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Witnesses Set for Senate MVPD Customer Service Hearing

The Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has tapped the cable and satellite execs it will be questioning about customer service, pricing and more.

That is according to a copy of the witness list for the June 23 hearing on MVPD customer service.

The witnesses will be Tom Karinshak, senior VP, customer service for Comcast; John Keib, executive VP and COO, residential services, for Time Warner Cable (now part of Charter); Kathleen 'Kip" Mayo, executive VP, customer operations, Charter; Rasesh Patel, senior VP, production management, AT&T Entertainment Group (DirecTV); and Kathleen Schneider, senior VP, operations, for Dish.

Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.), chair and ranking member, respectively, of the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, confirmed they will hold a hearing June 23 at 10 a.m. on the state of the pay TV industry, signaling their displeasure with it.

McCaskill, who formerly chaired the Senate Commerce Committee's Consumer Protection Subcommittee, has been hammering the cable industry on rates and customer service for years, including trying to amend STELAR, the satellite reauthorization bill, to include a bunch of provisions to put cable's feet to the fire.

The subcommittee has been looking into the customer service issue, and some of its findings could come out at the hearing.

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.