We had a very simple request for Dish Network to keep our business for the last 13 years. They needed to send my sister a different DVR box and swap the old one that failed to do its job. Since they refused to do so, we went to Time Warner Cable.
The Dodgers on Time Warner Cable was not the primary motivator. It was when my sister called Dish Network and tried to get technical support for her device, she had to do the generic trouble shooting flow chart and then after that did not do anything to her satisfaction I said we should jump the ship and we did. All we wanted to do was to swap the DVR unit out with a replacement one.
Our current bills were the following:
Local Phone Service 45.00
Now its around 145.00
We are saving around 34.00 a month switching to Time Warner Cable, but with the amount of money they paid for the Dodgers and how other programming providers are milking all video content providers for money, I do expect the savings to be eliminated in the next two to three years.
Hopefully Time Warner or our new cable overlords Charter Cable do not scare us away. Only thing I do not like about Dish Network is that they have to use contracts for new customers or equipment upgrades. I wish pay television was not a pain as it is now.
The sentiments I have been stating on the Dish Network Facebook page have been amplified. Los Angeles Times columnist David Lazarus has promoted the idea of a la carte pricing to help solve the crisis with Viacom and AMC for DirecTV and Dish Network respectively.
Content providers force feed their entire assortment to the programming distributors making the cost of providing the programming more expensive which helps drive our bills up. Viacom is deceiving customers by counting their east coast and west coast feeds and their HD channels as separate channels telling customers they have 26 channels that they could lose when Viacom only has 15 main channels on the DirecTV platform.
Because distributors have to carry the minor channels that have little or no interest, we are kept hostage where AMC has been removed from Dish Network and no Comedy Central for the DirecTV folk. In an a la carte world, we would choose the channels we want to pay for. Unfortunately as what Lazarus states “the typical viewer watches about 17 channels on a regular basis”.
Perhaps there would be incentives for us to add channels like WE which is part of the AMC network family that Dish Network is not really keen to carry or incentives for people to add Logo or Palladia if you are a Viacom customer from DirecTV.
If Canada can try out a la carte pricing, we should be required to offer this to help reduce bill creep where an average programming package and 2 receivers cost almost over 80 dollars now.
I would like to encourage readers to contact your US Congress member and your US Senators to make sure we can get some reform happening. We should not be required to pay for programming that is rarely watched. To update Bruce Springsteen’s song it feels like there are 257 channels and there is nothing on.
Today is July 1st and Dish Network got disconnected from AMC. My sister loves their programs, but I am only the person paying the bill. So this means no Breaking Bad, Mad Men or Walking Dead for the millions of Dish Network customers.
So what are you going to do my fellow Dish Network customers? If you are still under a contract like myself and countless others we have to use workarounds from visiting torrents or getting legal copies of programs from Amazon or iTunes.
Is it about AMC being greedy due to having three or four successful programs? Is it about a jilted business deal about HDTV programming with Dish Network? Perhaps it is about both issues that makes it a bloody mess.
Just be careful if you switch content providers, because they can also have contract problems just as much as AT&T U-Verse having problems with AMC recently, but they did kiss and make up.
My contract ends on August 6th and Dish Network might lose me if they do not negotiate properly with AMC.
Until then fire up your XBOX 360 or Playstation 3 and buy your programs a la carte.
As a customer of Dish Network since 2001, I am facing the possibility of leaving Dish Network. For the possibility of not having the AMC channels is one reason why my household is considering the decision. Our contract does not end until August. We are paying $77.94 including taxes. I am going to explore the options of moving to DirecTV or Time Warner Cable.
My contract ends August 6th. Hopefully Dish and AMC can resolve their corporate pissing fights. During the FX and Dish fight we stuck it out, but it seems that Charlie Ergen likes to pick fights often.
Right now my bill is $76 with $1.94 in taxes.
Part 1: DirecTV
DirecTV is America’s leading satellite television provider and they are also hoping that many of Dish’s customers leave for their service.
Problem is DirecTV is more expensive after the promotional period. It is honestly a hassle to switch pay television providers, and it may sound great with their promotions to get the DirecTV package cousin at 94.99 and expect the same amount in taxes where you will likely pay 96.99 as your monthly bill.
DirecTV does sound sexy, but I am not going to bite on their deal. Paying $240 a year more than Dish Network is very high of a price to pay. Sadly doesn’t AMC realize that what Dish Network wants to pay them is better than having their content pirated?
Continue reading Thinking About Leaving Dish Network
We are faced with another carriage dispute for Dish Network. AMC, also known as American Movie Classics is going to be removed soon from our Dish Network service.
Dish Network said they resented the fees that they had to pay to transmit the networks of AMC on their service because they said there was low ratings. But Walking Dead and Mad Men have generated exceptional audiences for AMC.
AMC has been moved for the time being at channel 9609 to annoy the executives at AMC where their channel used to reside at channel 130. My sister was yelling recently wondering where the network was residing until I had to give her the news.
For the time being the channels of the AMC networks are not removed, but there is a possibility that this will happen. I know Charlie and the Dolan Family of AMC/Cablevision want to make the highest profits possible and not alienate their customers, but it seems there is so much bad blood between these two groups it leads to customers being collateral damage.
If there is no renewal expect AMC affiliated networks such as AMC, WE and IFC to disappear July 1st. AMC thinks its retaliation for the 2.5 billion dollar lawsuit when Dish Network ditched their carriage of their HD networks from their corporate cousins Cablevision. But I think it is also Dish making sure that our rates do not go sky high through the roof as well.
Walking Dead and Mad Men may be exceptional programming, but going from 26 cents a month to 50 cents a month may be rather extreme, perhaps a gradual increase to 35 cents a month might be a more palatable compromise so we do not get more bill creep.
No content delivery platform is perfect, there will be carriage issues with Direc TV and even Time Warner Cable. Perhaps we need an outside mediator that could work a deal between the parties so we can get the networks we want and a fair price for all parties.
Many of us are fed up that our bills are eclipsing $70 to even $100 dollars a month. I do recognize we want high quality programming, but the content providers are pricing themselves out for many people where they want to cut the cord and buy shows ala carte from places such as Amazon and ITunes.
Maybe we need ala carte pricing so we can design our own channel lineups and pay for the channels we honestly want and need.
It just seems that the content providers are working hard to price themselves out of the market no matter what provider you have for your entertainment dollar. I know we have capitalism where people can march with their feet to a new provider, but when you join Verizon Fios, Dish Network or even DirecTV you end up getting into a contract to help pay for the free installation and other basics that lead you towards joining them in the first place.
I am not asking for federal regulations that allow people to get out of contracts because the television providers failed to negotiate with the content provider or the content provider is asking for an excessive amount of compensation during renegotiations.
However, I am asking for the simple request of knowing when Dish Network or any other provider might have contract problems in the first place so people would not tie themselves to contracts and be fully informed of their choices. I signed a new contract in August for HD programming with Dish Network and I did not know that Dish would have issues with Fox.
This regulation would probably cost less than a few hundred dollars for a secretary to make a table on their website listing when their programming contracts expire for the leading providers such as Comcast NBC, Disney and Viacom as an example.
October 1st happened, and it became like a sudden thud for millions of Dish Network customers when Fox Networks decided to pull back their regional sports networks, the National Geographic Channel and FX. Then next month Fox will pull back their broadcast channels if Dish Network can not satisfy Fox’s demands.
These pissing matches have been quite frequent and are becoming quite obnoxious. Even if you leave Dish Network because you are fed up for what is happening, perhaps Time Warner Cable will have another dispute with Disney or Viacom or Fox so there is no quick and easy solution.
The economy is rather challenging right now, and no one wants to see escalating costs on their pay television programming bills. Perhaps we may need to go for the jugular and demand a la carte pricing where the customer chooses what channels they want to subscribe to and they would be billed accordingly so we do not have to worry about high prices. Do not like sports? Then you would not have to worry about having FX and the National Geographic Channel removed from your channel lineup. Senator McCain one of the leading champions of al la carte programming should bring back his proposal.
I do understand Fox’s argument that customers do deserve to get what they pay for, but at what cost should customers have to pay for their networks? If Fox ends up affecting a price increase for customers of Dish Network, then customers may need to pull out from the regional sports networks when the sports they do not care about are not in session just to save a few Lincoln’s.
It is hard to tell who is telling the truth in these public relations situations, but perhaps both companies need to utilize an outside arbitrator to get a fair solution for the customers of Dish Network, and so Fox could keep their viewers to help with advertising.