Tonight I decided I was going to sit down and watch the Pittsburgh Penguins take on the St. Louis Blues. I first tuned in to Fox Sports Pittsburgh. The game wasn't on there. The next logical choice was the Versus network. They showed a tremendous amount of NHL games last year and almost every Penguins playoff game that wasn't on Fox Sport Pittsburgh in 2009. Needless to say, Versus is a must have for a hockey enthusiast.
As I tuned in to Versus this evening, the following message was waiting for me:
Unfortunately Versus is no longer available on DIRECTV. DIRECTV understands how important NHL is to our customers and we apologize for the inconvenience. Comcast, our largest competitor, has forced us to pull down this channel. Comcast charges us fees to air Versus, and they are now demanding an unfair and outrageous increase in those fees. In these difficult economic times, we do not want to pass this increase on to you, our valued customer, se we are standing firm in the negotiations on your behalf. For more information go to http://directv.com/versus.
I would give DIRECTV the benefit of the doubt in regards to their poorly written statement, but I've been a customer who's called in with too many problems. Let me just name a few... The day DIRECTV was to be installed in our new house the technician showed up 8 hours late. He didn't finish the job for three days. He brought his wife and kids with him to finish the job on the third day. His kids terrorized our cats. He didn't properly install our dish and we got crappy signal strength the first month we had DIRECTV. We were not informed that DIRECTV did not have our locals (FOX, NBC, CBS and ABC) in HD and we were not allowed to tap into the national feed. That meant no Super Bowl, NHL Finals, NBA Finals, NCAA Tournament or NCAA BCS bowl games in HD. The worst part about it was that nobody knew when they'd be available in HD. I called once a month for an entire year and even had a guy use the F-bomb on me while telling me he didn't have a clue when we'd get locals in HD and that nobody in the entire organization knew either. Last Sunday I called to cancel my NFL Sunday Ticket (it shows every NFL game in HD every Sunday) and was informed that I was unable to do so. I would instead have to continue paying for it. However, when I asked if I didn't have NFL Sunday ticket and wanted to purchase it midway through the season, I would be able to. I've had to have one of our receivers replaced and would have had to pay for it if I didn't pay an extra five dollars a month for receiver insurance. When that receiver crashed, so did all of our dvr'd programs.
So, needless to say, we've had our problems with DIRECTV and that's why I don't believe them when the above message portrays empathy towards their customers. Like any large technical service company DIRECTV lacks personal accountability. You all know what I'm talking about. It's the, "I'm sorry sir or madam, I certainly understand your frustration, but we here at XYZ company are unable to change our policy on your matter" bull crap. DIRECTV has perfected it and should teach a class on how to be the most unempathetic bunch of azzholes this side of the Equator.
So, when I see DIRECTV use words like "unfair" and "valued customer" I have to laugh. If DIRECTV had any empathy for their customers they'd get this Versus problem remedied immediately and stop using us as pawns. However, I have a feeling that will not be the case. DIRECTV will continue to play the victim while Versus and DIRECTV customers lose out.
I can't wait for the day our DIRECTV contract ends.
Vent session over. :)