More Ways DirecTV Screws Their Customers

I’ve been screwed before by DirecTV.

Seems that the satellite TV mega-corporation just continues to want to find ways to screw over its customers, evidenced by my most recent experience…which I would like to outline here in an effort to make others aware.

Here’s the Cliff Notes’ Version:

  1. HDTV is becoming commonplace so Pauly D buys an HDTV Tivo receiver for DirecTV. It costs him $399.
  2. One day DirecTV tells Pauly D that they are going to be rolling out tons of new HD channels, but unfortunately that means that his current HDTV receiver isn’t prepped to receive them. Pauly D is going to have to buy a NEW one, which he can pay $99 for. The other receiver he has, he can hook up to his other HDTV (which had been a basic receiver) and at least get the HD channels he’s had so far.
  3. One day, the older HDTV receiver doesn’t get any HD channels. DirecTV tells Pauly D, he should have read it on the website, but that HD receiver no longer gets HD channels. Let me repeat that: my HIGH DEFINITION TIVO for DIRECTV no longer gets HIGH DEFINITION CHANNELS. He can buy a new sparkling nice HD receiver for $199 if he wants to get HD channels on his HDTV.
  4. Oh, and by the way — the $199 you pay (whether you pay DirecTV or buy it at Best Buy) doesn’t mean you own the HD receiver. It’s just a “lease fee.” And you also have to sign up for two years, and if you end before those two years, you’ll also have to pay $480 in early termination fees. Oh, and you also have to pay $5.99 a month for an extra receiver. Oh, and f*ck you.
  5. I complain. I ask for the manager’s manager in customer service. She tells me before she transfers me that he’s not going to give me anything more and that I should have just given up. When the new guy comes on, the main floor manager at DirecTV customer service, he tells me the same thing, then I get his badge number for future reference.
  6. The next morning all my HDTV channels, on every receiver are gone. DirecTV tells me on my TV that I am not authorized for any HD channel.
  7. I call DirecTV, seems someone mysteriously removed all the HD access from my receivers the night before. They reactivate them, but I smell a rat.
  8. I have no recourse. Screwed again.

11 comments on “More Ways DirecTV Screws Their Customers

  1. AmyL - April 10, 2008 at 1:21 pm -

    Yep, they’re evil. No 2 ways about it. Did you also know that if you have a receiver that you have “leased’ from them (even if you paid a fortune for it, so you think you own it) and you unplug it and don’t use it they will charge you $200 for not returning it right away? Yep, the last CSR I fought with told me that. It’s an on-going battle. Now that they’ve canceled ‘Passions’ I see no reason to continue with them.

  2. Chris - April 10, 2008 at 2:30 pm -

    Did Microsoft upgrade you to Vista?

    Did Ford upgrade you to a Expadision?

    Did At@t upgrade you to a Blackberry?

  3. Pauly D - April 10, 2008 at 2:43 pm -

    Chris – No they didn’t, but… Microsoft didn’t suddenly tell me that Windows would no longer surf the web… And Ford didn’t suddenly make it so that my car wouldn’t drive… And AT and T didn’t take away features away from me or reduce the amount of minutes I use each month…

  4. Stacey - April 10, 2008 at 3:39 pm -

    Clearly DirecTV doesn’t know who they’re dealing with. Wait til your next book comes out.

  5. Catherine - April 10, 2008 at 7:30 pm -

    Holy crap, I would be positively livid. I’m livid for you.

    This makes me glad I still have one of those old fashioned wooden dial-up TVs, although winding it up is a pain. I know that sometime next year, there will be no more normal TV, it’ll all be digital HD or whatever. Well, it will be a good excuse to buy a flatscreen.

  6. Chris - April 11, 2008 at 5:37 am -

    I have an old MPEG2 HDDVR (TIVO) fron Dtv. I still get all the HD I used to, just not all the new ones. Dtv said they would upgrade me for only $99.00 for the new MPEG 4 HDDVR. They are installing the receiver and a new dish tomarrow. With almost 100 HD challels how could I say no! HD is great!

  7. Jerry - April 11, 2008 at 10:55 am -

    I smell a corporate mole in this Chris fellow – getting paid to monitor the Blogosphere for any Direct TV criticisms to refudiate.

    But more importantly. Chris, can you tell me where I can get a Ford Expadision? That’s the new line replacing the Expedition, right? No need to rush a response. I can wait until tomarrow.

  8. Jennifer Lankenau - April 17, 2008 at 1:01 pm -

    You’ve been having issues with these people for some time, haven’t you?

    There are some times when I don’t miss cable. Except when “Lost” is on. But then I just crash my friends’ pads and force them to watch it with me. Mwaahaahaa…

  9. Susan - April 18, 2008 at 6:32 am -

    They are bad. And they didn’t even buy you dinner first.

  10. Mark - April 18, 2008 at 7:10 am -

    You talking about the HR10-250 DirecTivo? Mine still gets the “old” HD channels it always got (ESPN on 73, etc.)

  11. sarah - April 20, 2008 at 3:09 pm -

    “Yes. Well the changes to your contract were on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet, stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard'”

    there really was no excuse not to review it..

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