By Cory Doctorow at 6:07 pm Sun, Sep 23, 2012
Behold, a Twitter exchange between Captains Kirk and Picard bemoaning the execrable state of Time-Warner Cable and the firm's general incapacity not to be a monstrous source of life-up-fucking.
Starfleet Captains versus Time-Warner
Some Trekkies in that company could make serious powerful friends if they fix those problems
You really think there is even one real trekkie left in this company?
Instead all these greedy, hypocritical fulltime assholes.
Lots of companies have social media teams nowadays, it works like writing a letter to the company president did 30 years ago but it’s faster and it doesn’t need postage. I’ve gotten replies from some companies in less time than it took me to search Twitter and Google for their username.
To be fair, someone from TWC responded to him two minutes after his tweet ( https://twitter.com/TWCableHelp/status/246405110828253185 ), but he’d already given up.
So the moral of the story for anyone else is: ask for help *just before* you’re ready to quit, not after you’ve lost the will to live.
I second using twitter to get problems solved, It’s the only reason I keep my handle(s) around.
I third your recommendation.
Twitter acts as a genius mix of PR and customer service for big orgs, puts a lot of power in our hands.
until they get swamped with tweets, then it’s no better than the phones or email
Ah, but it is, because it’s public – and as long as it remains public it will be in their interest to deal with stuff professionally and promptly – that’s the genius of it. It’s also not really about the response time, it’s about them actually being accountable to their audience and people being aware when they do bugger all to help – something you only have anecdotes about for phone/email.
true, but they can just stop responding to tweets. Then tweets are no better than consumer complaint boards. I think twitter is/can be very effective right now. Just seems that the “elite/rich/famous” get more response, ‘tho…as always ;)
You could be right of course – but up till now my experience has been good – I’ve achieved things with twitter that wouldn’t have been possible banging my head against a wall, I mean, talking to CS on the phone.
Well, yer rich and famous, stands ta reason.
Make it so!
Ready photon torpedoes.
Not that Comcast is any better… they can’t seem to make any change in my service without screwing something else up and requiring multiple phone calls, trips to their local office, and cable guys showing up at my place to finally fix it.
I had a recent brush with Starfleet greatness…
Maybe if the cable company was called “Paramount”, these captains would be getting their way…
One of those captains already got his way with Paramount once. They had to make another movie that they originally didn’t intend to make to apologize for it, and the side of my VHS boxed-set looked funny on account of it.
The line must be drawn HERE!
Please press 4 to see if your account qualifies for drawing lines.
When you read Patrick Stewart’s tweets, be sure to imagine them with his voice, and all it’s delightful gravitas. Much funnier that way.
Are you implying that some people don’t do this? MADNESS!
Heh. Maybe Shatner?
If they can’t offer at least an acceptable level of service for these high-profile celebrities, imagine how well they’ll treat the nobodies that most of us are!
Surely you remember David Letterman, the cable company and Beastmaster.
No I don’t. But don’t feel bad. I’m Canadian. Which means, instead of having to worry about getting screwed by Time-Warner Cable, I have to worry about being screwed by Bell Canada, Rogers, Shaw, and Videotron. Which I am, due to the ridiculous and abusive data caps all the major ISPs here impose on their customers to prevent them from using services like Netflix.
yeah but Videotron sounds like an awesome robot from the eighties, so that at least must be some comfort?
It’s French. :(
♫ Les Autobots mener leur bataille pour détruire les forces maléfiques de l’Decepticons…♫
Uh, the exact same? The only way any company like this gives special treatment is if you’re opening a big commercial account.
Not to mention … The Next Generation ran its last episode on May 23, 1994. Unless I’m mathing wrong, that means there are high school graduates who were born after the show ended.
It is amazing how crappy you can treat your customers when you have a monopoly on cable service for an area and the regulator doesn’t care about consumer protection.
On the other hand, it’s nice to see that they treat everybody equally badly.
“Oh, Mr. Shatner, there’s no need to feel singled-out. We might be the only game in town, but we screw everybody!”
We’ve had one socialized service since the country was founded – roads/bridges. Sometimes I think it’s instructive to imagine what things would be like if we privatized them.
Imagine if you had to pay a monthly fee to use the road system, with large roaming fees if you left your coverage area or drove too many miles. Small country roads would be completely abandoned. The fees would rise and rise, but the monopolists would make execuses and the regulators would slowly start to represent the businesses instead of citizens themselves. Congress would deregulate the monopolist road owners because the free market knows best.
Yet we privatized the railroads, telephone service, cell phone service, internet service, and cable, and most electric service, and they all suck.
Not that we don’t need more, but there is considerably more than one socialized service in the U.S.
Yep. Police, Fire Depts, most Water & Sewage, Street Lighting, Public Radio (not so much anymore. In the name of Darwin I cast a plague of unfitness and selection against the pledge drives.), there’s plenty of socialized services in the US.
Thought I’d just enumerate some by way of agreement instead of doing a “lol’d me 2 guyzz”
Defense. Why do people keep forgetting one of the biggest socialized services provided by the federal government?
lotsa profit in defense work
That’s the reason. Profits are drawn away, losses are ALWAYS socialized.
Spoken like a jerk who doesn’t live in Boston. I would give it a coin toss as to who likes to screw the citizens more, MassDOT with their truly amazingly corrupt, expensive, and shoddy road work, or Comcast, with their amazingly expensive, incompetent, and shoddy customer service and prices. The grass isn’t greener on the other side of the fence. It is a big ol’ mound of shit on both sides of the fence.
Folks, he solved the problem a week later by switching to the Dish Network: “Thank you @dish for rescuing us from the Faustian @TWCable_NYC with your prompt and professional service.” https://twitter.com/SirPatStew/status/248823148982702080
After turning down an offer of help two minutes after his tweet:
In my life, I’ve certainly told more than a few CSRs to shove their belated or underwhelming offer of help … but I at least try to remember if the offer was made.
I regret that we meet in this way. You and I are of a kind. In a different reality, I could have called you… on the phone instead of having to complain worldwide on Twitter before someone hooked me up.
Customer rep: Look at the modem and you’ll see five lights. Do you see those?
Stewart: THERE ARE FOUR LIGHTS!!!
No!!! 8 Minutes too late!!! The day is yours friend.
This is the kind of thing that happens when Scotty isn’t around anymore.
This reminds me of a fantastic essay written earlier this year entitled Destined to Fail, wherein the author describes why Time Warner (and presumably other cable companies’) service calls suck so much. An object lesson on how not to do things.
You think Kirk had Trouble with Tribbles? Imagine my Trouble With Tivo:
Comcast holds the monopoly in my town: you want a Tivo box, you need a Comcast card to plug in the back. So one must explore strange new neighborhoods in order to seek out new technologies and new ways to fast forward commercials…
The line…longer than the circumference of The Genesis Planet. One of those ladies James T. used to canoodle with threatened the Ferengi behind the counter with death during my hour long wait. And a Ferengi is what I got to deal with; obsequious and attentive…but when I got home: product fail. Information fail. And the Borg I contacted via Comcast IM could not assimilate my simple desires: (a working product!) into reality.
I had to go back to Mos Eisley to wait in the same line to get the information the first character should have given me…yeah I’m mixing my SF metaphors…but the whole situation sucked like that tar pit that got Tasha Yar.
It took Ten Parsecs…sorry hours, to deal with dimwitted Klingons, one particularly condescending yet incompetent Romulan…until finally!
A put upon, yet genteel Human/Vulcan who knew his craft, understood the difficulties: AND MADE THE SHIT WORK!
So bestow a Federation Admiralty on that guy: for the rest…remember that lumpy glob in the mine that Spock mind-melded with?
Yeah, that for them….
Uh, wait. So … you bought your own TIVO then had to physically go to a local Comcast office to get a CableCard, and the people there weren’t helpful? I’m lost =P
MOMENT OF BRUTAL HONESTY: Who here had ever “watched” CRN Talk Radio on their subscription television’s digital music channel before today?
New Kickstarter: a board game with 3D printed game pieces that tells you to set aside 30 min. per day for 1 week while provisioning with appropriate beverages, music, reading material and optional hours d’oeuvres to solve these kinds of pitched negotiations with ruthless service providers.
A different set of game pieces and recommended alchohol / snack recipe recommendations is provided by a website that crowd-sources optimal designs and social engineering strategies per service provider and territory. Chat in real time with others who are now dealing with the same service provider as you are, so you can commiserate and devise creative ways to dispose of the bodies.
This could reduce the suicide rate and identify who are the worst culprits. Obviously the most irritating ones are already playing their own version of the game…
Even neo-Scotty had problems getting connectivity.
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