The Worst Company in America


Hate your bank? The airline you fly? Cellphone company?

You can do something about it beyond yelling at them over the phone.

Apparently yelling doesn't do much good.

Customer relations "experts" suggest we often yell at customer service representatives because 1) we just want to vent and don't really expect it'll help, or 2) we are actually in the wrong and hope that yelling will make it right.

There may be a more effective way to make your opinion known.

For the sixth year in a row, The Consumeristis holding its version of "March Madness," bracketing nominated companies and allowing people to vote for "The Worst Company in America." Last year, the title went to Comcast—our parent company.

Among the 32 nominees this year is newcomer British Petroleum. You may recall the company and its CEO made quite a splash last year.

In the first round BP is going up against Toyota, which has had a few problems of its own.

Not much of a contest so far.

At last check, BP was beating Toyota by a 9 to 1 margin. Also new this year, Johnson & Johnson, "whose McNeill division must have set some kind of record for the sheer number and variety of brands recalled from store shelves in a single year". J&J is up against CVS in the first round, and is winning handily.

Telecom and banking companies once again take up most of the slots in the multi-round contest. However, there are fewer airlines this year. Consumerist speculates that's because there are fewer airlines this year. Also, "voters didn't blame the airlines for the TSA's procedures."

Source: Consumerist

One of the most interesting matchups is Time Warner Cable vs. Facebook. The cable company barely beat out the social networking giant as being worse, winning 53 percent of the votes compared to 47 percent for Facebook.

Today's voting pits Comcast against Charter, and RadioShack against Best Buy. Tomorrow a couple of biggies: AT&T vs. Verizon, and Apple vs. Microsoft. I'm always kind of surprised Apple gets nominated, considering its reputation, but maybe the handling of Steve Jobs' health issues is one reason some consumers are angry.

Once the voting ends, the winning company will be presented with the Golden Poo Award.Consumerist says all 32 firms have been warned. The website says the response to the contest this year has been bigger than ever. Perhaps that's not surprising as wages fall, jobs go away, and prices rise. Don't even get me started on bank fees...


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