Letter: Who is watching the cable TV monopoly?

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When my TV went dark, I called Time Warner and learned there was a deliberate (unannounced) overnight service interruption for maintenance. I missed the end of my show and wasted time reporting the outage, but when I asked for credit, I was told to call back after the interruption to request credit. Shouldn’t Time Warner be required to credit all customers without being asked when service is deliberately interrupted? Last month my service went out on a Monday and they couldn’t send someone to repair it until Saturday, but they didn’t want to give me a credit unless I called again after service was restored.

I asked for a supervisor, but was told repeatedly they were all busy. I insisted. Eventually I got a supervisor who credited my account – small compensation for the half hour invested in the call, but saving me a follow-up. When I asked where to direct my complaint about how Time Warner, which has a government-granted monopoly, administers credits, he could provide no information.

So, Time Warner and government officials, please advise: Where should citizens register complaints about how Time Warner does business? Does Time Warner have an obligation under its monopoly contract to direct complaining customers to a governmental monitor of the contract and, if not, why not? Why do we allow Time Warner to make it onerous for each customer to claim the small credits to which we are entitled, small amounts that add up to very large profits for Time Warner?

Carol Eisenberg
Peaks Island