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Comcast Serves Up What May Be the Worst Customer Service Call in History

Alyssa Bereznak
National Correspondent, Technology
July 15, 2014
Man yelling at telephone
Man yelling at telephone

You probably have your own fair share of cable-provider horror stories. But former Comcast customer Ryan Block’s may very well take the cake. 

Block, the former editor of the tech site Engadget and a product developer at AOL, recently shared his story/living nightmare on Twitter. Block’s wife, the writer Veronica Belmont, called Comcast to cancel the current service because the household was switching to Astound. Belmont was transferred to the “cancellations” line and handed the phone over to her husband. That’s when the terrorizing began, and Block decided to record the conversation and post it to SoundCloud.

RELATED: 6 Jaw-Dropping Cable Provider Horror Stories from Yahoo Tech Readers

Comcast victim Ryan Block (Via Twitter.)

Per Block’s explanation: 

“The representative (name redacted) continued aggressively repeating his questions, despite the answers given, to the point where my wife became so visibly upset she handed me the phone. Overhearing the conversation, I knew this would not be very fun.

“What I did not know is how oppressive this conversation would be. Within just a few minutes the representative had gotten so condescending and unhelpful I felt compelled to record the speakerphone conversation on my other phone.

“This recording picks up roughly 10 minutes into the call, whereby she and I have already played along and given a myriad of reasons and explanations as to why we are canceling (which is why I simply stopped answering the rep’s repeated question — it was clear the only sufficient answer was ‘Okay, please don’t disconnect our service after all.’).”

The call starts like this:

Block: We’d like to disconnect please.

Comcast rep: Why is it that you don’t want the faster speed? Help me understand why you don’t want faster internet. 

Block: Help me understand why you can’t disconnect us.

Comcast rep: Because my job is to have a conversation with you about keeping your service, about finding out why it is that you’re looking to cancel the service.

Block: I don’t understand …

Comcast rep: If you don’t want to talk to me, you can definitely go into the Comcast store and disconnect your service there. 

And it goes on for another seven more excruciating minutes.

But, seriously, listen for yourself. The Comcast representative’s utter determination to keep Block with the provider comes off as both unhelpful and disdainful; it’s like the worst part of every conversation I’ve had with cable provider stitched together into some cruel eight-minute sound bite. At one point, an exasperated Block even wonders aloud if the whole thing is a joke.

Since the recording has spread, Comcast released a statement on behalf of the employee, who remains unnamed.

“We are very embarrassed by the way our employee spoke with Mr. Block and are contacting him to personally apologize. The way in which our representative communicated with him is unacceptable and not consistent with how we train our customer service representatives. We are investigating this situation and will take quick action. While the overwhelming majority of our employees work very hard to do the right thing every day, we are using this very unfortunate experience to reinforce how important it is to always treat our customers with the utmost respect.”

Sure, Comcast. We’re sure you do.

Follow Alyssa Bereznak on Twitter or share your personal cable provider horror stories with her here.