There is a documentary coming up on HBO called The Nine Lives of Marion Barry* and last night I wanted to make sure it is correctly programmed into my TiVo. (Recently I recorded an HBO series on Alzheimer's in Spanish!!). But …. I found HBO had gone! (HBO is the only "fancy" cable channel we subscribe to).
What I saw on my screen was a long message, which I did not understand, about the cable card. What I did understand – it wasn't working. (nor was the Spanish version).
I checked my TiVo and found that Sunday night's True Blood was patiently waiting for me so HBO had disappeared between late Sunday and Wednesday.
I've posted negative experiences with Comcast a few times before and each time got a comment from someone apologizing on their behalf and offering to help. The first time I thought I was being scammed and sent a pm to them asking how I would verify they worked for Comcast. He provided a number and sure enough it was a Comcast office. Then the manservant found an article in the New York Times about corporations trolling the internet for blogs complaining about their services. The last time I whinged the guy left a nice comment about my tomato!
So back to last night – what to do. I decided to contact the commenter this afternoon and see if there was action behind his words - I was still skeptical. I sent an email with the exact error message. I was surprised to get a response really quickly saying that he would look into it.
I was even more surprised to get home and find a message from the local DC office with someone's direct phone number. Her message said that my communication error should be repaired and to check and let her know.
Oooh Yes! HBO is back! I called her and got her voice mail - one part of her greeting says if it is an "emergency to call (customer service #)" – I had a giggle as I imagined what constituted an emergency. I left a message saying all was repaired and thanked her. She rang back to ask if there was anything else they could do (I guess I missed this opportunity to ask for some free Showtime!). I did ask her how many people considered an emergency to be missing their favourite show. "An awful lot" she responded.
So – there you go, today I had a very positive and totally painless experience with Comcast!
Marion Barry – former Mayor of DC and now Councilman – a colourful character caught up in more than a few legal wrangles; a little embarrassing for DC but always entertaining!