DirecTV Charged With Extortion In Class Action Suit

from the shouldn't-you-have-proof-of-a-crime-before-you-demand-money? dept

We've written about DirecTV's questionable legal strategy a few times in the past. After getting their hands on the customer lists of some companies that were selling smart card readers, DirecTV sent legal nastygrams to everyone on those lists, accusing them of stealing DirecTV signals. This ignored, of course, the fact that those card readers have other (legitimate purposes). While it's likely that many people did use them for illegally accessing satellite TV signals, DirecTV had no specific proof, other than their name on a customer list. On top of that, the letter made it clear that as long as people paid up $3,500, they wouldn't get sued. In a lot of ways, it's difficult to distinguish that from extortion, and so a group of those accused by DirecTV have filed a class action lawsuit against the company for these actions. DirecTV claims the suit has no merit and that it will be thrown out (as similar cases in the state of California have been).

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  1. identicon
    Frank From Florida, 4 Jun 2008 @ 1:37pm

    Directv is a fraudulent company looking to rip people off!

    I signed up for DirecTv 6 months ago and have nothing put problems from day 1! To start, they lied about my set-up price. They told me I was getting 1 HD-DVR and 1 DVR. The installer shows up with 2 reg receivers. I contacted customer service and she noted that my install order had been changed and she could no longer honor the original agreement. The new tech had my correct order (after much yelling at a supervisor). He damaged my house and stated he did work that he did not do. My service never worked correctly. The third tech told me I had to repay him to redo the work the second tech said he did. Again, much yelling involved.
    Finally got my service working, but the DVR never worked correctly. Finally after 6-months of techs at my house, they offer to exchange my HD-DVR. Not thinking, I agreed. During the install, I found that one of the techs had the cable running through my Monster Power conditioner. I undid that and the service seemed to work ok from then on. Side note, they replaced me NEW HD-DVR with a factory refurb.

    Fast forward to a month later. I had another issue with the DVR not recording shows. It records an hour of black screen rather than the show and I know the show was on because I watched part of it and recorded it for my wife. So I call them again. After a good deal of hassle, I say, I have had enough of you guys. I want to know what it takes to cancel this crap service. The lady informs me that I would owe over $480. I ask why. She tells me that my 24 months restarted when I had my new HD-DVR installed. *The one that replaced the defective one.

    So, they screwed up my order, screwed up my house, screwed up my install, double billed my credit card, and to fix one of their screw-ups, sent me a refurb DVR, just so they could extend my contract without my knowledge or approval.

    This is the single worst company in the world! Had I known about their fraudulent business model, I would have never let them in my house!

    Other side note. At the start of the contract, they offered me a $50 visa gift card if I would sign up for Auto-pay and paperless billing. A month later they sent me a letter saying I was not eligible for the card, but gave no reason why. I contacted customer service. He looked over the account and said I was in fact eligible and he would resubmit it. A month later, another letter saying I was not eligible! CROOKS!!!

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