Comcast Partners with YMCA in $15M Deal

Left to right: Mayor Kenney, David L. Cohen, Darrell Clarke and Jackie Joyner-Kersee. Photo by Fabiola Cineas.

Left to right: Mayor Kenney, David L. Cohen, Darrell Clarke and Jackie Joyner-Kersee. Photo by Fabiola Cineas.

On Monday, in a series of announcements, Comcast delivered on its commitment to narrow the country’s digital divide.

At Olney Elementary School in North Philadelphia, David L. Cohen, Comcast’s senior executive vice president and chief diversity officer, announced that the company, as part of its Internet Essentials program, will award a total of $100,000 to 10 local non-profits that provide technology-related resources to the communities they serve.

And later on at Philadelphia’s Columbia North YMCA, Cohen announced Comcast’s new $15.3 million multi-year partnership with the YMCA of the USA, a deal that will allow the company to support the YMCA’s academic achievement programs for youth nationwide. Comcast announced that it will also donate a total of $50,000 to five YMCA centers, one in Philadelphia, Central Maryland, Memphis, Houston, and Indianapolis.

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Comcast to Buy Out Ed Snider’s Stake in Flyers

The Wells Fargo Center, home of the Flyers and Sixers, at night

Photo by PHL Approach (license)

Comcast will buy out Ed Snider‘s 24 percent stake in Comcast Spectacor next month, gaining full ownership of the Philadelphia Flyers, the Wells Fargo Center and the hospitality and entertainment division, Spectra.

Ed Snider created Spectacor in 1974 to combine the two related things he owned, the Flyers and the Spectrum, into one umbrella company. Comcast bought 63 percent of Spectacor in 1996; Snider remained as chairman with a minority ownership stake.

“Ed was a visionary in the sports and entertainment industry and is deeply missed,” Comcast Chairman/CEO Brian Roberts said in a release. “He planned for this transition and, thanks to his thoughtful approach on succession, Comcast Spectacor is in a strong position. I’m very excited we are able to carry his spirit with us by bringing the company, its leadership, and its thousands of employees fully into the Comcast family.” Read more »

Comcast to Provide Wireless Phone Service by Mid-2017

Brian Roberts

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts announced on Tuesday that the cable company has plans to launch a wireless service by mid-2017, which means that Comcast customers may soon be able to purchase cell phone service as part of a bundle of services like cable TV and home broadband.

To launch the service, Comcast will rely on its 15 million Wi-Fi hotspots and use airwaves leased from Verizon, the WSJ reports. Read more »

An Earthquake Shook Philadelphia Five Years Ago Today

Comcast Center

A photo I took on the day of the earthquake five years ago, if my photo archive timestamps are correct | Photo: Dan McQuade

Five years ago today, my world shook — literally.

Five years ago today, I worked on the 17th floor of the Comcast Center. I worked a 6 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. shift, which was almost up. Then, the shaking started.

I actually knew it was coming. While scanning Twitter, I saw a handful of tweets from people in Washington, D.C. They reported shaking. When my desk started to shake ever so slightly, I knew we were getting an earthquake.

It was over quickly. It was not that bad. The main sight I remember was the rooftop pool across the street from the Comcast Center — the water was going back and forth for minutes after the quake ended. Some of my coworkers were terrified — a few people just left, immediately. But once people figured out it was just a small earthquake, and not something more serious, we were fine.

Then came an announcement over the loudspeaker. Whoever was making it seemed out of breath. “There has been,” the voice said, and then a loud pause and an exhale, “an earthquake.” This person now sounded terrified. There hadn’t been any structural damage to the building, the voice said, and work could continue. Those who evacuated should return to the office to finish the day. We shouldn’t be worried.

The tone of his voice said otherwise. Some of my coworkers, previously calm, were now scared. What did the Disembodied Comcast Voice know that we didn’t? Read more »

Olympic Champ the New Spokeswoman for Comcast’s Internet Essentials

Jackie Joyner-Kersee, the newly-named spokeswoman for Comcast's Internet Essentials program.

Jackie Joyner-Kersee, the newly-named spokeswoman for Comcast’s Internet Essentials program.

It’s Summer Olympics season, but athletes and longtime champions are being recognized for accomplishments aside from their physical feats, too. Comcast announced today that it has enlisted Jackie Joyner-Kersee as the spokeswoman for its Internet Essentials program. Joyner-Kersee is a six-time Olympic gold medalist and has had a successful philanthropic career since retiring from Olympic competition in 1998.

Joyner-Kersee was the first woman to win back-to-back gold medals in the heptathlon (that’s the track-and-field competition that combines a whopping seven events: 100-meter hurdles, high jump, shot put, 200-meter dash, the long jump, javelin and 800-meter run). She is also the first African-American woman to win an Olympic medal in the long jump and the first woman to score 7,000 points in the heptathlon.

So what does this have to do with Comcast and Internet Essentials?

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Comcast Customers Can Now Pay Bills in Cash at 7-Eleven

Image via Pixabay.

Image via Pixabay.

Things just got more convenient for (some) Comcast customers. They can now pay their bills in cash at a local 7-Eleven.

Through a partnership with PayNearMe, a California-based company specializing in electronic cash payments, Comcast announced Wednesday that its cash-paying subscribers will now have the option to pay their bills close to home.

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Pa. Attorney General Urges Comcast Customers to Come Forward Following $100 Million Lawsuit

andrewhuynh265/iStockphoto.com

andrewhuynh265/iStockphoto.com

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane is reviewing Washington state’s recently-filed $100 million lawsuit against Philly-based cable giant Comcast and urging the state’s customers to come forward if they think they were misled by the company.

Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson announced the lawsuit Monday, claiming that Comcast illegally deceived customers into paying the company tens of millions of dollars by misrepresenting its Service Protection Plan and charging customers unnecessary fees for credit screening practices and service calls.

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And on the Third Day, Protesters Visited the Comcast Tower

Demonstrators protest outside the Comcast Center in Philadelphia, Wednesday, July 27, 2016, during the third day of the Democratic National Convention.

Demonstrators protest outside the Comcast Center in Philadelphia, Wednesday, July 27, 2016, during the third day of the Democratic National Convention.

Ten protesters received $50 citations from Philadelphia Police after they flex-cuffed themselves to a railing in the lobby of the Comcast Center on Wednesday afternoon, according to Police Commissioner Richard Ross.

The demonstrators “couldn’t have been more peaceful,” Ross said. They were removed from the lobby, given their citations and sent on their way, in keeping with the city’s desire to get through the Democratic National Convention without having to arrest any of the thousands of people who have taken to the streets to protest a variety of causes — the convention itselfHillary Clinton, police violence, environmental issues, etc. Read more »

Comcast Will Have All the Olympics You Could Possibly Ever Need — And Then Some

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts | Photo courtesy Comcast

Comcast CEO Brian Roberts | Photo courtesy Comcast

Remember the Olympics? The world’s social and political climate may have shadowed this summer’s grand sporting event, but the games are still happening in less than two weeks. About 207 countries and 10,500 athletes are expected to participate, and Comcast says it will capture it all. The company has been working all along to bring fans a viewing experience of the future, they say.

For the Olympic enthusiasts out there, Comcast and NBCUniversal will record every single event and have a projected 6,775 hours of Olympic content available, including live, on demand and online streaming content.

If you sat down to watch that content straight through, you’d be at it for 250 days.

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