Comcast’s Response to The Cancellation of Eureka

by on December 1, 2011

in Entertainment

EUREKA --

As many of you all know, Eureka was canceled and its last season is coming up next year.

If you followed the media on the issue, it seemed that the timing of the cancellation was in line with when Comcast took over NBC.  There was even some snafu with some Syfy channel press releases first saying they renewed Eureka, then a few days later, releasing a statement that it was, instead, canceled.  It was noted that network management was said to have fought to keep the fan-favorite show in the schedule.

If you do the funny math and look at how NBC/Syfy kept renewing the show each year, though the ratings weren’t stupendous, it seemed to do well enough for them.  Then, along comes Comcast, who took over NBC, and from the outside looking in, it sure seemed to be curious timing that not long after they took over, Eureka was canceled.

I also took it upon myself to guess ever further that the company making billions in a down economy knows how to make money and where to trim the fat to keep the profits moving at a healthy pace.

With those few data points, and an impassioned fan perspective, is what motivated me to crank out a few pieces on Eureka being canceled.  It’s like the pretty decent sci-fi show is being tossed in the same can as Stargate Universe and what not.

With that said…

I tend to have little patience with pre-formatted banter and excuses that one might get from corporate circles.  To me, it feels like, what’s the point?  But a reader of Cinema Static on Brusimm.com did take the initiative and contacted Comcast in regards to the cancellation of Eureka from the Syfy network.

He first sent one email with no response, but when he inquired a second time, he did get a sincere and well meaning reply.    (In this case, I’m using italics to indicate the dripping of heavy sarcasm from this writer…)

Check out what Cinema Static reader Andrew got in response to his inquiry (The ‘xxxxx’s are blocking out Andrew’s last name as I’m respecting his privacy, and these emails are being reprinted with his permission.)

Please Note

And please take note, which I’m sure you will see without my pointing it out, the spelling of the Syfy channel, interspersed with the spin towards customer satisfaction.  In fact, it seems that about half of the reply really touches on the issue, the other half, on the customer spin.  Oh, and something you won’t see in the below quoted email, was that they even misspelled Andrew’s last name in their reply:

Dear xxxxxxxx,

I would like to thank you for contacting us here at Comcast, where our customers come first. Mr. xxxxxxx, we want you to know that we are committed to providing you with excellent customer service. I am genuinely sorry for the loss of EUREKA on the SCI-FI Channel, I would be upset too if I had lost a program that I really liked. You have reached the right person and I can definitely help you resolve your issue today.

The SCI-FI Channel determines the programming that airs on their network. You can contact the SCI-FI Channel via email to express your concerns over the loss of Eureka. Mr. xxxxxxx our Comcast Customer Guarantee is our promise that we will deliver a superior customer experience everyday. It reflects the confidence we have in our products and service, our network and especially our employees. I truly apologize for the SCI-FI Channel’s decision to remove the Eureka program. I hope the information I have provided in this email meets with your satisfaction.

I want to thank you for the opportunity to assist you today. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to call us back at xxx, or by contacting us again via email or live chat at xxx. Mr. xxxxxxx we know your time is important, so I want to thank you again for contacting us here at Comcast and allowing me to resolve your issue. We are grateful to have you as a Comcast customer, because your satisfaction is one of our primary concerns.

Thank you for choosing Comcast.

Sincerely,

Susan

Comcast Customer Care Specialist

=====

“Allowing me to resolve your issue”  And how was that done?

So check it out… I started looking at the response with a keener eye and determined that only three lines in the email reply touched on Eureka being canceled by Syfy.

I pulled out the reference’s to Andrew’s inquiry and think I found the form-letter outline they fill in and use to reply to inquiries:

I would like to thank you for contacting us here at Comcast, where our customers come first. Mr. xxxxxxx, we want you to know that we are committed to providing you with excellent customer service. Eureka Text goes here> You have reached the right person and I can definitely help you resolve your issue today.

Eureka Text goes here>  Mr. xxxxxxx our Comcast Customer Guarantee is our promise that we will deliver a superior customer experience everyday. It reflects the confidence we have in our products and service, our network and especially our employees. I truly apologize for the Eureka Text goes here>. I hope the information I have provided in this email meets with your satisfaction.

I want to thank you for the opportunity to assist you today. If you have any additional questions, please do not hesitate to call us back at xxx, or by contacting us again via email or live chat at xxx. Mr. xxxxxxx we know your time is important, so I want to thank you again for contacting us here at Comcast and allowing me to resolve your issue. We are grateful to have you as a Comcast customer, because your satisfaction is one of our primary concerns.

A bit disappointing, on all fronts, if you ask me!

In the meantime, we have to brace ourselves for the loss of a fun, and much loved TV show that took its entertainment value and had fun giving it to the fans.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Tim Miller December 2, 2011 at 4:53 am

Dear Bruce and Andrew,

It is no secret that large corporations have a group of gatekeepers to shield the guilty from the wrath of the public.

The guilty aren’t even the people you think they are. Presidents and CEO’s and the board of directors do not make those decisions. It isn’t even the people who have the title of Vice President of whatever.

The people who make the decisions have titles like General Manager in charge of (fill in the blank – in our case I would bet it is something called programming). You won’t even know their names because they aren’t published in company statements. They have all the power to hire and fire and to turn good products (TV shows in our case) into crap or drop them altogether.

General Managers get away with a lot because they tend to run the businesses and if fired their bosses would actually have to work until they found a replacement.

Besides, they are safe as long as they make their numbers at the expense of the long term health of the company.

So, the form letter was correct. The decision was made by someone at the network. You just won’t ever know who.

You are fighting someone with a lot of power who can remain anonymous and doesn’t give a crap what you or I think. They pay no attention to criticism or write in campaigns.

The only thing you or I can do is vote with our remote.

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