Two months ago, Sam Levy felt like he was spending more time on the phone with Time Warner than with his girlfriend Nikki. Levy, who lives in western Brooklyn, a region served exclusively by Time Warner, was having trouble with his cable service and Internet connection, and, working full time, he could not wait around his apartment for the cable repairman between the hours of noon and 5 p.m.
Clearly, Levy’s situation is nothing short of unique. Neither was his frustration that, if he wanted to have cable and Internet service, he didn’t really have much of a choice but to grin and bear it.
“With only one cable provider in our neighborhood, we [customers] have no leverage to demand better service. It seemed like their customer service model was to infuriate people into apathy,” said Levy, who begrudgingly admitted that for awhile he chose the agitation of poor service over the agitation of making repeated calls to his cable provider.
“On the positive,” he added, “I did go outside more.”
But for Levy and cable customers like him, there is new hope.