Internet service problems plaguing some Comcast customers

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(Host) Some customers of Comcast Cable are continuing to experience problems with the company’s Internet service.

The complaints first surfaced several weeks ago when subscribers were switched from another cable provider to Comcast.

VPR’s John Dillon reports:

(Dillon) Comcast recently acquired the Vermont service territory from Adelphia Cable. As the company moved customers to the new broadband provider, some lost their service entirely.

(Admasian) “I lost service for almost three days.”

(Dillon) Mary Admasian runs a marketing and communications company in Montpelier. She was in the middle of helping a client announce the purchase of a new business when her Internet service went dark.

(Admasian) “And the emails are flying back and forth to get this new company that my client had just purchased out the door and all of a sudden I was shut down.”

(Dillon) Comcast has about 105,000 customers in Vermont. Company spokesman Marc Goodman says the company has experienced an unusual number of complaints in the transition from Adelphia. The company has been switching over to new software and hardware. He says the problems are being addressed promptly.

(Goodman) “We want all of our customers to be satisfied with their services. Customer account executives are reachable 24 hours a day, seven days a week through 1-800-COMCAST. So if anyone has an issue or a question, we’re there to help answer those calls right out of our call center in Burlington, Vermont.”

(Dillon) But some customers report being on hold for hours as they try to reach a Comcast representative.

The state Department of Public Service, which represents ratepayers, does not regulate Comcast’s broadband service. But it has kept track of complaints. Stephen Wark is the department’s director for consumer affairs and public information.

(Wark) “Of course, consumers have a right to be concerned. They pay good money for their services. And they were out of services and in some cases weren’t able to get through to report that.”

(Dillon) The department has logged 320 complaints about the Comcast service, including 15 on one day this week. Wark says officials have worked with both the company and its customers to get people back on line.

(Wark) “We’ve advocated for credits for people in the instances where they’ve been out of service. And I believe Comcast is going to be addressing that, or has already addressed that with many consumers.”

(Dillon) Mary Admasian says she’s back on line with her cable broadband service. But she recently experienced problems in trying to switch her email addresses from Adelphia to Comcast.

For Vermont Public Radio, I’m John Dillon in Montpelier.

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