Service complaints

Published 7:00 am Saturday, November 7, 2015

As much as my local Internet provider amuses me with their attempts to upsell me services I don’t need for devices I don’t own, these distractions are, at least, innocuous. The business practices of my former Internet provider, HughesNet, are, on the other hand, downright sinister.

HughesNet offers satellite Internet, and if you’re not fortunate enough to live anywhere where you can get cable Internet or DSL, this is really your only option, unless you’d prefer living in the 20th century and dealing with dial up. Such was my former life, prior to moving to the big smoke that is Picayune.

Prior to moving to Picayune, I duly cancelled my Internet services only to be informed that I’d need to get on the roof and uninstall part of the satellite receiver they’d installed and mail it back to the company. The week of the move was a rainy one and so, not wishing to break anything, I elected to return at some later date and, anyway, I still hadn’t received their box by moving day.

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Then a month or so ago, I noticed $320 mysteriously gone from my checking account with the HughesNet name listed as the recipient.

I checked my email. Nope, no notices. So I called them. I was told they’d sent me a box, which I never received. I asked them to send another box and I’d happily ship them their equipment in exchange for my money back. One weekend about a month ago, I made a trip back to the old place, got out a ladder, noted it wasn’t tall enough, then propped it on a rotted wooden box, hung from the roof with one hand while working a wrench with the other. Ten minutes later, I had the piece I needed.

Twelve hours of driving later, everything was boxed and sent to the UPS drop location here in Picayune.

That was weeks ago. Again, no emails. No phone calls from them.

I called HughesNet back this week. I asked, had they received the equipment? The tracking number indicated they had.

The customer service person said yes, they’d gotten it. I asked about my refund. The mean said they’d been waiting on me to call them. Why, I asked? The man said they didn’t know what account to deposit the refund.

Why don’t you try putting it back where you found it, I suggested.

After another day or two, they did.