Tag Archives: subscription

The Sirius XM Subscription Scam

For Christmas, my husband got me a satellite radio for my car. I had a super old system and this one would replace my old unit and could be docked in my car. Sweet!

Sweet until I got scammed by the subscription department at Sirius XM when I tried to activate my account.

I waited forever to put the unit in my car and set up service, but when I finally did, I was shocked to learn that they wanted over $200 for a yearly subscription to all their available channels. I have never been a fan of paying for radio, especially since my husband works in terrestrial radio and I have the luxuries of Pandora, Spotify and my iPod, but I was willing to pay a few extra bucks a month for commercial-free tunes geared towards my musical preferences.

Sirius/XM was never terribly reliable. It would lose its signal randomly and stations replayed the same songs within an hour or two of each other. Yet, even with these annoyances, I liked the idea of listening to the all 90s channel on my way to work or writing to the tunes of Coffeehouse. That was until I found I would be paying twice as much as other customers.

My neighbor told me he paid $94 a year for his premium service . My mom pays a mere $84 annually for the same plan. When I called, over a holiday weekend, they wanted about $230 for 12 months which included taxes and applicable service fees.  Fuck that!

I told the customer service reps that I knew people were getting the same plan at a significantly lower cost. They proceeded to tell me that there were no promotions and to try back again. I did that, and again, no specials. I was baffled. How could they keep telling me to sign up and call for new deals when there never were any? Didn’t they want to sign on a new customer, even at a discounted rate? I mean, Sirius/XM’s churn rate is insane and would be even worse if they didn’t broker deals with current customers to stay on board.

I finally asked to talk to a manager who told me he had some special promo code that the initial reps didn’t have. It didn’t quite make sense to me, but when he offered me at a deal for all the channels at $109, I said I’d take it. I had to call back with my radio’s ID number for them to activate it, so they made a note on my account.

When I called back, they told me the $109 subscription was for a selected plan – one that doesn’t give you all the channels the satellite radio giant offers. Um, hello, if I am paying for a service I can get for free (kind of), why would I only want some channels and not all? I explained this to the rep who said he couldn’t do anything for me, so he put me through to a manager. Suddenly, she had a deal for $131 for the premium subscription plan, which was still more than my mom and neighbor were paying, so I protested. They couldn’t match those deals or do  much better.

I was curious why only the managers could get me a deal and the initial sales rep could only offer me something for $200+. When I asked, the manager declined to comment, simply saying she was sorry. I went on, asking why all the managers had a code for a promotion that was locked to my radio purchase, yet when I called to subscribe, no one was able to offer me what apparently I was “entitled” to anyway.

I kept at it, demanding an answer from the manager about why I wasn’t told I could get a deal by the first 10 reps I spoke to. She hung up on me. Bitch. I decided to call back and the next manager I spoke to read from a pre-written script, apologizing for the trouble and brokering me a yearly premium channel deal for $185.

Excuse me?!? $185? That is $50 more than the manager who hung up on me offered. I asked her how this was possible and she was just as dumbfounded as the rest. Finally, she gave me a deal at $124 for everything I wanted, but told me I had to pay $4/month for internet access to stations and buy another dock to listen to the unit in my home, which would run me about $39.99.

After all this shit, I thought to myself, why do I need to pay for radio? Yeah, it’s a luxury and a convenience, but the hassle and bullshit that I went through to get it, along with the unfairness, left such a bad taste in my mouth, so I told them I was no longer interested. I mean, why would I want to pay more than other people, and why should other people pay more than me? I’m not trying to sound cheap, but the whole thing is such a scam. If I had service previously (which I did and conveniently, they couldn’t find my account despite a myriad of information I provided them), they would have done whatever they could to keep me to lessen their churn rate. I have friends who call every three months to broker a new, cheaper deal. So Sirius XM, what gives?

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How’d You Get THAT From My Resume?

Information Security Analyst. Licensed Practical Nurse. Project Engineer. Screen Printer. Speech-Language Pathologist. Intern.

Do any of these scream Public Relations / Communications professional to you? Yeah, me neither. But for some reason, they always seem to pop up in my daily job alerts.

I subscribe to a lot of job boards that automatically send you searches each day in an effort to “weed out” the jobs that don’t match your skill set or preferred job type. I have tailored these alerts time and again to meet my specific criteria.  After a year of job hunting, I have come to the conclusion that these saved job searches are a piece of crap.

I don’t know how anything in my resume would qualify me to be an Information Security Analyst. My specialties are internal and external communications, writing, and media strategies; not cyber threats and computer technology.  C’mon CareerBuilder, get your act together!

While there might be some similarities in the words in my resume and the professions listed above (can anyone say COMMUNICATIONS?), doesn’t nearly everyone have communications in their resume these days? Don’t we all possess communications skills in one way or another? Interpersonal, oral, visual, written, etc.? In this day of technological advancement, isn’t there some tool that can separate these jobs from one another? I mean, are the nurse, screen printer and project engineer getting my PR listings?

The job hunt is a daily struggle in and of itself.  The last thing any jobless person needs is a worthless job alert.  So to all the career sites out there that send automated job alerts, please do your due diligence to the unemployed and send the right jobs to your subscribers or don’t send any at all!