aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Wednesday, February 09, 2005
I missed it
Hating the cable company. A rant.
Colloquially, there is Cox cable in Macon, and “sucks cox” cable here.
Everyone here hates the cable company, with good reason. High prices. Poor quality. Arrogant service. That’s Charter Cable, situated in a tiny little building off the Gray Highway with one puny satellite dish and an antenna to pull in the Macon broadcast stations. Reception is truly awful.
So I’m home at lunch today and the cable company calls.
“I’m calling to find out how your cable reception is and to...”
At that I interrupted.
“It’s the worst reception of any cable company I’ve ever seen.”
“Well, then, can you go to your TV and tune in channel 30.”
This, I do, thinking that maybe they are checking the signal through my $6.95 + tax monthly digital box. Turns out, “I don’t get channel 30.”
“Okay. I captured that. Now I’d like to extend an offer...”
“Wait, wait, wait. I don’t get channel 30. You ‘captured’ that? What does that mean?”
“Well, some people who are on Analog Basic are actually receiving Extended Basic. You are on Analog Basic and I can offer you a special price on extended basic...”
I wanted to !@#$%&*; instead I got off the line. Don’t call me telling me you want to “find out how the quality of my signal is” when what you’re really trying to do is find out if I’m stealing cable service and when you find out I’m not, try to sell me more service!
I recently downgraded from my $50 monthly extended service when I realized that I had 30 South Parks and a dozen Daily Shows stacked up on my TiVo. Give me a la carte pricing please. Oh, of course not, thank you very much gutless FCC for ignoring what the public wants and granting the cable co’s their every wish. Grrr.
I should point out that I worked with the cable industry for 12 years and was part of the team that negotiated the public access requirements of the New York City Time Warner Cable Franchise. Now that’s a cable system!
One last point. Charter High-Speed Internet is notoriously awful. I get DSL through Altell. The DSL is great. But Alltel? That’s a rant I’ll save for another day.
Ahhh. Now I feel better.