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Comcast CEO: It's Not Like We're Trying to be Hated
by Karl Bode 07:15PM Wednesday May 28 2014
Comcast CEO Brian Roberts and top lobbyist David Cohen again today attempted to defend the company's $45 billion acquisition of Time Warner Cable. Speaking at the Re/code Code conference in Rancho Palo Verdes, California, Roberts again tackled the three big concerns about Comcast growing larger: more usage caps, greater anti-competitive leverage against all manner of competitors, and the company's abysmal reputation when it comes to customer service.

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Netflix and Level 3 have accused Comcast (and AT&T and Verizon) of letting peering points with transit middle men saturate to force content companies to come to them for direct peering, which Level3 and Netflix worry will result in a tightening noose over the years. Roberts followed AT&T's rhetorical lead in trying to argue that Netflix just wants to ride Comcast pipes for free:
(Netflix CEO Reed Hastings) would like it for free. It's a business dispute. Who wouldn't like it for free? You used to pay the Post Office three quarters of a billion dollars to send DVDs around and they're used to wanting it to be free. On the other hand, we don't want to charge Netflix different than any other company but they do amount to a third of all the bits on the Internet....the deal that we made was they reduced their expenses generally speaking over the life of the agreement and speed up the experience getting to the Internet. So customer performance is better, they've saved money. I'm not sure why that isn't in everyone's interest.
Except Netflix recently stated that paying to access Comcast customers wasn't the same as paying a transit middle man like Cogent or Level3 for long distance transit, the company accusing Comcast of "double dipping."

Roberts also briefly touched on Comcast's plans to cap users, the CEO mirroring Cohen's recent claims that Comcast doesn't have caps:
We have experimented in two or three markets with some usage-based pricing. Obviously we don't want to frustrate customers. We've gotten ride of any kind of cap and are looking for ways to share the cost of this network. It's (network use) is exploding, 30 to 40% in the amount of bits people consume every year for 20 compounded years in a row and probably the next 20 years. That's an exciting high-class opportunity and we'll keep experimenting....
That rather ignores the fact that prices for TV and broadband services continue to soar despite a reduction in the cost of gear and bandwidth. As for the company's horrible customer satisfaction ratings, which Roberts has promised to fix for the last decade? "We don’t wake up every day and go to work and say 'we want to be hated,'" said the CEO. Roberts also tried to argue that Comcast is so disliked because "it's the company consumers have to deal with when other companies raise their prices."

54 comments .. click to read

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Plano, TX

2 recommendations

They are "Double Dipping"

Argh I hate when they say Netflix wants to ride the pipes for free. No they don't they are providing a service that I connect to over the connection I pay for. If I want to stream Whitehouse.gov 24/7 or a porn site or Netflix it should not matter. I am paying for the bandwidth I am using. Netflix is paying for that bandwidth as well from its ISP.

I am not sure why Comcast thinks they deserve any more money for doing what they are supposed to do?




2 recommendations

More reasons why they're hated

If you say you're not trying to be hated, why did you offshore your 800-COMCAST frontline support to the Philippines? Why is going to a local service center akin to getting sent to a Soviet-era Gulag?
Yeah sure, Americans love it when they get routed to script monkeys that do everything they can to keep you from speaking to people that can actually fix your problem. Or waiting in endless lines to speak to surly reps behind glass walls. Or getting nickle-and-dimed for almost everything you used to do as part of business, like making simple changes to your channel choices ($2.99 change of service fee etc.).

There are plenty of reasons why people hate you.


2 recommendations

Not trying to be hated

Well either way they are very good at it. I have never hated any one company as much as Comcrap. Nothing but thieves period a necessary evil and nothing more IMO

Jason Levine

2 recommendations

reply to nonamesleft

Re: Just be straight! Stop lying

It's weasel words again. They've gotten rid of the caps and replaced them with "bandwidth thresholds." Much better, right?
-Jason Levine


Champaign, IL

6 recommendations

reply to Yes

Re: Now THAT'S saying something

Wrong. Over the air TV was never free; it was paid for by advertisements. Now we pay CATV or IPTV for the privilege of viewing commercials on 900 channels no one cares about.


Alma, AR
·Cox HSI
·Cricket Broadband
·AT&T Wireless Br..

5 recommendations

This sound like comcast



2 recommendations

reply to Yes

Re: Now THAT'S saying something

..and 26 episode season shrink to 12 episode seasons. and there is just tons of junk on cable that no one wants to watch.


6 recommendations

We don't try...we MAKE people hate us!

That CEO is a joke.....Hey Brian Roberts your policies, products, prices, and customer service make your customers hate you.


Ex .. Ex .. Exactly
Parsonsburg, MD

8 recommendations

Now THAT'S saying something

It's Not Like We're Trying to be Hated
So ... you're the Most Hated and Worst Company in America without even trying.