Dish Network / dishonest practice

CA, United States Review updated:

Dish Network Customers Beware!

Former 14 yr. customer here: I chose Dish Network TV over cable back when Dish Network was the just about the only provider out there. I had to drive 60 miles to find a retailer and then had to install and aim the dish myself using a protractor and compass because there was no installer network like there is today. One of the reasons I chose DIsh Network was the Dish pack was a purchase of equipment while the others were rentals, and I'm not a fan of perpetual renting. Purchasing saves you money in the long term. And when Dish converted to HD programming, I purchased the DVR instead of renting for that very reason. Purchase price: Approx. $500.

About a two years later, I had an unrequested visit from a Dish Network installer who said he was there to install an upgraded DVR to work better with the HD programming, etc. The price there? $150 upgrade. The installer told me the upgrade price was high because I was not a rental customer. Again, I paid it in lieu of endless renting.

Recently, after one of the many little $5 price hikes which Dish justified by adding a premium package (I didn't want or use) "free of charge", I found a better package for a cheaper price (saving $40 per month) through Direct TV. My network viewing had decreased considerably because of streamed video via Netflix, Amazon and Hulu, so I just couldn't see paying Dish Network $85 a month anymore.

Now the real character of Dish Network came through: When I closed my account, the Account Specialist told me that Dish had collected my purchased DVR during the "upgrade" and replaced it with a rental machine. Remember: the Installer had confirmed it was a purchase upgrade when he swapped it out.

When I disputed this, the Account Specialist told me that if I didn't return the rented DVR, worthless to me without the Dish service anyway - but at one time mine, my account would be charged $400. Their version of the upgrade was that they credited me $10 (TEN dollars) for my $500 DVR after they replaced it with the rental. The Account Specialist agreed that it wasn't a square deal but refused to credit me for the DVR purchase I'd made several years earlier. She even had the temerity to tell me that she hoped I would return to Dish and that I could leave the dish setup intact on the roof to make switching back easier. Fat chance.

Bottom line: Dish could have had a customer for life if they'd simply kept their prices reasonable (read: competitive), but they didn't. And the little move of switching a purchased machine for an "upgraded" rental machine, then shafting the customer for the difference, left an angry former customer and ensures that Dish Network has lost a customer - for life. Dish Network cost me $500 but I'd bet disseminating this information as far and as wide as I can costs them more.

I'm not recommending Direct TV over Dish Network (there are too many other entertainment options out there today), but I am advocating avoiding Dish Network. When you see the DIsh vs. Direct TV customer satisfaction commercials on TV, there is merit to Direct TV's claim of higher customer satisfaction.

Charles Ergen, you run a dishonest business.

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  •   Jul 06, 2011

    I've gone over your post, D. Wishart, and would be more than happy to help you! Have you been able to speak to any one of our representatives since you posted this to get it cleared up and resolved? Let me know so that I can further assist. I'll look forward to hearing from you so I can look into the situation more in depth!

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