If you subscribe to DishNetwork and like to watch CBS, Comedy Central, BET or any of the other Viacom channels, you’ve probably been wondering about those occasional messages that scrolled across the bottom of the screen over the past few days. Generally, the message read something “Attention Dish Network / EchoStar customers: EchoStar is threatening to…,” only to be abruptly cut off and covered with a big black spot designed prevent Dish Network / EchoStar customers from figuring out what the company was threatening to do. Well, wonder no more, they’ve pulled the plug on all of these channels, citing a six cent per viewer fee increase Dish considers unreasonable.
A telephone call to Dish, at (800) 333-DISH (3474) yielded nothing but automated, smarmy excuses over how they are doing this out of the goodness of their hearts, to save their consumers from costs they would have to pass along to us. None of them bothered to ask me whether I would prefer to see my bill increase by six cents rather than do without an integral part of the product I am paying for and not getting. In fact, they went out of their way to keep consumers in the dark over the very existence of this dispute, by blotting out the messages from Viacom intended to alert us to it. So what do we have to show for it now? A generous credit in the amount of a whopping $1.00 per month until the dispute is resolved. Thanks, Dish!
UPDATE: Apparently, Dish also thinks they have the right to hold customers to commitments they themselves are unwilling to keep. From the FAQ on their site:
Will I be allowed out of my programming commitment if these channels go dark?
All programming commitments will remain in effect at this time. DISH Network will monitor the duration of the loss of channels for further decisions made for this.
FINAL UPDATE: Well, that was quick.Powered by Sidelines