BIG thanks to the folks at DirecTV, who felt like yesterday would be a great time to force-download an update to my receiver that ended up bricking the box. Since I'm not home, I can't reset the damn thing, which means it ain't recording the game and I won't be able to watch when I get home.
I just love DirecTV.
So ... if the game matters today, I'm hoping you guys knock yourselves out in the open thread so I can at least read the blow by blow when I get home.
Of course, if the game doesn't matter, well then that sucks too.
I've been a DirecTV customer for about five years. I don't remember the exact date I signed up, but I remember the reason: we finally were living in an apartment that would let me set up a dish to get the NFL package.
It therefore came as a pleasant surprise that there were other benefits. The pricing was somewhat lower than cable -- and other than the installer who tried to bilk me out of 100 bucks for "special installation equipment" that included a couple of long screws -- the customer service for the satellite guys was so much better than it had been with cable.
Yeah, those were the days.
Because I'd rather watch the game that spend the next quarter and a half listing all the things that now suck about DirecTV, I'll just skip straight to today's story. Check out this listing of NFL games on the package today. Notice anything? Like how the Raiders game and the Eagles game are both listed on the same HD channel?
So I called DirecTV to find out what channel the game was on. I mean, that's what I told Stephen, the rep who was lucky enough to get my call. In reality, I knew that actually -- whatever the explanation -- the game wasn't going to be on, and Eagles' fans would be screwed.
Which of course turned out to be true. After much putting-on-hold and milling-around-the-office crap, Stephen told me the bad news that the game would not be in in HD this week. When I asked him why, since CBS isbroadcasting the game in HD, Stephen told me that the game wasavailable in standard definition and, after all, my contract explicitly stated that not all games were guaranteed to be available in HD.
That made me feel so much better.
I told him, fine, then I want 1/17th of my SuperFan package fee back -- counting the bye week, since I'm a reasonable man. Stephen told me he would take care of that. So he went back into hold for a couple minutes, from which he emerged to give me the bad news, that actually no refund would be forthcoming.
This was going well. Unsatisfied with the initial explanation, however, I again asked him why the game wasn't on in HD, Stephen told me that DirecTV's contractual arrangements with the NFL are the reason not all the games are shown in HD. When I told him that made no sense, and wasn't it more likely that it was a capacity issue and the reason I couldn't see the game is because DirecTV wanted to show the Food Network in HD right now, Stephen repeated that it was an NFL issue.
It was at that point that I said, ok, let me make sure I have this straight, since I want to go ahead and stick this on my blog. You're telling me that the reason this game isn't in HD is because of contractual arrangements with the NFL? Stephen backtracked some and said he couldn't say for sure that this was why this game wasn't in HD, but that was the reason that many games aren't in HD over the course of the season.
So, according to DirecTV, it's the NFL's fault that I couldn't watch the Eagles -- so far stinking up the joint -- in HD today. That makes perfect sense, since why would the NFL want its product to be put forward in the best possible light at all times? It's not like the league has mandated that the networks broadcast all games in HD within the next couple years or anything.
Oh right, they did.
Final reason DirecTV sucks: my friend "Stephen" claimed to be from Pennsylvania and an Eagles fan. The game he was watching today?
The Cleveland Browns, because that's his manager's team. Or at least that's what he claimed. Maybe it's actually just because his DirecTV office has cable.