An online petition asking Cogeco to compensate all subscribers for a two-day e-mail outage has fallen on deaf ears. Instead, the company is relying on legalese to defend its position of no blanket reimbursement.

Following the major e-mail outage in August, Cogeco issued the following statement:

“As is standard practice in the telecommunications industry, Cogeco’s residential general terms and conditions state that Cogeco does not warrant  uninterrupted use or operation of the services and will not be liable for any interruptions in service, loss of data or any delay or failure to perform.”

Cogeco’s customer service line was flooded with phone calls, but most residents got only a busy signal since the backlog of calls resulted in wait times of up to 30 minutes.

Glenda Lloyd, community relations manager for Cogeco Cable, said some Burlington residents experienced an e-mail outage from Sunday, Aug. 26 until Tuesday, Aug. 28 when the company had a problem with some of its hardware. Cogeco’s vendors have replacement hardware available at all times so it was delivered immediately.

Lloyd first said no businesses were affected, but later announced that some businesses were not able to use e-mail up until noon hour on Monday, Aug. 27.

She said the company is well aware that some residents rely on e-mail for home businesses.

The problem prevented residents from receiving e-mails but they were still able to send them.

“One of the reasons it took extra time is that we did extra testing to make sure no e-mails were lost,” Lloyd said.

Many subscribers pay for their Cogeco service through automatic chequing and expect to get the delivery they were promised.

Cogeco e-mail subscriber Karen Taylor believes the company should offer some kind of compensation.

“Absolutely, because they’re still getting paid for something that’s not working,” she said. “Just in good faith, especially with all the competition these days.”

Mary Edmondstone, who works through a Cogeco e-mail account both at home and her workplace, would like to see an improvement in communication.

“I wish they could give you a better sense of what is happening, instead of a message saying simply that there’s an issue in Burlington,” she said.

However Kimberly Calderbank. who also works in Burlington, said she understands things can go wrong.

“I had no access to e-mail for two days,” she said. “But I was able to make phone calls and create relationships in that sense.”

Cogeco internet users from the Windsor area to the Quebec border and Northern Ontario also couldn’t access Cogeco email accounts.

Cogeco told its customers the email problem had been resolved as of 9 a.m. on the morning of Tuesday, August 28. However, a full day after the company posted that update, many of its customers were still unable to access their email accounts.

Louise St. Pierre, senior vice-president, residential services, issued an apology online later in the week. She said subscribers with questions should e-mail the company at – including their phone number, name and address in the e-mail. Complaints will be dealt with on an individual basis.

The situation is the latest in a series of controversies Cogeco has been involved in. Subscribers were outraged when the popular news channel CNN was dropped from the regular Cogeco package.

Lloyd said in that case Cogeco sent out a letter and provided all subscribers with a special box which allowed them to get CNN, giving them several months to take advantage of the offer before it expired.

When the offer did expire, however, they were asked to pay an additional $4 a month for a converter or purchase it for $159.

Later the Canadian Radio-television and Tele-communications Commission (CRTC) ruled that TV companies must begin allowing their subscribers to pick cable packages based on channels they want, and drop content they don’t.

The impetus for the CRTC decision is to provide consumers greater flexibility in choosing the content they want to watch given the array of video platforms now available to them.

The Montreal-based company, which operates a cable and telecom system that spans southern Ontario and Quebec, reported a third-quarter profit of $53.2 million.

Rumors are widespread that Rogers Communications is planning to purchase Cogeco.

Providing a Fresh Perspective for Burlington and Hamilton.

7 Comments to: Cogeco ignoring customer pleas

  1. Pol

    November 27th, 2012

    I hope Rogers buys Cogeco. Maybe then we’ll get some technical competence.

    • li

      December 23rd, 2013

      I signed up with cogeco on May of this year (2013). Now I made up my mind to cancel my cogeco account with my home phone and internet service in less than a year. I want to voice my opinion here so that more people can learn from my lesson and dont get fooled by this company. This company made a lot of money out of me by charging me the internet overage usage. So I wanted to upgrade my package to higher level and didn’t mind to pay more for mothly fee. But they didn’t provide my to the higher level package because they said they didn’t have that in my area. Then when I wanted to cancel the account, they charged me $75.00 plus tax for the panelty. This is robbery and their customer service personnels are very rude. In here, I recommand people call this number 1-877-482-5522, they provide high speed internet service for $39.95/month for unlimited usage and their customer service is fantastic. It is worth it for me to pay panelty of $75.00 and go for a much better and cheaper service. I have a version, something like Cogeco so called monopoly wont last long, because there are some other companies are appearing with more compatitive service out there. Pelple need to know.

  2. Alex

    May 9th, 2013

    Cogeco is the WORST ISP of all. They could care less about customers. I wanted to switch from a business to a residential plan, and they wanted me to pay $300 for that switch. I then asked 100 times to speak to a supervisor, and they were so rude that they would not connect me to a supervisor. What kind of a company would reject to connect you to a supervisor? That is ridiculous! I am so mad. They know that they are a monopoly and they could care less about their customers.

    • Ashley

      May 24th, 2013

      I agree cogeco is the worst!! They change their policy’s all the time and never inform the people that keep this company alive. Most recently I didn’t pay my bill for one month so they sent someone to my door, I gave them a check all my service still worked. 3 months later I got behind again only this time instead of sending a notice they cut all my services at once and are telling me they want their money before doing anything — I’m going back to bell… It’s the same price and when you get behind they work with you rather than just cutting your service and saying sorry this is our new policy and the only way to find out about it is getting no service for a week. Yes they cut their services on a Friday do not contact you or allow for payment arrangements Oh yea when I first got their service last year the guy who installed it left 2 of the boxes on the table and they were new boxes looked like a modem thing no power cords for them and just left. I didn’t have a clue what they were or how to hook them up with no power cords to them. Idiots

  3. Cy...

    July 12th, 2013

    Cogeco outsources most of its tech support both on the phone and in the field. You don’t need any skills or education to work for the companies they outsource to. They are a basic call center with under trained staff and even worse supervisors. And their rule is you never give a live call to a supervisor, the sup might call the customer back in a few hours.

    • Rick

      October 31st, 2013

      I can confirm this. I used to work for one of those outsourced call-centers and I left for that very reason. Policy dictated that we weren’t allowed to put supervisors on the phone, we pretty much couldn’t do anything to help anyone. The whole things was a joke, and no one had a clue what they were doing. I was so frustrated I had to leave.

  4. Manny

    October 12th, 2013

    It is interesting to note these comments. We recently moved and having been with Cogeco for 20 years were told that any promotions on the previous account would not be applicable on the new one being created unless we called back. When we argued, the manager said he would put a note for the marketing department to call back right after the move date. We have been in our new house for about a month. Today was my third phone call to Cogeco to resolve this. The run around is appalling. I am a bit distressed that I have provided my money every month without fail to a company that provides no customer service. I am tempted to take this matter to the Presdent and advise him/her how their company is being managed.


Leave a Reply

  • (not be published)