Comcast Fail

It’s been a tough couple of months since my last cable contract lapsed, before I moved. It was eye-opening how much TV I could watch through basic, bare-boned cable, online outlets or advance screeners.

But once I moved into my new place I knew I’d have to be hooked up, but what a mess. First, I had to wait a week for an appointment, then the first crew hooked up the wrong setbox (without the DVR I had ordered). Then the ones who installed the DVR a week later either gave me a bum box or wired it wrong to begin with.

Every time I went to record a show, and then turned it on to watch during the recording, the screen would be entirely black and silent, with an error box.

I could watch every other channel in the package – except the one I wanted to watch so much I had it recorded.

It’s off-putting to call up and try to get satisfaction. First there’s the hold music which I know by now by heart, and then when you get someone on the line (a person you’ll never talk to again), they’ll do weird things remotely, like turn your set on and off (can they see what I watch on TV too? Can they see me watching it as well?).

None of that did any good, so a third home visit was scheduled, and I got up bright and early Sunday to receive the technician. A robo call the day before reminded me of the appointment and I pressed the button that said I’d be here.

The fine print in their visit policy – a service satisfaction guarantee! – says that when they call before they come the day of the visit, if you don’t answer, they don’t come. Never mind the cell phone they called was ringing in another room and wasn’t noticed – don’t answer and don’t get a visit.

Another set of calls followed. One fiddled with the signal remotely and ended up, I had discovered after hanging up, wrecked the sound. Recording may still turn out to be unreliable, but I’m not sure I want to face that hold music again.


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