Author Topic: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!  (Read 1379 times)  

Offline Cuechick

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Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
« on: November 14, 2016, 10:08:46 am »
For over a year I'd been debating getting rid of Direct TV. I felt I could get all my entertainment needs via streaming except my local channels and at the suggestion of someone here, I ordered an antenna for those. However, I procrastinated for months even opening the box, let alone setting it up. Finally last week I decided I was done. My contract with them had expired the last year and though I still didn't know if the antenna worked, all the channels I watched could be streamed if need be. So I made the dreaded call, dreaded because I knew they would not make it easy.

Boy did I underestimate their reserve. I got a seemingly nice female who sympathized (LOL) and then made an offer that sounded pretty good, $40 off my bill and just a 12 month commitment. That part was big, cause I did not want another 2 year contract as clearly the price would go back up and I'd be in the same position but worse with 12 more months tied to them. Before finishing the order she sent me their "verification" department to review and confirm the order, the mandatory final step. Now I was speaking to a woman with an accent and clearly English was not her first language. Still all looked fine till she suddenly says, oh I'm sorry, this has to be a 24 month contract. WTF!?! I was livid, immediately I said "No, No, NO! Send me back to the other operator, I want to go back to my original request to cancel." she tried to calm me down but I repeated my request telling her I knew they'd try to pull something like this and then I was disconnected.

I immediately called back, got a man named Tom, who I'm sure could tell I was very angry and he proceeded with a bit of a curt attitude to cancel my service. I did receive a confirmation that it was canceled. Then Saturday I received four calls from them of which I answered two. One guy named Warren claimed to be my account rep and that he could see I had no contract. "I know that I have no contract." he continued to try to make offers but I just kept repeating "I am done." I then got another call from another man saying he was from the "verification" department. I said, "I told you no, that I am done, please don't call me again." Another call was attempted and I did not answer and blocked the number.

My service was set to end at Midnight last night and indeed as of this morning it was done. I had already hooked up the antenna and yay, it works great! I get all my local channels, no problem! Now that brings me to later this morning when I get another email from DirectTV, this one (some of you may have seen this coming) confirming my NEW CONTRACT! Another WTF moment! Despite me clearly NOT agreeing to the terms with their so called verification dept...it seems they decided to ignore this and put the order through 3 days later... which also includes an early cancellation clause that states I could be charged $240...

So I'm forced to make yet another call and have to talk to two people to get this supposedly taken care of. Mia, my "resolution specialist" claims to have put through a waiver of the cancellation fee. A waiver for something that should not be on my account at all does not really make me completely happy. Even she said "It's clear you never confirmed this contract." I did get her name and employee # but she said she could not send an actual confirmation, of course not.

I am seriously considering getting a new card for the account I used to pay them, just in case. They actually have it on the cancellation email that they can charge it if they want for any outstanding fees. After hanging up, I logged onto my account and saw they already had the first bill for this non-contract on my account as well. Do I need to call again about that... sigh. They were also suppose to send a new DVR as I was downgrading to a non-HD model to also cut cost. I will be curious to see if that shows up. You also have to wait for a box to return your DVR equipment (the satellite is yours to keep!), it should come within 7 days... though my account "Rep" Warren said it could take 14 "just to be honest".

Ugh... it has been a bit of a nightmare but I am so happy to be free of them and to be saving about 1100.00 a year! I signed up for Hulu, which has a 5.99 a moth deal for the with commercials option right now for 1 year. Between that, Acorn and Netflix I should be set!

My advice if you want to do this is to stick to your guns, don't let them try to talk you into anything else. It is only $20 a month to get out of a current contract which might still save you a lot of money. I know many that opted to pay that rather than to stay.

Thanks for reading through this long rant. Just curious, do you think I should get a new card just to be safe...? Also wondering if I need to call back again to make sure that "new contract" is fully removed? Ugh... 
« Last Edit: November 14, 2016, 10:59:44 pm by Cuechick »
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    Offline CegAbq

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #1 on: November 14, 2016, 07:24:04 pm »
    I don't know about a new card, but I'd make a report to your state's Attorney General's Consumer Fraud Division!
    And I think the Federal Trade Commission also has a reporting system!

    Even if reporting doesn't do much for you personally, it will help help document abusive incidences for future group action to be taken against them.
    Carol in 'burque

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    Offline telracs

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #2 on: November 14, 2016, 07:52:49 pm »
    you should call your credit card company and inform THEM that you will not be responsible for any charges from Direct TV after the day BEFORE you made the first call to DTV. 

    Offline Mike D. aka jmiked

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #3 on: November 14, 2016, 08:27:45 pm »
    That's not encouraging. I'll probably be dropping Direct TV in 4-5 months when my commitment is up. I've been a customer for 17 years, but I've had it with the nickel-and-dime billing and the buggy DVR software.

    I'm really not looking forward to the process.


    Mike

    Offline CegAbq

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #4 on: November 14, 2016, 08:35:10 pm »
    you should call your credit card company and inform THEM that you will not be responsible for any charges from Direct TV after the day BEFORE you made the first call to DTV.
    Yeah - should have remembered that move as well. Definitely do this. One can ALWAYS dispute an unauthorized transaction.
    Carol in 'burque

    Life's journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to Skid in sideways, champagne in one hand, strawberries in the other, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and shouting: Damn-What a ride!

    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #5 on: November 14, 2016, 11:06:06 pm »
    I don't know about a new card, but I'd make a report to your state's Attorney General's Consumer Fraud Division!
    And I think the Federal Trade Commission also has a reporting system!

    Even if reporting doesn't do much for you personally, it will help help document abusive incidences for future group action to be taken against them.

    That is great advice, I will report them for sure...they really are snakes. I have had easier break ups with x-boyfriends!
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    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #6 on: November 14, 2016, 11:09:36 pm »
    That's not encouraging. I'll probably be dropping Direct TV in 4-5 months when my commitment is up. I've been a customer for 17 years, but I've had it with the nickel-and-dime billing and the buggy DVR software.

    I'm really not looking forward to the process.


    Mike

    I hear ya! I recommend recording your conversation, if you have a mac by chance it comes with Quick time player that includes an easy to use audio recording option. Then just speak on speaker phone through the process. If you don't have a Mac I'm sure you might have some comparable software... or can download some.
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    Offline Sandpiper

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #7 on: November 15, 2016, 05:15:56 am »
    Isn't Direct TV part of AT&T now?  I have never had cable or satellite.  NEVER.  I'm in a condo.  We have a good rooftop antenna.  (This building is about 50 years old -- built before cable.  Comcast cable is wired on the outside of the building.)  I stream -- pay for Amazon video via Prime, Netflix, HBONOW, Hulu without commercials, Showtime within Hulu, and CBS All Access.  I have both an Amazon Fire TV and an Apple TV.  Oh yeah, I have TiVo for my DVR.  I've had that since '04.  When I get a new TiVo box, I always get lifetime service with it.  Very rarely have problems with TiVo. 

    I have AT&T land line, cell phone, and U-verse for my ISP.  AT&T is pretty miserable to deal with also.  Heard recently on the news that the cable industry has more customer service complaints on record with the government than an other industry. 
    « Last Edit: November 15, 2016, 07:35:45 am by Sandpiper »
     
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    Offline JumpingShip

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #8 on: November 15, 2016, 05:35:54 am »
    I hope you still have your confirmation that it was canceled. It seems that should be the key document that you canceled your service.

    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #9 on: November 15, 2016, 08:03:08 am »
    I think that streaming ala cart as you are Sandpiper is the way of the future. Another reason they are digging in their heals and trying to make it hard for customers to leave.

    By the way, I was really pleasantly surprised at the quality of the antenna reception. They also have a bunch of interesting channels you don't get with cable. A lot of old TV shows and even a cool old movie channel called The Works that has all these old MGM films.

    Yes Mary, kept everything! I also think it is very telling that I've not received the new DVR which was suppose to be overnighted. Clearly, whoever put my order through missed that detail. Clearly it was not the original deal I was proposed.
    « Last Edit: November 15, 2016, 08:05:22 am by Cuechick »
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    Offline Sandpiper

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #10 on: November 15, 2016, 10:00:10 am »
    I think that streaming ala cart as you are Sandpiper is the way of the future. Another reason they are digging in their heals and trying to make it hard for customers to leave.

    By the way, I was really pleasantly surprised at the quality of the antenna reception. They also have a bunch of interesting channels you don't get with cable. A lot of old TV shows and even a cool old movie channel called The Works that has all these old MGM films.

    Yes Mary, kept everything! I also think it is very telling that I've not received the new DVR which was suppose to be overnighted. Clearly, whoever put my order through missed that detail. Clearly it was not the original deal I was proposed.

    The biggest problem cable has is the customer service.  Improve it / make it good -- I bet business would increase. Cuechick, who is your ISP?  What are your choices?  Only two here in Chicago -- Comcast cable and AT&T DSL or U-verse fiber.  So I deal with AT&T.  For the most part all my AT&T stuff works, but when it doesn't . . . I dread calling them.  When I upgraded to U-verse fiber, mistake on initial billing.  Told me I wouldn't be charged for new modem and installation.  I was.  Took a while to get that corrected.  I got billed $99 for something re my land line that was in error.  Took many calls / few months to get that reversed.  Couldn't believe when one guy said he would correct it and actually did.  :o  :)   Called about something recently, person I was talking to (I have his name and employee number) said my current monthly charge for U-verse fiber internet is permanent -- will never go up.  We will see.  You're going to hear me nationwide if it ever does. 

    In the Chicago area there are a good number of OTA / antenna channels besides the three networks.  There's also network sub-channels, simply local channels, and two PBS channels and their sub-channels.  So . . . OTA, streaming, DVDs -- there's always a big choice re what to watch on TV.  :)  :)  :)
     
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    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #11 on: November 15, 2016, 01:05:54 pm »
    I have At&t also. I had to pay for my modem but at the time it was really the only option. Now there is Spectrum which is a combo of Charter & Time Warner I think... I pay $52 a month for my internet. I have seen deals for Spectrum but after the 12 months it will go up and I don't want to pay more than I already am. It also works and is fast enough to stream what I need to stream. I have not really dealt with them much on CS end but I don't think any of the companies are easy.

    :)
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    Offline Atunah

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #12 on: November 15, 2016, 01:25:58 pm »
    Ouch.  :-X

    I had briefly thought about getting Direct TV, or even Dishnetwork as at the time they had a german package. But we live upstairs in apartments and besides the fact that it would be next to impossible to get a dish anywhere without the leasing office griping, I didn't want to do a 2 year contract thing in case reception was bad. I don't do well with long term contracts. I don't have a contract phone either. Just makes me feel weird. And as someone with a phone phobia, I'd be locked in til the end of times as having to do such phone calls might do me in.  :-\

    We have uverse, but its not a contract. I think there was a price guarantee for a year,  many moons ago. We don't have many options, 2 to be exact. Uverse and Grande com, which is fairly local. I would love to switch to grande as they have super fast internet, but they don't carry channels I must have. Those channels are some of the reason why I haven't been able to cord cut yet.
    Luckily our service with ATT uverse has overall been pretty good. 3 times over the years we had routers die and some other issues having to do with network. They always either send someone next day, or explained everything over phone with hubby and send a new thingie. He can do all the hooking up stuff himself of course. If it was just me, I'd have to have someone do it for me.

    I am still waiting until the offerings outside of cable/fios/etc are more robust and where I can get what I need. I looked at some of the packages like through sling TV and by the time you add all the cost with other stuff, I would end up paying the same as I do now with uverse. Its crazy. And I'd have way less channels. I am hoping a couple of years more and the market will have settled and everything is available a la card, but at affordable pricing. Or there is no point.

    They must really be desperate now with many folks cutting cords to be so aggressive about keeping customers. Just horrible what they done to you Cuechick. Just disgusting.

    Offline Sandpiper

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #13 on: November 15, 2016, 01:33:38 pm »
    I have At&t also. I had to pay for my modem but at the time it was really the only option. Now there is Spectrum which is a combo of Charter & Time Warner I think... I pay $52 a month for my internet. I have seen deals for Spectrum but after the 12 months it will go up and I don't want to pay more than I already am. It also works and is fast enough to stream what I need to stream. I have not really dealt with them much on CS end but I don't think any of the companies are easy.

    :)

    AT&T wants to buy Time Warner.  It's up to the government if it will happen.  I pay $57 per month for 18 mbps.  AT&T employee Darcel, #DE720H said it will never increase.  During the conversation I asked a few times; he repeated that.  PERMANENT / NEVER INCREASE. 
     
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    Offline Atunah

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #14 on: November 15, 2016, 01:50:02 pm »
    Oddly enough I just got an email a day ago that they gave us more speed and lowered the price. We paid $62 plus a equipment fee of $7 for 18mbps. Now its $60 total for 24mbps. I wish I could get Grande, they offer 200 and more. But that depends on also the building. Our stuff is so old and shared with neighbors. Old wiring, cables, etc.
    Moving is my only option, which I been wanting for years and years.

    Offline Sandpiper

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #15 on: November 15, 2016, 01:58:08 pm »
    Oddly enough I just got an email a day ago that they gave us more speed and lowered the price. We paid $62 plus a equipment fee of $7 for 18mbps. Now its $60 total for 24mbps. I wish I could get Grande, they offer 200 and more. But that depends on also the building. Our stuff is so old and shared with neighbors. Old wiring, cables, etc.
    Moving is my only option, which I been wanting for years and years.

    Old building.  Old wires.  That's me too.  Actually U-verse fiber goes to a point outside this building.  Then onto old AT&T land line wires into building and to condo units.  It does work.  Knock on wood, no problems with internet connection and streaming.
     
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    Offline Atunah

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #16 on: November 15, 2016, 02:07:21 pm »
    Old building.  Old wires.  That's me too.  Actually U-verse fiber goes to a point outside this building.  Then onto old AT&T land line wires into building and to condo units.  It does work.  Knock on wood, no problems with internet connection and streaming.

    Yeah, we have been really really lucky so far. Outside every night when internet slows to a crawl. Not sure how uverse exactly works, but the box thing, what is it called is right next to our building. There are 26 buildings with a total of 176 apartments sharing that same box from attuverse. So we figured when everyone comes home it slows down. A installer somewhat confirmed that to us. But the wiring we have is barely usable at this point. Nobody will run any new wiring so they make do as much as they can. And over the years we had different providers so they all do things differently. I have so many wires running in the wall, under the baseboard, under carpet, painted over old connections from outside, I have no clue what most of it is. Neither do the installers.  ;D

    As long as my streaming works including the 4K, I am good. My husband though is doing more techy thingies with servers and other thingies and he gripes all the time. I think though he would gripe no matter what we used.  :-X

    Offline Sandpiper

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #17 on: November 15, 2016, 02:45:08 pm »

    Yeah, we have been really really lucky so far. Outside every night when internet slows to a crawl. Not sure how uverse exactly works, but the box thing, what is it called is right next to our building. There are 26 buildings with a total of 176 apartments sharing that same box from attuverse. So we figured when everyone comes home it slows down. A installer somewhat confirmed that to us. But the wiring we have is barely usable at this point. Nobody will run any new wiring so they make do as much as they can. And over the years we had different providers so they all do things differently. I have so many wires running in the wall, under the baseboard, under carpet, painted over old connections from outside, I have no clue what most of it is. Neither do the installers.  ;D

    As long as my streaming works including the 4K, I am good. My husband though is doing more techy thingies with servers and other thingies and he gripes all the time. I think though he would gripe no matter what we used.  :-X

    This is a 60 unit, 5 story building -- one building, not a complex.  All ages in here.  So there is probably a number of units that don't have computers.  I'd bet many / most have cable, therefore use Comcast for their ISP if they do have computers.  I doubt there's many (if any others?) in the building that use AT&T U-verse fiber for internet.  Knock on wood, it works well for me 24/7.
    « Last Edit: November 15, 2016, 04:25:33 pm by Sandpiper »
     
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    Offline Gertie Kindle

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #18 on: November 15, 2016, 03:41:37 pm »
    I kicked Direct TV to the curb a few years ago. I have Hulu Plus w/o commercials, Netflix and Amazon Prime. I also have Starz for a few months out of the year to watch one series.

    Unfortunately, I can't get local channels even with an antenna. I'd have to get a 20 footer on my roof and I can't see myself climbing the roof to readjust it every time we have some wind. The problem is that the closest stations are over 50 miles away and there are no repeater antennas sending a signal my way. With an indoor antenna, I'd have to move my TVs to the front of the house by the window in the kitchen or GS's bedroom. With that, I can get ABC, UPN and a couple of Spanish language channels.

    I've adjusted very well without local channels.


    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #19 on: November 16, 2016, 04:55:44 pm »
    That is good to hear Gertie. I think we can adjust to anything... its not really like we are without Enterainment options. If you like British TV shows and movies, I recommend AcornTV, they have a free month trial and its only 4.99 a month. The price of a frappachino around these parts. I also see its now ava through Amazon.
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    Offline The Hooded Claw

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #20 on: November 16, 2016, 05:10:10 pm »
    It is strange, I've come to accept that canceling any subscription will be a chore, but two years ago when I cancelled my Cox cable tv and my landline phone, it really wasn't a problem. I had no difficulty with the phone company cancelling, and nocontact at all from them after cancelling. I think I had to talk to two people to cancel my cable tv, and I did have two phone calls from the cable company encouraging me to resubscribe, but they weren't aggressive, didn't sign me up for anything I didn't ask for, and basically weren't a real problem.
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    Offline Gertie Kindle

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #21 on: November 16, 2016, 06:18:18 pm »
    It is strange, I've come to accept that canceling any subscription will be a chore, but two years ago when I cancelled my Cox cable tv and my landline phone, it really wasn't a problem. I had no difficulty with the phone company cancelling, and nocontact at all from them after cancelling. I think I had to talk to two people to cancel my cable tv, and I did have two phone calls from the cable company encouraging me to resubscribe, but they weren't aggressive, didn't sign me up for anything I didn't ask for, and basically weren't a real problem.

    A couple of years ago, the cable companies probably didn't consider the few subscriptions available as a threat. I think once HBO went subscription, the cable people sat up and noticed. That's why they're being more aggressive about keeping their dwindling customer base.


    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #22 on: November 17, 2016, 08:57:45 am »
    Another important note if you are considering canceling a service like DTV that requires you to mail back your equipment. Make sure you copy down the tracking number and screen shot when it shows it was received. I read a post about a guy who tracked his return, saw it made it back but did not document it. Later he saw on his credit report that he'd been reported by them as never received. He has spent two years trying to get that removed!

    I did just see that my account now shows the new contract fees they tried to charge me for are gone so at least there is that. I did post about my issues on twitter, companies hate social media posts, it really scares them and I found it very effective in situations like mine. I even included a link to this post!

    Oh and I even filled out a survey they sent me about why I canceled them. I love how they promise in the email it will take just 5-7 minutes but then just before you start they up it to 10-15! The lying just never ends...  ::)
    « Last Edit: November 17, 2016, 12:39:19 pm by Cuechick »
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    Offline Cuechick

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    Re: Breaking Up is Hard to Do ~ Especially from Direct TV!
    « Reply #23 on: November 17, 2016, 08:59:24 am »
    A couple of years ago, the cable companies probably didn't consider the few subscriptions available as a threat. I think once HBO went subscription, the cable people sat up and noticed. That's why they're being more aggressive about keeping their dwindling customer base.



    I think thats very true, also the addition of high quality original programing by Netflix, Amazon etc.. has been a big game changer!
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