First, who are "THEY" and why is what "THEY" say true? Well, I don't know who THEY are - but THEY say a lot!
You've heard people (they) say things like - you'll tell 30 people about a bad experience but only tell a few about a good one. Well, here I am - to tell you about a bad one - mainly because I'm a wee bit frustrated, but also because I told the dude at Tivo that I would tell my friends. So - THERE - that's what I'm doing.
We've had Tivo for just over a year now. We got Tivo because the apartment we were in had cable that was reminiscent of the mid 80's. Giant remote with only channel up and down buttons, no DVR - you get the picture. Well, with Jason in school and me having an addiction to 90210 - Tivo was needed. We would have never paid full price for a Tivo box - just because we wouldn't!! So we 'acquired' one from a relative (which means we had to pay them for it - BUT not full price) and called Tivo and tried to hook up. We had problems and were missing a cable - they sent a replacement and even offered a CREDIT in the meantime since we were paying for A SERVICE WE WEREN'T GETTING. Hmm, imagine the concept of NOT having to pay for something you aren't getting. Rare, I know!!
So fast forward a year, give or take - and here we are. I pull up my credit card statement to see the balance - which should only be our Tivo fee and our Blockbuster monthly fee (that's another post). And low and behold - it's only 12.95 instead of 16.95. YIKES - YIPPEE! That must mean the contract is up and I can cancel now. Why would I cancel when you know for a fact that I still heart 90210? Well, we got a new tv a few months ago and it's HD and we needed an HD box and could get a DVR through Charter - so we did. So for several months - we've had both - Tivo and DVR. You would think that's a good thing - more I can record, right? Well, the Tivo has not really been used - not since the GIANT TV took over our living room.
So I go online and start reading policy and procedure for Tivo because if I'm going to cancel I don't want to be hit with hidden fees and crap, right? So I'm looking - no problems, I'm out of contract, I can cancel. THIS is where I mess up. I assume that they would refund me my money since I'm canceling and they bill a month ahead. Guess what? Come on, try and guess!!
They don't give you your money back because you've already deactivated your account - you know just a second ago when you said "hey I want to cancel my service". So I asked nicely - "You mean to tell me, if I told you I wanted my money back FIRST, then canceled - I'd get my money back?" - Dude says "Oh no Mam!! You would only get your money back had you called within the 5 days after your billing date." Well, little does he know - my credit card statement is still in front of me and the billing date was only FOUR days ago - so take that TIVO Dude.
Well, I tell him this - still in my nice phone voice - and he says something about how the billing date and the date is hits my statement are different. He goes on about how they bill on the 4th of the month and they can't control how long it takes to come out of my account or to be charged. Well - how in the world would I know that?
So I say "Ya know what (in my frustrated but still nice voice) now I'm wasting time in addition to that $12.95 you won't give me back - so I'm done!!" Dude says "Thank you for calling Tivo - have a nice day!" To which I laugh and say 'OH YEAH - right' and hang up.
Well, seriously - I can't just let it go at that, now can I? I call back and ask for a supervisor and get one (or so I'm told) so I give her all the details again and Rebecca tells me that no company prorates services - this is nothing new. I tell her so nicely "yes, actually they do." I went on to tell her that power, cable, water - all of those people prorate - basically the rest of the world prorates except YOU TIVO. So she compares it to a cell phone and minutes and how I pay for the minutes whether I use them or not and I quickly correct her by saying "Yes, of course - BUT if I call Verizon right now and cancel my service and I've already payed for the service thru the 13th of the next month, I'm pretty sure I would get some money back. And YES I know this because I've worked for a cell phone company" hmmmmmm - she's silent. And YES, I lied because I haven't worked for a cell phone company (well, technically I went through cell phone school with BellSouth about 14 years ago - you know back when we all had Zach Morris phones that weight fifteen pounds - but anyway, Jason worked for a cell phone company so that counts!!).
So she says "Look, I can get you a manager, but they are going to tell you the same thing. It's policy" and I'm like "WHOA - what a sec, you aren't a manager? So now I've wasted 12.95 and two phone calls? PLEASE get me a manager on the phone because I don't care if they tell me the same thing - they need to understand that their policy isn't clearly noted ANYWHERE that I can find on tivo.com and they should correct that." She says she'll transfer me but it could be 4 or 5 minutes, maybe longer.
So then I get another Dude - let's call him Dude 2 - and I go through the whole thing again - adding in many times how GLAD I am that I cancelled because I WILL NEVER USE TIVO AGAIN. You know, he doesn't care, but it made me feel better to say it. I also let him know that I felt as though no matter when I called - on the first, second or eighteenth billing day - there would have been some other reason why I couldn't get my 12.95 back. I'm sure of it. Then he said something about how the months with 31 days are different - they bill on the 5th. He said I could reactivate my account (even though Dude 1 and Rebecca said I could NOT) and have service until October 4th (or 5th because he didn't know that OCTOBER HAD 31 DAYS??????) and then call within 4 days again and cancel all over again. I giggled - yes - giggled and said very nicely 'Surely you can see why I'm very hesitant to do that. The policy will surely change by then and I'll have to call 4 days BEFORE the billing date and look at that, I just missed that as well' - I'm pretty sure he would have laughed there - because it WAS funny.
Anyway - he said he would pass along my feedback. THAT wasn't feedback Dude 2 - that was ME being mad that I'm out 12.95 now. Does he have any idea that there are new Hambly craft stickers at Scrap Etc.???? Does he know that I could get two or three packs of Thickers for 12.95?? Does he even care? THAT my friend, is the real question.
The answer - NOPE!! No one little bit.
SO there - oh, at some point in the conversation with Dude 2 I did say - I'll just pass along the word to my friends that Tivo doesn't really have great customer service and that I'm SO very glad Charter has DVR and I don't have to ever have TIVO again. So - now I've kept my word to Dude 2 - and I've told all of you about Tivo and how bad that stink!!!