Thursday, April 15, 2010

How To Piss Off A Customer...

Yet another example of how a company trying to protect itself from its own interested customers just ends up pissing people off. In this case, we have Comcast Sports Net, the cable channel on which many Cubs/Blackhawks/White Sox/Bulls games appear. I wanted to watch the game on my deck yesterday, since it was so nice out and since the game was such an important one (This one game decided whether or not the Bulls made the playoffs).

So I went to CSN's website, where you had to register to get access to the live stream of the game. It asked you many questions: name, email address, mailing address, etc. One of the questions it asked was who your cable TV provider was, since you had to have an active cable subscription to get the stream. Leaving aside for a moment why that is business stupid, I then got the following email from CSN's customer support:

"Dear Customer,

Your recent registration for the Chicago Bulls local internet streaming package was, under the terms of the offer, contingent on your having an up-to-date subscription to a television provider that distributes Comcast SportsNet Chicago and that has authorized Comcast SportsNet Chicago to enable you to watch Bulls games streamed to your computer.

This is to inform you that RCN, the television provider you selected, is unable to confirm that you are its customer in good standing. Accordingly, and as noted in the Purchase Policy governing your order, we are hereby terminating your access to live streams of Bulls games through

If you believe this conclusion has been reached in error we encourage you to contact your local television provider. If it turns out that an error has been made, your access will be re-instated forthwith. You may also contact us via Live Chat Support (found at

The RayV Team and Comcast SportsNet

You guessed it. They tried to match my name to our cable subscription instead of our address. Awesome, except that our cable bill is in my girlfriend's name, not mine (she's lived there longer than I have). So now, despite the fact that I have RCN cable in our condo, my ability to stream the game is cut off. Now, I could go through the always pleasent process of sitting on hold with RCN and then CSN's customer support....but no thanks. I just won't watch next time I want to sit on the deck on a nice day.

Great way to boost ad revenue, hotshots!

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