• Report: #634762
Complaint Review:

DirecTV Inc.

  • Submitted: Thu, August 26, 2010
  • Updated: Sun, September 12, 2010

  • Reported By: Mark — Holly Michigan United States of America
DirecTV Inc.
Internet United States of America

DirecTV Inc. Direct TV, directv.com Bait and Switch, Combative Customer Service, Unethical Business Practices, Internet

*Consumer Comment: Update

*Consumer Comment: You'll soon be singing a different tune!

*Consumer Comment: I agree with Ramjet

*Consumer Comment: Ridiculous

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: you, my friend are a dying breed

*Consumer Suggestion: Direct Tv is Awesome

*General Comment: Dealer

*Consumer Comment: Not a chance!

*Consumer Comment: SO True and I have more

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: 100% Correct

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I'm fed up with DirecTV. I've never seen a company more unwilling to work with their customers. They have been unwilling to even make an effort at basic customer service, and their customer service reps have been combative with me on the phone. Here's what's happed thus far.

1. I signed up for their service at a promotional rate, yet they billed me the higher non-promotional rate for the first month. When I called and questioned this, there was no apology, no refund of the difference, and in fact, the rep I spoke to was very stern and unyielding.

2. When I signed up, there was an offer that stated if I signed up for their Auto-Payment option using my credit card, they would send me a $100 prepaid VISA card (promotional give-away). I signed up for the auto-billing, and still have not received the promised card a year later.

3. The DVR receiver they supplied me is faulty - shutting itself down and rebooting on an daily basis even when the TV has only just been turned on. When I called today to request a replacement unit, they insisted on charging me a $20 fee for shipping to replace the unit. Again, the rep I spoke to was stern, and combative on the phone.

In each situation, their reps have been unwilling to extend even a basic level of customer service. In each case they refer back to their customer agreement, which is a 3-page legal document you never get to see in the sign-up process. There is no opportunity to review their contract terms prior to using the service, and in their words, by using the service, you're "agreeing" to the terms. How can I agree to a contract I've never seen? There's no "meeting of the minds" there. Plus, the customer service reps I spoke to all took an attitude of "we have you locked into a contract, so tough luck buddy." In other words, they really hold the contract you never agreed to over your head and use it as leverage to get out of helping you rather than focusing on basic customer service, and building positive customer experiences.

BEWARE of signing up for their service. You will regret doing business with them. Please also warn your friends and family to steer clear of their service as well. You will be doing them a favor. This company engages in unethical business practices and horrible customer service, then hides behind a customer agreement you never get a chance to review prior to signing up.

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 08/26/2010 07:17 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/directv-inc/internet/directv-inc-direct-tv-directvcom-bait-and-switch-combative-customer-service-unethical-634762. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Ceila - (USA)

I'm back!  I have an update regarding what happened/is happening to me (above report).

DirecTv PROMISED me a refund of $460 within FIFTEEN DAYS.  Four days ago, I checked my credit card.  What a lovely surprise!  A new charge of $355.07 was on my credit card from -- guess who?  DirecTv!

I called them immediately and was told that the charge was a combination charge for NON RETURN of equipment!  I was also told by EVERY person with whom I spoke that, the SAME DAY they charged my credit card, they DID receive my returned equipment!  The charge ALSO included an EARLY CANCELATION FEE!  The early cancelation fee I was and am still being promised a FULL return!

I have been told by several people that I will recieve a FULL refund of $460 within FIFTEEN days but now I am told I must "hurry up and wait."  They'll return my monies in full in SIX TO EIGHT WEEKS!!!

I called my bank.  Since DirecTv has admitted they owe me money and has promised (gag) to send me a check, there is NOTHING my bank can do at this time!  Now I have to wait 30 days and THEN I will file a dispute at which time ALL of my monies will be returned to me by my BANK!

The nightmares SIMPLY NEVER END!!!

If ANYONE has ANY suggestions, PLEASE CONTACT ME!!!  Has anyone ordered and read the book advertised on here about how to get back your money?  If so, PLEASE inform the rest of us!!!



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#2 Consumer Comment

You'll soon be singing a different tune!

AUTHOR: Ceila - (USA)

Just wait until, for whatever reason, you want to disconnect Directv.  The charges against your card, the nightmares, will never cease! 

You said your service went down due to a bad storm which blocked the signal.  I have their competetor and even in the worst of storms, the only time I have lost a signal was when snow piled up on my dish.  I went out and wiped off the snow, went back inside and had a perfect signal!

Once Directv has you, WATCH YOUR BANK CARD VERY CLOSELY!!!  I truly hope none of this does happen to you but I'll bet you dollars to doughnuts your nightmares will begin at any time.  When it happens, will you then come back here and let us know??

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#3 Consumer Comment

I agree with Ramjet

AUTHOR: Stacey - (U.S.A.)

I have had Directv for 8 years and the only time it went out is when we got over 12 inches of snow last year.  I was charged for a NFL season package this year, called them and was credited on the spot!

I had Comcast and everytime the wind blew it went out! They charged me close to $100.00 a month with the dvr - Directv I pay $57.00 and change with the DVR and NO I do not work for them nor receive monies from them

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#4 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Ramjet - (U.S.A.)

Here is the old familiar statement accusing anyone who disagrees with you of working for the company.  Ridiculous!

We also have had very good results with Direct TV.  We do NOT have the highest package, we have no movie packages or anything special at all.  The installers were here on time, had a bad part, drove miles away to get the new part and installed it the same day.  They set up all 3 of our TVs to work with the remote controls, spent time teaching us to use the system and were friendly and helpful.  Great guys.

The only times we've had reception problems was when there were serious storms between us and the satellite.

I just wish there was a way to subscribe to just what I want instead of having to have packages.  It's offensive to me to have to pay for religious channels. They all do this however.

They have done a great job for us.

This does not mean that people are not having problems, it's just important to know that there are people happy with it also.

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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

you, my friend are a dying breed

AUTHOR: Anonymous - (United States of America)

of course they are treating you good, you bought the most expensive pkg.  i can't wait to hear how things go when you try to make changes or downgrade.  anybody who gives this company a raving review is either being paid a lot of money or they work somewhere in corporate.
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#6 Consumer Suggestion

Direct Tv is Awesome

AUTHOR: Brad - (USA)

I am a customer of this company.  Insight Communications in evansville raised our bill. So we considered either dropping cable altogether or switching to satelite.  I have never used direct or dish before. So I wasn't sure which one to go with.  I took my time didn't make the decision in a day. Done some major research.  Read all the fine print I could find. We finally decided on direct tv over dish.  Dish was cheaper however the upfront cost was more.  Now you have to considered before you sign up with satellite service of either option. IF you don't have excellent credit you might as well forget getting the premium promotional rates.  This is a must They do in fact run a credit check.  Now we was qualified with excellent credit for the best rates.  We recieved 1 HD DVR reciever. And 4 HD recievers. We paid No money upfront.  They even offered to hook it up on a sunday WOW!!!!! Cable would never run on sunday.  The appointment was between 8am and 12pm or something like that. Either way the guy showed up at 9am.  We signed up for the highest package.  We did take out the insurance which the rep said was like 6 or 7 a month. However if they had to make a service call it would still cost like 50 dollars.  Now fast forward we have had the service for over a year.  The promotional rate was up and so we got rid of hbo and the premium channels. However we still have more then we got with cable.  Now I wasn't sure how it worked sense it was a 24 month contract. We was able to change services without extending our contract. We are not allowed to upgrade equipment without extending the contract though.  We have had next to no issues with outages cause of weather. During a bad snow storm we had to go out and dump hot water on the dish to melt the ice but afterwards it worked fine. THe picture quality is Out Standing. Way way way better then cable. We have newer HD tvs though. Not old style ones. With older tvs the picture isn't as good cause the direct tv uses HD signals.  The dog chewed up one of the remotes We called they sent us another one it was 15.00 no shipping costs.  When I have called we always get thru right away and Get english speaking reps. Not out sourced to india or some other nonsense.  Now we signed up online. But ending up calling. I can say this. We did not sign up for auto payment. However you must leave a credit card on file for the equipment. They have not charged this any except for the few times we ordered pay per view events.  They offered 100 dollars for me and anyone I got to sign up. THis is given as 10 dollar credits over 10 months. We signed up one person and recieved our credits. Also after a year with the different rate I was able to get them to give me free hd service for 6 months which I'm currently getting.  THe biggest thing is to sign up with Direct tv's direct line Not a 3rd party contractor.  Call 1-800-directtv.  Or sign up at www.directtv.com    Do not go thru a 3rd party company or an authorized retailer they can't give the same deals and have different terms of service.  Also excellent credit is needed for the better rates and no deposits on the equipment.  By the way we recieve The HD DVR reciever free and the other 4 recivers are 5.00 dollars monthly each.
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#7 General Comment


AUTHOR: James - (U.S.A.)

I've been called by Directv 4 times  over the past 8 months. I havent been a dealer for them since October 2001. It's  their atitude that is killing them. They want only dealers doing 24 installs a quarter.

They want those high volume dealers who are here today and gone tomorrow. They don't want anyone who as experience and wanting to do the work right.

The last idiot test i took for them i got 100 on it. You would think that they would  want someone who as 26 years experience in the business.

It's a shame it as all come down to money........and the hell with everyone else.

In all fairness it's the cable industry as a whole that as this type of atitude. Everyone fighting over money

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#8 Consumer Comment

Not a chance!

AUTHOR: Inspector - (USA)

I was a contract installer of direct TV for a while and I would never subscribe to their service.  I think that all of these satellite providers are becomming monsters.  Most of the time they are aware that they have a captive audience and take advantage of that fact.

It is wise advice not to give them your account number for automatic pay.  They will offer incentives for doing so but, it is best to try any service for awhile before signing up for auto-pay or direct pay

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#9 Consumer Comment

SO True and I have more

AUTHOR: Ceila - (USA)

I, too, fell victim to DirecTv and their scams.  Talk about "bait and switch!"  It's been a nightmare and it's not over even though I've canceled.

1)I mis dialed when trying to get through to Dish (I've been with Dish for 8 years but was having problems with them) and thus began speaking with a very nice, "honest," gentleman about the benefits -- and tremendous discounts -- of Directv.  He was supposed to be my "Personal Customer Rep" from that point on.  Everything was great UNTIL I was foolish enough to sign up!

2)My "FREE" receivers were going to cost me over $300 just to SEND them!  When I laughed and told my "Personal Customer Rep (PCR)," he suddenly found a "deal" and sent them to me for $100.  I was lead to believe this included the cost of the monthly rental.  WRONG!  A big fat LIE!  I was still billed a monthly service charge for EACH receiver!  Even one which never worked!!

3)My PCR promised me I would NOT be billed a month in advance.  Another LIE!  Since I signed up for auto pay, they couldn't zap that money out of my credit card fast enough!  (PLEASE do NOT give them ANY of your BANKING INFO!  EVER! For ANY reason!)

4)I was promised I would be billed for only ONE receiver.  I was billed for all THREE even though one did not work -- EVER!

5)After my installation, I had problems EVERY single day!  I was on the phone with DirecTv for hours each day!  There are also the lengthy hold times.  They do offer you the option of leaving your name and number, saying they will call you back and you will not lose your place in line.  Not ONCE did ANYONE return my calls!  What a complete waste of time!!

6)After I signed up, I couldn't EVER reach my so called "Personal Customer Rep"!  And each time I spoke with ANYONE there, the above poster is SO correct, they truly are VERY combative, just RUDE, couldn't care less!

7)Before I had their "service" for even TWO WEEKS, my service went out TWICE.  Each time, they "couldn't" get anyone to come fix it for at least a week and a half!  I did keep the phone number of the gentleman who installed this crap for me just as he told me to, and so I called him.  He came out and fixed everything within an hour and a half!  At MY cost!

8)On at least three separate occasions, I was promised $20 credit for my "inconvenience."  When I got my bill, there were NO credits and, of course, NONE to be found ANYWHERE!  Each time I had been promised these credits, I asked the rep to please notate my account but of course, while they SAID they did, in fact, they did NOT!

9)I've been told SO many lies while dealing with Directv I've lost count!  Whatever they tell you, don't believe it!

10)Both a friend and I attempted to get the $100 for the "refer a friend."  I was told to fill out the forms AFTER installation, which I did.  Then I was told I was supposed to do it PRIOR to installation!  (I still don't know how that makes any sense!)

11)I, also, experienced the constant rebooting of my system and seemingly always at the worst possible times!

12)Almost EVERY program I recorded, I was unable to watch upon playback!  I kept getting an error message, most of the time saying "The signal has been lost" or some such nonsense.  So much for recording a program and watching it later!

13)The extra and exorbitant hidden rates and fees which aren't even ANYWHERE in writing, not even the small print!  Let's not even go there!  There isn't enough time nor space!

14)I canceled my services well before 2 weeks.  If my system was going to keep going down on cloudless days, what would -- or rather WOULDN'T -- winter bring?  I was NOT going to go through winter without TV yet still have to PAY for something I'm not getting!

The gentleman I spoke with when I canceled was, at first, very nice, polite and professional.  He offered me a month of "free" service.  I told him that a month of "free" service meant nothing if I my system won't work so no, thanks.  He then turned VERY rude and belligerent.  I explained to him the MANY reasons I was canceling but he wouldn't listen. 

He told me I would have to pay a $460 "early cancellation fee."  Are you SERIOUS??  What nonsense!  He told me I had 24 HOURS in which to cancel without getting slapped with this ridiculous fee!  I told him that, under NO circumstances would I pay a penny!  I would gladly take it to court.  He threatened to ruin my credit.  I laughed.

15)They did send me a box to send back their equipment.  I have SEVEN DAYS, not just business days but days, in which to return their crap.  The boxes arrived last Friday.  Obviously I could not send them back until today (Tuesday) due to the holiday yet if they do not make it back to DirecTv, I will get slapped with ANOTHER fee of at LEAST $250!

16)I was "credited" on my bill but the credits are SO little, they may as well keep the pennies!

17)On my bill, there it was.  The $460 "early cancellation fee."  I was expecting it.  I had also paid my bill a few months in advance as soon as I signed up, so they already HAD my money!

18)I called them immediately and spoke with a young woman who -- this was a shock! -- was very nice!  I explained everything to her and demanded reimbursement of my "early cancellation fee."  She told me I could only get it IF I had canceled within TWO WEEKS!  What happened to the 24 HOURS?  Who can make any sort of educated decision like this in 24 hours anyway??

She did keep me on hold for quite some time while she spoke with her supervisor.  The end result, thus far, is that I AM supposedly receiving the return of my $460.  She also told me I would have to wait 30 days for it!  I asked her if there wasn't a faster way to get it back and she expedited it for me so now I will, supposedly, get back my $460 in 15 days. 

We'll see what happens.  After getting NOTHING but LIES from them, I'm not going to hold my breath!  But if they do NOT return my money, I WILL be taking them to court!  I also still have to get them to return the money I paid for their "service" in advance which adds up to a few hundred dollars.

While, when I signed up for DirecTv I was PROMISED TONS of wonderful things from DirecTv such as "free" DVRs, MUCH lower bills (NOT!  Mine were HIGHER!), free movies (NOPE!), excellent service (really?  WHEN??  WHERE??), excellent customer service (really?  from ONE PERSON!), free this and that, discounts, the list is SO incredibly long!, you get NONE of these things!  You DO get RIPPED OFF!!!

I immediately returned to Dish.  Now I constantly have service!  A very clear picture and everything they said I would have AND at the price they promised!  When I call, I am not put on hold for extended periods of time and the customer reps are always very polite and professional.

PLEASE!!!  Do yourself a HUGE favour!  Don't even THINK about DirecTv!!!  EVERYTHING to previous poster said is SO true and this is all just the tip of the iceberg!  I know I won't be straying from Dish again!  Their prices are lower than cable, you get more AND when your neighbour's system goes out, if you have Dish, yours WON'T go out!  The longest I've been without service with Dish is about half an hour.

If, for some odd reason, you WANT to get ripped off every time you blink your eyes, then absolutely go with DirecTv!  If this is the case, you'll LOVE them!!!

I'll post again IF I receive the return of my $460 as well as all of the money I put out to pay my bill in advance.

I hope these posts DO help people!

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#10 UPDATE EX-employee responds

100% Correct

AUTHOR: Dizzle - (USA)

I regrettably used to be one of these phone salesmen working for DirecTV's largest outsourced call center companies, PRC, LLC. Everything you're saying is 100% accurate. However the salesmen/women are trained to believe that all of this false information is actually fact. Anyone who has been working there for over a couple of months discovers the truth. Hence the high turnover rate among their employees, and hence why I am no longer one of them.
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