BBB Spotlights Satellite Service Complaints

“In the past three years, more than 53,000 customers have complained to the Better Business Bureau [BBB] about satellite TV providers,” the BBB reports, making these providers “one of the most complained-about industries,” according to a BBB spokesperson.

Dish Network May Shut Down Millions of DVRs

According to the Associated Press, Dish Network may be forced to pull the plug on millions of DVRs in a patent-infringement dispute with Tivo.

Dish DVRs Threatened

According to a report in Multichannel News

Dish Network may be forced to disable as many as 8 million of its DVRs [digital video recorders] within a month, after the satellite TV operator lost an appeals court decision Thursday in its years-long battle with TiVo. Moreover, Dish could even lose the ability to offer a DVR altogether, according to Sanford Bernstein analyst Craig Moffett.

DirecTV Lawsuit

An Arkansas woman is suing the satellite TV provider …

The lawsuit alleges that DirecTV holds customers to a contract that they need a magnifying glass and the Internet to read. It also says retailers don’t tell customers about the contract, which includes a provision for a fee if the service is canceled less than two years after purchase.

The latest tiff is over which court will hear the case.

Future of the Set-Top Box

Per Michael Willner

As the FCC explores a process to determine whether a technical solution can be developed to allow television set-tops to operate on any cable or satellite provider, America’s cable companies have joined in that effort, pledging their support in developing a cross-platform set-top. But at least one satellite company has gone on the record to state their opposition to their set-tops being part of the solution.

Deceptive Ad Charges Against DirecTV


The state attorney general’s office received more than 50 overnight complaints against DirectTV after Rob McKenna filed a lawsuit against the company for “deceptive and unfair practices.”

That follows hundreds of complaints filed against the satellite television business, which McKenna said Tuesday was a huge number for a company operating in the state.

“These guys are off the charts,” McKenna said in a meeting with reporters. “We’ve had more complaints about them than any other (company) in America this year. So they really do stand out.”

Latest Suddenlink TV Spots

This one is the most recent in the the “Hard/Easy” series:



And this one takes a (much-deserved) shot at our direct satellite competitors:


Buyer Beware, Part 4

From Texas to Missouri to Maine, DirecTV is not having a very good year:

Debbie Seavey of Kennebunk says she signed a contract with [DirecTV], and that from day one, it hasn’t worked. However, the company won’t let her out of her contract.

The company’s response?

A [DirecTV] customer service representative says that once you sign a contract, you will have to pay, whether you are satisfied with your service or not.

Suddenlink offers bundles of TV, Internet, and phone services with no contract required.

Buyer Beware, Part 3

Monday, we noted concerns about AT&T and DirecTV contracts and early cancellation fees. Those concerns are apparently not isolated to one family but shared among several.

Case in point:

Elizabeth Koziatek, of St. Charles, plans to cancel her DirecTV service this week, but she’s wrangling with the company over whether she should be on the hook for a $240 cancellation fee. She bought U-Verse on Aug. 14, and she said representatives at both AT&T and DirecTV assured her she wouldn’t pay a penalty to cancel her existing satellite service

Buyer Beware, Part 2

Earlier this month, there were questions about whether or not local TV channels were available through DirecTV. Now, there’s concern about contracts and early cancellation fees.