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Taking a Whack Against Comcast
Washington Post ^ | October 18, 2007 | Neely Tucker

Posted on 10/18/2007 5:56:35 AM PDT by 3AngelaD

...Fear not, fellow Americans! In these dark days of war, pestilence and Paris Hilton, a new hero has arisen. She is none other than 75-year-old Mona "The Hammer" Shaw, who took the aforementioned implement to her local Comcast office in Manassas to settle a score, and boy, did she!

This was after the company had scheduled installation of its much ballyhooed "Triple Play" service, which combines phone, cable and Internet services, in Shaw's brick home in nearby Bristow. But Shaw said they failed to show up on the appointed day, Monday, Aug. 13. They came two days later but left with the job half done. On Friday morning, they cut off all service.

This was the company that has had consumer service problems serious enough to prompt the trade magazine Advertising Age to editorialize that Comcast and other cable providers should spend less on advertising and more on customer service. And has spawned a blog called ComcastMustDie.com...

So Mona Shaw and her husband, Don, went to the local call center office to complain...according to Shaw: Mona demands to speak to a manager. A customer service representative says someone will be right with them. Directs them to a bench, outside. (Remember, it's mid-August.) Mona and Don sit.

Tick, tick, tick, goes the clock. Sit, sit, sit, go Mona and Don. For. Two. Hours.

And then...the customer rep leans out the door and says the manager has left for the day. Thanks for coming!...The insulting idea that, as Shaw puts it, "they thought just because we're old enough to get Social Security that we lack both brains and backbone."

So, after stewing over it all weekend, on the following Monday, she went downstairs, got Don's claw hammer and said: "C'mon, honey, we're going to Comcast."...Hammer time...

(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society
KEYWORDS: comcast; customerservice; rage
This is so deeply satisfying on so many levels.
1 posted on 10/18/2007 5:56:37 AM PDT by 3AngelaD
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To: 3AngelaD
Every 4 months or so, Comcast will drop channels from my package in its plan to force everyone onto digital cable.

I DON’T WANT DIGITAL CABLE!

I have 5 TVs in my house and I would need 5 cable boxes with digital, and 5 additional remote controls. And it would mess up my Tivo.

If I have to go to a cable box, it won’t be with Comcast. I will go to the Dish or something else.

2 posted on 10/18/2007 6:00:57 AM PDT by Captain Jack Aubrey (There's not a moment to lose.)
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To: 3AngelaD
And there is nothing, nothing you can do.

Yes, there is. Cancel the f#%&ing cable, shut down the f#%&ing internet, and get a f#%&ing life.

It may come a shock to some people, but the phrase "entertainment needs" (which I've heard in advertisements, BTW) is an oxymoron.

3 posted on 10/18/2007 6:01:36 AM PDT by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: 3AngelaD

Especially since she is a peace-loving Unitarian.


4 posted on 10/18/2007 6:01:42 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: Corin Stormhands

Heh.


5 posted on 10/18/2007 6:02:48 AM PDT by Lil'freeper (Don't taze me, bro!)
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To: 3AngelaD

I understand that these people were frustrated but being a person who sat on the other end of the Customer Service line, equally frustrated that I couldn’t help the crying lady on the other end, I find no satisfaction with this.

The poor little blonde that had her keyboard smashed did not cause her problem. All I can think of is what my own sweet daughter would be going through, if she were that blonde.

I pray that people will not go off this way.


6 posted on 10/18/2007 6:03:19 AM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time .)
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To: 3AngelaD

Anyone with Comcast 3-Ply willing to share their impressions? Positive or negative, it doesn’t matter. I’m in NW Chicago.


7 posted on 10/18/2007 6:03:22 AM PDT by 1rudeboy
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To: 3AngelaD
MOM!


8 posted on 10/18/2007 6:04:13 AM PDT by Drango (A liberal's compassion is limited only by the size of someone else's wallet.)
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To: Drango
Shaw received a three-month suspended sentence for disorderly conduct, a $345 fine in restitution and a year-long restraining order barring her from the Comcast office.

I sense a fund drive to pay the $345 fine.

9 posted on 10/18/2007 6:06:31 AM PDT by Drango (A liberal's compassion is limited only by the size of someone else's wallet.)
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To: Alberta's Child
Amen!

We have Directv and are thinking of ditching that.
A friend of mine has three kids and does Netflix with NO cable. They love it and it costs them less than their old cable bill.

We need to take charge, not terrorize people who have nothing to do with the problem.

10 posted on 10/18/2007 6:07:03 AM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time .)
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To: Captain Jack Aubrey

....... Comcast will drop channels from my package.....

Which is to say....Comcast is stealing cable.

I thought they prosecuted cable thieves?


11 posted on 10/18/2007 6:08:02 AM PDT by bert (K.E. N.P. +12 . Moveon is not us...... Moveon is the enemy)
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To: AppyPappy

And secretary of the local AARP coven.


12 posted on 10/18/2007 6:08:24 AM PDT by Wage Slave (Good fences make good neighbors. -- Robert Frost)
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To: 1rudeboy
Cable...no problems.
Internet...no problems.

When we tried to add their phone service, it blew out everything, and took forever to fix. Cable went out. internet was down for hours at a time, every day, and the phones rarely worked.

We went back to regular Verizon for the phones, and just have ComBastards for internet and cable. As soon as the FIOS service breaks the monopoloy ComCast has in our borough, we're switching over.

13 posted on 10/18/2007 6:08:47 AM PDT by Malacoda (A day without a pi$$ed-off muslim is like a day without sunshine.)
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To: 3AngelaD
I've had nothing but good experiences with Comcast's customer service. In fact, in one instance it was beyond excellent.

It was after I installed a wireless network and shortly after I hooked it up to my new Computer. All lights were Green (good to go) but couldn't get a network connection. But Ping worked, tracert worked but I couldn't get a website (any - FR, Drudge, etc). The guy spent a 1/2 hour trying to help.

About an hour later - wham - I get a network connection again as my desktop weather started working. Must have been a Gremlin. It was the darnedest thing.

14 posted on 10/18/2007 6:11:14 AM PDT by Condor51 (Rudy makes John Kerry look like a Right Wing 'Gun Nut' Extremist)
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To: Alberta's Child
Yes, there is. Cancel the f#%&ing cable, shut down the f#%&ing internet, and get a f#%&ing life.

And give up Freeping? I don't know if life would be worth living without that.

15 posted on 10/18/2007 6:11:27 AM PDT by Non-Sequitur (Save Fredericksburg. Support CVBT.)
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To: All
The lady only got one thing wrong. They didn't treat her that way because she's old; they treated her that way because she's a customer.

I've seen kids at fast food joints handle irate customers with more skill than 99% of the customer dis-service departments I deal with. What is it about "customer service" that is so hard to get?

16 posted on 10/18/2007 6:11:51 AM PDT by Proud_texan (Just my opinion, no relationship to reality is expressed or implied.)
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To: Non-Sequitur

Right. It would be tough, but sometimes we gotta make do without. LOL.


17 posted on 10/18/2007 6:16:22 AM PDT by Alberta's Child (I'm out on the outskirts of nowhere . . . with ghosts on my trail, chasing me there.)
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To: Condor51

http://www.potomacnews.com/servlet/Satellite?pagename=WPN/MGArticle/WPN_BasicArticle&c=MGArticle&cid=1173353015622
(older story)

~ snip...Shaw’s problems began when she and her husband, Don, waited all day Aug. 13 for a Comcast worker to come to their house to install its much-publicized Triple Play service, which includes digital cable, digital voice and high-speed Internet service. The Shaws were Comcast customers already but wanted to upgrade.

No one came Aug. 13 but two days later, a representative arrived.

According to Shaw, the Comcast worker didn’t finish the job, told her that he needed a third party to finish it and left his equipment there.

Before leaving, the cable guy gave her the option of changing her phone number, but Shaw said she didn’t want to change a number that she has had for 34 years.

The next day the Shaws couldn’t receive calls but were eventually able to make calls.

That Friday, Shaw spent the morning on the phone with Comcast and made a frustrating trip to its Manassas office that resulted in no assistance from a company manager, she said.

When the Shaws returned home, they discovered they had no phone service at all.

A cell phone call to Comcast resulted in their receiving a new number and a promise that someone from the company would call on Monday. In the meantime, the Shaws figured out on their own how to plug their phone directly into the equipment the worker left.

That weekend, Shaw called the State Corporation Commission, the regulatory agency with authority over Virginia businesses. She says she spoke with the SCC’s Larry Kubrock and was promised that someone from his agency would contact Comcast.

The Shaws waited Monday for a call. Finally, around 4:30 p.m., Mona Shaw put a hammer in her purse and returned to the Manassas Comcast office.

“I smashed a keyboard, knocked over a monitor ... and I went to hit the telephone,” Mona said. “I figured, ‘Hey my telephone is screwed up, so is yours.’ “

Shaw said she was panic-stricken the previous Friday when they came home to no service because of her need in the past for emergency medical help. Their house on Bristow Road isn’t close to a neighboring house.

“It’s totally not like me to do stuff like this,” she said. “But it is so irresponsible and so disrespectful [what they did]. I can’t think of any company reacting that way. It’s like they got you in their clutches and they’ll do what they damn well please.”

The day after her arrest, Comcast called her husband and said they could switch her to the Triple Play service but the couple would have to wait a week. He demanded that the company come out the next day and remove their equipment and told the company they were returning to Verizon for phone service.

Comcast did as her husband requested, but several weeks later the Shaws received a letter from the company thanking them for subscribing.

That was typical Comcast, Shaw said.

“They are so confused, they don’t seem to know what the hell they’re doing. You begin to wonder how well they are trained,” she said.

In a public statement, Comcast said it holds all its employees, whether they are in-house or contracted, to the same standards and expects them to provide quality service.

Mona Shaw’s disorderly conduct case will be heard in Prince William District Court in December.


18 posted on 10/18/2007 6:17:32 AM PDT by Drango (A liberal's compassion is limited only by the size of someone else's wallet.)
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To: 1rudeboy

Have the 3-play here in MD...First try, everything works..got phone service free as being new customer, once offer expires will be removing phone....who needs it, with cheap cell service...


19 posted on 10/18/2007 6:19:27 AM PDT by dakine
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To: Captain Jack Aubrey
I will go to the Dish or something else.

If you do get soemthing like Dish TV, you will need a box for each two sets. We needed six tv hookups. Well, fun time. You cannot lease a third box. You must buy it and/or get a 2nd satellite dish. If you attempt to get some understanding on this from Dish TV's customer service... be prepared to speak to someone in Manila (a long way to bring a hammer).

However, on Dish TV the programming is excellent. We have the "Everything Package." I've never been more pleased with a service. It's much better and less expensive than dealing with the cable bastards.

20 posted on 10/18/2007 6:21:49 AM PDT by Types_with_Fist (I'm on FReep so often that when I read an article at another site I scroll down for the comments.)
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To: Condor51

I’ve had nothing but good from Comcast. Oh, there was one installer who couldn’t get it right, but my husband redid the wiring, and everything works 99.8 percent of the time. There are occasional outages, but when I call, they take care of it right away.


21 posted on 10/18/2007 6:24:00 AM PDT by vharlow (http://www.vventures.net)
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To: dakine

we have Verizon DSL which is superb. We have Comcast cable which never gives us trouble. I think we have a Verizon landline. And I don’t own a cell phone. If Verizon had cable, I’d probably switch


22 posted on 10/18/2007 6:24:25 AM PDT by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: 3AngelaD

We dumped Comcast and went with Qwest. Our service included better offerings and $145/month instead of $225. I’m sure Qwest will screw that up and we will have to switch again to something else.


23 posted on 10/18/2007 6:24:43 AM PDT by CodeToad
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To: 3AngelaD

This woman was interviewed on our local radio. After hearing her describe her attempts to get Comcast to respond to her requests, I think I would have done the same thing.

Comcast acts like this because there isn’t much competition to force them to treat their customers better.

Stories like this one are why I won’t get their combo packages.


24 posted on 10/18/2007 6:26:14 AM PDT by iceskater (Everyone has the right to be stupid....some people just abuse the priviledge)
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To: netmilsmom

Was the poor little blonde that had her keyboard smashed the one who had Mona and her husband sit outside in the August heat for three hours, only to be told the manager had left for the day? If so, it was earned trauma. You obviously haven’t had to deal with Comcast lately, or you, too, would be polishing up your hammer. I subscribed to their TiVo service. It took three tries for them to get me a TiVo box that actually worked. Each try necessitated me taking half a day off work and sitting for hours waiting for their mental deficient to come install the box. When the third guy left, he took the remote, and it took me a week to get it back. On another occasion, several years ago, I was having problems with my digital service and they sent two different technicians who were not trained in digital service. I will not go into my billing difficulties with Comcast because it would take too long, and I don’t want to relive those nightmares.


25 posted on 10/18/2007 6:27:14 AM PDT by 3AngelaD (They screwed up their own countries so bad they had to leave, and now they're here screwing up ours)
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To: CodeToad
I’m sure Qwest will screw that up and we will have to switch again to something else.

I think that's actually in their mission statement on their web site...:-)

26 posted on 10/18/2007 6:27:40 AM PDT by Types_with_Fist (I'm on FReep so often that when I read an article at another site I scroll down for the comments.)
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To: 1rudeboy
Anyone with Comcast 3-Ply willing to share their impressions? Positive or negative, it doesn’t matter. I’m in NW Chicago.

Howdy neighbor. (I'm in the SW Chicago suburbs)

Oddly enough...I was not had ANY problems with service or support from Comcast. In fact, I was quite impressed with the knowledge of the guy on the other end of the phone when I had a minor issue with their internet service.

27 posted on 10/18/2007 6:29:26 AM PDT by BureaucratusMaximus (Our national sovereignty and cohesion as a country is not for sale at any price.)
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To: Captain Jack Aubrey
I feel your Pain... COMCRAP has a strangle hold monopoly in my area. Verizon is making noises of coming into the area. If they do decide to make it down here I am dumping comcrap like a bad case of beer. I detest comcast as a company, they suck at customer service they raise their costs every year and provide no additional content and try to force their crap down your throat. I’ll pass. If I have to pay for a t1 into my house I will before I pay them for digital crap I have no need of. The ONLY reason I have them is because of the internet connection. I am currently looking into ways to get rid of them.
28 posted on 10/18/2007 6:29:30 AM PDT by SouthernBoyupNorth ("For my wings are made of Tungsten, my flesh of glass and steel..........")
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To: Condor51

I second that. On the odd occasion I call Comcast about internet problems, they are nothing but professional and helpful. For example, I called about a month ago when some contractors digging a ditch down the street cut through Comcast’s fiber. A Comcast truck showed up about 15 minutes after I called and had it fixed an hour later.

By the way, my wife’s computer had the same problem as yours (pings worked, email worked, browsing did not, DNS flush didn’t help). Rebooting corrected it but only for a day or so. It turned out to be a buggy, outdated driver for the Ethernet card. After I updated the driver with the latest from the mfr’s website, the problem went away for good.


29 posted on 10/18/2007 6:30:07 AM PDT by CountryBumpkin (Paying the taxes that illegal aliens won't pay)
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To: 3AngelaD
Comcast! When we moved from PA, Comcast decided we hadn't returned our computer modem to them. I explained that we purchased the modem over the internet and didn't lease it from them, ever. A year later we got a demand letter for the $100 modem. I spent months calling and writing to explain to them this was OUR modem, not theirs.

Finally a human with an IQ over 70 checked into the situation and realized our serial number was not one of theirs (I guess) - Of course this took about 8 months. I was not going to have my credit rating marred for a $100 claim but it still was a B$3th to clear up with them!

30 posted on 10/18/2007 6:30:21 AM PDT by WhyisaTexasgirlinPA (Guns up Red Raiders!)
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To: Drango
Ahh, the Comcast Phone service. I seem to recall this or another horror story about phone number screw ups.

Personally I'd never get their (or anyone's) main phone service. When it comes to utilities I'm a Luddite. Ma Bell is for phones - period.

31 posted on 10/18/2007 6:31:45 AM PDT by Condor51 (Rudy makes John Kerry look like a Right Wing 'Gun Nut' Extremist)
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To: 3AngelaD

Do you think that this was the blonde’s decision? That she intentionally told them to sit in an uncomfortable place? That she held the manager so he didn’t go out?

Been there, done that, gotten the hell from customers. She didn’t deserve the woman’s rage.

And this is part of the problem we have. The extreme is cheered. They chose to sit there too, I would have stood at the desk and actually have done this from time to time. Bring a folding chair and make a place. That works.

I don’t care what poor customer service these people got. Get a sign and protest outside on the sidewalk, start a letter writing campaign. Violence should NEVER be cheered. Personally, I’d medicate the old lady.

If you don’t want to go through the problems again, move on to Directv and let them go. Don’t give them your money and complain.


32 posted on 10/18/2007 6:47:57 AM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time .)
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To: WhyisaTexasgirlinPA

I almost experience panic attacks at the thought of having to call comcast! It does not stop at the door of Comcast though—call ATT and see what happens. And, oh if you have a problem with a modem for your internet service and have to call the modem manufacturer! This past spring I called the local gas company about my bill. It was a little higher than normal and I requested a reading of the meter. This was a Tuesday. On Wednesday the technician was supposed to read the meter and on Thursday I was going to call back the Gas provider(DTE) to get the update on the meter. I was too busy to call Thursday—so on Friday morning at 6 am my house was a little cold and I went to turn the furnace on. It would not work—blower on but no heat! I laughingly wondered, “did they shut my gas off?” Well I called DTE to check on the status of my account and the person told me, “you are okay, your account is fine.”
Then I called the furnace guy—he came at noon and checked everything out. He stepped outside and came back in and told me my gas was shut off and capped off at the meter! I paid the man $60 for the call. It took me one month and several phone calls, but I got my $60 bucks back!


33 posted on 10/18/2007 6:59:41 AM PDT by truthingod
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To: netmilsmom

True-violence is not an option. Yet, my sister was told by a customer service rep at GE appliances “I don’t care if the front of your dishwasher falls off, we are not going to do anything more for you.” How would you like that? What do you do? Boycott—that’s the ticket!


34 posted on 10/18/2007 7:06:31 AM PDT by truthingod
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To: iceskater
Comcast acts like this because there isn’t much competition to force them to treat their customers better.

That, of course, is the problem in a nutshell.

35 posted on 10/18/2007 7:07:07 AM PDT by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: truthingod

If someone told me that they didn’t care about it, I would call back and get a different rep. Did she get the rep’s name? I have gotten a name, called back, then gotten a different rep and reported it to the supervisor.

This happenened this week to me with my internet service. We had a 48 hour outage where I was told that the internet in MI was down. HA! Talked to one dimwit, wrote his name down and called back. I got an ETA on the service by telling them about it and service was back within an hour.

Those who have never been in the middle of these situations have no clue what the CS people are going through. You go to the bosses and ask them what you are suppose to say and get some glib answer, THEN have to deal with the customers.

The blonde didn’t cause the problem nor did she do anything more than her supervisor told her. She didn’t deserve some raving senior with a hammer.


36 posted on 10/18/2007 7:25:30 AM PDT by netmilsmom (To attack one section of Christianity in this day and age, is to waste time .)
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To: netmilsmom

Actually, this has gone on for months—the response from the rep was the “final answer”. You are correct, customer service can only provide what they are told—but it does reflect on the company for lack of options that take care of customers.


37 posted on 10/18/2007 7:51:35 AM PDT by truthingod
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To: 3AngelaD
Comcast has increased their fees in the last five years by 100% for basic cable. When Comcast installed the cable, they didn’t use or bury the correct cable and it failed in two years. Second time they cut another ditch to the house and buried another cable....wrong type again and failed in one year. Third time they had to cut another cable line and bury it perpendicular to the house and didn’t bury and couple the connections correctly and the cable fails when it rains. They have ruined my large yard three times and failed to supply the correct cable three times. Their service sucks and it they incrementally increase the costs often...and wonder why I am not happy with them....
38 posted on 10/18/2007 8:04:16 AM PDT by vetvetdoug
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To: CountryBumpkin

I wish I could get rid of DirectTV and internet service. We live in an area that will not support Verizon because of the outdated lines. Cable refuses to bring service to any street with only a few homes. We are stuck for now with overpriced DirectTV. They make you get channels you don’t even want or use in order to get a few you do like. I wish congress would make them stop making us purchase garbage channels


39 posted on 10/18/2007 8:10:43 AM PDT by oldironsides
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To: 3AngelaD

If I was on a jury and I heard this, I wouldn’t convict. I’d give her a medal instead.


40 posted on 10/18/2007 11:15:56 AM PDT by burzum (None shall see me, though my battlecry may give me away -Minsc)
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To: truthingod
I hear ya! We were going to go with Time Warner for phone/internet/cable. They missed the first appointment, missed the second so I cancelled. Since we were going to keep our phone number, they cut off my phone.

I asked why since no one ever showed up at my home to change it over, they said the number belonged to them and it would take 10 days to get it back to our previous provider.

I said I wasn't that attached to the number - so they hooked up back up with a new number.

You don't want to hear the nightmares of our modem phone calls. The last one could barely speak English and I was at the point of screaming when the new modem finally worked.

At least we weren't cold - that had to be infuriating for your family!

41 posted on 10/18/2007 1:04:28 PM PDT by WhyisaTexasgirlinPA (Guns up Red Raiders!)
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