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posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 05, @01:22PM   Printer-friendly
from the business-as-usual dept.

It's no surprise that cable companies charge lower prices for broadband when they face competition from fiber-to-the-home services. But an article yesterday by Stop the Cap provides a good example of how dramatically promotional prices for Charter's Spectrum Internet service can vary from one street to the next.

In this example, Charter charges $20 more per month for slower speeds on the street where it faces no serious competition. When customers in two areas purchase the same speeds, the customer on the street without competition could have to pay $40 more per month and would have their promotional rates expire after only one year instead of two.

Stop the Cap said it examined promotional offers to new customers in the metro Rochester, New York, market, "where Spectrum faces token competition from Frontier's slow speed DSL service" and more robust competition in limited areas from Greenlight Networks' fiber service. Greenlight fiber is available in 23 percent of Rochester, while Charter cable is available to homes throughout the city, according to BroadbandNow. Greenlight prices start at $50 per month for 500Mbps.

"Charter's offers are address-sensitive," Stop the Cap founder Phillip Dampier wrote. "The cable company knows its competition and almost exactly where those competitors offer service. That is why the company asks for your service address before it quotes you pricing."

Am I the only one that's appalled at the Upload speeds? From the linked BroadbandNow page for Spectrum: Speeds up to:1,000 Mbps Download, 35 Mbps Upload

Charter Must Pay $19 Million for Tricking Customers Into Switching ISPs

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  • (Score: 2) by Tork on Saturday June 05, @11:44PM (2 children)

    by Tork (3914) on Saturday June 05, @11:44PM (#1142186)
    If a business has a legal right to set its price however it wants, its customers (and potential customers) certainly have a right to dispute the prices, especially when "vote for your dollars" is not a thing. Voting the representatives out is not a path to lowering your bill. "You just wait till mid-terms!"
    Slashdolt Logic: "24 year old jokes about sharks and lasers are +5, Funny." 💩
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  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @12:36PM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 06, @12:36PM (#1142343)

    Voting the representatives out is not a path to lowering your bill. "You just wait till mid-terms!"

    I know of a recent example that refutes your claim.

    In Cook County Illinois (which includes Chicago), the County Board decided that drinking sugary drinks was a "Bad Thing"(tm). So they imposed a tax on sugary beverages (adding about $0.75 to the cost of a six-pack of soda).

    In just a few months, it became clear that the people of Cook County greatly objected to this new tax, and in order to save their jobs, the County Board reversed their decision (by a 15-1 margin). Toni Preckwinkle, President of the County Board, had been a serious contender in the upcoming Chicago mayoral race, but suffered a humiliating defeat at least in part because of her support of the "soda tax".

    "Voting the representatives out" is very effective when the government rules against the consensus of the people. It doesn't work so well when most people don't care, and there is outrage only in fringe group echo chambers.

    (And just in case someone wants to drage class/race/sex into the argument, it's clear that this change was brought primarly by the poor, for whom the extra $0.75 per six-pack was a significant issue. Regardless of the opinions of class-obsessed people who are over represented on sites like this one, poor people's votes count just as much as those of the wealthy.)

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 07, @11:33PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday June 07, @11:33PM (#1142957)

      What's funny is the the strongest class obsessed people tend to be the more affluent ones. Just like the strongest race obsessed people tend to be white.