May 022009

Rogers is an interesting company. Sometimes, they are super competent. I remember when cable modems were new… I got one fairly early (and still use a cable connection as my backup Internet connection) and whenever I had a technical problem (which was rare) I was immediately able to get competent help on the telephone. Or when a contractor managed to cut our underground cable… Rogers was here almost faster than it would take for the police to arrive. Within half an hour they had a temporary solution rigged, and by the next day, everything was back to normal. They even apologized that they had to unplug us for another few seconds once the underground cable was repaired and reconnected.

Yet at other times, they are just blatantly incompetent. Such as when it took them months to sort out billing issues that only amounted to a few cents in the end.

Or take this past week. I phoned Rogers because I noticed that on CNN, instead of getting stereo audio all I get is the right channel. Perhaps not so much a problem for a news channel, but I am seeing similar problems with other channels, including MuchMusic, where it can be a bit more problematic, for all the obvious reasons. I reported this over a week ago, but no solution yet, not a peep from Rogers.

And then there is this other thing… being a weekend, Rogers is showing a preview of a premium channel, which this weeks happens to be the CBC’s Documentary Channel. So far so good, and I in fact caught a rather interesting program on it, about the history of the East German Trabant automobile and its current fans. Much of the dialog was in German, and it was subtitled. Except that every so often, the subtitles were covered for an extended period of time by a Rogers banner about the preview. Now yes, of course they want us to know that it is a preview and that this channel can be ordered along with many others… but must they demonstrate at the same time just how little they actually care about their viewers?

Not that Rogers is alone in this regard… many channels have picked up the nasty habit of overlaying a rather large, often quite disconcerting banner advertising the next show, for instance. And not infrequently, they do so while subtitles or other important pieces of information would appear there.

 Posted by at 11:13 pm