Monday, February 09, 2004

Letter to Very Big Evol (tm) Satellite Company

Right, so more belligerent than I wanted to be, but I'm that frustrated. I doubt anything will get done, but at least I wrote to them and said, "You are not meeting expectations." Gah. I sound like such an MBA.


Dear Sir/Madam:

I'm writing to give some feedback concerning the service provided and in addition, would like to request some additional programming options for those of us who are not big television watchers but what would like to have more options than local viewing.

In terms of customer service, I've been very unhappy from the first day when I signed up. Even to sign up for the new service required that I stay on hold for over an hour before a representative was able to take my order.

In another instance, I was receiving a message on my television screen to change a video card. This message obscured half of my screen and I was unable to watch programming. This went on for over a week before I was able to contact someone at Very Big Satellite Company.

In another instance, I never received a first bill and was charged a late fee when I received the second bill. It took me over a week of calling and being on hold for 45 minutes or more on each occasion before the situation was resolved.

On more than a few occasions, the satellite feed has 'frozen' for 15 to 20 minutes, if not longer, on the local channels, and whenever it rains, the stations go out. Once the local channels froze for over an hour and there was absolutely no weather at all. The non-local channels did not have this problem, but that's not comforting when you want to watch the local channels. I was unable to get any assistance on this problem and was sent through many, many phone menus before being informed I'd have to call during business hours.

However, calling at business hours means being on hold for at least 45 minutes and while it may be okay once or twice to have to be on hold for that length of time, every time I call in to Very Big Satellite Company, it's at least that much.

Finally, I'm unhappy with the programming changes at my complex. I subscribed to the Basic Plus package for $11.99 in August, which includes the local channels plus A&E, CNN, TBS, MSNBC, and the ABC Family Channel. That option was removed from my service options, leaving me with a choice of a $35/month package with 50+ channels or just local service. I chose local service because I don't watch enough television to justify over 50 channels.

I'm not sure, at this point, what the advantage of keeping your service is over getting an antenna, since I'm receiving very little value for the money in terms of service and programming. I chose Very Big Satellite Company rather than going with an antenna because I was expecting a certain level of service and consistency in reception and programming. My expectations on this level has not been met.

I'm also writing to ask for reinstatement of the Basic Plus package at my apartment complex. While I enjoyed the free satellite preview you provided with us, I realized that I would not watch most of the channels, hence didn't feel the need to subscribe to it, but I did enjoy having the option of TBS and A&E since there are shows there that I do enjoy and would watch regularly. However, those two additional channels are not worth $35/month.

At this point, if asked, I would not recommend Very Big Satellite Company to anyone, nor would I choose another apartment complex that used the service exclusively.

Thank you for your consideration.

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