Letter sparks wave of complaints about cable firm

A reader appears to have hit a nerve with expats here when he criticized Amnet for its cable television service.

The reader, Gary Mathews of Escazú, said that he received e-mails from more than 50 persons Thursday as a result of his letter that was published in A.M. Costa Rica.

Mathews noted in another e-mail that the consumer division of the economics ministry was looking into Amnet and its adherence to its own contract. If anyone wishes to call the ministry direct they can call 800-CONSUMO and file a verbal complaint, he said, adding that if the agency is inundated with calls they may accelerate their investigation.

“The Gringos and some Ticos are livid,” said Mathews. “I received a response from a hotel chain that advertises to their prospective clients that the hotel provides Fox News and CNBC in order to attract North Americans and as an added perk. When some of their clients arrived and found out that they did not have the channels as promised they became angry. Clients are hard to obtain and if they think that they have been misled they will not return.”

Amnet shuffled the channel listings and put a number of favorite expat channels, like Fox, into an upgraded package.

To see these premium channels requires a special box, and some readers complain that Amnet is slow to deliver the needed device.

What galls Mathews and others is that Amnet still is advertising CNBC even though it does not seem to be available. He said one of the unhappy customers is a lawyer who has had long discussions with Amnet management.

‘The only thing that people want is what we have paid for,” he said. “We uphold our end of the contract by paying for the service in advance!! We do not get the same respect in return. This issue will not go away soon, it will only get worse because in Costa Rica businesses for the most part do not assume responsibility for their actions.

Amnet is owned by Millicom International Cellular S.A., a European firm.

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