If you’re a Comcast customer, we’re sorry. The company has drawn the ire of many Americans over the years for its poor customer service and generally unprofessional employees. In fact, Comcast took top honors as Consumerist’s Worst Company in America for 2014 (let’s give it up for the two-time winner).
In the midst of its campaign to secure approval for an acquisition of rival Time Warner Cable, stories have popped up in recent weeks detailing how customer service reps have sunk to new lows to humiliate customers. One customer had the name on her Comcast bill changed to “Asshole Brown” after attempting to downgrade her service. Other customers have found their names changed to “whore”, “dummy”, and more recently, “Super Bitch.”
Now we’re hearing yet another story of Comcast incompetence, but there’s actually a happy ending to report. Philly.com columnist Ronnie Polaneczky tells the story of Diana and Jason Airoldi, a couple that tried relentlessly to have Comcast hook up cable service in their apartment. The couple first contacted Comcast on December 23 to have service activated, but six weeks (and 14 missed appointments) later they were still without service. The Airoldis contacted Polaneczky via email to explain their situation, and that’s where things get really interesting.
Instead of contacting Charlie Herrin, Comcast’s Senior Vice President of Customer Experience, Polaneczky decided to go over his head. But she didn’t take her complaint to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts — she went over his head by contacting his 92-year-old mom. That’s right, Roberts got ratted out to his mom; that’s gotta hurt.
Polaneczky didn’t actually get in direct contact with Roberts’ mom, but she did speak with her assistant who relayed the Airoldis’ tale of wretched Comcast service. Needless to say, less than 24 hours after Polaneczky made her first call to Mrs. Roberts, the wheels finally started turning.
"I have never seen so many Comcast trucks in front of our building!" said Diana Airoldi in a phone call to Polaneczky. "There's a couple technicians, there's a supervisor. They say they're going to fix this today! They're inside right now!"
Within three hours, their service was finally activated — more than one month after it was initially ordered. What’s even more confounding is that the apartment building that the Airoldis live in is a Comcast-only building, so this sort of incompetence shouldn’t have taken occurred in the first place.
Although we do feel that contacting the CEO’s mom is going a bit too far — there’s no need to harass a 92-year-old woman — we can’t argue with the results in this case.