Comcast / cable-card
I’m writing this after Comcast put me thru 48 hours of hell but it really started over a year ago. I am an avid football fan so I decided after over 15 years of basic cable with Comcast to get a DVR. I researched the DVR and found that it was limited in recording size by a 160 gig HD. There was no option to upgrade it internally or externally. Comcast had also made sure the customer could not offload any recordings to a computer or get a different DVR. Everything was no no no. I decided to live with it expecting Comcast to eventually allow customers to upgrade. About two weeks ago with football season approaching I decided to revisit the DVR situation. I was surprised that it was identical to last year. Comcast has disabled or blocked every possible way to get more recording space. My DVR can record only 20hrs of hd. One HD football game lasts 4 hours. I could almost fill this DVR up in one weekend of football. This was when a co-worker mentioned I should get TIVO. The more research I did the more I found the answers were yes yes yes. The TiVo was highly upgradeable in every way. There was one problem. There is a multitude of horror stories on websites such as comcastmustdie.com and others of Comcast customers who have attempted and failed to get Comcast to do one simple thing (install Comcast cable card in the TiVo box). After researching the situation and considering I hold a Masters Degree in Information Systems from Kennesaw State University I figured I could walk a Comcast csr thru the process. I knew from my research I would be better off to go to Comcast and get the m-card because every part of this process could be done over the phone. It’s a simple matter of typing some numbers in a computer (m-card pairing) and sending an initialization hit from the vinings head end. I also knew that many of the service reps sent out have no idea what they are doing. I won’t even go into the trouble I went thru to actually get the m-card from Comcast. When my TiVo arrived I followed the instructions and made sure that the latest software was installed. On Monday night July 27th I was ready to make my first of about ten calls to Comcast customer service. The csr was named Pat. I knew from the online forums what numbers she needed such as host id and data ID. She said she didn’t need all those numbers that everything would start working in about 45 minutes. Nothing happened so I went to bed and started the next morning. I didn’t get the names of every csr I talked to but I know it was at least 8 and maybe 10. The fact that the first one I talked to didn’t set up a case file proves that their entire existence is a joke to Comcast. With a case file the eighth csr I talk to will know this. Asking them a question is equal to asking the guy that bags my groceries what to do about my cable TV. Some time on Tuesday afternoon on of the CSR’s mention that she could schedule a field rep to install my cable card the next day. I was exhausted so I reluctantly agreed knowing I may be paying 17 dollars for more misery. Lamont arrived at 12 noon today in a Comcast truck. I started bombarded him with technical information about Val:V missing and the Auth:MP problem. He didn’t know what I was talking about but he assured me he would get my cable card working. I took some notes. He called someone at [protected] using my phone because his was malfunctioning. He told them he was getting an illogical equipment message from the first person (the dispatcher) he called that could not help him. He said it was job number 681052. He switched the m-card I had received from Comcast with another one. He also solved one mystery. From the second I received the m-card I was billed for digital service a/o. He said the Comcast rep had charged me for an additional stb instead. These charges were on the bill I received on Tuesday. I was able to check the conditional access screen (which he knew nothing about) and see that the Val:? had changed to Val:V but Auth:MP still displayed which needs to be Auth:S . He said I was 36th in line to receive an init hit from the vinings head end. He said I should have all my channels within an hour and he would call back to verify. He assured me that if the init hit failed he would return to fix it. Indeed some unencrypted hd channels displayed as he was leaving. I commended him and told him I would keep checking channels until he called. He gave me a receipt and took my Comcast dvr and the original m-card I had received from Comcast. That was about 5 hours ago and no call. Below I have provided every piece of information Comcast may need to correct these problems. I believe it would take a person with basic knowledge of how to use a computer and telephone about 5 to 10 minutes to fix this problem.
The grief this has caused me has made a permanent negative impression on me concerning Comcast. What is the price to pay for that? Right now my options are limited. I have invested in a TiVo dvr and a year of TiVo service and football season is coming up. My personal knowledge of technology ensures me that a time will come in the near future that I can rid myself of this Comcast. Consider this: I intended to eventually have Comcast cable, Comcast internet service and Comcast phone service. Now I intend to eventually rid my house of all traces of Comcast.
In the meantime this is what must happen in the next 24 hours. I want every single channel that I am paying for restored and an email or phone call from Comcast assuring me that I have been refunded for the erroneous charges and that I am not charged one single minute for the dvr and m-card Lamont took with him. I also will not be charged for Lamont accomplishing nothing. Make sure the $17 is removed. Considering what I have been thru I should receive a month’s credit but I can assure you at this point with the time and money this has cost me that would be an insult. You will however give me what’s mine. I will not waste my time on the phone with another Comcast csr and I would prefer that no one else from Comcast be sent to my house.
In the event that all of this does not take place at 5:00 pm eastern on Thursday July 30th 2009 I will draft a cover letter and place that and this entire email in letters to the president and ceo of Comcast and every member of the board of directors of Comcast, the FCC, the governor’s office of consumer affairs and the BBB. I also intend to post this email on comcastmustdie.com and any other websites or forum that will allow me. Next week I plan to start requesting meetings with the President, CEO and members of Comcast board of directors. These people need to hear in person what Comcast is doing to its customers.
Vincent Mark Hill
Home phone: [protected]
Comcast Account Number: [protected]
Motorola m-card Numbers
Cable Card NO: [protected]
Host ID: [protected]
Unit address: [protected]
Card S/N: MA0847CAN012
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