Deceptive advertising

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  • Problem
  • Updated 4 weeks ago
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TV ad is a bait and switch! Beware!
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jason 7122

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  • I just saw a commercial on my direct tv saying I can get viasat for 50 a month locked in for 2 years. I then call and it goes up to 100 a month. I told the salesman that this is deceptive and why would they do something like that. he then told me to F off

Posted 1 month ago

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Photo of VeteranSatUser

VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Doubtful he said that.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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What plan are you on and how much data have you used for your current billing cycle?
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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He isnt on any plan. Read his post! The salesman told him off. Doubt there was a sale after that.
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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American plan, meals included and looks like we're getting some free ham elsewhere... 
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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That would be two meals per day. Popcorn for a snack.
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GabeU, Champion

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Free ham?  I'm there!
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GabeU, Champion

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Not all plans, nor all offers seen in TV ads, nor even print ads, are available in all areas.  The plans and offers available to you are dependent on your location.  It's not deceptive advertising.  I'm sure there is a small disclaimer related to such on the screen.  

I see cable and fiber ads every day, telling me I can get X for X amount.  I can't get any of it.    
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Old Labs (VS1-329-L12FZ)

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The disclaimers are there - it requires one of two things: completion of an Evelyn Woods speed reading course or a Hopper...
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GabeU, Champion

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That surely is one "not often thought of" advantage to a DVR and HD.  We can now actually read disclaimers on our screen!  :) 

In reality, though, since the advent of HD TV I've seen the disclaimers get smaller and smaller and smaller, so even with HD they are becoming difficult to read.  Next they'll do the same for 4K TV.

Eventually, the disclaimer will be so small it will just be a dot on the screen.  :)  
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Ron Frank

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I dont think its HD or 4K ... I keep getting older, my eyes keep getting worse, BUT THE TVS KEEP GETTING BIGGER!  

Disclaimers, and even some of the scrolling headline banners during the news, the font just keeps getting smaller, and smaller, and smaller!

I have a 60 inch screen!  What next?  A dog and a cane?

And yes, it is pitiful, people use DVRs to skip commercials while I often find myself rewinding them with the expression  "WHAT DID  THEY JUST SAY?"  Written or spoken, sometimes some of the claims are simply so ridiculous you have to see/hear it again just to process it!

My all time favorite is pharmaceutical ads with the good old "and in some instances, may cause death" disclaimer.
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GabeU, Champion

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Ron Frank,

Some of those drug ads are crazy.  After hearing all of the possible side effects you almost think, "Who in the heck would take this?!?!?!"

"While taking Flinifarb, your face may turn blue and your left arm may fall off.  Your nose may start growing hair on the outside, and your toes may web.  If you start salivating when you see the color green, stop taking Flinifarb and call your doctor immediately, as your heart may be ready to explode.  Death has happened after the first dose when drinking a milkshake containing malt...."

Some of them just go on and on and on.  :) 
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Ron Frank

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GabeU  I agree fully that some of the "trade offs" are utterly ridiculous.  Uncontrollable diarrhea and kidney failure to clear acne?  Hmmm lets see, arthritis pain or paralysis?  Psoriasis or Hepatitis?  Of course as I mentioned "XXXXXXX" or DEATH?

Best of all I forgot to mention before .... "Do not take if you are allergic to "XXXXX" or any of its ingredients"   My husband took this med and died!  Oh well, guess he was allergic to it huh?  Shoulda read the disclaimer, sorry for your luck.

Yea I laugh but what comes to mind is the quote  "I wasnt sick until I started seeing a doctor"   I am currently going through this.  My diabetic meds screw with my heart, and my heart meds screw with my diabetes.  I think daily that I was 100% better off before I was being "treated" for any of it! 
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jason 7122

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If it stated the normal price I wouldn’t have called. They shouldn’t show commercials if they can’t honor the price. Where is the argument?
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namloops

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No difference in the suppliers! We get "UP TO" speeds, why can't we get "UP TO" prices. 
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Brad, Viasat Employee

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Gabe is spot-on! As is Veteransatuser (If the sales person did say that, please call and report it)

The ad may not reflect what's in your area and we do put on the ads to call to see what we can offer. I personally advocate for visiting www.viasat.com/internet and putting in a zip code to see what's in the area. It's a lot better at pinpointing than a TV/internet ad. Those ads run in a coverage area that spans hundreds of miles so plans are all but certain to vary as a few beams may overlap. 

I can't speak for DirecTV's promos (but I will advise as with any buying choice to research first) but we rarely do promo prices to begin with but our current new customer promotion is only for 3 months before it goes to a locked in price. We DO lock in the normal price for 2 years and in my time here I've not seen any price increases (which is RARE with internet companies) but we have retired plans and routinely offer different options but we do grandfather people into plans even if we no longer offer them.

I'm sorry this call didn't work out but feel free to give us another try in the future (I'd recommend contacting Viasat directly)
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Ed Lingrin

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Viasat uses deceptive marketing.  I have TONS of printed material from my area promising UMLIMITED VIDEO STREAMING and the resolution was based on the package:  IE:  Siver = DVD quality.  This is not one but MANY pieces of marketing materials to include screen captures in the Wayback Machhine.  State of Florida is aware of it and there are numerous people now filing complaints ..... I am stopping at many homes each day when I see a dish to talk to them about their service and then give them the names and telephone numbers at the State.  I am PISSED.

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GabeU, Champion

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Why don't you post a picture of one of these things that you claim?
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Ed Lingrin

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Nah.  I will let the State deal with it.  These marketing materials were used all over the North Florida market.  Signs were posted like EVERYWHERE too.  Dealers were mailing out materials and posting signs on every corner, all over telephone poles, EVERYWHERE.  The webpage even had a set of boxes on it where it talked about WOW! UNLIMITED VIDEO STREAMING is here!  and how it didn't count like regular data.  No... they are cooked.  They need to knock off the deceptive tricky advertising and BE HONEST with people about what to expect.  

Trust me, i know a lot about this company now from both the dealers and employees. 

You can get away with stuff like this for a while but eventually, it will catch up with you.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Have you considered going on MSNBC or Good Morning America?

But in all seriousness, I have those up to 100Mbps signs all over my area. There isnt a 100Mbps Viasat plan offered nowhere close to my area
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GabeU, Champion

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Nah.  I will let the State deal with it.
Claims with no evidence.  Oh well.  
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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For evidence collection, contact the FBI.
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Ed Lingrin

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I was instrumental in taking down a 168 million dollar scam recently by gathering data and assisting 4 federal agencies and 5 state governments.  I am DEAD serious when I say that I will follow through with this matter.  I fortunately already had numerous contacts in the State of Florida from the scam I helped take down.  The news media is a waste of time -- companies like the size of Viasat only can be tackled by a regulatory body or Federal/State government. 
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Ed Lingrin

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Claims with no evidence?  No GabeU, I have plenty, I just don't owe anything to you pal.  LOL
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jason 7122

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If you need my help let me know, for them to trick me into calling with a false price and then for the sales guy to argue with me and curse me out. There should be laws against deceptive advertising
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Ed Lingrin

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What State are you in jason?
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Well. I see you already are working with the FBI then. Several months ago another poster on here indicated they were going to contact the FBI. So perhaps the process was started already!
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jason 7122

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I’m in Kansas
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GabeU, Champion

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No, Ed, you're right, you don't owe me a thing.  But, when I make a claim on a public forum I back it up.  I don't boast, and then not back up that boast.  It's a bit ridiculous to do so.  But good luck to you, "pal".  

Is it the weekend already?  
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Got my popcorn.
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GabeU, Champion

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Extra buttery!  :) 
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Ed Lingrin

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I worked with the FBI on the scam issue I mentioned, yes, out of LA in California. However, in this case, I have not really pushed it with them because this is kind of a different beast.  This is all about deception in marketing where the other issue was an investment fraud.

Therefore this is more of an FTC issue.  BUT, more effective will be the similar type divisions at the State level.  It is easy for residents of a given State to file a complaint with their Department of Consumer Affairs, Fraud Divisions.  Every complaint filed will be investigated and followed up on.  As a taxpayer, you are entitled to protection and assistance from these government entities.  The more people that file complaints the more "incentified" they are to deal with the problem -- the more complaints that pile up = more work... and they don't want "more work" . LOL
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Internet service providers pushing the marketing boundaries of what they can deliver is not limited to Viasat. When a company advertises "unlimited" but then slows you down after a few GB of data (i.e. Verizon), not exclusive to Viasat
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Ed Lingrin

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No, I am sorry, they have gone WAY WAY beyond what is reasonable.  Furthermore, the thing that is really going to be a problem for them is all the marketing (online and in print) that stated the VIDEO STREAMING was UNLIMITED at the given resolution you picked (by plan).  If you can not stream video, because the rate has been reduced, then you are not getting unlimited video streaming.  It was also stated that the video streaming was NOT included limits as imposed on the rest of the data.

PERIOD.

And that is deceptive trade practices.

Look, I get it, you are clearly here to "set the mood" of these threads, I am sure you are an employee or contractor.  All I am saying is this is going to come to an end and they need to be required to provide HONEST and CLEAR marketing of their products, just as would be expected by ANY OTHER BUSINESS.

If I sell an "All You Can Eat Buffet" but then slip by and point to small print on the bottom of the menu (which you never probably saw) that said your buffet was limited to 2 plates nearly anyone would complain and say they were lied to.  This is no different as they are hiding behind small hidden print -- and it is not easy to prove what marketing materials you responded to and what was printed on it.... but see, some people keep that stuff.  ;)

UNLIMITED INTERNET is still slapped all over my customer login -- along with my video resolution.  Not a mention of "limits" anywhere --- but it is burried off in the dark back alley somewhere eh?  LOL.    

Not going to fly any longer.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Gabe and I wish we were paid! I dont even think he has Viasat.

But have at it. We will watch as you get the state to hold Viasat accountable.
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Ed Lingrin

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I don't have to do anything. Much to my surprise, once I arrived, there were already many complaints filed and an open investigation.  The people I send their direction now are just to help add more fuel to the fire.
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Bev, Champion

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Likely misreading or, the INDEPENDENT contractor is printing up his/her own stuff and, not printing exactly what Viasat authorizes, assuming said materials exist at all.

Good luck trying to hold Viasat corporate responsible for what independent contractors do behind their backs.
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Ed Lingrin

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Everyone that feels like they have been "tricked" or "deceived" in any manner, and especially ones that were wise enough to keep the marketing materials around (or can go by a dealer and pick up what they still have laying around) should file a complaint.  

I live in rural North Florida and drive around a lot during the day.  When I see an Excede or Viasat dish if it is possible to get to the house (not gated, etc) I will stop and talk to them.  I would say so far 20% have been happy with the service and the rest either feel the service is terrible or that they were flat lied to and are pissed.

So, now I am giving out pre-printed sheets with the name, telephone number and email address of the people to contact at the State of Florida.  :)


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Al Santayos

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Awesome Ed, keep up the good work. In my area, Central Virginia the TV ads from VIASAT say "Super fast for everyone!" They also go on to bash SLOW DSL. They are obviously implying VIASAT is better than DSL for EVERYONE. Then you come in here and all the employees and homers tell people they made a mistake switching to VIASAT from DSL. Anybody see a problem with that? It would be different if they were honest, they are not. I see nowhere in print while trying to sell VIASAT the issues that signal latency causes outside of issues playing first shooter video games. In a lot of areas VIASAT is much worse than old school DSL from 20 years ago that was around 700kb.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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I was paying AT&T for up to 18 mbps DSL. My speed was usually around 6 mbps yet I would have all sorts of buffering issues with sites such as YouTube.

I am paying Viasat for up to 12 mbps. My speeds are usually beyond 12 mbps and I never experience buffering when I am still within my priority data allowance. I rarely use up my priority data thanks to the free zone.
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Ed Lingrin

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Al, I have learned a lot about how this company works while talking to people inside and outside of the company.  In my opinion, ALL of their marketing is very deceptive.  Without a question, sat service is NOT as reliable as a service like DSL or Fiber.  It also has limitations based on physics that they can not overcome (distance to sat for example).  So they market the product knowing the limitations but certainly cannot stress those in their marketing because they are not benefits.

As far as data overages -- internally they have "pools" that are available per area for the customers in that area to consume.  There are really not supposed to be any slowdown and they will let the pack "consume from the pool" once they have breached their soft caps.

Clearly, something has changed recently and they are NOT ending up with happy customers.

Organizing their customer base has been one of the easiest things I have ever tried to do -- because for the most part, everyone is unhappy.

Have you noticed EVERY "advocate" in this forum keeps running to the ONE thing they try to use over and over and over to justify what is happening?

They never address the fact that you are receiving HORRIBLE service -- they just throw out the TOS at you and say "See, you agreed to this".

When you have a company that finds their first GO TO SOLUTION is to try to hide behind legal terms buried in a TOS then you are headed down the wrong path as a company.

I have a better idea, how about stop MISLEADING and trying to CONFUSE your customer by OBFUSICATING the actual "service" with FLUFFY and FEEL GOOD deception in advertising? Instead, try HONESTY in marketing and be up front... say "Once you use 60gb your service it be worthless as we will slow it down so much it will frustrate you to death. Your web pages will take 1-2 minutes to load, each.  When you come to us to seek help our well-trained agents will attempt to slam you into a higher cost program to "solve the problem" and otherwise ignore your complaint. If you complain too much, we will hang up on you, or ignore you until you go away.   

I think they have also vastly oversold certain beams and their capacity and they are struggling to provide the necessary service levels to certain customers so they screw the other ones in the process to pull off basically a "CYA maneuver". 

There need to be some REAL investigations by the FTC, for example, to see if this company has been selling services they are actually unable to even supply.

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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Ed Lingrin, just for your information, I am not compensated in any way by Viasat. I have been a subscriber for almost 11 years now, and have always been happy with the service I get. You are obviously not happy, but that does not mean that all the over 600,000 Viasat subscribers unhappy. If you don't like your Viasat service, then terminate your contract. If you really have all this so called advertising material with alleged false  claims, then do as Gabe has asked than post it on this forum.

Also, please refrain from your name calling and insults to others on this forum, they are uncalled for.
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Ed Lingrin

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So now you want to censor me as well huh?  How very fitting -- the TOS bandit should LIKE censoring so I should not be surprised.

Furthermore, I am not going to post anything here publically because I don't want to tip my hand as to the extent of what I have.  No, I will let the State handle this at this point.  My purpose now is share the contact info with the State with as many people as possible.  

Unfortunately, for now, sat is the ONLY solution in this area.  That is soon to change because fortunately AT&T, Verizon and others are soon to provide Direct Wireless in this area (less than 6 months away with one of the products) and I am sure Viasat will see people exit service in droves... until then I must suffer with the overpriced and underperforming misrepresented mess that I have at this time.
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Jim16

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Save us "O Great White Knight!!!



See the source image
(Edited)
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Ed Lingrin

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Oh look, Jim again with more insults.  This is a tactic used by many.  When you can't address the issue, because you have been caught with your pants down, you try to redirect by attacking the messenger.

Go ahead, have your fun, it will not change anything and actually it kind of motivates me further to expose what was done here.
(Edited)
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Al Santayos

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It seems everyone's needs are different, mine is very basic. I do not need high speeds, I need reliability. I receive correspondence from customers through e-mail. I also use the internet to shop for and order business supplies. I am a machine shop, there is nothing like having your service drop in the middle of ordering a few dozen different items, that happened frequently. Sometimes I thought the order went through and it did not, other times I ended up with double orders. Sometimes my service dropped up to a dozen times a day when the weather was perfect. Every time I had a tech visit they always blamed the websites I was using for the problems instead of VIASAT. Really strange now that I use Verizon Wireless all my dropped connection, invalid password, etc,etc problems stopped. It seems for some reason while my Verizon cell service here has actually regressed the wireless internet service has improved. I tried wireless internet here a half dozen years ago and it did not work, now it is at least better than old school DSL.
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Al Santayos

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Just saw another TV  VIASAT ad saying they are better than "SLOW DSL" and you can use "MULTIPLE DEVICES AT ONCE", is that deceptive or what? Also when are the VIASAT homers going to come clean? The same VIASAT homers show up in every thread that is ripping VIASAT, sticking up for crap service. Their posting rates of 500-1000 posts a year are the same I post on professional machinists forums trying to help young people new to the trade, but they are doing that sticking up for VIACRAP. Explain how that makes sense other than they are paid shills.
(Edited)
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GabeU, Champion

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They must be sending my shill payment to the wrong address.
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Steve Frederick-VS1/Beam314, Champion

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Makes me wonder who is intercepting my "shill payments". I  have never gotten a single one.

The weekend has arrived. Enjoy.
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Bev, Champion

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Yeah, me too, haven't received a single schill payment in 15 years - something is wrong. (Like we aren't paid to attempt to help people here.) 

We really need to fix that automated mail system but, I seem to have lost the Satellite Secret Sauce recipe and, you know, we can't do a thing without that Sauce. xD.
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GabeU, Champion

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Ya know, in this day and age, our shill payments should be by direct deposit.  No check to get lost!  :)  
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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My Liberty 12 plan from Viasat is faster than the 18 mbps dsl I had from AT&T.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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I am paying for up to 12 mbps but according to Al, Viasat is a scam.
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Al Santayos

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The high speed a couple of lucky customers have is meaningless to those who are in an area that has slow and  or unreliable service. You are just trying to be annoying, You didn't do anything to attain the high speeds, you are not special, just lucky to be in an are that isn't over sold, plain and simple.
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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I would agree with that.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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If I had used up my priority data for the month, I too would have speeds well below 1 mbps during prime time.  I haven't used up my priority data, hence my speeds being fine 24/7.
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Al Santayos

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I went over my priority data once or twice in 7 years and always had unreliable usually slow service. It would drop out a dozen times a day even when the weather was good. Sometimes it would be down hours at a time. The service got worse in reliability by the year, it was obviously getting over sold. My zip is 23015.
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Al Santayos

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Now some of the pathetic shilling for VISAT is making sense, someone who had champion by their name admitted to being a contractor for VIASAT. Unfortunately it was during middle of the night internet surfing and I forgot who it was.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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Andy?
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Al Santayos

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What is Andy's screen name so we can check his posts.Some of the shilling for VIASAT in here makes no sense.
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Stephen Rice, Champion

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What?
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GabeU, Champion

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His screen name was Andy Schack.  He is a contractor/installer.  He is no longer a member here. 

He never hid the fact that he was an installer, so I don't know what the point is.  Oh, that's right, he probably refuted someone's claim, so he's automatically a "shill", right?  SMH. 

And if you think Andy was a shill, you obviously didn't read that many of his posts. 
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VeteranSatUser, Champion

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Some peoples' post on here make no sense either!