Blow up your television

Editor's note: There's a sweet irony to this post; it is National TV-Turnoff Week. Synergy, baby, synergy.

Whoops. My fault. I put it out there to the universe – and see what I get?
I’ve been wrestling with television.
Satellite television.
I watch about five channels on any regular basis: Food TV, Discovery, NFL Network, ESPN, the Travel Channel.
Mostly, I listen to Sirius Satellite Radio, which is a perk if you have Dish.
Only I have to get the 200-channel package to get Sirius.
Why not just get Sirius in the car – and then get the $49 docking station for the radio and run it through my stereo system?
That was the debate I was having in my head. It was the message I sent to the Universe.
And the Law of Attraction made the decision for me.
Last month, I dumped my land telephone line with AT&T. Bundled with that was my Dish contract.
“You’d like to keep Dish, correct?” the person on the phone said.
“Yeah, but I need to dump HBO and Cinemax.”
“No problem, we’ll go with America’s Top 200 package, which includes all the great music choices with Sirius Satellite Radio. Anything else I can do for you today?”
“No, thanks.”
Tuesday, I get home to no satellite signal.
“OK, I see the problem,” Todd at Dish said. “AT&T didn’t debundle the package.”
“What’s that mean?”
“Can I put you on hold for a few minutes?”
“Sure.”
“Ahh, sorry for the long wait,” Todd said about five minutes later. “Ahhh, it means you’d have to start all over as a new customer and I’d have to rebuild your package from scratch.”
“And that means?”
“You’d have to pay the $50 activation fee, set up the account with a new credit card and pay the first two months. Oh, and we’d have to send out a technician to re-install new equipment, meaning a service call.”
“Todd, why would I want to do that?”
“Ahhh, well, there’s nothing we can do here at Dish. AT&T bundled it and they messed up. I wish I could just turn it back on, but I can’t.”
“So you’re willing to lose a five-year customer because you can’t just re-activate the account.”
“Ahhh, yeah. Sorry.”
“So my options are to pay you about $200 to recreate the account, or what?”
“Our we ship you out a box to send back the equipment.”
“Todd?”
“Yes, sir?”
“Send the box.”
And the decision is made.
I’ll get Sirius, which I wanted anyway, for substantially less than satellite or cable television.
And rely on the goodness of my friends when football season rolls around.

4 comments:

RachelRenae said...

Hey, Todd sounds like good people, but phone companies are just ridiculous.

Kimbolina said...

It's amazing how nobody cares about thier long-term customers anymore. I've found that to be true in businesses outside television, too. The bigger the company and profit, the less important the little individual customer.

Stevo said...

Funny thing.....I just ditched all our Charter stuff.

Jason said...

Dish keeps screwing up our bill and it annoys the hell out of me and Robin. She has to call them and stay on hold for 15-20 minutes each time. I keep thinking I should cancel, but then I think about how much I want to watch the classics and the Giro and the Tour and I change my mind. They've got me by the balls.