We’re not really sure what would possess someone to defend one of the most hated companies in America, but Forbes contributor Gene Marks went ahead and did just that. He claims not to be a shill of Comcast in any way shape or form (even though they’ve been shown to pay for positive pieces). They also recently cancelled a promotional event at a legislator’s house, the same legislator that proposed a bill in Kansas to block municipal broadband after the Kansas City Star contacted them about the event. Comcast has also made sure that their lobbying efforts are strong and effective as they’ve effectively got every important Senator and Representative of the Congress on their payroll. For example, 84 of the 97 congressmen that approved the Comcast and NBC merger received money from Comcast. The amounts range from token contributions of about $1,000 up to $25,100. Additionally, Comcast has spent over $3.2 million in 2012 (last data available) among federal candidates alone (does not count state or local) for lobbying. During the 2012 election, Comcast gave Obama’s campaign over $328,000 and Romney’s campaign nearly $100,000. Yet again proving how much our politicians are really in their pockets.
Now, getting back to Gene Marks’ so-called 5 reasons to admire Comcast, of which there are only really four (Sorry, Jimmy Fallon doesn’t count). So what are exactly his reasons?
- Comcast is a tech company that has improved the lives of its customers.
Really? Comcast has improved the lives of their customers? That explains why they’re the second most hated cable company in America, right? Because they improve people’s lives. I’m sure people hate their doctors, teachers and librarians as much, too. Yet, Comcast is considered one of the most hated companies in America (not even among cable companies, ALL companies). Not the banks, not the carriers, not the oil companies, the cable companies are the most hated and Comcast is easily in contention for the #1 place.
- Comcast technology is reliable.
He may actually have somewhat of a point here, while Comcast like many ISPs may have a lot of haters, places like DSLReports appear to support the fact that Comcast is fairly reliable. But it doesn’t change the fact that many customers absolutely loathe the company. Including people like Ryan Block who tried to cancel his service and was met with an agent that almost wouldn’t let him cancel.
- Comcast stands behind its employees.
He actually uses the example of Ryan Block’s call as well to talk about how Comcast supported their employee, saying that he was only doing his job. So, Comcast trains their employees to not be helpful and constantly be selling people services they don’t want. If you listen to the call, you can hear how this guy is literally trained to shove Comcast services down the customers’ throats. I don’t really know if this is a valid point, especially when Gene himself mentions all of the Comcast employees that complain about their jobs (and then questions their validity).
- Comcast is a ruthless, competitive, take no prisoners tech company…and good for them.
Gene is partly right here, but he forgets why they are the way they are. Comcast is fairly ruthless, yes, ruthless to their competitors, ruthless to the politicians that don’t support them, and ruthless to their own customers. I don’t know about you, but that’s not the kind of ruthless I want to support. Oh, and the competitive part? Who the hell is Comcast competing with? They’ve effectively got local monopolies in most of the areas they serve. If they’re not the only choice in the area, they’re probably the 2nd choice and the other choice is very likely AT&T which is no better than Comcast in any way (and is usually more expensive). Comcast can only be competitive if you look at the networks they own, which include all of NBCUniversal’s holdings which are numerous and even that acquisition is questionable considering how many people were opposed to it and how many people still believe it was not a justified acquisition.
Hey, maybe it was all just clickbait, but in the end supporting a company like Comcast is simply unjustified, especially when you consider what they’re doing to companies like Netflix. Comcast really really wants to acquire Time Warner Cable and it seems as though they will do whatever possible to make that happen. Meanwhile they will essentially become the de facto internet provider for over 30 million Americans and further stifle competition where there already was very little. So, please do tell us why we should admire Comcast, because it only really seems like there’s one reason to and that’s because their reliable and last time I checked that’s not really good enough.