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Charter Cable Dream or Nightmare?
Posted by Partyhero on 04/15/2011
HOMEWOOD, ALABAMA -- About 3 weeks ago, I called Charter and set up an appointment with them to get their phone, cable, and internet bundle installed in our home. They were to come between 10am and 12pm Monday morning.

By 1pm, there is not one. At 1pm Monday morning, (on my cell), I get an automated message telling me that the technician is running late (really? thanks for helping me figure that one out!) and will be at my house between 2p and 4p. Okay, my husband is off, we can wait. 3pm rolls around, no tech and another automated message.

I go to work and when I get back, I find out that the the tech never came but they scheduled us an appointment between 8am and 10am Tuesday. Okay, no problem, I am off. 11am-no tech but an automated message saying the tech is running late. This happens all day until the tech shows up around 5pm.

At least the tech is here. But he doesn't have all of the proper equipment with him due to the set up of the house. We schedule another day and finally on that day by 6pm the cable and internet are installed but someone different has to install the phone.

We schedule an appointment for the phone to be installed. Same saga but it gets done. The tech leaves and we need to use the phone. It doesn't work. We call the number the tech gave us and he promises to come back out. He never does.

We call Charter and set up yet another appointment. The tech misses this appointment. I call Charter again and by this time, I have lost my patience. However, the lady on the other end puts up with my rant and sympathizes with me. Over my cell phone, she directs me as to what to do to get a dial tone. We find out that the tech had plugged something into the wrong port on our modem. At least we have a phone...

Only, it only works in the downstairs jack. Good thing it is a portable phone. Well, the very nice and very helpful lady on the phone sets up another appointment with a different technician to get the upstairs phone jack working.

This time, only one automated message saying that the tech is running late. He comes over around 1pm and leaves at 3pm with no results. It is too complicated, he will have to get his supervisor and a lead tech to come over. He tells me he put in the work order and his supervisor will call Monday (This is now two weeks after the cable and internet has been installed)to tell me what time he will be over. Perfect, my husband is off Monday.

No one shows up Monday. Tuesday, I call the number on the work order believing it is the tech's number. I explain the situation and find out the the number is the supervisor's number. The supervisor tells me, he remembers being told about this(I guess he thought Tuesday was Monday?-it happens right?) and he will be over with his lead tech as soon as they are finished with the job they were on.

The techs show up after 5pm and leave around 7pm. The jack does not get fixed. The solution: "You have to buy a sattelite phone".

Through this entire ordeal, the techs that we dealt with were very nice but the one person who made the whole ordeal better was the lady we spoke with on the phone who went above and beyond to assist us.

In the end, we do have phone, internet, and cable. It only took nearly 3 weeks to get the Charter bundle.

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Posted by momsey on 2011-04-15:
Ugh. That's terrible. Good review.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-15:
That sounds like a big hassle Party Hero. You did a good job on this review. Thanks for sharing!
Posted by Umatter2Charter on 2011-04-21:
Hello partyhero,

My name is Seph Wahl, and I am a Communications Specialist with Charter. I'm very sorry to hear about the issues that you experienced during the installation of your Charter services. I would be happy to look into this with you and make certain that all of your concerns are addressed. Please e-mail us at Umatter2Charter@chartercom.com with the name, address, and phone number on the account, as well as the best number to reach you. Also, please put "CharterSeph: My3Cents" in the subject line, so I can watch for the e-mail.

For additional information on the Charter Social Media team, please check us out at http://www.charter.com/Umatter2Charter

We look forward to helping you resolve your concerns.

Seph Wahl
Communications Specialist - Charter
Posted by cat lady on 2011-06-06:
Hi I had gotten a letter from Charter that sounded great, but after reading the reviews, even some of the positive ones are negative, I've decided to spare myself the drama. I work from home and rely heavily on my ability to use my computer, phone, e-mail and fax in a consistent and reliable manor. The problems listed are too many and impossible for me to deal with. Thank you for your service. You have saved me from a lot of grief and pain. catlady
Posted by Ak on 2013-05-06:
Hi there
My husband is a technician for charter and telling the truth the way they do the scheduling for techs and how other techs are with each other is why everything gets screwed up my husbands route literally gets changed every hour and they initially give him equipment for his route when he starts for the day so when they flip flop his route he never has right equipment or enough equipment charter really needs to get their act together with how many techs there are and how many jobs they can handle in a timely manner
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They Lie About Their Plans; Your Bill Will Be Higher!
Posted by Bleeper101-info on 04/14/2014
RANCHO CUCAMONGA, CALIFORNIA -- Don't believe this company! Whatever program they sign you up for, the cost will ALWAYS be higher! This has happened every time I listen to their FALSE pitch about changing tiers and plans. They always say the bill will be less and I'll get more. NEVER HAPPENS!

They said my bill would go down $20 a month. Instead, my bill the following month was almost $300, and the rest of the bills until last month were the same as before! Then today I notice the monthly bill was up another $20, now almost $200 a month for 2 TV's! I called and they insist I ordered a new package last month. I DIDN'T and they won't refund the money! I spoke with 4 supervisors. The service is AWFUL. It was out 3 times last month.

The sales and billing people are LIARS and you will find your bill climbing every few months so that it will never be predictable and will always be higher. DON'T GO WITH CHARTER! No wonder they are rated the 6th most hated company in America!!
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No Customer Service
Posted by Muskit85221 on 02/21/2014
GEORGIA -- Last year, Charter came out with a digital box system for their system. I went down to the office and inquired about why we could not get certain channels. We were told that we were to RENT boxes to get a signal and that their techs had to come to my home and install these boxes. We had to make an appointment, we did.

Two contractors showed up smelling of alcohol, one heavier than the other. They put a large box on, the side of the house. Requested that this box not be installed. It was to prevent rain from making contact with the Cable. They grounded their system to the an insulated power company box. Ask what was wrong with the ground rod that was installed by them in 1981 that was 8 feet long? The installer said that was not an acceptable ground. He strung wires all over the side of the house. We have experience at wiring houses since I am an electrician. These gentlemen did some sloppy work that would not be acceptable in our profession. They left and come to find out we were not getting an HD signal of 1080, just a 480 DPI signal and one of the boxes did not even work at all. Still did not get all the channels that they advertised. Called Charter service department. I was told it would be at least 2 days before they could get back to me to make adjustments to the system.

We waited and in the mean time a fellow electrician went about removing the big box from the side of the house and reinstalling the ground wire to the ground rod. We ran the wire inside the house and made all connections inside the house and took pictures of the shoddy work that was done before by the techs. On Sunday one tech came by and found the problem and reset the box and found 'filters' on the pole at the street. he stated that the install techs should have found this problem and had corrected it at that time. Showed him the pictures of the shoddy work that the install techs did and how it was corrected by my electrician friend who installs computers and low voltage service. Told us that we had done a very professional job. Told this tech who works for Charter about the techs who came out to install the system and their 'condition'. he called his supervisor. We wound up taking one box back and told the office about this. They reduced our rate and thought it was a good thing and that would be our rate from now on.

We are retired well today a letter arrives saying that or rate was going up by $5. Went back into the sales office and ask why. It was not going up by $5 but by almost $20 per month. Was told that we had 125 channels, on demand movies, and music channels. If we want music we turn on the stereo. Do not have time to watch movies and do not watch the shopping networks or the Spanish channels. Wish we could get only the channels that we want and forget about the rest of them.

Charter wants us to bundle, no way and will not come off their price at all. So now we are looking for another service. Look forward taking their boxes back into the office and doing away with Charter.
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Posted by nikalseyn on 2014-02-24:
Keep the Charter internet if you have it. Cancel the cable television and go to streaming. We did last year after Charter informed us we needed a digital box at $5 per tv set plus a large increase in monthly fee. We bought a Roku box for $50 and use it to stream movies, tv shows, etc. from the internet to either my computer monitor or direct to the telly. Roku is simple to set up and you will neet a $50 or less router to transmit the WiFi if you do not have one. My wife is a movie nut and is thrilled at all the movies and tv shows she can watch now. And, we are not paying for all those stupid channels we never watched. Subscribe to Netflix streaming for $7.99 per month and Acorn for $30 per year and you will never miss Charter cable tv. The dirty secret nowadays is that you do not need to pay for cable tv. Streaming is the only way to go. Much cheaper, also. Ask around or do a search of the internet for how to stream, etc. Buy the Roku at Amazon and start off with the basic, $50 one. Good luck.
Posted by muskit85221 on 2014-03-01:
We got smarter and ditched Charter. Took the 2 boxes back to Charter. 'Why are you canceling our great service' asked the young lady. How much time do you have today? First price, then lack of customer service, will not work with customers.
'We can lower your rate and give you more channels if you stay with us' Too late tried to talk to you about lowering our costs. already have another service. Who do you have and how much do they charge? Too late to be asking those questions now. The only thing that Charter needs to know is that we have dropped your service and probably will not be back. Was with Charter for over 30 years. Had with not problem, until they started charging for boxes

If Charter has all that much money to buy Time Warner then they should have thought about their current customers and lowered rates to keep their customers.
There were about 15 customers with boxes turning them in and all were switching to another service for the same reasons that we were.
Posted by muskit85221 on 2014-03-14:
Charter came to our home today to offer us a 'New Deal" For only $84.95 a month you can have Charter cable in your home. Ask him to come to the back yard. There was a Direct TV dish on the roof out of sight. Told him that we were with Charter for over 33years. They have priced themselves out of the market and now pay far less with Direct TV. At that time Direct TV was installing a dish at my next door neighbors house. Told him to go next door and my neighbor will give you the boxes from his place. More are leaving Charter due to poor service and no customer service.
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Charter Is Blackmailing Us Into HD Settop Box
Posted by Kevin8985 on 01/24/2014
SANFORD, NORTH CAROLINA -- The deadline notice came in the mail again yesterday... February 11th and we lose all video services if we don't upgrade our cable box.
We have chosen to only use "The Basic" package due to cost and really no need for HD since all we watch is the news and a few series.
We have one basic cable box on the main TV and just a direct cable to the small TV in the kitchen.
We are now being forced to order and use a HD box on each TV or go blackout on February 11th - I feel blackmailed into this. The ugly part of this is that while the first year use of these boxes is free for one year then you will be charged a monthly fee there after. One hell of a sneaky way to implement a major price increase isn't it?
Charters reasoning of going all Digital is to give us all "free" improvements such as HD channels, more channels, more phone features, and later will double the internet speed for "free". What a farce for people who only use the basic channel lineup and no phone service!
Are these people exempt from a class action lawsuit?
Do they think we are stupid?
Around here they have the market cornered and are the only game in town so yes I consider this blackmail and think the consumer needs to be protected from these tactics.
What to do is the question?
Drop the service or band together and stop them are the only options I see... your thoughts please.

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Posted by kevin8985 on 2014-01-24:
Looks like we can't take any action except pay or drop their service... this was approved by the FCC last spring.
Posted by jonthethird on 2014-01-25:
Without knowing your system, it appears they are going completely digital. As the digital signals are encrypted, you will need a box to continue viewing.

Digital allows more channels on the existing bandwidth, cleaner video, as well as HD. Ask if they have NON HD versions available: most systems do.
Posted by FoDaddy19 on 2014-01-28:
You answered your own question, there's not much you can do other than drop the service or pay. Which is how it is with any business or product. Comcast has a monopoly in my area, so I know where you're coming from. I'm paying $200 per month for cable/internet/phone. Just five miles down the road, Comcast has stiff competition from Verizon, and they charge about 20-30% less for the same services in that country as they do where I live.
Posted by Shaun on 2014-01-28:
With respect, I don't see how this is blackmail. You could cancel their service, receiving a signal via amplified antenna. Digital signals being broadcast are fantastic now. Or you could consider Direct TV or Dish Network.
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New Price
Posted by Old fart on 09/28/2013
I got a bill for $154. I got their full package and they reduced the price to $114 dollars...Go figure, but I love it....thanks folks!
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Complete Disregard for Utility Easements
Posted by Czapm on 09/27/2013
SAINT LOUIS, MISSOURI -- I am not a Charter Customer, but I still have to deal with their rude and disrespectful technicians. My neighbor was having a new cable installed. Fortunately, I was home the day they came to install the cable. I first noticed some guy, wandering around in MY yard-had no idea who he was. Then I saw him lay down the cable in the MIDDLE of MY YARD, now this is some 30' feet from the utility easement that runs along the edge of the property. When I told the guy, he needs to move the cable to the property line because that's where the easement is, he told me, "I can do anything I want." I told him it doesn't work that way, he needs to move it. He told me that is not going to happen.

Needless to say, I don't back down-finally my neighbor came out and told him to move it to the back of the property line. Since the technician is now upset, he drags his cable through the flower beds.

Thanks Charter for hiring individuals that have a complete disregard for an individual's property rights!!!!
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Posted by Terry on 2013-09-28:
Call the Police, that's vandalism. Also Charter and lodge a complaint. Good luck!
Posted by Weedwhacked on 2013-09-28:
I would have called the police.
Posted by nikalseyn on 2013-09-29:
The guy many not have been a real Charter employee, but an employee of a company hired by Charter to install the cable. Your first response should have been to call Charter and tell them you have someone purporting to be from Charter trespassing and in the process of destroying your property. Any "guff" from the guy and the police should have been called. At this point, you and your neighbor should complain to Charter about the guy. They need to know.
Posted by muskit85221 on 2014-03-02:
Do not bother calling Charter, they sent 2 who smelled of alcohol to my home. Sent them packing.
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Nobody Knows What Is Happening and Lies About Installation
Posted by Beacon58 on 08/24/2013
INMAN, SOUTH CAROLINA -- About a week ago, I called Charter because I am located in a backwater very slow copper ISP DSL provided by Windstream. Charter offered a 30mb/sec speed.

My house is in service range, but NOT beneath a pole. So the tech comes out and quizzes me, where is the cable. He didn't know. He discovers it a street above and then says, sorry Bud, it will need a dig.
Ok, so when will that be.. doesn't know says they are BUSY.

I called Charter on Monday and it's the 19th and the tech was out on Saturday but, was unable to do an install. The agent says, the professional tech will do his job on the 17th, but its now the 19th. How would that be possible.
Then says anything else she can help me with?

So the tech visit rescheduled and I stay home, but NO SHOW, no phone calls etc. The agent says the appointment still open. Hold tight. But two hours later no show.

So, then I called asking when is the tech arriving? No answer, later told if a dig is needed they may need an attorney, the sheriff and and an act on Congress.

But, I thought they could be trusted and canceled my old copper wire service.
So stranded no Web at home and not expectation of when, even if Charter will ever install.
I am told later all digs are subcontracted, but they do not yet even know where to dig.
Beware !
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Posted by cmthru on 2013-08-24:
Be aware that of you are more than 100ft from the nearest cable connection they will bill you for the 'dig'. It isn't going to be cheap.
Posted by cabletech on 2013-08-24:
The cable line from the house to the pole or box can only be so long or the signal starts degrading. Sounds like the connection for your house is too far away. This means the main line has to be extended and a hook up box put closer to your house. Here is the kicker - most cable companies will CHARGE you to do that and you have to pay it upfront before they do the work. Last I heard the going rate was around 500$.....A FOOT. I have seen people willingly pay over 20K to the cable company to get cable so they can pay them even more money! Insane! If that is the case wait until February 2014 and call back in.......cable companies also give each department a set budget per year and in February the construction department is more flush with cash and willing not to charge so much
Posted by John Nicholson on 2013-08-25:
I hope you are not paying anything yet for "service." The comments are both correct. You will pay to have the cable get to your home. It will no doubt be cost-prohibitive. Charter sub-contracts these jobs and altho the subs do a very good job usually, occasionally problems occur. In your case, with the distance involved, I would go back to DSL and forget Charter.
Posted by jonthethird on 2013-08-26:
It sounds as though you need the underground crew to come out and put in your drop. This has to be done before any further installation can be completed.
The question you need to ask of Charter is when is the underground scheduled? There may be a need for permits and easement mapping before work can begin.
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Terrible Service for Internet and TV
Posted by Marogers on 07/20/2013
PORTAGE, MICHIGAN -- We pay for 100Mb service but typically only get 4Mb-11Mb according to several sources i.e. posted transfer rates for files and reports from speedtest.net

everyday have problems with tiling of picture on TV and several error codes s0012 s0600 and picture may or may not ever come in on affected channels.

I have more problems on any single day that I did in 6 years combined with direct TV. I changed to Charter about 12 years ago as direct TV could not offer internet connection. these problems only occurred in the last 8 years of service as they seem to be upgrading until nothing works

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Posted by John Nicholson on 2013-07-20:
A word of advice: stop paying for 100mbs service. No one needs it. And, as you suspect, you won't get it anyway. You only waste money. Charter offers 30mbs and it is very good. I get anywhere from 28-35 mbs consistently. Perhaps it depends on where you live, etc. but again, 100mbs is a waste of money. By the way, you should call Charter and verify that they have set their system so that you receive 100mbs. There is something they have to do when you change internet speed service and if they don't do it at their office, you may pay for it, but still not get it---you won't anyway, but-----

Also, your telly problems could be on your end. I would try a different set and see if it improves.
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Channel change up
Posted by Ricky the Kid on 04/27/2012
SAINT LOUIS, MISSOURI -- In Missouri Chapter cable has made recent changes in their packages - what channels you get at what level of payment. The excuse was that more channels were going all digital and some had gone HD. That's all well and good but now we find that our newly re-arranged line-up has moved the more popular channels that were included before to the next more expensive tier and we have the extended plan - We have been customers of Charter for almost 10 years - but this is the straw that broke the camel's back. Anything worth watching -that we had before is now more expensive. What they have done in a round about way is just say - if you want the programing you are used to pay up - a flat out rate increase ( which we got as well) would have been more honest and up-front. This has finally pushed us to look at alternatives Our rates have gone up and up -
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Posted by Alain on 2012-04-28:
Being as you're in the St. Louis area, you should have a decent selection of competitors you can check out.
Posted by PirateKnowsAll on 2012-04-28:
Many channel lineups have gone straight HD - it's an increased cost across the board and broadcasters and cable companies are passing it along. Nothing is as inexpensive as it was 10 years ago. Do some research and cost comparisons, consider providers such as DirecTV. Not inexpensive, but crystal clear digital signal.
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
I've learned to live without cable... OTA is the way to go and it is free. Would I like to have cable so I would have more to choose from? Absolutely but it just isn't worth paying $90 a month for the few (less than 10) channels that I watch.
Posted by PirateKnowsAll on 2012-04-28:
OTA is becoming more and more interesting - local affiliates with their multitude of .2 .3 etc., channels. I can't say that the programming is much yet, but eventually all these side bands will air infomericals, weather and re-runs. Part of the problem with trying to sell ads - too much diversity and absolutely no quality.
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
That's how I feel about pay TV. At least this way I can stick the $90 per month in my pocket... that can rent or buy quite a few DVD's.
Posted by MRM on 2012-04-28:
John and Pirate, thats what Ive been trying to tell DB about the OTA.
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
MRM, will you also tell her its SODA and not POP?
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
What is OTA?
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
Oh...Over The Air TV?
Yeah, but it takes away a lot of my Dad's favorite channels.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
Like they say cable is a luxury. I think if cable companies didn't have such a monopoly, prices would be more competitive. I also think there should be an al-carte option so you can pick and choose the channels you want.

But then cable companies won't be able to generate huge profits. And will whine that its bad for the consumer like they told the FCC when they wanted to implement it.
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
Agree with you 100% Wally! If I could pick and choose the channels I want then I would go back to cable. What really gets me is the way the tiers are structured. Why not have an educational tier for those that like History, H2, Discovery, etc. and a sports tier for those who want ESPN, Fox Sports, etc. I guess cable companies would lose money because people would buy just one tier instead of them all so they can get all of the channels they want. Anyway even History and some of the channels are going to reality shows ... Pawn Stars, American Restoration and so on. I can see why some would be interested in those but when I think history, I think historical events, not antiques.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
I don't need 10 Spanish channels geez, no bueno lol. It ticks me to no end knowing i'm paying for them.

Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
Hey I like watching Spanish soap operas. They are hilarious!
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
prob since you understand Spanish, I don't.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
I thought about getting satellite because they have some Russian channels that my mom might wanna watch. But eh I don't like satellite.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
The people on the soap operas talk so fast. I only catch about half of what they are saying.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
I always said when I win the Lotto, I'mma gonna have my own BasherCable and will have a set price...this many channels for this price and allow the customers to choose their channels.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
Will M3C members get a discount?
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
It will be for the residence of Basherville only.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
What if I vacation in Basherville?
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
As long as you follow all the laws, you're welcomed. BasherCable will be in our 6 room hotel where you will be staying, without a male companion.
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
Guess I'll cross Basherville off my list of vacation spots
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
I thought so, that's why I held off making reservations for you...LOL!
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
Can I bring my video collection Basher? since I can't have sexy time with a woman in downerville.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
Well Wally, you will have to drop them off at my place first. Once I view them, I will let you know if they are acceptable or not...if they are not, then I'll have to confiscate them.
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
No offense Wally, really... but doesn't Basherville sound a lot like the old USSR?
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
WARNING!!! Comments like that^^^^^^^^ will get your face on a poster at the Basherville Post Office as one of "Basherville's Most Unwanted"!!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2012-04-28:
lol Da John. I hope she doesn't throw me in a gulag for speaking out!
Posted by JISCal2 on 2012-04-28:
LOL Go ahead. Once you have satisfied your addiction to photochop any picture you post of me will be unrecognizable.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2012-04-28:
Now, back to the cable problem.........
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Charter Cable Internet is a Joke.
Posted by Msbattleacc on 04/13/2012
FORT BENNING, GEORGIA -- Hands down the worst internet service I have had in my life. Charter cable is my 4th internet provider, I move a lot since I am in the military. I've had their cable for a month now. While playing online games getting disconnected, or in the best case lagging terribly, every 3-5 minutes. I spoke to one of the technicians from Charter privately and he told me that they have bandwidth problems. Simply put they sold more internet connections than they r able to support, hence everyone is laggind due to insufficient bandwidth. they keep saying they r working on it. I'm looking for another service Provider.
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Posted by Alain on 2012-04-14:
After you get another Internet service provider you might want to drop a line to umatter2charter@charter.com and let them know why you switched.
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