Friday, February 12, 2010

Does Comcast Even Care About Deaf?

Caption Action 2 was contacted by a deaf customer of Comcast. The customer granted permission to reprint the letter, as well as the response from Comcast.

Customer's Email to Caption Action 2
I appreciate all the effort that you are doing in the Caption 2 action movement.

I wanted to ask if you are aware that Comcast cable company advertises from their homepage that you can watch tv from their site now. Only problem is that I have yet to find a way to watch any of their programming captioned. I was wondering if you had any information about that. I did email them today to ask about that as well.

Also, Some of their "OnDemand" programming appears to be without captions when the program had originally aired, it had captions. An example would be the fairly popular series, "Burn Notice", which appears on the USA network.

I also emailed Comcast very briefly about that. Are there guidelines somewhere for effective ways to complain or protest about issues like these? Who are the best people to contact about issues like these?

In the case of the issue regarding online captioning of programming, I thought Caption 2 Action might be a good place to contact.

Then the customer gave more details of their effort to get captioning on Comcast OnDemand:
Also regarding the captioning OnDemand, my father tried talking to one of the chatroom people. They bumped it up to their supervisor who decided they needed to send a pulse to his box to fix the problem. It didn't fix the problem. The sending the pulse to your box thing seems to be their solution for when they don't know what to do. We had run into that on another issue here. I know it isn't related to the Caption 2 Action goal, but it is sort of related because it is the same company and how they are dealing with hearing impaired and captioning problems.

Comcast's Unsatisfactory Response

Comcast wrote to the customer:
Thank you for reaching out to Fancast.

I understand that you want to be able to watch programs with Captions online. I do apologize however right now, this feature is not yet currently available in Fancast.

Our product team is constantly working on improving the site to make the best experience possible. Thanks for your suggestion, we'll consider your idea for a future release.


The Fancast Support Team

Bottom Line!

Idea?? Comcast considers our need for closed captioning online to be an IDEA?? This is an insulting statement for them to make!! And they will quote, "CONSIDER" the "idea" for a future release? This is yet another example of why we need HR 3101! Companies just push us deaf and hard of hearing aside in the rush to market to make money! Then they say "oh, maybe we will consider it for later..."

This attitude on the part of companies is downright maddening! We need the legal protection of HR 3101 to force companies like Comcast to do the right thing because they obviously won't do it voluntarily!!

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  1. has "Burn Notice" and it's closed-captioned on I say, boycott Fancast and Comcast. I got rid of Netflix and Comcast years ago. All I have now is and Network TV. But they probably don't care! But why should they? Instead, what we need to do is EDUCATE. Get them to put themselves in our shoes. Ask them to turn the speakers off on the computers and see how they like that. Not everyone has speakers for the computers, so they can't hear any audio at all.

  2. Hello everyone,

    My name is Christopher Tubbs, I am deaf and I would like to support HR 3101. It is very important for this to pass because it would be very helpful so that deaf people could understand what every video on the internet is saying and what is going on in the videos. When I want to watches movie, T. V. shows or videos on the internet and there were no captioning, and it made me feel angry because no one is really doing anything about it. This is a chance for deaf people. We can change things around this world and make it easier for people than having hard times. If Rick Boucher had a deaf child, what would he have done about HR 3101? Would he support HR 3101? I think he would have if he had a deaf child. But to me, he doesn’t want to pass it because either he doesn’t care about deaf people or too worried about costs.

  3. Anonymous, Comcast is in the process of acquiring NBC Universal. is owned by NBC Universal.

    We could expect some troubles looming in the horizon once Comcast takes over NBC.

  4. We need Video Accessibility which will require Internet captioning, passed in Congress.

    Don't give up

    let passed HR 3101

    Don't be afraid

    Stand up for what right

    Support hr 3101

    contact me at

  5. I have had a thread on the Get Satisfaction website for Comcast for the past 6 months regarding closed captioning for Video On Demand. The response is extremely frustrating. Whenever I report anything it seems as if it is the first time they've ever heard anything about this issue and some reps there don't even seem to know what closed captioning is. We need to be LOUDER - and bond together and get with the media on this somehow. I got results for 3 networks by contacting the parent company directly and the issue was fixed within 3 weeks. I'm contacting more individual companies now - but I have 17 channels that aren't working correctly for captions and 2 movie channels and it is ridiculous that I would have to contact that many people directly to get something fixed that the FCC verified on the phone yesterday is mandatory and should be working. Does Comcast care? - No.

  6. I am a hearing, signing EFL teacher (English as a Foreign Language), my students are all over the world. When they are looking for more experiences with native speaking and culture, I used to recommend Fancast, but I stopped because of the same doesn't have CC. I appreciate the information from this site regarding, and I will switch also. Thank you everyone! Know that you have non-deaf supporters as well! (=

  7. That is fine, however, how does a potential customer sch as myself, who happens to be deaf, e-mail Comcast before I buy their product, so I can ask a question. I find it a blatant form of discimination that the only way to contact them is by phone or in a service center.