• Report: #6404
Complaint Review:

Charter Communications

  • Submitted: Wed, August 29, 2001
  • Updated: Sat, January 14, 2006

  • Reported By:Azusa Ca
Charter Communications
P. O. Box 78475 Phoenix, Arizona U.S.A.
  • Phone: 626-537-6702
  • Web:
  • Category: Cable TV

Charter Communications rip-off charging for movies that I did not order. They are not being cooperative. *Consumer Suggestion

*Consumer Suggestion: Louie you are absolutly right

*UPDATE Employee: PPV Disputes

*Consumer Comment: In response to: fries with that order? ...the user with the comments about temps might find this interesting

*Consumer Comment: "rais[ing] hell" is only likely to get you escorted out by security or the police.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: My two-cents

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Charter doesn't care about customers or employees

*Consumer Comment: People are getting ripped off, plain and simple.

*0: EDitor's Response the above Rebuttal

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Charter Cares

*UPDATE Employee: fries with that order?

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: You are not the only victim of PPV movies!!

*0: I spent several months working as a temp representative for first AT&T and then Mediacom. Bad news:

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I received monthly bill on August 28, 2001. I noticed that the bill was for 316.37. I noticed that there has been movies that were ordered from 8-04-01 through 8-16-01.

I have proof on several dates that I was not home til very late that evening. But for other dates it will be hard to show proof for. I know for a fact that I did not order movies at all for the month of August. I tried to speak to a telephone agent by the name of Irma and she was rude saying to me that I just wanted to get off paying the bill.

This comment made me very upset and then I asked to speak with a supervisor. I spoke with Natalie Delgadillo, and she was not too helpful. She said that ther is no way They would of made the mistake. That I had to have made the charges. The bill is outrageous. I have always maintain a low bill of around 65.00 to 67.00 dollars.

But I am not going to let my bill go al the way to 316.37. I am having problems with Charter Communications in working with me regarding this bill. Please I need help. I do not think I should be made to pay something I had nothing to do.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/29/2001 12:00 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/charter-communications/phoenix-arizona-85062/charter-communications-rip-off-charging-for-movies-that-i-did-not-order-they-are-not-bei-6404. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Suggestion

Louie you are absolutly right

AUTHOR: Troy - (U.S.A.)

I'm a Field Tech for Comcast, and Louie is righ there is no way the digital box just ordered the ppv's the only way would be if the box did malfunction , but it would either order all movies at all times like every half an hour or just one movie on just one channel but it would keep ordering it wouldn't stop unless the box was unplugged. Most likely someone ordered a movie without the persons ok that had the account. what she needs to do is have a ppv block put on her acct and then the only way she can order a movie is to call the office and give them her ssid# to verify it is her to be able to order, or set up the parental controls on the box to block all ppv movies so you have to enter a password that only you know to order them. this would keep that from happening.
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#2 UPDATE Employee

PPV Disputes

AUTHOR: Louie - (U.S.A.)

I am actually an employee of Mediacom, not Charter, but I assume they both use CSG billing systems and track DCT's with number's such as GI4082TBA1298. In response to a previous rebuttal, "IF" your digital DCT had the same GI number as another in the system, for one, they could not share the same prin. You would get a fatal system error. They could not co-exist in the same system prin (prin being your location geographically.) Also both of these DCT's would have to be registered in the system twice, which would not happen, even if by some miracle they were, then both customers would have the "EXACT" same services, and if one changed, so would the other.

Now when a movie is ordered it is reported back to the office with the DCT's GI number which is specific to that box only. I have witnessed a malfunctioning DCT and the DCT ordered all movies, not just adult movies. The chances of it malfunctioning and ordering ONLY adult movies is slim to none. More likely it's a case of someone ordering movies when someone else wasn't home. Which happens more than you think. And understand Charter's position. You call in, tell them that you weren't home, you didn't order these, and want credit. The rep sees an account with adult movies ordered, everything looks by the book, yet they are to remove these chargers and eat the cost simply because you say you didn't order them? They look at it like a Motel, if you have a room with a few friends, and your friends help themselves to the little lock box of goodies while your gone, guess who gets the bill?
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#3 Consumer Comment

In response to: fries with that order? ...the user with the comments about temps might find this interesting

AUTHOR: B - (U.S.A.)

I am that temp from a long time ago who originally responded.

Though the user with the comments about temps might find this interesting. I actually turned down full-time employment at the end of my temp term since I intended to return to school.

I did leave the work force to return to school, and I stayed involved in consumer advocacy.

I ended up appointed to the commission which oversees the cable franchise for the local metro. I was one of the negotiators of the most recent franchise extension. Despite my temp work years ago, I did not exactly take it easy on our local incumbent either. At times it even made them a little nervous that I knew how their operations worked and had contacts with individual employees. During my time as a commissioner, consumer complaints have dropped to all-time low levels while resolution levels are at their highest ever.

Because, after all, I was too incomptent to be a full-time employee.

Identifying link included for the purpose of editor verification:
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#4 Consumer Comment

"rais[ing] hell" is only likely to get you escorted out by security or the police.

AUTHOR: Beverly - (U.S.A.)

I agree that oftentimes the best solution is to go to the office and talk to someone face-to-face. However, going in and "rais[ing] hell" is only likely to get you escorted out by security or the police.

Best choice: Call in advance and set up an appointment with someone in managemnet. Arrive on time for the appointment and be prepared with whatever documentation you have available and your log of calls you made, who you talked to, about what and what the outcome was. If you treat the matter as a professional business issue, chances are you will be treated in a professional business manner. Go in acting like a nut case, or otherwise getting otu of control (raising your voice, cursing, etc.) and you're gonna get ZIP. The louder you get, the less people hear you.

If that doesn't work, then send a letter to the office of the President at the corporate headquarters. Corporate complaints in any business are usually handled quite differently than any other type of complaint. Again, polite, stick to the facts, assure them you understand how it is, how mistakes can happen, yadda yadda yadda.... They have the upper hand here, you're trying to get them to do something for you (whether it should have been done that way to begin with is not the point) and the only way it's going to happen is if treat it as a professional business matter and act like a professional business person.

Remember Mom telling you, "You catch more flies with honey?" Well, it's as true now as it was then. Even with Charter.
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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

My two-cents

AUTHOR: Daniel - (U.S.A.)

Bob's comments proves how poorly this company is run. The call center I worked in was run by kids. Most of them less than 22 yrs old and only HS educated. I hope you have found work and didn't have your retirement in Charter stock.

For the PPV. The person who was the temp was right on only 1 thing (not the neighbor ordering porn and watching it through the window) and that was his last paragraph. By calling them and setting the cr. limit to zero and making them call in is THE ONLY WAY to prevent movies from being ordered from the remote. In addition to that, give them some sort of password to prevent children from ordering. Charter employees are susposed to add a comment every phone call. Thus, if no call and movies are on the billed--customer wins.

The comment about the serial numbers is false. If the number in the computer doesn't match the one in the house no signal will be availiable.

Another thing people don't know about is that if a movie is ordered and not watched, you do not get billed. We can tell when a person calls in to order a movie--even if you forget to write a comment. You tell them that and then they say I didn't watch it. Or they admit, their children ordered and watched ten movies (adult ppv) and aren't going to pay--these are my parents of the year.

Your situation is a rare one, I did have one of these and was able to cr him the would amount back. Just keep fighting, go to an office and raise hell.
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#6 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Charter doesn't care about customers or employees

AUTHOR: Bob - (U.S.A.)

I was an employee to one of the many cable systems Charter Communications had acquired in Michigan.

I had been an employee at this location since 1989 and enjoyed my employment in the cable industry. Our customers were happy(except when the occasional rate increase happened) and all the employees were happy. Then Charter took control.

At first, everyone was excited with Charter taking over and everyone worked harder than ever before. They promised the employees the world. I personally worked between 2 of their systems, putting in long hours to make sure they could reach their projected goals and even received the MVP award for our region of the state. Then the nightmare began for the customers and the employees.

Inexperienced people were placed in management, rate increases were every 2 months and their best employees with several years of experience started leaving. Customer satisfaction declined due to an inexperienced work force. If customers were lost, they would increase rates once again to keep their bottom line within projections. In the fourth quarter of the year, they would not disconnect people who no longer wanted their service and keep billing them to keep their bottom line up.

When I had enough of the "Charter philosophy" of business, I decided to give the customary 2 week notice. Since this made management upset, they decided to walk me off their facilites after 13 years of service.

Bottom line, with a company that only cares about their bottom line,has inexperienced management,has inexperienced employees, and experienced employees at the local level that hate going to work everyday, customer satisfaction will suffer the most.
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#7 Consumer Comment

People are getting ripped off, plain and simple.

AUTHOR: Jennifer - (U.S.A.)

If someone gets charged for movies that they did not order, then that means it is possible for that to happen. Someone can't say it is impossible if it's happening - and to more than one person. For Charter Communications to state that it is impossible, shows that it is totally unaware and ignorant of what people are capable of doing, what is electronically possible, or the errors that can happen either with its equipment or with its employees. People are getting ripped off, plain and simple.
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#8 0

EDitor's Response the above Rebuttal

AUTHOR: - ()

Jimmy, Jimmy, Jimmy,

You have flunked your first test in critical thinking. Just because you are unaware that something happened does not mean that it did not. Just because you were a good employee does not mean that you worked for a very bad company.

Now go stand in the corner. You've been a very bad boy.

ED Magedson


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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Charter Cares

AUTHOR: James - ()

I was a faithful employee to Charter Communications in Vincennes, Indiana for two years. I was in the customer service department for the largest majority of the time and can verify that Charter's billing system and cable boxes are HIGHLY reliable and seldom make mistakes. The company itself is very strong in customer service and has a true commitment to keeping it's customers happy. I ended my career there in the marketing department and can tell you that I will never find another company that cares for its employees or customers more. On a side not..I almost garuntee that the person who filed this complaint is writing about "Adult" movies on there bill... because of course they would not have ordered them... So are the days of cable! :-)

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#10 UPDATE Employee

fries with that order?

AUTHOR: rm - ()

Temps. are simply temps.

Temps. are not reliable sources of information especially when you are depending on feedback information. They are simply temps. and the reason they are not permanent employees is that they simply not able to meet the minimal criteria of a full time industry professional.

The theory of these mystery PPV movies being ordered by an individual using a remote through a closed window, or not directed at the box is proof of why this poster was not granted a full time position.

This claim is not only untrue, but is simply ludicrous.

Waves bounce off of glass and are sensitive to interruptions of those waves.

Light, sound, and liquid all follow the same rules of physics. They will follow the least path of resistance so your theory holds no legitimate reason.

My suggestion would be question your house sitter because I went though a similar situation.

Advice to the temp: Have you practiced the phrase would you like fries with that?

Just a career suggestion
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#11 UPDATE EX-employee responds

You are not the only victim of PPV movies!!

AUTHOR: Jack - ()

I worked at a Charter office for over two years. And, yes there are many times that customers did not order the movies on bills. But Charter's stance is you, the customer, must assumem the burden of proof. Because you will surely not get the benefit of the doubt.

There are 2 circumstances where this could happen: 1) There is a tracking # on the bottom of each digital box. Make sure the # on the bottom of your box is an EXACT match to the box # they have listed on your acct information. If it does not match, whoever truly has the box # listed on your acct has been enjoying these movies AT YOUR EXPENSE!! 2) There could possibly be another digital box in their system that has the same tracking box# as your digital box. (Now I have only seen this case twice. It is extremely rare.) If there is a duplicate #, then both persons with that box # are being billed for the movies.

But don't dispair, ASK FOR A MANAGER!! Do not accept an answer that they are not available, refuse to call back, refuse to leave a message to have your call returned. Threaten to go to satallite. Demand that one of the technicians come out & change that box get it out of your house. But do not give up!! That's exactly what they are hoping that you will do.
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#12 0

I spent several months working as a temp representative for first AT&T and then Mediacom. Bad news:

AUTHOR: - ()

They filed the following rebuttal to the above Rip-Off Report:

Their email: bkc3@giant.net

Their name: B Castillo

Their relationship to the company: Advocate


I spent several months working as a temp representative for first AT&T and then Mediacom. Bad news: It is rather hard for cable box to malfunction and order movies for you. We tried ourselves to break one into ordering movies on its own.

When one does, it orders every pay per view movie available (not just the adult ones).

Something more distrubing to check is whether or not your tv is visible from a window. Digital cable boxes unfortunately have a standardize remote. On several occasions, people who had had many adult movies mysteriously ordered while they were not home found out that someone was actually ordering and watching movies through their windows while they were not home (universal remotes can turn on the tv as well as order movies).

If you offer to set a pin number on your box, and set your credit limit on your digital box to zero (requiring all movie orders to be called in) there is a good chance the company will credit some or all of the movies.
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