Comcast’s Latest PR Campaign is All Spin

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By Michael McCauley on Thursday, September 25th, 2014

Comcast has launched a national media campaign to try and discredit merger opponents (that’s all of us) as just the “doom and gloom” crowd.  The cable giant is stepping up its pr offensive because it knows that the public is overwhelmingly opposed to its mega merger with Time Warner Cable.

Comcast dismisses your concerns, saying groups like Consumers Union have been predicting “doom and gloom” about mergers in the cable industry since the 1990s. They say our predictions about the cable industry “have never come to pass.”

But let’s look at the facts:

  • Between 1995 and 2013, the price of cable TV expanded basic service has skyrocketed, rising more than twice as fast as the rate of inflation.
  • In the past twenty years, Comcast has grown from 3.5 million customers to more than 20 million today. In the last four years Comcast has raised prices on basic cable by nearly 70 percent in some markets.
  • In the most recent customer satisfaction survey by Consumer Reports, Comcast and Time Warner Cable ranked near the bottom of the list of cable providers, earning poor marks for their terrible customer service.

If we’ve been so wrong about the cable business for all these years, where are the lower prices and better service?   Ever since the merger proposal was announced in February, we’ve heard from hundreds of consumers frustrated with both companies and the lack of better options.  Price hikes year after year, long waits with customer service, technicians who fail to show up as scheduled, and billing mistakes are some of the more common complaints.

We know the truth, and we know that allowing Comcast to gain even more market power through a merger with Time Warner Cable would only make a bad situation worse.

We need to keep up the pressure.  If you haven’t already done so, please add your voice to the hundreds of thousands of people who have urged the FCC to reject the merger.   If we win this fight, it will be entirely because you didn’t stop voicing your opposition.

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