Read on about a minor gripe with a major satellite provider.
I’m going to skip the usual news about what comes out this week because it’s The Untouchables, The Patriot and very little else, and tell you a story about how I, as a loyal DirecTV customer, have been trying to upgrade my equipment.
On/about 5/29, I set up an equipment upgrade appointment from the 3 LNB H10 setup to the 5 LNB H20, so I can get the new HD channels running through MPEG-4. I set up the appointment for 6/16 be…ween 1-5. I do this because, well, I was on vacation, so sue me. I call to DirecTV around 4 on that day, and find out the installer is still coming, which was fine. Around 4:45, I get a call from the installer (a 3rd party named Advanced Technologies, who’s calling me from a West Virginia area code, which is a good 30 miles away from where I live) who says that the installer is running behind, and should be there between 5-6. No problem I say. At 6 I get a call from the tech who is in Fairfax and looking to come out to my area. Bear in mind, I’m only 2 miles west of South Riding. When I talk him out to where I am, he says “Oh, that’s way too far”, and says that he’ll be there around 7:30 (keeping in mind the appointment timeframe is 1-5). So I hang up on him, not because he’s going to be late, but because I really have lost faith in a guy who’s severely late AND isn’t really sure when he’ll get there. I call DirecTV and tell them all this, so they credit me for the missed install and reschedule me for the 30th, which was the next available weekend. Fine, no problem. I go to get dinner with my wife, and the tech has apparently got in some sort of accident. I feel bad, so I call and say sorry, but I rescheduled. I sent an escalated email through DTV’s customer portal and say basically ‘hey, can whoever comes out at least Mapquest my address before coming out?’ and also tell them that maybe perhaps they should revisit their relationship with Advanced Technologies.
So Saturday (6/30) comes, my appointment is between 8-Noon. I call DTV around 11 to see if the guy is still coming, he is. At 11:20 I get a call from Advanced and it says that the tech is running a little behind, plus they have to get another tech, because I have a large TV. This next part isn’t verbatim, but it’s close:
Me: Why do they need another tech for this?
Them: Well, you have a large TV, don’t you? They need to move the TV.
Me: I do have a large TV, but I’ve already got a Dish and receiver in my house, and there’s no need for a tech to move the TV when a) the receiver is there and b) I can help move the TV if worse comes to worse.
Me: Can you tell me when they’re coming out?
Them: Well, we’re not sure, because they have to get another tech.
Me: That’s not acceptable. I had a tech tell me he was going to be two and a half hours late before, I have stuff to do, give me a general idea when to expect him.
Them: Well, we’ll have to call you back.
Me: Please do.
I leave my house because a) I’m not going to see a tech in 40 minutes, plus b) I had an appointment I made at the last minute that I decided to show up for. So I leave and come back. This tech has apparently got in an accident (I had to listen to the message 3 times to get that), and can they reschedule. I call DirecTV and speak with a supervisor named Lisa and tell her the whole story (never mind I was on hold for 15 minutes beforehand). She does the usual soft skill stuff and puts me on hold to speak with Advanced Technologies. She has me on hold for about 40 minutes and basically says that she can only stay on hold with me for another couple of minutes before I have to call them myself. So I say that well, as a supervisor, aren’t you kinda supposed to resolve an escalated issue right there? She says yeah, but then she starts giving me excuses as to why she can’t stay on (she’s got other issues, she’s got representatives to coach, etc.). So at this point I question her abilities as a supervisor, hang up, and call back to cancel my account, because I’d rather pay more for Dish and Cable at this point than keep DirecTV right now. The cancellations rep was nice, gives me free stuff, and reschedules me for 7/14 between 8-Noon.
So at this point, I’m on my 3rd appointment, and I’m looking at FIOS and other options right now, and when (not if) they miss the service call, I’ll probably switch over and ask you to cancel whatever’s been done as an employee account on my behalf. I’ve also sent another escalated email to DirecTV to discuss just how good they are at customer service.
So as you can understand, I’m a little bit disturbed, all for something that should last 30 minutes. So that’s it for me this week, and as always high definers, keep the brightness low and the resolution high!