To: Doug ________
From: Edward Champion
Re: Lies, Incompetence & Rudeness
Never in my history of dealing with telecommunications companies have I lost more man hours, borne such a burden for your company’s failure to communicate and organize action among its remarkably Kafkaesque branches, and experienced more outright incompetence.
Let us review the history: I ordered your Triple Play package last month. I was told that I would be given a static IP. It was under this specific condition that I ordered your service. When the technician arrived on May 30, he was hostile and threatened to leave when he saw that I did not have a television. The cable service was more or less a fringe benefit that I could do without. But that didn’t seem to matter to this technician. I had apparently committed an installation solecism. I then had to persuade him to install the phone and broadband service — in part, by calling Cablevision while he was here. Your technician bitched and moaned the entire time, particularly since the super wasn’t available in seconds to open up the basement.
He installed the service, but there was no static IP. There were at least four conversations with Optimum I had on the phone. Until I finally got in touch with you. You represented to me that through a work transfer order and through switching my service from residential to business, I would be able to obtain my static IP and keep my phone number. But that this would take two and a half weeks. I reluctantly set the appointment for the morning of June 25, 2007, where the cosmos would be aligned and all would be well.
I anticipated a technician to arrive this morning to make the change. The man, George, showed up at 5PM with a work order directing him to move my line from the fifth floor to the ground floor. After wasting twenty minutes with his dispatcher on his cell phone, he then left — without installing the static IP. When I objected, he told me, “Don’t look at me.” Well, who else should I look at? The Virgin Mary? The nearest Mister Softee truck? This man was a representative of your company. This technician then told me that I would have to call your sales department to arrange for another appointment.
I am currently suffering from laryngitis, but I called your sales department, only to strain my voice considerably in describing your screwup to three different people. The last one claimed that he could help me, only to tell me that it was “impossible” to move my number, to the new business account. This was not, of course, what you told me. Before I could describe everything that had been set down for the record, he then put me on hold and, since I was unable to talk on the phone any further, I hung up.
Let us review the email that you sent on June 8, 2007 — two and a half weeks ago:
Hello Mr Champion,
Just a correction for your reference. The new account number will actually be XX-XXXXXX-X not XX-XXXXXX-X
Sorry for the confusion.
Doug __________ previously wrote:
This is just to confirm your move transfer request for XX XXXXX St #XX 11225 to attempt to move the phone # XXX XXX XXXX from residential acct # XXXX-XXXXXX-X to dual Commerical acct # XX-XXXXXX-X. We are sending out this request as an accomodation to you as our customer to correct the type of cablevsion acct your serivces are on , which should allow you to order Static Ip in the future. Install will be reduced to $46.95
Thank you for your patience
* * *
Because your company has completely failed to solve this problem, and because your company has lied to me repeatedly, beginning with the false promise that I would have Internet service with a static IP (which again I have been without for almost a month and which has greatly inconvenienced me), and because your company has talked to me on the phone as if I was the one who screwed up, not YOUR company, I have no choice but to pursue other broadband options. At this point, I would not trust your company to perform basic arithmetic, let alone possess the decency to help an old lady cross the street. (Basic spelling and grammar likewise seems to have failed you.)
Since I am entitled to a 30 days money back guarantee, I wish to disconnect my service, effective June 29, 2007. I will return my equipment to your New Jersey address and be sure to postmark it for that date. I demand the immediate refund of the $100 that I initially paid you.
I assume, based on this history, that your company will likewise fail on this front. So here’s the deal, Doug. If I do not receive my refund within 30 days of June 29, 2007, I will have no choice but to pursue a small claims action. I trust that we can resolve this dispute amicably.
— Edward Champion
[6/28 UPDATE: Word apparently has made the rounds of my Cablevision horror story. This morning, I discovered that my service had been cut off without warning. This evening, a gentleman by the name of Bob Weisman, who claimed to be the head of the Brooklyn branch of Cablevision, called me, wanting to see if there was anything he could do to keep me as a customer and noting that he had "seen my writing." I talked with Mr. Weisman for about fifteen minutes, pointing out that I had already taken steps with a new provider who had communicated with me at all stages of the installation process. But I did go through the history of events with him. I don't know if this will have any effect upon the way that Cablevision treats its customers. But Weisman's gesture is a start. I'm only sorry that it took a public callout to get Cablevision to listen to its customers.]