Friday, November 19, 2010

The Worst Company in the World

Yes, I am still alive!  Thank you for your concerned emails!

It has been almost NINE days since my last post.  That is a no-post duration record here at the Carrot and an explanation is surely in order right?

Well sit back and relax because it has been almost 9 days since I have vented on my little slice of the interweb and I am in full RANT mode!!! (and yes, I am poking fun at Keith Obermann in the header).

We returned home from San Antonio RnR Marathon on Monday (will tell you all about it later) and we had a box from Comcast (aka: Worst Company in the World or WCITW) on the front porch.  The accompanying letter in the box explained that this was a new modem to replace the outdated modem that was currently being used.  Sweet!  Is what I first thought.  This was very un-Comcast-like because they are by far the least proactive company ever (this is not an exaggeration).

After work that evening I followed the instructions and promptly received an error message that said I needed to contact Comcast Customer Service.  Now this is the Comcast I am familiar with!! Game on!! Oh,  I  like to refer to Comcast Customer Service as: The Precipice to Hell.

Now I proceed to enter The Precipice to Hell of the Worst Company in the World.  As you have probably already keenly sensed, much like Spiderman,  this did not go well.

After 25 minutes of hearing that I should continue to hold because my call is very important I finally get to speak to an actual human being.  We spend another 15 minutes actually verifying that I am in fact Jeff Irvin and not someone trying to impersonate Jeff Irvin.  Seriously, my bank has far less security than Comcast?  Must be a huge ring of cable modem account thieves out there.

So I begin to describe my problem to the young lady on the other line:

Jeff:  "I received a new cable modem from you today, followed the instructions, and an error message popped up on my computer screen saying, I needed to contact you."

Hell's Minion #1:  "Are you by the cable modem right now?"

J:  "Yes, and please tell me you have something more substantial then unplugging it for 10 seconds and then plug it back in?"

HM#1:  "Well, have you already tried that?"

J:  "Yes, many times.  So lets just skip that step and move to the one that is going to allow me to have actual internet service."

HM#1:  "Sir, can you please hold?"

Ok, now I am once again on hold.  Must have really threw them a loop with my advanced cable modem problem solving skills and crazy ability to operate a plug.  At this point she comes back on the line and says she is going to escalate my call to someone else.  I do not argue with her as this seems to be a good idea to me as well.  After another 5 or so minutes I get to talk to Hell's Minion #2 and my mood is becoming even more sour with each passing minute:

HM#2:  "Hello Mr. Irvin, can you please give me your phone number or account number so I can verify your account?"

J:  "No, I have been through that with the last girl.  I know you have the information right in front you because you called me by my last name.  You have already wasted enough of my time now tell me how to make the internet appear on my computer."

HM#2:  "um....sir is your account number ********?"

J:  *Deep Sigh* "Yes"

HM#2:  "Sir, why did you request a new cable modem?"

J:  "I did not request one (my voice is getting louder)! You sent me one because you said my old one was outdated? .... The old one was working fine and as I was waiting on hold I tried to hook the old one up again and it is no longer working either."

HM#2:  "Sir, I am not showing that you have a new cable modem can you read me the Mac number on the back?

J:  "******"

HM#2:  "Please hold sir"

At this point my wife and dogs are able to sense the rage coming from my office.  They all wisely avoid that section of the house.  After about 10 mins on hold HM#2 comes back and says, "Sir, it appears the modem was never commissioned to you and we now need to do that.  It should only take a moment.  Will you please hold?"

J:  "Wait, wait, what the hell does that even mean?  Does that mean you idiots never turned it on?"

HM#2:  "Yes"

J:  "Wonderful, just go do what you need to do."

I'm cutting out a lot of the inane dialog to spare you the painful details and partially because it was all so stupid that I  have tried to strike it from my memory. Now At this point I am a good 1.5 hours into this call and Comcast basically told me that it was not activated before they sent it to me?  I am seething at this point.

HM#2:  "Sir, I am unable to reset the modem and it is not registering here.  All of you light are on so this is highly irregular ..." *I interrupt*

J:  "... Listen, I understand you are doing everything possible and it is clear we have reached your level of expertise.  I do not say this to be mean but rather because it is true.  Now if you tell me that you need to send a technician out to my house I am going to tell you that is unacceptable.  So lets skip all the bullshit and let me talk to the best tech you have in whatever call center you are in ... okay?"

HM#2:  Ummm? Sir, um, please hold."

30 seconds later ....

HM#3:  "Hello Mr. Irvin.  My name is James, lets see if we can figure this out for you?

J:  "James, if you ask me to verify my account information my head might literally explode."

HM#3:  "No sir, we are good let's figure this out."

At the time James seemed very competent.  I was actually wondering out loud to James how such a competent person could work for Comcast?  James did not try to dissuade my line of thinking and I actually  had a glimmer of hope that the World Wide Web was once again going to flowing freely in my home in no time at all!  James was the Ice Man and he was going to solve my problem.  Right up until the point when James said,   "Sir, we really need to send a technician out to your house."

Since this is a PG-13 Blog my reply to James cannot be posted, but by this point you probably know how it went (-:

Three hours, zero results.  Comcast is the Worst Company in the World.

Soooo .... best part of the story.  I take every thing apart again at 7am this morning (3 days later) and the modem miraculously begins to work?  Just starts pumping out the internet?  No rhyme, no reason?

And yes, I did call to cancel the technician.

Suck it Comcast, Suck IT.

To answer some questions before they are asked:

-Comcast is the only option for cable service in my neighborhood.  I'd love Fios or Uverse - we have over 100,000 people who live in my area and yet we cannot receive these awesome services?  I would leave Comcast in a heartbeat if another option was available.

- Yes, I do have a 4G aircard but when I am at home it only receives 3G service.  Which is slow.  I cannot blog at 3G speeds, just ain't happening.  I am dedicated to the Carrot, just not THAT dedicated.

- Yes, I have heard the expression that, "You catch more flies with honey than vinegar!" In the case of Comcast it does not matter if you are nice or not.  The only way I am able to communicate with them is through large doses of sarcasm.  If you have ever dealt with those asshats you'd understand.

- If Comcast is the Worst company in the world who is the runner up?  Glad you asked!  Here is my list of the Top 3 Worst Companies in the World:
#1: Comcast
#2: Sprint
#3:  DirecTV

Thanks for Reading,


Ps - that drained me.  I will get to the San Antonio RnR Weekend on Sunday.  Annie did awesome and set a PR in the 1/2 Marathon by over 7 minutes.  


  1. I don't think I've ever laughed so hard in my whole life!! I have no doubt this whole thing is true, because we dealt with Comcast for years before there was FINALLY another option in our area.
    I can't decide which phrase I like better: "Hell's Minion" or "asshats." I'm still laughing just typing them.
    Can't wait to hear about RnR San Antonio - you've been missed!!

  2. Haven't you seen the sign at the Comcast Call Center?

    "Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'intrate", or "Abandon all hope, ye who enter here"

    It sucks Worstcast is your only option. We ditched them as soon as Uverse was available and haven't looked back.

    That is BS about activating the modem. They don't need to activate shit before they send you a modem. You could, if you wanted, go to Worst Buy and buy a cable modem and give the MAC address to Worstcast and be all set. I've done it myself multiple times.

    There's the problem... "******" isn't a valid MAC address. :) haha

    Oh, and the phrase "You catch more flies with honey than vinegar!" You can catch even more flies with bull shit so that kills that idiom.

    Glad you are back up and running!

  3. THIS is AWESOME! 5 minutes after this post I get this email:

    ComcastMelissa (@ComcastMelissa) is now following your tweets (@JeffIrvin) on Twitter.

    Welcome ComcastMelissa, plenty of room at the Hotel California, such a lovely place ...

  4. Nice work Annie on the PR!!!!
    looking forward to hearing about it

    and rolling while reading your interaction with CCast - very familiar...I need to take that same approach next time with them


  5. I'm frustrated for you!!! Hopefully it keeps working and you don't have to bother with them for a long time!

    Congrats to Annie! :)

  6. Cablevision _HAS_ to make the top 3 or the list is wrong. Once I was offered a high paying spot at Cablevision and refused to even meet them for an interview since they are so evil.

    Realize in addition to ruining the internet, Cablevision is ruining pro hockey and pro basketball here too.

  7. Ha ha. Sorry to laugh at you expense. I hate Comcast, but this is a funny story! Well done, it would have been sad to see your head explode! Have a great weekend (surfing the Internet!)

  8. Nice story...LOL! Sorry it went so badly! I've been there!

  9. Great story. I feel your pain. I'd add AOL to your list of horrible customer service companies. I used to have tons of problems and each time I'd call they'd try cross selling me all kinds of services. If you don't go for it then they bump you to the next sales associate to start all over on the same sales script.

  10. classic dude. just classic. do you mind if I have a go at filling 4-10?

  11. We had a similar experience, one day the internet was locked, said no access and to contact Comcast. We called and they said we hadn't paid in 3 months. We told them that we paid online automatically and they told us that was a problem, since they had changed their banking info and those payments had not been reaching them. Hadn't we seen that info on their website? :) Oh yeah, Comcast is my homepage and I read every bit of minutiae they post. What a bunch of yahoos. They are a monopoly on our neighboorhood as well.

  12. I *LOVE* legal monopolies? *end sarcasm mode*

    Congrats to your wife!

  13. Being a tri (IM) blog, you probably picked up 100 new followers thinking your post title was referring to WTC.... since they seem to be SO loved in blogland.

    Lot's of relief down at Rocky Point Dr. here in Tampa right now...

  14. Congrat's to Annie!!!!

    I think Verizon might give Comcast a run for title of Worst Company in the World. Their customer service is horrible, I was close to tears on my last call to them.

  15. hmmm I remember leaving a comment here yesterday congratulating Annie. Probably didn't go through. =/

    Anyway, kindly read my blog post yesterday. I am shamelessly plugging it to all my blog buddies coz I don't want anyone to miss it. Kindly read and you'll understand why =)

  16. Everyone has experiences like this, including all those other people the Comcast representatives were working with at the same time as your call. I hope you weren't as rude as you state in your blog. There really are more important things to get upset over. If you'd rather talk to a call center in India, I imagine that could be arranged...Oh well, that's just my two cents. And I do not work for Comcast. I do like your postings but this was too much of a rant.

  17. I think i broke my record of no blogging too...2 weeks and 2 days and it bothered the hell out of me. Anyway, about Comcast, i think you should move to an area that offers fios. Easy enough! Great job to Annie for doing so well at the half mary!!

  18. Congrats to Annie! Welcome back to the blog world BTW, my only option is DirecTV, and I have had luck with them. For the most part anyway.

  19. Congrats to Annie

    We are polar opposites on alot of things, but when dealing with dumb companies, we are exactly alike, this was a great read, reminded me of myself