Complaint of the week: “Give me back my rabbit ears to watch TV!”


No complaints come close to the passion of jilted cable TV subscribers. Including this one.

Today, I’m starting a new feature called “Complaint of the week.” With so many to choose from, it’s not going to be easy (but hey, someone’s got to do it, right?).

This one is from a Cablevision Systems customer. By the way, I list all the Cablevision contacts on this wiki.

I’m sick and tired of Cablevision and their inaccurate bills and incompetent representatives.

For four months straight, I have had to call about my bill. Each time I get the call center rep who tells me they’ll take care of the issue and then the next month comes and the bill is totally different than what was quoted.

This is totally unacceptable business. I will be notifying the FCC of this and making them aware of yet another scam that is going on with these cable companies. Give me back my rabbit ears to watch TV!

Oh, that’s a priceless rant.


What to do. I have a few words of advice for this unhappy Cablevision customer. First of all, here’s how to contact the Federal Communications Commission. I love those guys; they list their real email addresses, which is the responsible thing to do.

Next, I would try to put some of these issues in writing. Cablevision, like many other large companies, sees little need to respond to phone complaints, and is even less responsive to email rants. By sending a note to the cable TV company, you can usually count on a written answer, which is helpful in creating a paper trail.

Related story:   Bad airline service? Try complaining to the Better Business Bureau

The actual email shouldn’t contain any of the emotional language that this one does. Referring to a “scam” — which by the way, may be true — lessens the credibility of a complaint. It does, however, make it much more interesting. As to the rabbit ears comment, that was also very entertaining, but I’m not sure if it helped the customer.

All in all, this was one of the better complaints I’ve had the pleasure of reading. It was succinct, funny and revealing without bogging us down with the minutia of a particular grievance.


Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is an author, journalist and consumer advocate. You can read more about him on his personal website or check out his adventures on his family adventure travel site. Contact him at chris@elliott.org. Read more of Christopher's articles here.

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