Very unhappy with DirecTV

100 Human Paladin
12735
Posts: 6
So, I happily paid DirecTV for BlizzCon this year. I've purchased it in the past, set my DVR to record both days, and enjoyed watching the entire thing for an hour or two at a time over the following weeks. Saturday morning, I watch the first few hours of Day 1 and enjoyed it immensely. I was on-call for work this weekend and unfortunately was called in. I finally was able to sit down this evening (Sunday) and continue watching from where I left off. Imagine my shock when my recordings are no longer viewable.

The last time BlizzCon aired on DirecTV, I was able to watch my recordings at any time after the event was over. However, when I played back my recording this evening, it would only show about 2 seconds and then just stop. I called DirecTV asking why I could no longer watch my recordings, thinking maybe it was just a technical issue, but was informed that the viewing window for BlizzCon was over as of 12pm Sunday. They also would not offer me any refund, just a $10 credit on my bill.

I can't believe DirecTV actually expects people to be able to watch 20+ hours of programming in just a 48 hour period. I guess if I didn't have a job, no other responsibilities, didn't need much sleep and cared little for my health I guess it would be no issue to sit and watch it all during that time period. Apparently DirecTV thinks that's the way it should be.

I realize that I can still watch the streaming recordings here on the website, but my Internet speed is not very fast and it just doesn't work well. I also wanted to enjoy BlizzCon on my big TV and was willing to pay the extra $10 dollars but apparently that isn't going to help me now either.

Blizzard, please reconsider using DirecTV in the future. Even though I am a longtime subscriber of DirecTV, this is seriously making me want to switch to Dish. Cable is not an option, unfortunately as cable is not available where I live. I would be happy to pay extra to be able to download the recordings so that I could view them in high quality. Streaming just doesn't work well for those of us with slow Internet connections.

Thanks for listening.
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Posts: 376
On the phone with DirecTV right now. I am VERY unhappy with them. Apparently this year its a 48 hour event and I can't watch my recordings from the past two days. This was Never stated anywhere.

Blizzard. You need to dump DirecTV next event. This is totally unacceptable.
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Posts: 376
Blizzcon ended less than 24 hours ago and you can't even go back and watch yesterday's content. Totally unacceptable.
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100 Orc Hunter
11010
Posts: 13
Exact same problem here. First year with directv. One of the reasons I picked them over DISH was because
of blizzcon. I've never heard of a "viewing window" for over 20 hours of programming being only 48 hours. Complete garbage. I'd have been better served to just take off work and watch it. Had I known this was the case I wouldn't have ordered this ppv. Is this the first year they've done this?!
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Posts: 376
This is the first year.

They swear that it does it every year. The old recordings on my old DVR have determined that's a lie.

I will not be ordering from DirecTV next year. I have ordered every year it was available and watched it when I got back from the Con a few days later.

If the virtual pass player wasn't complete junk, I could deal with it.
Edited by Artisane on 11/10/2013 11:10 PM PST
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Posts: 142
Sorry Blizzard Normal I like you VOD's of BlizzCon but Direct TV just isn't getting the job done. The Sounds been bad. The video playback has been skipping.
The StarCraft II finals the only video is of the First Person Views, So you can't actually see what the casters are talking about.

And giving that the issues Direct TV has, a 48 hour window, WAY too small! Every other time I've had the VOD BlizzCon Ticket I've enjoyed it. Improvements must be made.
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90 Night Elf Hunter
10510
Posts: 757
I agree with the OP Directv likes to rob its customers please consider other ways to bring Blizzcon to viewers that cant attend blizzcon in person.
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100 Draenei Mage
8355
Posts: 12
I'm on the phone with them now. Also having the same issue.
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100 Draenei Mage
8355
Posts: 12
So, I just spent an hour on the phone. The first person I spoke to told me that that is just how PPV works and that there was nothing he could do. I asked for a Supervisor. I explained that I can still watch Blizzcon 2011 on my DVR, but when I tried to finish up 2013 yesterday, it just 'stopped'. Very disappointing. He had me try while I was on the phone and it said something like 'no audio video packets available', which lead him to believe there might be something wrong with my DVR. Whether there is or not, he thinks a tech might be able to retrieve the data so that I can watch it. They are coming tomorrow. I will let you know how it goes. I did tell him I wasn't the only one experiencing this issue.

When they told me that's how it is (originally), I let them know that if that's how it is, it needs to be in writing. Since it is not, the answer is unacceptable. I know very few people who can sit on a couch for twenty hours straight, so even if that was 'how it is' it needs to be rethought.

I have always been a fan of directv, so it is upsetting that this has been such a cluster this time around. :-( I hope you all get satisfactory resolutions too.
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90 Undead Rogue
9360
Posts: 84
I'm still waiting for the code. 72 hours is a long time. I hope I will still be able to see content online before it expires.
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91 Human Rogue
10305
Posts: 2
To the people who make the deals concerning the broadcast of Blizzcon through a paid subscriber service, I have a small request for future Blizzcons which are to be televised. Could you stipulate that said provider make the programming available for a reasonable amount of time.

My scenario:

I ordered Blizzcon 2013 through Directv a week before the event and, on the morning of November 8th I set up my dvr to record both days of the broadcast since I would be unable to watch it live. On the early afternoon of November 9th I sat down with my wife to start watching the program, we made it about 1.5 hours into it when we had to take care of other things around the house. When we came back to the show on the evening of November 10th we were shown only a black screen for about 5 seconds then it would exit back to the dvr list. After trying the recording a few more times, even the day 2 recording, we gave up.

I called Directv on November 11th to find a solution to this problem and was told that the program was available for 48 hours after I started to watch it. While nothing on the order page indicated an expiration date, and the rep confirmed that there was not, the email confirmation with code did mention a 48 hour time limit. I thought nothing of this since Blizzcon 2011 had no such restriction. In the end they said they were sorry but there was nothing they could do except to give me a small credit and free dvr service for a few months to make up for the lack of refund.

So in short I had 48 hours to watch 23 hours of programming. This is of course not a problem if your life can accommodate that but otherwise you'd have to ignore the obligations of job, family and life in general for a day or two. All in all I'm very much not happy with Directvs' handling of this whole situation. The only saving grace is that the internet has all the videos and information to at least catch me up on what was missed.

And for the more observant I will be calling Directv back since it dawned on my long after the call that if I had 48 hours after I started watching the program, which was started early afternoon on the 9th then why was I locked out less than 36 hours later.
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100 Draenei Mage
8355
Posts: 12
The tech just left my house and I got Blizzcon back!

I think it's safe to assume that everything we've been told on the phone is wrong.

He said that for anyone who is having this issue, you should reset your DVR, and then go online to your account and ask directv to resend authorization. He thinks there must have been a glitch somewhere in the broadcast because he spent five minutes here doing that and at the end of it I looked like a crazy person for saying it wouldn't play.

I hope it works for you too!
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100 Human Paladin
12735
Posts: 6
Hi Emelina,
I was excited to hear that and tried it myself (twice) but it still won't play for me. I wish I knew why.

Has anyone else had any luck with Emelina's instructions?
Edited by Kazola on 11/12/2013 6:43 PM PST
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Posts: 376
Gave it a shot, but no luck.

Day 1 just wants to delete immediately, and day two just sits there on pause with a black screen.

I might try again later tonight when I get back from the office, but I can't get my hopes up.
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100 Draenei Mage
8355
Posts: 12
:-(

I'm sorry it didn't work for you. I asked the tech to tell me exactly what he did so I could come here and share it.

Since I posted that, day 1 is black for me again (no audio/visual packets available), but I still have day 2 and I'm going to finish watching it as fast as I can. Then I might try the resend again.

If they wanted to, directv could give it back. The fact that I'm staring at it on my tv right now tells me that.

I think the company is so big that the right hand doesn't know what the left is doing. (Didn't we fight a boss like that once?) If you have the patience for it, I would call back and work your way up the ladder until they've either fixed it or given you a refund. Point out that Blizzcon 2011 (also a PPV) still works on dvrs. Point out that Blizzcon 2013 is a 20 hour PPV, that no reasonable person could finish watching 48 hours after starting. Point out that we paid ten dollars more this year to choose to watch it on directv rather than the Internet stream, and that if we had gone the other way we were given two weeks to view it. That should be their minimum, but I still have Blizzcon 2011 on my DVR. If they tell you there is nothing they can do, always ask for the supervisor. They are just reading the script, doing their job, trying to get you off the phone as fast as possible. Be prepared to be on hold a lot.
I just told them: look, I'm a reasonable person. I just want to watch the event that I paid for. I'm not planning on ending this call until you have made it so that I can, or you've refunded my money since I couldn't watch the event. Can you sit on the couch for twenty hours straight? (They scheduled me a tech pretty quickly after that.) And always be nice to them. So they'll want to help you.

This has been a very frustrating year for directv / blizzcon fans. It makes me sad.
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90 Human Paladin
3505
Posts: 9
I had a similar experience with this whole ordeal my self.

I ordered it online and selected when I ordered it to record ad to playlist and record it since I was going to be at work for the first 2 hours of the opening of blizzcon. When I got home I noticed that my DVR was not recording and I had to manually hit record and I missed the first almost 2 hours of the opening! I was enraged so I called DirecTv and talked to their tech support and asked why did it not record? The tech did not know why and said the best he could do was give me 3 months of my DVR service for free. So I agreed and thought everything was ok. In the menatime I hit record for the rest of the entire event on my guide and gave it no other thought. I knew the earliest I could astually sit down and start to watch was Sunday evening. Forward to Sunday evening I had to watch the first 2 hours through streaming to my TV via Chromecast which worked pretty well. Then when I got to the 2 hour mark I went to swap over to the DVR and I hit play and I got sent instantly to the Delete or Keep recording button???? I was like WTH! I got back on the phone again to tech support and tried to figure out what was going on and why I only had a black screen for 9 hours of recording (first day) and a delete or keep screen for the remainder of the event. to no avail the tech could not figure out why it recorded black screen for 9 hours. He did mention that there was known problems with the PPV recording and it going to delete or keep screen. The tech had me run a complete diagnostic and log report and tried to send it to them which errored out 3 times before he gave up on that. After being on the phone with the tech for almost an hour I told him I better get a refund for something that did not record and I didn't even get the chance to view at all. and to my surprise I got a full refund of the PPV including the tax which worked out for me getting a $3.18 credit towards my bill. This is the first PPV I have ordered from DirecTV in over 13 years and needless to say i don't think i will ever order another. I have been with DirecTv for over 14 years (6 months after launch) and I must say that they really dropped the ball big time on this one for me. The only thing that half redeemed themselves is I got a full refund without having to go through several managers demanding for it. I was surprised. Now the only thing is I have to stream via Chromecast to my TV so my wife & I can actually watch this and worry about net speeds slowing during peak internet usage times.
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100 Human Paladin
12735
Posts: 6
Emelina, I was very patient and friendly with them on the phone. I even talked to a supervisor who put me on hold for several minutes, just to come back and tell me that all she could do was give me a $10 credit. I kept repeating pretty much what you said above, but she would not deter from her statement.
I went ahead and used their contact us page to send in an email, and I did get a response. They want me to call them back on a special number with a unique PIN so they can talk to me again. I don't know if this will help at all, but I'll give it a shot tomorrow night. This week has been so busy for me I haven't had much time to do anything non-work related. I really would like to get this resolved because at this point, I don't even know if I'll have time to watch the Blizzcon streams on www.blizzcon.com :(

Edit: I just reread the last email I received from them and they are putting the blame on the content provider (Blizzard) for this, as they state that the content provider is the one that determines the expiration date.

Blizzard, is this true? Did you ask DirecTV to only allow their viewers to watch BlizzCon for the 48 hour viewing period? If so, I am very disappointed with Blizzard as well. BlizzCon was $10 more this year - I would expect to at the very least have the same viewing period we had in years past - which was as long as we kept the recording on our DVR.
Edited by Kazola on 11/13/2013 8:40 PM PST
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100 Draenei Mage
8355
Posts: 12
Kazola,
I am so frustrated on your behalf. This whole thing has been a cluster.

I strongly feel that virtual ticket subscribers need a point of contact. When I originally didn't get my code, and both companies were pointing fingers at each other, I realized that my biggest frustration was that there was no one I could turn to for an answer.

Now here we are again with the PPV stream, and there's no 'responsible' entity. Just a lot of unhappy customers who don't know where to turn.

Every time I have called Directv, I've had to explain what Blizzcon is, describe years past, and hold while confused people struggle to find a script. They should know by now that it is a recurring problem, and have one solution to it. But instead we each get an answer dependent on who answers the phone when we call. I get a tech, you get a credit, Traenak gets a refund.

I am boggled as to why it has been like this for us this year. And I sincerely hope that we are just a handful of anomalies that happened to find each other. Otherwise both companies don't really have an excuse for the inconsistent customer service that has been offered.
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100 Human Paladin
12735
Posts: 6
So I called DirecTV again on the special phone number and pin they gave me, only to be told yet again there's nothing they can do. They did credit the entire amount of the PPV this time, however, and gave me some other credits, so that's something. But they also kept insisting that this wasn't their fault, and that the broadcaster (Blizzard) is the one that determines the viewing period.

So I don't know who to be angry with at this point. It doesn't make sense that Blizzard would ask DirecTV to limit viewing of recordings - BlizzCon is effective advertising for their products - why limit that?

Very frustrated.
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90 Pandaren Monk
12575
Posts: 9
I too was a victim in 2013. Like many others I had several previous years of Blizzcon on my DVR for months. This year my recordings "expired" one week after I first watched them, which was of course, in real time. Who wants to miss out on the big announcements? A week later, I spent an hour on the phone with DirecTV who eventually told me that it was the originator of the event (i.e. Blizzard) who set the one-week expiration. (Obviously this disagrees with others above who were screwed worse than me.) Needless to day, I will definitely NOT order Blizzcon in the future without assurances that the recordings will stay live long enough to fully appreciate them. DirecTV did not offer me any credit, but I guess I wasn't smart enough to ask for it.

Arrrrrgh.
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