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Charter Cable Wants To Emerge From Bankruptcy And Overcharge Customers: Rate Hikes & Limits Under Consideration

Phillip Dampier November 19, 2009 Charter Spectrum, Editorial & Site News, Internet Overcharging 1 Comment

charterYour company has been in bankruptcy since late March.  Investors wiped out, debtors in court fighting settlements, you try and hang on by keeping customers from fleeing for the limited alternatives.  You also overpay your management to make sure they don’t flee with annoyed customers.  Charter CEO Neil Smit, who waltzed Charter into bankruptcy under his leadership, effectively doubled his salary, becoming St. Louis’ top paid executive, negotiating a $6 million dollar bonus if he helped waltz the company out of bankruptcy.  If he agrees to do his job after that, he gets another bonus.  How nice.

Now that Charter is looking for the bankruptcy exit door, it’s time for someone to pay.  It won’t be Smit.  It will be Charter’s customers.

In addition to across the board price increases, Charter is also considering slapping Internet Overcharging schemes on their broadband customers with “consumption-based billing” sometime next year, Smit told Bloomberg News.

Charter’s failure didn’t come about because their broadband users are using their service too much.  It came from bad management decisions that have plagued the company since it went public in 1999.  Charter has never had a single year since when it did not report a loss, eventually accumulating an enormous $21 billion in debt through mergers and acquisitions and efforts to keep its position as the nation’s fourth largest cable operator.

Now, that same bad management team will be making all-new bad decisions to further alienate Charter’s remaining 5.3 million customers.  Many of them will be hearing from AT&T to switch to U-verse soon enough.

Perhaps instead of punishing customers, Charter should consider replacing the people that put the company where it is today.  If Charter needs money to upgrade their network, why not start with the ridiculous salaries paid to reward the people that failed the company and its customers in the first place.

Tell Charter Cable if they bring consumption billing to your area, you’ll waltz your business to the other provider in town.

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