Forced to be a Customer...

C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
All,

I am new to these boards, and new to Dish Network as well. However, before you welcome me, let me give a brief history of my situation, and let you decide. And sorry for the length of the post, it's a LONG story.

This isn't meant to be a Dish bashing, but merely an outlet for my frustrations and a last ditch effort to illicit some help from these boards.

Last month, I moved from Northern Virginia to Vermont. When I to Vermont, I found that my DirecTV programming would not work, and that DirecTV did not offer locals in my area. I would also not qualify for Distance Locals because I (apparently) can receive a grade A signal for NBC and a grade B signal for CBS. This wasn't an option so... Dish Network to the rescue... or so I thought.

I called my local Dish retailer. Nice guy, willing to do anything for me. He told me that I wanted a 322 and 522 because there was a special DHP deal going on. I said ok, proceeded to give my information and waited. He also told me that the 522 was a good replacement for my DirecTV w/ TiVo.

After waiting about a week, and not hearing back from the retailer on an install time, I find out that the 522 is delayed and won't be available for another couple weeks.

So, I complain letting him know that that is information that I should have been told when I signed up. H says that he wasn't aware... long story short, he put in a demo model for me to wathc until the 522 was available.

So, Last Wednesday (Dec 3) I get the call, "The 522's are in." So I go to pick it up. Install it and call the number to get it all activiated. Well, things don't go as planned. I'm on the phone for about 3 hours trying to get BOTH the 522 and 322 activated. No go... It's after midnight at this point, so I give up and go to bed.

Next morning (Thursday) still nothing on the screen for both the 322 and 522. I call customer support again, we fiddle fart around and still no go. So, I actually decide that I need to do some work, so I give up until later that night.

Later Thursday night, I finally can give the situation the time it needs. After 4 hours of customer support, I finally learn that the CSR who originally put in the R00 and S00 numbers got the numbers transposed not just for 1 of the receivers, but for BOTH of the receivers.

So, I officially now have Dish Network after weeks of waiting, and 2 days of trying to get the receivers activated.

Even tho' it took a long time to activate, and I initially had problems, I was still excited. (I'm a geek... I love new toys).

So, I start surfing around the channels. I notice that I don't have my locals. So, I give a call back to the CSRs, and they tell me that it can take up to an hour to get locals activated. I say ok, and head to bed again.

It's now Friday evening, I finally get a chance to set down and watch my new dish. The CSR was right, it takes some time to get the locals activated. However, they have no guide data. I figure no big deal, DirecTV was the same way with their TiVo... I'll give it a couple days.

So, I'm surfing around and the first thing I notice is that the pixelation and PQ are just totally unwatchable on the locals. Even the movie channels are just horrible. (No, this is not an RPTV, it's a 32 TV)

I call my installer, he says that he's seen that pixelation before, and there is not a lot he can do about it. I ask about re-aiming, and he says he'll be out on Monday to take a look.

So, I'm now starting to get really pissed. The PQ is horrible, and to top it off, I can't seem to get my 522 in to Single Mode.

During this whole process, I asked every CSR I spoke with how to get the 522 in to Single Mode. Not a single person had a clue until I finally spoke with (I believe it was Greg) on Monday. According to him, the Single Mode won't be activated until late summer '04. I think to myself, this isn't what I was told, and is he sure. He says summer '04 at the earliest, and I figure, this isn't what I signed up for.

So, I had had enough. I am usually a pretty easy going guy, but I decided that if I was going to pay for bad reception and a DVR that wasn't what it was sold as, then I was going to cable and my HTPC.

So, Monday evening, I call to cancel. I tell them I am a DHP and that my 30 days are not up yet. The CSR laughs at me and tells me that I only had THREE days. I tell her, "No. My retailer told me 30 days to cancel." She laughs again and says no, DHP is 3 days, and you have been a customer for 5 days. I then proceed to tell her the situation (very calmly mind you) and she says that there is nothing she can do about it, she will note it in my account, and my retailer would have to call to get it canceled.

Well, my retailer is stuck in Boston or some such place, and won't be back up until Tuesday/Wednesday. I say fine, and leave it at that.

Tuesday, I get a call from my retailer. He has me conferenced in with the Dish CSRs. I say I want to cancel, she says, "OK. We'll charge your CC $240 for the cancellation fee." I start to dispute them, and she says, "It's in your contract!" Funny thing is, I don't have a contract with Dish Network. I haven't signed a single piece of paper.

So Tuesday, long story short. I CAN'T cancel. They won't let me go. MY retailer tells me not to worry, he still have a few tricks up his sleeve.

So, I'm not panicking, Wednesday, he tells me that he'll hear back by COB. Nothing.

Thursday, he calls me back and says that I can't cancel. He can't use his magic, and that he will call his distributor to see what they can do.

That brings me to this morning. I get a call from my guy. His distributor can't do anything, so now I am stuck.

That brings you up to date, so let me summarize for you.

- Promised that the 522 would replace my TiVo in functionality.
- I created my "Home Account" on Wednesday
- Didn't receive all channels until Friday
- Was told 30 day satisfaction guarantee by retailer
- Was told THREE days by Dish on my 5th day
- Never signed a contract
- Horrible PQ (in my opinion)


Feel free to bash this, flame this, praise this, whatever you want to do. This was my first Dish experience, and it will be my last. If anyone asks me what I think about Dish Network, I will tell them to steer clear of it.

Honestly, I think this is bad how they are handling this situation. They would rather have an forced customer than a non-customer.

-Casey

P.S. A derivation of this post has been sent to Charlie as well.
 
G

glenn z

SatelliteGuys Guru
Dec 3, 2003
141
0
Dispute charge on CC. Tell them to come pick up the equipment and let them know you didn't sign a contract and they better not try to charge you a bogus cancellation fee.
 
jerryez

jerryez

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Sep 8, 2003
4,546
1,019
Pensacola,FL
The "Who" response just makes you look more like a troll, than no response at all.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
jerryez said:
The "Who" response just makes you look more like a troll, than no response at all.

I'm not a troll. Just looking for some advise, thats all.

I was merely asking who Bob Hallar was in case he had the same experience or may have been able to help out.

-Casey
 
S

SlicerMDM

SatelliteGuys Guru
Sep 7, 2003
132
2
Definately, dispute any charges they put on your CC.

If you really didn't sign anything, just tell them to show you the piece of paper that you signed accepting any of their services. They can't produce what doesn't exist. They have zero legal recourse with you. The retailer/installer, on the other hand, might have some issues with E* to deal with since they didn't have you sign a contract.

Are you sure you didn't sign ANYTHING? It's been a while since I my setup installed, but if you signed even something simple, it might have had 'contract' terms and stuff on the back, or bottom of the page or something. Anyway, I'm just asking. It seems strange that the retailer/installer would setup all this stuff and not have you sign anything at all.

EVEN STILL, it's obvious that you were told false information on a number of occasions and they didn't deliver the services you were told you were getting. It's not like you kept the service for a long time, THEN, decided you didn't want it. 5 days isn't long, especially with all the initial problems (stupid CSRs!) getting things setup. The hardware didn't function like you were told.

Anyway, continue to bitch, complain, and dispute any charges on your CC. If this is the way E* has to get customers, I'm glad I'm making the switch to D*.

Good luck!
 
AppliedAggression

AppliedAggression

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 26, 2003
538
6
Connecticut
Here's some advice you probably don't want to hear. First off your situation is horrible, I agree. They should just let you cancel, especially with all the problems you've had. Here's my advice. Things do happen, and even though they are not handling them the way they should, you should just keep your service. You are one of the unlucky few who goes through this type of crap, it happens with any company. But you should realize that if you really can't get directv, that dish network is your best choice. True, their DVRs don't have name-based recording, or a season pass feature, but they do have features that Tivos don't have. Like caller-id, PIP (soon), and a UHF remote. My suggestion to you is just let this go, because in the long run, it'll be better for you. Complain and complain about your situation, try to get compensation, but don't cancel. The 522 is a good receiver, and you always have great updates to look forward to. Yes, i know that you expected them to be there in the first place, but if you can deal with what they have for now, as a geek, we always look forward to updates, and you know there's some good ones coming.

It's easier said then done, i understand you might not want to keep dish just for the principle, but if you can calmly look in your future, i think you'll understand that you just got unlucky and that dish network too, is a great company and it'll be your best choice in the long run. Hope this helps.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
AppliedAggression said:
Here's some advice you probably don't want to hear...

snip for space

It's easier said then done, i understand you might not want to keep dish just for the principle, but if you can calmly look in your future, i think you'll understand that you just got unlucky and that dish network too, is a great company and it'll be your best choice in the long run. Hope this helps.

Thanks Applied. That is one option that I have/had. I turned it down mainly because the PQ was so low that I found it to be unbarable to watch on anything larger than my 20" TV.

And now it's the principle of it. Yes, I got screwed... Yes, I am angry... But the lack of caring from their CSRs just has me baffled. I even offered to pay them for the time that I actually DID have recption.

As of now tho, the receivers and dish are all boxed up, and the cable is installed. And I must say that the PQ is MUCH better.

-Casey
 
M

MikeF

SatelliteGuys Pro
Dec 2, 2003
195
0
I don't know if it would do any good but I know if I were in your place, I would fire off an email telling this story to ceo@echostar.com. It certainly cannot hurt. Good luck
 
rad

rad

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Lifetime Supporter
Sep 7, 2003
10,608
4,221
Dripping Springs, TX
Try calling 866-443-5162 and see if one of those folks in the executive offices can assist you.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
MikeF said:
I don't know if it would do any good but I know if I were in your place, I would fire off an email telling this story to ceo@echostar.com. It certainly cannot hurt. Good luck

Yup. I did that. No response yet.
 
AppliedAggression

AppliedAggression

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 26, 2003
538
6
Connecticut
I can't help but wonder if your PQ is really that much worse than everyone elses. PQ isn't the greatest, I agree, but if you were satisifed with Directv's PQ then I don't see why you wouldnt be satisified with Dish's. They're pretty much identical overall.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
AppliedAggression said:
I can't help but wonder if your PQ is really that much worse than everyone elses. PQ isn't the greatest, I agree, but if you were satisifed with Directv's PQ then I don't see why you wouldnt be satisified with Dish's. They're pretty much identical overall.

I would have to agree. But I can't get anyone at Dish to even care. I have had both DirecTV and now Dish, and from what I saw... DirecTV was better than Dish. And Dish locals were just horrible.

But I supsect that's because they are using their OTA signals to rebroadcast... pixelation of a bad OTA signal is just plain bad.

-Casey
 
V

video62

SatelliteGuys Pro
Sep 26, 2003
385
0
caeyathompson said:
He also told me that the 522 was a good replacement for my DirecTV w/ TiVo.
I know this is a pretty grey area, but if the 522 was presented as an equivalent replacement to a DirecTivo then I'd call that material misrepresentation. Only you know what was promised compared to what was delivered.

Functionally, the 522 isn't identical to a DirecTivo and an important feature appears to be unavailable until late summer of 2004.

You may have some success in small claims court and be able to get the money you plunked down plus the cost of service that you must maintain during the DHP period.

I would not go the small claims route unless you really want to get rid of Dish and their gear.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
video62 said:
You may have some success in small claims court and be able to get the money you plunked down plus the cost of service that you must maintain during the DHP period.

I would not go the small claims route unless you really want to get rid of Dish and their gear.

Thankfully, I haven't paid them a dime. They do however have my CC number, as well as my SSN.

They "say" that they will only use the SSN for security purposes, but I highly doubt that.

I have already told my CC company (Chase) that I will dispute any charges from Dish Network, and the CSR I spoke with at Chase actually laughed. I asked why and she said that this was probably the 10th Dish Network dispute she had done in the last few days.

Makes you wonder.

All-in-all, I am still hoping for an amicable resolution to this matter. As of now, the ball is in Dish Network's court.

-Casey
 
D

deathopie

SatelliteGuys Family
Nov 20, 2003
44
0
Casey, is it adelphia that you went with? I'm in southern vermont. i had them before, but went with dish because of their lack of hd and their ever increasing prices. I kept the cable internet, but the price went up on that due to dropping cable tv. Now hd is available; abc, nbc, hbo, + espn soon. All for about the same as dish with locals, at100 and hd pak. Bye Dish!
 
Stargazer

Stargazer

Supporting Founder
Supporting Founder
Sep 7, 2003
16,565
340
Western WV
The retailer is quite capable of refunding the money on the system since Dish Network lets him use the DHP hardware on another customer.

Since the retailer was misleading I would tell him to refund the money and that he is responsible for returning you the money, not Dish Network, for misrepresentation. Scare him a little, maybe that will help.
 
C

caeyathompson

Thread Starter
SatelliteGuys Family
Dec 4, 2003
73
0
deathopie said:
Casey, is it adelphia that you went with? I'm in southern vermont. i had them before, but went with dish because of their lack of hd and their ever increasing prices. I kept the cable internet, but the price went up on that due to dropping cable tv. Now hd is available; abc, nbc, hbo, + espn soon. All for about the same as dish with locals, at100 and hd pak. Bye Dish!

Yup... Adelphia it is. Not my first choice in programming, but they do fit the bill.

I was able to get their antennae service (no stb required) for $17/ month.

This was perfect, as I am now able to connect my HTPC and get all of my DVR functionality on all of my TVs.

And believe it or not, the picture is amazing.

-Casey
 
M

Matt_Stevens

SatelliteGuys Family
Nov 5, 2003
110
0
Casey, WHY DON'T YOU DISPUTE THE CHARGES?! You were lied to. Period. If you paid by credit card, DISH is screwed.
 

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