You can’t get a much better example of why American business sucks.
Forbes magazine just published an article “5 Reasons Why You Should Admire Comcast“. If I didn’t know better, I would think it was satire, but it isn’t.
First, the article is so full of misinformation it isn’t even funny.
Like one of their reasons to admire Comcast is because they have made lots of money while “waging war on competitors like Time Warner”. Hmmm, so that’s why when Comcast recently applied for federal permission to merge with Time Warner they claimed that it was OK because Time Warner is not a competitor because their service areas don’t overlap.
Or when the article spins the recording that went viral of one of Comcast’s customer-service representatives who the article admits was a “over-zealous, super-aggressive maniac”. But they spin this example of extremely bad customer service to try to claim that “Comcast stands behind their employees” because they “defended him, saying that he was only doing what he was trained to do”. Well, except that Comcast didn’t defend the employee in public. That statement was internal and was leaked to Consumerist by other disgruntled employees. Or as Consumerist put it:
If your only evidence of Comcast “standing behind its employees” is a memo that was leaked by employees who don’t feel supported by the company, you’re standing on shaky ground.
Second, the article paints an incredible picture of what is wrong with American business. They applaud because “Comcast is a ruthless, competitive, take no prisoners tech company… and good for them.” Their evidence of this? “They are employing teams of lobbyists, marketing experts and PR consultants whose job is to persuade us that the growth of their company is good for America and not anti-competitive.” Is this what we see as a successful, admirable company? Yes, this article even praises Comcast because “They are fighting the net neutralists, battling the press” all while not really competing against Time Warner and Verizon.
But the really ironic part is this:
We hate them because of their success and power over us. And we’re jealous of them – just like we’re jealous of the reach, power and success of Microsoft, Apple, Google and the like. But I have to admit – I admire their success. … Aren’t they the example of what a successful tech company is all about?
Again as Consumerist points out, Comcast operates a regional monopoly. Unlike Comcast:
Consumers aren’t told “you must have an iPhone if you live in this ZIP code” or “your only choice for video game consoles in this city is Xbox.”
Most customers of Comcast have no alternatives for cable or high-speed internet. This is competition?
And this is also an indictment of American media. Why did Forbes print this? Did Comcast pay them? Is a monopoly that overcharges their customers, gives them bad service, and then treats them extremely poorly their idea of what business should be? I hope not, because if it is we are asking for trouble.