Warning: listening to this phone call may make you want to throw your Comcast modem through the front window of your local Comcast service center.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/158720628″ params=”color=ff5500&auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false” width=”100%” height=”166″ iframe=”true” /]
This tracks pretty closely with my own experience. It took me over six months and multiple phone calls and transfer/disconnection requests to get Comcast to stop charging me for my business Internet connection after I moved out of my office.
Cable companies, perhaps more than any other product providers love to entice new subscribers with new packages at low rates. Existing customers tend to get nothing—other than frustrated.
Maybe that has changed.
I use Comcast—for cable ($60/month) and internet service ($45/month). I saw a recent promo for cable and internet for $69.99 for 6 months, called and asked about it, and was told “only for new customers.”
So I called back, talking to someone else. He tried to sell me phone service, which I didn’t want. I told him I would like to save some money. He offered to downgrade my internet to 1MPS/second (slow as crap) which would save me $17 a month.
Undeterred, I told him the promotional price would save me more than that, and perhaps I just need to cancel my cable service to save more money—because I needed to cut my household costs. I was then transferred to a specialist.
Net neutrality is the idea central to the Internet that no content provider should have priority over any other. Consumers pay for the pipeline, which gives access to all the content on the web. There are no back roads online, just one, big, wide, information superhighway.
Some internet service providers—the telecommunications industry, mainly—want to relegate most websites to the back roads while a few, well-funded content providers get the best connections. Just like cable, you would get “basic” access to just a few, “premium” websites, and you would have to pay extra for access to things like Wikipedia, Consumerist, Google, and the thousands of blogs, forums, free email providers, and other websites that make the Internet such a rich place.
Some ISPs have already started. Comcast was recently sanctioned by the FCC for throttling BitTorrent traffic, and Virgin Media’s CEO has called net neutrality “a load of bollocks,” saying he is already making deals to deliver some content faster.
McCain says he wants to leave net neutrality to the market. Which is a nice thing to say. But despite the market, the telecoms’ stated intention is to choke the internet to death.
As a Comcast customer experiencing serious bandwidth throttling on my home and business connections, I am thrilled with this news. FCC Votes To Punish Comcast | /.
According to Consumerist, Comcast is now making it easy for customers to opt out of mandatory binding arbitration. This is great news, and a consumer-friendly move from Comcast, which lately is best known for throttling its customers’ bandwidth.
I am a Comcast customer (somewhat by necessity), and completed the online form in roughly five seconds. Click here to take back your right to a judge and jury.