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Enough is Enough Already, Comcast!

Sean McDermott

Posted on January 23, 2021 11:49

5 users

As I detail my personal disgust with the only provider of high speed internet in my area, Comcast Xfinity, I discuss why ISP choices are so few in some areas.

The Internet service providers are running amok in America. The mostly cable television and internet companies that they are have us by the purse strings. They are charging us what they want and sometimes doing what they want with our service because they know internet is vital to Americans.

I, too, own a cable/internet package. I watch Netflix, check my email, and my five year old son watches Youtube and plays games. When I moved into my apartment in May, 2019, I searched far and wide for anything in my area that offered just internet (no cable, no phone) for my target affordability of $40 a month. I found nothing as such. I saw AT&T advertise internet alone, but it wasn't available in my area without Directv. I learned there isn't much competition because smaller, less expensive ISP's either merged or were bought out by larger conglomerates. Additionally, my lesser populated, rural town residence is like others that internet companies don't find the incentive building up. This left me with limited choices: the expensive Comcast Xfinity or satellite which fails in bad weather. I chose Comcast.

Since choosing Comcast's $65 "Triple Play" that includes cable, internet, phone, equipment (router/box,) and taxes, my bill has increased on three separate occasions. It now costs, as of this month, $98. My Introductory rate disappeared and two, separate "general increases in the value of services" have my bill sitting 33% higher than it was when I first subscribed. Not imagining things getting any worse, I noticed all of the local channels were unfamiliar when I went to watch the news one night. Soon I discovered without my knowledge or consent, Comcast switched each of the New York network channels I had since day one to Philadelphia network channels! As a New York person, this means I am now forced to watch unfamiliar local news and sports teams on the channels I do not wish to pay for.

I feel like this company is toying with me, and surely, I couldn't be alone. Sean Hollister at TheVerge.com had a very similar situation to mine: after hopelessly searching for cheaper, reliable ISP's (both let down by AT&T,) Comcast seemed like an only choice, gradually accrued a $100 monthly bill, and now wants change. Hollister reports that we pay double what Europe pays on average for internet. Also, in 2009, the FCC tasked companies like Comcast to create a "National Broadband Map" to depict where broadband internet was available. With their own data, they disproportionately exaggerated the number of ISP providers when in reality, 83.3 million Americans have only one broadband ISP provider.

As a fan of Bernie Sanders, often I am regarded as "wanting things for free," but I continued to pay for Comcast because satellite wasn't much cheaper. Regardless, when the features change and the price continuously rises, it gives Sanders' message more credibility because it's not only about affordable internet- it's about reigning in corporate arrogance.

Sean McDermott

Posted on January 23, 2021 11:49

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Source: KRQE 13
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