too, so that wasnt' even a big deal. this man runs his entire ISP with over 2,000 customers with one employee, himself, and his wife. He does a better job then most ISPs with thousands of poeple working for them.


Time Warner's time is coming...
By mac2j on 6/7/2008 5:52:59 PM , Rating: 2
There's a reason Time Warner divested its cable unit...

They currently have an exclusive deal in Manhattan that is FINALLY giving way to FIOS spreading here (only because legally they couldnt keep up their monopoly).

The "switch rate" in buildings where people have a choice between TWC and FiOS so far is above 80%. Some buildings are now allowing DirectTV dishes ... >80% switch rate.

Lousy overpriced cable service.
Most limited HD offerings of any provider.
Overpriced internet.
Terrible service.

The problem is if you're so-so people may make other choices if theres a better deal... BUT if you're as bad as Time Warner and you fight to prevent people from having any other choices people will HATE YOU. People in NYC HATE Time Warner ... and when you hate a provider you will actively seek ANY other option.




RE: Time Warner's time is coming...
By Yocal on 6/8/2008 10:46:05 AM , Rating: 2
From what Im to understand, in the areas near me where FiOS is available, Verizon has about a 30% take over rate. But of that 30 they only have a little over 10% retention rate. They also had a 27% rate increase since they first launched... 27 PERCENT!! And its only going to go up. I also heard the average length of contract in people switching back is about 8 months. So maybe its not all its cracked up to be?


By g35fan on 6/8/2008 8:45:42 PM , Rating: 2
I was a internet/cable customer of Comcast here in Cleveland and payed roughly $100/month for cable internet and cable TV with 2 movie channels. Then, Comcast had to transition to Time Warner in this area.

Comcast notified us of the pending transition and said nothing would change. Next month comes by, my bill went from $100 to $120 with no explaination. The next month from $120 to $140. The next month it topped out at $155. Each month I called and got horribly long wait lines of hours each call with frequent hang ups in between making me start all over. When I did get ahold of someone from Comcast they told me to contact Time Warner!!! LOL...I said screw this...and threatened to cancel my service. Well it's too bad since I have NO other options where I lived! The apartment complex wouldn't allow satellite dishes and were stuck with Comcast/Time Warner. They just called my bluff each time and said you can drop off the equipment or we'll pick it up. Screw that. I'll never forgive these monopolies for that....

Finally after paying $155 for 3 months Time Warner took over and my bill went back down to $110.




By Reclaimer77 on 6/9/2008 12:23:34 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The apartment complex wouldn't allow satellite dishes


You might want to check, I'm not sure, but I think thats illegal. I'm pretty sure a federal law mandated that installation of dishes for the consumer can not be barred.

Again, I'm not sure, but you might wanna look into that.


Competition
By cscpianoman on 6/6/2008 7:39:06 PM , Rating: 3
I agree with the call for more competition. I'm in Phoenix and we have the choice of Cox or Qwest. Wow... Talk about your serious capitalistic drive to improve networks, increase speeds and improve customer service. I laughed reading this article about Adelphia being split between TW and Comcast such that they do not cross borders. I would love to see four or five providers duking it out for my business, not two.

Is there ever a good reason to 10Mb down/512Kb up, except for marketing!? I would give up my widescreen LCD for a 13" CRT for the rest of my life just to have at least 4-5Mb up.




haha
By ttnuagadam on 6/7/2008 3:05:19 AM , Rating: 1
do you guys realize what kind of ridiculous demands those are? all calls answered in 30 seconds? all repairs done in 24 hours? adhering to those kinds of standards would drive cable prices through the roof. i happen to work for a cable company, call volumes are very inconsistent, if you have the amount of people it would take to answer all calls within 30 seconds even during outages, you're going to end up with CSR's being paid to not do very much for most of a work day. do you really want to pay for that?




RE: haha
By bodar on 6/7/2008 6:38:39 AM , Rating: 2
I agree the "30 seconds" thing is a bit ridiculous. I think 15 minutes of on-hold time is where I start to get annoyed. When you think about it, they really never had to live up to these standards though, since most people had no idea they even existed. All they really have to do is give reasonably good service for a competitive price and most customers wouldn't care enough to raise hell with the local government.

They chose "exclusive franchise with a catch" over "open access free-for-all" and they should be fined if they don't live up to their end.


Interesting
By P2S9 on 6/6/2008 6:23:05 PM , Rating: 2
I live in Socal and I have to say Time Warner is the best internet service provider I've ever had. Before Time Warner I had Verizon and Charter Cable, both were horible.




Yes Fine Them!
By bobdelt on 6/6/2008 7:40:42 PM , Rating: 2
Yes sue them for millions! That why, any money for R&D and upgrades will be depleted. Oh! And then they can raise their prices, not only to pay for the fines and suit, but also to improve their customer service up to spec. Sounds like an awesome plan for the consumer.

If we can have almost any long distance phone carrier, why cant this happen with cable? I understand that someone owns the cables and infrastructure... but a deal must be set out to allow competition. FIOS will help too. But unless satellite offers real broadband, or maybe wimax or lte can offer some competition.




Glad TW is getting used.
By Trikat on 6/7/2008 11:41:32 PM , Rating: 2
Ah I am so glad TW is getting sued... Comcast and Verizon are both rolling out faster and better services while TW is just flopping around and delaying the upgrades. Service in Charlotte has been a pretty daunting experience and there is just no other cable provider that provides good dl and upload speeds.




Good
By sushib0x on 6/9/2008 1:45:47 AM , Rating: 2
I am so glad that someone stepped out to home plate and did something right for once. As a former adelphia customer, i had no technical issues what soever. I had Adelphia cable internet for about 2 years and it was the best experience ever. I was shocked to hear that TWC had bought Adelphia. As I was adapting to the new transition, i had so much problems dealing with technicality. I had : slow internet, couldnt connect to the internet, and you know what i mean. As of right now, my download speed is 111kbps. Even dial up is faster...I will do whatever it takes to help LA sue TWC




Typical government ignorance
By joshuaheard on 6/9/2008 10:20:13 AM , Rating: 2
The city grants Time Warner a monopoly and wonders why service sucks...




Time Warner suxs
By jahwarrior on 6/9/2008 12:25:23 PM , Rating: 2
San Diego needs to sue Time Warner, the service here is atrocious, nothing but problems with the internet, cable and their hardware is horrible, had 3 DVR boxes replaced in less than 6 months.




Great when there are no issues...
By The0ne on 6/9/2008 1:56:12 PM , Rating: 2
The internet connection works great when there are no issues. I haven't found a "limiting cap" on my downloads/uploads yet so that's a good thing. However, when you do have problems with your service, be it TV, phone or Internet, you will suffer their horrible customer service. Calling them on the phone is practically useless unless you are signing up for their service, in which case you get connected easily and quickly. Strange but no.

In fact, this year has been horrendous for me as many of the CSR's continually screw up my service plan and billing charges. Phone waits were 1hr+ and that's if you get lucky! So I ended up making a few trips back and forth to the main office here in San Diego, Miramar to clear things up.

I have to point out that the office service is much much much better than the phone service and that both are different. You call the phone service and I believe it goes to Carlsbad. Having said that though, even the CSR at the office screwed up trying to "fix" what the first CSR screwed up. Basically I should have gotten the $29.99 for each of the package but instead got charge the regular prices for each. What a scam. Oh and funny thing is the Office CSR's I spoke to know how crappy their customer services are.

This isn't just one incident as well as TWC is the ONLY provided within the city for me. So year after year I have to deal with this crap customer service and nothing is being done about it...at least there's no improvement at all.




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