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Still Talkin TV » Devilish TWC Rate Increase Demands Individual Action

Devilish TWC Rate Increase Demands Individual Action

Jason Sudeikis at the 2009 New York Television...

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A few of my readers laughed at the line from Satan in the recent “Saturday Night Live” that I blogged about Tuesday.
You may remember since I only wrote about it a day ago that Satan (played by Jason Sudeikis, see right) was so exasperated by the Penn State child sexual abuse scandal that he decided to give up his evil job.
Asked by “Weekend Update” anchor Seth Meyers what he planned to do, Satan responded “I’ll probably go back to my old job doing customer service at Time Warner.”
Of course, it is not the customer service workers at TWC who are upsetting local subscribers. On the telephone, they can be pretty cordial. It is the national leaders at TWC who decided on another rate hike effective Dec. 1 who appear to be the devil.
I got my proposed December bill last week and finally had had enough to act.
My monthly bill already is more than $200 a month with the All the Best package that includes digital cable, the internet and phone, HBO and a DVR. All the Best is going up $6.50 monthly and my DVR is going up $2 monthly. A wise reader advised me to go back to using a VCR and drop the DVR but I’ve become addicted to the DVR, which is so much easier to program.
The additional $8.50 monthly or so for All the Best and the DVR likely will be about $10 a month once taxes and some other minor increases are added.
That was enough for me to do something I haven’t done for years – investigate my bill and find ways to cut it down.
My cell phone provider, Sprint, immediately, helped me find a way. It offers phone service for my residential home number for $20 a month through something called Sprint Connect. Sprint also gives you 14 days to try it out. I tried it out and was sold.
That one move saved me $15 a month. That’s the difference between the $35 a month my cable bill decreases from going from the All the Best package to the Watch N Surf package without the phone and the $20 (actually it is $19.95, but what’s a nickel) I’m now paying for Sprint Connect. .
After further review of my TWC bill, I saw that I am paying $5.95 a month for the TWC Sports Pass. So I called TWC to find out what channels were included in the package. I was told the package includes the NHL Network, The Big 10 Network, ESPN Classic and CBS College Sports, all of which are good channels for the sports lover.
But I probably watch each of them once or twice a year. There are enough NHL hockey and college sports games without that package to keep most sports fans happy. On any given Saturday, one can watch up to a dozen college football and college basketball games. So I dropped TWC Sports Pass, which is going up four cents (which apparently means a lot to TWC) on Dec. 1.
So by proposing to raise my rates by about $10 a month, TWC forced me to look at my bill and find ways to save money. I figure I’m saving about $20 a month — and gaining a lot of satisfaction knowing that I beat the devil.
My advice to TWC subscribers is to look closely at their bills to see what they can live without.
This isn’t to say that I’m not happy with some TWC features.
I love Prime Time On Demand, especially now that many Fox and ABC programs are aboard. If you missed the “Glee” episode featuring “West Side Story” tunes a few weeks ago, I suggest you go to On Demand and watch the episode of the Fox show with this warning: It is a controversial episode because some high school characters lose their virginity.
On a slow weekend night, I also found five episodes of the first season of Larry David’s “Curb Your Enthusiasm” on HBO On Demand. It was interesting (and funny) to be reminded how all the insanity started.
I also recently found the premiere of the most intriguing new show of the season – Showtime’s “Homeland” with Claire Danes and Damian Lewis – on another free On Demand channel. Showtime is offering it for free in the hope that it will lure more subscribers to the pay-cable channel.
And it is good enough to do just that – if the economy was better. Because I imagine cable subscribers like me are looking for ways to cut their bills and curbing their enthusiasm to add more channels that increase them.
pergament@msn.com

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One Response to “Devilish TWC Rate Increase Demands Individual Action”

  1. Gman says:

    Took a look at my Directv bill last summer, trying to cut back on our expenses. Between Directv and TW cable broadband Internet , we were spending about $180/mo. We received a great deal from T/W cable in which we only pay $65 /mo for Tv and Internet for the next 2 yr. That’s quite the savings, and YNN is a nice addition. It pays to look at your cable and satellite bills yearly, and call the company’s for a better deal. They usually have something to offer .

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