Dear Comcast, I'm leaving you because..

For the past 10 months, I’ve lived without a cable TV subscription, solely relying on Comcast cable internet for all forms of entertainment. The cable-free experiment has been great overall (but is certainly a subject for another post).

Though I’ve long detested Comcast’s shady business practices, they were my only option for a sufficiently fast internet connection at my old San Francisco apartment. I was out of range for Monkeybrains wireless, the only other high-speed provider that I was aware of in my area.

But then, about a month ago, a post appeared on Hacker News asking readers to pledge to cancel their Comcast subscription in light of the company’s open support for SOPA/PIPA. In the comments, a user pointed out that offers bonded DSL service that could deliver up to 40mbit speeds. I immediately scheduled an installation.

The installation process has been a bit rocky due to the aging wiring in my apartment building, but it’s all settled now. My apartment now has a ~24mbit connection from an amazing local ISP. The peak rate is slightly slower than my cable internet, but it’s well worth it for a company that’s easily 1000x more deserving of my money than Comcast.

Because I’ve been looking forward to calling Comcast to cancel my service, I decided to draw up a list of reasons why I was happy to be taking my money elsewhere. In no particular order…

Dear Comcast, I’m leaving you because:

  1. You are openly in favor of stripping constitutionally protected freedoms with some of the most toxic legislation ever conceived, SOPA & Protect-IP.
  2. You send me at least 1 snail-mail advertisement per month trying to sell me the exact level of internet service I’m already paying for.
  3. You enforce an archaic 250GB monthly bandwidth limit that was barely sufficient 4 years ago when it was instituted. Meanwhile, you’ve raised service prices while your costs to transfer a gigabyte of data have surely halved or quartered.
  4. Users who exceed the bandwidth limits are arbitrarily cut off from service with no opportunity to pay for additional bandwidth.
  5. You enforce arbitrary traffic shaping to severely limit your customers' abilities to use the data they are paying for with the services of their choice.
  6. You actively lobby against Net Neutrality because it would prevent you from being able to exploit your customers by charging them the type of per-service fees associated with your cable TV subscriptions.
  7. You think that Netflix somehow owes you money to deliver its data to your customers. You know, the users that are already paying you for their internet service.
  8. You’re so desperate to act like you aren’t losing cable TV subscribers that it’s generally cheaper to get a package with TV and internet service than it is just to get standalone internet.