Given the cable TV industry’s notorious reputation for poor customer service, from indifferent phone operators to MIA installers, it’s no surprise that Comcast’s proposed acquisition of Time Warner Cable caused an instant consumer backlash. Members of the media were particularly virulent, especially as many journalists can’t cut the cord — they need HBO they can hatewatch “Newsroom” in real time.
The New Yorker was quick to jump into the fray, with Andy Borowitz posting a blog item in the style of a cable company’s typically-unhelpful FAQ on its website. Inquiries in the FAQ included:
Q: Will there be any adverse impact on customer service?
A: A technician will be at your home between the hours of eight and never.
Tweets were even snarkier, with journalists and comedians vying to outdo each other’s snark.
Comcast and Time Warner Cable to merge. Reached for comment, Time Warner Cable put every journalist on the planet on hold for 75 minutes.—
Matt Singer (@mattsinger) February 13, 2014
Wow, a Comcast/Time Warner merger would create a combined customer service department of well over ten employees.—
(@pourmecoffee) February 13, 2014
Time Warner and Comcast merging is like when the Joker and the Penguin would team up to try and kill Batman.—
Jon Lovett (@jonlovett) February 13, 2014
Wow, the efficiency of Comcast combined with the great customer service of Time Warner? Win-win!—
Tom Tomorrow (@tomtomorrow) February 13, 2014
Meanwhile, Business Insider’s Sam Ro had some real-life experience to share: He posted a transcript he had saved from a particularly frustrating 2010 attempt to add Showtime and HBO. “I found myself webchatting with what seemed to be an unending series of analysts who could not tell me how much it would be to add a channel,” he remembers.