How Not to Treat Your Customers (a continuing series)

So my wife, Crystal, is on the phone with Dish Network, supplier of our Daily Bread:  football, reality television, Chris Cox horsemanship, the Food Network.  And she's reviewing our bill, looking for ways to save a few bucks each month.

Turns out, there's a five dollar charge on the bill, levied by our service provider, because we don't have our DIsh Network receiver hooked up to our phone line.  Never mind that there's no phone jack near the receiver.  Never mind that we nearly got rid of our phone line anyway.  Not Dish's problem.

Why do we need to plug our receiver into the phone line? So that we can order pay-per-view programming.  We never order such programming, but that apparently does not matter.  What matters is that we are preventing Dish Network from selling us their extra-cost programming.  And for that privilege, we pay.  Five bucks a month.

I remember the guys that would show up at our front door in the summer, saying they'd painted our house number on the curb and asking us for money.  We told them to go away.  They could learn something from Dish Network:  "Hey, I'm here to paint your house number on the curb.  Or for five bucks, I'll go away." 

What a business model!

and I did not approve this message

Remember those political campaign ads? How they had to end with "I'm Joe Cheeseball, and I approved this message"?  Well I've seen two commercials so far, that use the same (or nearly the same) clip of President Obama giving some kind of "stimulus" speech.  They then segue into a pitch for their service... in one case, credit card debt counseling (which you can get for free), and extended auto warranties (which are worthless) in the other.

I suppose video of a President's speech is considered in the public domain, so this is likely a legal use.  But it sure seems cheesy.  I guess this is the inevitable result of Billy Mays' passing.