Earlier this week we had the unhappy realization that we could not transfer my RCN cable account over to the new house. Turns out that while RCN provides service to most all of Somerville, our little street is apparently small enough to be one of the streets which isn't on the "most all" list. I am legitimately upset about that; I have been a satisfied RCN customer for eight years now. I hear some people don't like their television options, but I really never used it except to watch Turner Classic Movies so I didn't mind it. Their cable Internet service has been reliable and, with only a few exceptions of brief spotty service, fast and steady. Sonya used them briefly without complaint when she lived on Winter Hill; their setup was quick and service fine.
It was to my chagrin on Wednesday that I found that Comcast is the cable provider of our little street. I have yet to hear anything good about Comcast. I dislike their Internet policies, I dislike hearing about arbitrary bandwidth caps, and I admired RCN for being one of a small handful of ISPs which didn't roll over and say "Okay, DMCA guys, you can grab whatever information you want from us whenever" when asked a while back. Comcast? On its back, wagging its little paws in the air, waiting for a belly rub from The Man.
However, short of leeching someone else's wireless service, which isn't the nicest thing to do to someone else's bandwidth and we couldn't find any open access points besides, Comcast appears to be the only game in town. So it goes.
On Wednesday we called Comcast and set up service: high-speed Internet and a basic enough cable television package so that we could get TCM. We declined the DVR option; we can do that much more cheaply on our own should we wish. A technician was scheduled to come out Tuesday, and when we said we could at least set up the Internet portion ourselves, the customer rep said he could ship us out a cable modem which would arrive on Friday.
Nothing arrived today. Sonya checked her credit card and saw she had been billed and charged for Internet, Cable TV, and the DVR which we explicitly said no to. Upon calling Comcast, she learned the following Ugly Truths:
- The order for the cable modem never went from Sales to Shipping. It was never sent out. Nobody anywhere acknowledged it. The rep Sonya spoke with today said she could send an order to Shipping now, and it may come by Monday. We got an order number for this; we never received an order number from the guy on Wednesday.
- No technician was ever scheduled to come out Tuesday, and the earliest another one can come out now is November. This may be because Comcast thought "well, they're getting the stuff shipped to 'em, we don't need to send anyone out", which brings us back to #1.
- There was indeed a charge for the DVR, but the rep today said she took it off our service. A refund is supposed to be forthcoming, but there's still been a charge.
However, the second rep did a lot today in an attempt to make good; time will tell if what she did works. I'm really expecting to get the package on Monday only to find, surprise, the service was never switched on at the house. Neither Sonya nor I can afford major lapses in Internet service right now. We have contingency plans, places to go in order to do our work and our communicating which is very helpful, but goddammit I'd really like us to have the damn service at home.
ALSO RCN WHY YOU NO LIKE OUR STREET IS NICE STREET IS SMALL STREET YOU COME OVER BRING SERVICE TO OUR STREET WE WILL PAY YOU MONEY EVERY SINGLE MONTH YES PLEASE