Today, we have a city, Huntington, West Virginia, that seems all but resigned to getting screwed by Comcast. As the city decides on how to approach the latest rounds of negotiations with Comcast over a new franchise agreement, the city is also accepting that they really have no choice or leverage in the negotiations. Even though they have in the past repeatedly tried to find competition to bring to the area, they have so far failed in attracting anyone else.
But let’s see how negotiations are going. At the moment, according to the city attorney and a Huntington City Councilman, Comcast is offering the city these incredible perks:
- Comcast will offer Huntington substantially less financially than other cities around them in the state.
- Comcast will cut the number of public education and government channels from three to one.
- Comcast will even cut the amount of gross revenue that it gives the city compared to prior years.
- Comcast will not accept any language that penalizes them for poor customer service.
The last request by Comcast is outrageous. Just last year, the local paper in Huntington found that when many local customers called Comcast to inquire about why channels were suddenly being pulled off the air, the customers were told by Comcast that they could get those channels back….for $100 extra. That’s nice of them.