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Cable and Satellite Companies You Can Do Better

by My Journey to Millions

I hate my current cable and internet provider, Cablevision / OptOnline, literally hate.  I always have hated cablevision, like most cable companies they depended on a monopoly to drive their terrible customer service and inflated prices.

Watching my parents fight with Cablevision growing up, I swore that I would never be a cablevision customer, however, when I bought my current townhouse 3 years ago I had no choice!  I don’t own the roof so satellite is out, and since the genius builders didn’t put in Verizon FIOS (the other option on Long Island) before they put down the roads I had to pay cablevision month in and month out.  During that time I have spent countless hours arguing over billing with them, and I still don’t get why everyone else in the Country gets NFL network but I don’t!

So when FIOS finally came to my neighborhood (without a contract) I was super pumped.  So, I called to see what we could do to get me away from my nemisis.  Their answer…FIOS Couldn’t Save Me Any Money.  My bill would have been the exact same amount for my services (couple boxes, HBO, DVR, etc.).

So, Cable & Satellite Companies…STEP IT UP! Cell phone companies basically give away $600 phones just to get me come over, why shouldn’t you?  Here is one idea that apparently none of your consultants came up with (but I won’t get any credit for) give me Pay Per View Credits!  So give me $200 PPV credits that have to be used within 6 months.  How much could that possibly cost you?  Here is another 1 month free after 6 months of subscription.

Sure people will try to game the system, but how many are like me and just don’t want the hassle of:

  • Waiting around so you can come between the hours of 9 and 12…
  • Switching all the boxes
  • Returning old boxes
  • Worrying about the cancelation of e-mail addresses (I have begged The Wife to stop using her ISP based email)
  • Billing Issues

Make it worth our while, and 2 months of a service that I already pay for free (HBO) isn’t enough.

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krantcents 01/28/2011 - 1:52 pm

Your title suggests they can do better, but they won’t! You will need to find an alternative like Netflix etc or give up cable TV. I am not suggesting it, because I am addicted too. Maybe start Cable Watchers Anonymous and we can stop the lunacy by entering a 12 step program.

Evan 01/31/2011 - 4:24 pm

No Chance The Wife would join! So I’d be out…sucks

Kris 01/28/2011 - 3:15 pm

The only good thing about cable companies is you can almost always complain to them and they will reduce your bill.

They know they have you where they want you. Since you don’t own the roof (as you said), your options are limited unfortunately.

Evan 01/31/2011 - 4:28 pm

You are so right. Prior to getting the FIOS lines down the current company KNEW and didn’t give a shit whenever we called.

Now things have changed!

yesiamcheap 01/28/2011 - 3:58 pm

I hate it but you’re almost forced to have cable now that the government went all digital. I was okay with my rabbit ears and no cable bill.

Evan 01/31/2011 - 4:29 pm

I know people talk about them on frugal blogs but I literally haven’t seen rabbit ears since my yia yia (grandmother in Greek) moved in with my family when I was 13

IPA 01/28/2011 - 4:04 pm

I also don’t like the monopoly cable companies. We lived for a while without cable tv and we went through some major withdrawals. Currently we have Frontier FIOS (used to be Verizon) as that is the only option where we currently live. When they built the subdivision they only ran FIOS, Comcast didn’t run their cable into the neighborhood, so we didn’t have any options. We keep going back and forth about canceling FIOS TV and just stay with internet as we stream Netflix and just about any network show is on the internet that can be streamed and even hook up the laptop to our TV. What to do….?

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:14 pm

There are those that swear by the system, system using just the internet.

Craig 01/28/2011 - 5:40 pm

We have a pretty decent FIOS plan. Our prior plan was in Queens so we weren’t on Cablevision but FIOS is cheaper than what we had. Find the best CV deal you can find and call up FIOS and see if they can match or beat it.

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:14 pm

The problem is that they matched it but to switch for a match? Just seems like a hassle

Craig 02/02/2011 - 10:21 pm

True. For us we heard from numerous neighbors that FIOS was more reliable than the other services so that was a big factor.

BeatingTheIndex 01/29/2011 - 7:01 am

Evan, don’t complain as you guys in the US have waaaaaaaaay more options than us Canadians. BE glad you don’t have to deal with our providers here, all 3 of them!

Personal Finance 4 All 01/29/2011 - 4:07 pm

LOL, It’s the same here in the UK, only a few providers offering the same rubbish service!

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:15 pm

3 in the entire Country?!

BeatingTheIndex 02/03/2011 - 6:27 am

Yessir, for instance in my province the DSL network is owned by 1 company and the cable network is owned by another. Every ISP out there is simply a reseller!

MC 01/30/2011 - 1:25 pm

Whatever happened to anti-monopolistic laws? Why are cable companies always a monopoly?

Here, I have no choice other than Comcast. They all suck!

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:15 pm

I don’t think it is a true monopoly…rather I think that companies are finding it isn’t worth it to get in the business since they would have to dig up how many hundreds of miles of streets to get the lines in.

101 Centavos 01/30/2011 - 9:04 pm

Let me open up a special can of HATE for Cox Cable. Wankers!

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:25 pm

HA! Join in the fun

Mike 01/31/2011 - 12:27 pm

Dude, that’s a great idea! I can’t believe no one has thought of using PPV credits in that way before. You’re right, changing services is such a hassle. And you have to get your wife onto gmail…that way your email is permanent no matter where you go or who you switch to.

Evan 02/02/2011 - 10:26 pm

She has gmail, has 3 of her own domains and STILL uses optonline UGH

Investor Junkie 02/04/2011 - 10:47 am

I hate, HATE HATE Cablevsion! I’ve dealt with them for many years and can’t stand their practices.
– After no notice, they sent us to collection for a box I had no idea we had to return and their cable guy (who was a contractor) just told us to keep it and take to our new location
– Their techs for the most part are subed out to contractors.
– DVR stinks to high heaven! Slow, crashes and costly.
– Costly service. One of the highest in the country. You have to pay for every little service.
– Stupid fights every few months with broadcasters and have to deal with blackouts of service.
– Overloaded network local hubs. They offer 20Mbs+ but your are lucky to get 10Mbs in popular areas (where we live now it was S L O W during peak hours)
– Poor video quality.

Verizon while not a perfect company to deal with, is light years (pun intended) over Cablevision in every aspect.

Evan 02/08/2011 - 10:08 am

Damn it you make so many good points. Inertia is preventing the move.

Elias 02/10/2011 - 11:53 am

Wow this is horrible. I know you said you don’t own your roof so satellite is out, but as a DISH customer/employee I can tell you that have made advancements in non-roof mounting…My DISH at my house goes off the railing of my balcony, and at my dad’s house he has one pole mounted in his back yard. I hate to hear about people getting stuck with a cable company they hate, because I’ve been there myself. Check out http://www.dish.com and they may be able to help you find a non-roof mounted solution. Also, their prices are much lower than what you’re paying now.

Evan 02/10/2011 - 4:01 pm

Yeah I don’t even own the backyard. As a dish employee can you tell me why the hell they haven’t invented a smaller unit yet?

They have been rocking out that same 18 inch design since I was 14 years old…I am 29!


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