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Old 07-15-2014, 07:22 PM   #121
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LOL Wonder how many conflicts have resulted when what was claimed to be just a "warning" was taken as a "threat". The laughable thing about this particular case is the assumption that anything a customer says could taken as a threat by a TiVo rep. As long as they stick to their scripts and policies there is nothing that would threaten them, including threatening to return a TiVo.
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Old 07-15-2014, 08:29 PM   #122
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The OP is saying I'm going to financially harm you unless you take back the financial harm I perceived you did to me.


extortion is defined as

"the practice of obtaining something, especially money, through force or threat."

What is the OP doing but trying to obtain money through a threat? He's trying to obtain his $10 through threat of a cancellation.



Threaten is defined as "(of a situation ) seem likely to produce an unpleasant or unwelcome result." or "express one's intention to harm."

In this case he expressed his intention to financially harm Tivo by returning a Tivo and this is an unwelcome result for Tivo.


Obviously not unlawful and it is his right to return his Tivo.

And extort and threaten are harsh words to use as they are usually or frequently associated with serious crimes or transgressions. But the framework of "do this or else" is there.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:15 PM   #123
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wow, i see it differently, altogether.

the op perceives the cancellation policy as overbilling for unused services. tivo refused to negotiate, choosing to blindly follow policy, and escalate a small customer billing dispute to a point where the customer would rather cancel altogether than continue to do any business with tivo.

tivo has the right to blindly follow their own policy. the customer has the right to leave at any time, within the same policy.

however; if tivo believes this is a smart business decision, they need look no further than their own independent subscription numbers, and the continued decline in those numbers. it should be a hint to tivo that it's worth $10 to save a good customer, than spend hundreds to try and find a new one.
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Old 07-15-2014, 09:20 PM   #124
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The OP is saying I'm going to financially harm you unless you take back the financial harm I perceived you did to me.


extortion is defined as

"the practice of obtaining something, especially money, through force or threat."

What is the OP doing but trying to obtain money through a threat? He's trying to obtain his $10 through threat of a cancellation. <snip>
You guys are really trying hard here, aren't you? I'm going to suggest that you are not comprehending what I'm saying. I never said "I'm leaving unless you <insert your imagined threat here>" That still would not have been extortion under any accepted usage of the word. But even if I give you the semantics (which I'm not), from a purely logical perspective I never made a threat to do anything. How can there be extortion with no threat?

Once again: I never asked for anything. I never made a threat. They told me what they were doing. I told them what I was (likely) doing. It was a way of letting them know I did not care for their business practices. It was not a negotiation. We can go at this all night if you want. Your point about me extorting something is just flat wrong.

Let's say you or Grakthis go to a grocery store. You have an unpleasant experience with the checkout person. Case 1: you say "I'm going to fill out a complaint card." and you do so. Case 2: you say nothing and fill out a complaint card.

Are both, one, or neither of those extortion by your definition?

Is your argument supporting the use of the word "extort" in my case a semantic one or a legal one? Just curious as to where you're coming from.

(Edit: fixed typos)

Last edited by Darichard : 07-16-2014 at 10:45 AM.
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Old 07-16-2014, 02:48 AM   #125
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This discussion is getting us nowhere, let end it. At 125 posts I don't care who has the moral right to get the $10, TiVo or the OP.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:13 AM   #126
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This discussion is getting us nowhere, let end it. At 125 posts I don't care who has the moral right to get the $10, TiVo or the OP.
How 'bout if we take up a collection for the OP?
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:26 AM   #127
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How 'bout if we take up a collection for the OP?
I'm in. You can put me down for ten bucks.
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Old 07-16-2014, 10:48 AM   #128
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This discussion is getting us nowhere, let end it. At 125 posts I don't care who has the moral right to get the $10, TiVo or the OP.
For the Nth time, it's not about the money.

You guys want to keep making it about the money. It has nothing to do with the money for me. It has to do with how TiVo runs their business. It's about doing the right think and treating customers fairly and reasonably.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:15 AM   #129
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How about a collection to bribe the forum admins to obliterate this thread.
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Old 07-16-2014, 11:52 AM   #130
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I have to say, I admire Darichard's persistence!

My $0.02: As several others have said, Darichard has a point about the TiVo "no refund" policy. If you are billing for a service a month in advance of the user actually making use of the service, and the user cancels before that month is up, the only fair and reasonable thing to do is to issue a pro-rated credit for the unused service.

However, there is no obligation for a company to have fair and reasonable policies. TiVo has always had this policy, and it is clearly disclosed in the user agreement. It is the customer's decision as to whether he or she chooses to do business under those terms. Darichard has stated that they choose not to do business with TiVo under these terms, which they are completely free to do.

No one is threatening or extorting anyone. This really all started over the confusion between "cancelling" and "deactivating" a TiVo. From TiVo's point of view, these two words are synonymous - when you stop service on a TiVo you are "cancelling" service for that device. Asking to "deactivate" a device does not change TiVo's POV...they still see it as cancelling service for that device and they do not allow you to do that online, and nor do they issue any prorated refunds.

So many aspersions have been cast on Darichard's character and motives in this thread I can't help but comment that if I were a newcomer to this site, I would likely have to think twice about visiting again, and I sure wouldn't want to post anything. Hmm...I guess TiVo may not be the only organization that has characteristics that drive people away.
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Old 07-16-2014, 12:22 PM   #131
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You guys are really trying hard here, aren't you? I'm going to suggest that you are not comprehending what I'm saying. I never said "I'm leaving unless you <insert your imagined threat here>" That still would not have been extortion under any accepted usage of the word. But even if I give you the semantics (which I'm not), from a purely logical perspective I never made a threat to do anything. How can there be extortion with no threat?

Once again: I never asked for anything. I never made a threat. They told me what they were doing. I told them what I was (likely) doing. It was a way of letting them know I did not care for their business practices. It was not a negotiation. We can go at this all night if you want. Your point about me extorting something is just flat wrong.

Let's say you or Grakthis go to a grocery store. You have an unpleasant experience with the checkout person. Case 1: you say "I'm going to fill out a complaint card." and you do so. Case 2: you say nothing and fill out a complaint card.

Are both, one, or neither of those extortion by your definition?

Is your argument supporting the use of the word "extort" in my case a semantic one or a legal one? Just curious as to where you're coming from.

(Edit: fixed typos)
Did you not tell her that you were returning your new Tivo if they don't give you a pro-rated refund on the last monthly fee for your old one?

That's how I read it and I think that's how many others read it. That's where the use of the words "extortion and threat" come from. Obviously used with a little hyperbole but it roughly fits the interaction.

YOu complaint analogy doesn't work because you aren't demanding anything from the checkout person. With Tivo you wanted $10 back.

I already said you did nothing unlawful at all. I don't think anyone here thinks you did anything illegal in the slightest. Never crossed my mind. But I don't think extortion is only about unlawful acts. People emotionally extort all the time. And as I said obviously a little hyperbole is being used because this is a sort of a Seinfeld discussion at the local diner type of issue.

You seem to have made a mountain out of it. I'd probably make you George then. I think most of us would be Jerry or Elaine on this and think it's a molehill and would say, "Shame on you Tivo," but that's about it or at least I would. We wouldn't cut off the kid's hand because he stole a pack of gum. Nor throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Personally I think you're just acting out. Something else is going on there. Nothing major but something else. You weren't really using your Tivo anyway so I don't buy that it's all about the principle of the ~$10. Probably just the straw that broke the camel's back or a convenient cover.

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Old 07-16-2014, 12:54 PM   #132
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If you are billing for a service a month in advance of the user actually making use of the service, and the user cancels before that month is up, the only fair and reasonable thing to do is to issue a pro-rated credit for the unused service.
I disagree there.

First they aren't exactly billing a month in advance are they? Aren't they billing a day in advance or a few days in advance of the beginning of the month?

Minor point, but it pertains to fairness and reasonableness of how they bill a customer.

Second and more to the point, I don't think the only fair and reasonable thing to do is issue a pro-rated credit. Yes it is more fair and reasonable to issue a pro-rated refund. But hardly unfair and not reasonable to have a clear policy where the customer pays for the rest of the month they cancel in. Anyone that has been around awhile knows all about canceling before the next period starts or else you might be paying for the next period. Fairly common straightforward practice.

Judge Judy never pro-rates rent for tentants that move out before the end of the month.
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Old 07-16-2014, 01:20 PM   #133
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How about a collection to bribe the forum admins to obliterate this thread.
You know that it's possible to just stop reading it, right?
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Old 07-16-2014, 01:31 PM   #134
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Did you not tell her that you were returning your new Tivo if they don't give you a pro-rated refund on the last monthly fee for your old one?
I did not. It does not fit the interaction. I have to question whether or not you've really read what I've written.

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YOu complaint analogy doesn't work because you aren't demanding anything from the checkout person. With Tivo you wanted $10 back.
I didn't ask for anything back. I didn't say "refund it or I'm leaving." Where did the $10 amount come from?

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I already said you did nothing unlawful at all. I don't think anyone here thinks you did anything illegal in the slightest. Never crossed my mind. But I don't think extortion is only about unlawful acts. People emotionally extort all the time. And as I said obviously a little hyperbole is being used because this is a sort of a Seinfeld discussion at the local diner type of issue.
Okee dokee. Extortion always involves a threat and coercion. I made no threats and didn't coerce anybody. You seem to want to my actions extortion for some reason in the absence of any evidence that this is accurate, even semantically. So be it.

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You seem to have made a mountain out of it. I'd probably make you George then. I think most of us would be Jerry or Elaine on this and think it's a molehill and would say, "Shame on you Tivo," but that's about it or at least I would. We wouldn't cut off the kid's hand because he stole a pack of gum. Nor throw the baby out with the bathwater.
Ok. Thanks for your input.

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Personally I think you're just acting out. Something else is going on there. Nothing major but something else. You weren't really using your Tivo anyway so I don't buy that it's all about the principle of the ~$10. Probably just the straw that broke the camel's back or a convenient cover.
Another probing into my "true" motives. You seem to be unwilling to accpet things as I described them. To be clear, your contention is that I had pretty much already decided to stop using TiVo before before I went out a bought a Roamio?
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Old 07-16-2014, 02:34 PM   #135
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You know that it's possible to just stop reading it, right?
Actually, no, it's not.



I refer you to the threads where people keep talking about how utterly stupid "Under The Dome" is, and yet they keep watching and commenting on how utterly stupid it is.

(those threads are actually far more entertaining than the show, with more logic and fewer plot holes, and lots and lots of snark)
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Old 07-16-2014, 02:34 PM   #136
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You know that it's possible to just stop reading it, right?
Yeah, I guess I should join the 99.999+% of forum readers who have already done that. Thanks for a totally worthless thread.
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Old 07-16-2014, 03:05 PM   #137
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Actually, no, it's not.



I refer you to the threads where people keep talking about how utterly stupid "Under The Dome" is, and yet they keep watching and commenting on how utterly stupid it is.

(those threads are actually far more entertaining than the show, with more logic and fewer plot holes, and lots and lots of snark)
Finally someone with a good opinion, "Under The Dome" has gotten stupid and I have taken it off my SP list.
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Old 07-16-2014, 03:21 PM   #138
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Yeah, I guess I should join the 99.999+% of forum readers who have already done that. Thanks for a totally worthless thread.
So I post something I think is relevant to TiVo as a service provider. I got the web site thing wrong (Australia only) but I stand by my post and decision to stop doing business with TiVo. You disagree with me. That's fine. After all the noise and personal attacks, I'm now blamed for the thread being "worthless?" Did I deprive you of some value you expected to get out of reading this?

To paraphrase trip1eX, something else seems to be going on here. I can't get my head around it.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:44 PM   #139
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I disagree there.

First they aren't exactly billing a month in advance are they? Aren't they billing a day in advance or a few days in advance of the beginning of the month?

Minor point, but it pertains to fairness and reasonableness of how they bill a customer.

Second and more to the point, I don't think the only fair and reasonable thing to do is issue a pro-rated credit. Yes it is more fair and reasonable to issue a pro-rated refund. But hardly unfair and not reasonable to have a clear policy where the customer pays for the rest of the month they cancel in. Anyone that has been around awhile knows all about canceling before the next period starts or else you might be paying for the next period. Fairly common straightforward practice.

Judge Judy never pro-rates rent for tentants that move out before the end of the month.
I'm not going to go down that rabbit hole. The "fair and reasonable" description is clearly my opinion. Opinions are thick on the ground...everyone has (at least) one.

I admit I don't have a great deal of visibility into how TiVo does monthly service billing (I'd never do monthly if I could avoid it...lifetime is just a much better deal IMHO), so I'm going by what others have posted. As I understand it, if I were paying monthly, and activated my TiVo on 5/26, I would have paid the monthly fee for the next month's (i.e. through 6/25) service at that time. On 6/26 my credit card would be have been billed for service through 7/25. If I cancelled service on a box today (7/16) I would effectively be "giving up" 9 days worth of service as TiVo will not issue a prorated refund. If that's not how it works, then I stand corrected.

By contrast, I cancelled my DirecTV service on 7/11, and my billing date was 7/9. If DirecTV worked like TiVo, I would be giving up 29 days of service. However, DirecTV issued a prorated refund for 29/31 of my monthly service fee.

Sure, there are plenty of other examples of businesses that have the exact same policy as TiVo. IMO, if the payment is for a service (as opposed to a lease payment for a physical thing like an apartment or car) it is unfair to not issue prorated refunds. In my experience the standard practice is to issue prorated refunds for services and TiVo is an exception rather than the rule. YMMV.

MY point was that Darichard did not deserve some of the abuse he got in this thread - but that is, again, just my opinion.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:48 PM   #140
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I did not. It does not fit the interaction. I have to question whether or not you've really read what I've written.


I didn't ask for anything back. I didn't say "refund it or I'm leaving." Where did the $10 amount come from?


Okee dokee. Extortion always involves a threat and coercion. I made no threats and didn't coerce anybody. You seem to want to my actions extortion for some reason in the absence of any evidence that this is accurate, even semantically. So be it.


Ok. Thanks for your input.


Another probing into my "true" motives. You seem to be unwilling to accpet things as I described them. To be clear, your contention is that I had pretty much already decided to stop using TiVo before before I went out a bought a Roamio?
The gist of what you wrote is I didn't get my pro-rated refund back for the last month of service on my old tivo so I'm returning the new one I bought.

Some people spun it as threat (I'm returning my new tivo) unless I can obtain(the pro-rated refund I think I deserve) which fits a definition of extortion....the practice of obtaining something through a threat.

You can say well I didn't say it directly. I was exercising my rights. I didn't threaten. etc. But I think everyone knows that already.

Extortion didn't cross my mind until I read it in other posts, but after a deep breath I could see the parallels. It's just a creative way to use the words extortion and threat. Also I can see how it could be perceived as harsh and make someone defensive.



And yes I think you already had one foot out the Tivo door from what I read. I mean you say hadn't used your Tivo is months. Yet were still paying it. Then suddenly ...you are so concerned with Tivo not pro-rating your refund for the month in which you cancel?

Overall it just seems like a foolish behavior if you were fine with Tivo otherwise. All the cliches apply here. Mountain of a molehill. Baby and bathwater. Grass ain't greener. .....

All for what? To punish Tivo? To stick it to them? over part of a monthly fee? That's the $10 I'm talking about. Isn't it $10 or so? It's not like you haven't heard of not canceling something before a period ends and then getting charged for the next period. That has been a fairly common practice from various businesses.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:51 PM   #141
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...if the payment is for a service (as opposed to a lease payment for a physical thing like an apartment or car) it is unfair to not issue prorated refunds. In my experience the standard practice is to issue prorated refunds for services and TiVo is an exception rather than the rule.
this.
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...Darichard did not deserve some of the abuse he got in this thread...
and definitely this.
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Old 07-16-2014, 04:57 PM   #142
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But he's not. I never said "pro-rate me or else." I never asked for anything. She told me her actions. I told her the likely result. That is in no way extortion.
"Hey, I just said 'it would be a shame if something happened to your pretty wife.' I didn't say I was going to hurt her!"

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Your neighbor says he's going to cut down a tree that is on the property line between your houses. You reply that when he does, you will report it to the HOA. Is that extortion?
It is certainly a threat of retaliation intended to stop your neighbor from cutting down the tree. Absolutely, without question. The main reason it is not extortion is because there is no monetary gain for it, on your part.

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The OED defines extort as: "Obtain (something) by force, threats, or other unfair means." I obtained nothing, I did not threaten, and I did nothing unfair.
Look man, it's OK to threaten a business with not doing business with them anymore. I have no idea why you're being so defensive about this. But you absolutely DID threaten them with termination of your current commercial contract! Absolutely, without question, you did. Pretending you didn't makes me doubt your honesty about everything involving this story. Why are you denying this obvious thing that you obviously did!

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Extortion has to do with a wrongful use of force or power, not exercising your rights and informing. If I had given her an ultimatum that will still have not been extortion. But I didn't, so it most certainly was not.
"Wrongful" is a really fuzzy word here. It is, somewhat, wrongful to hinge something totally unrelated (the new TiVo box) on termination of the old one. I mean, per your own words, it's not a meaningful amount of money. It's principle to you. Fine. But i think there's clearly a case that it's wrongful to leverage a monetary exchange on an outside matter.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:01 PM   #143
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All for what? To punish Tivo? To stick it to them? over part of a monthly fee? That's the $10 I'm talking about. Isn't it $10 or so? It's not like you haven't heard of not canceling something before a period ends and then getting charged for the next period. That has been a fairly common practice from various businesses.
I really don't know how else to say it. Based on this practice and my experience with this transaction they are not a company with whom I want to do business. It had never occurred to me to get rid of my TiVo. I've had one so long it's just how I watch TV. Not that I watch much TV, particularly in the last few months.

I already mentioned Wal-mart. There are many other businesses I won't patronize. It's about principle. Does it inconvenience me to now have TiVo? Probably. Does it inconvenience me and cost me more to not shop at Wal-mart? Absolutely. We all make choices.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:05 PM   #144
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Also, I am not sure if SOP is to offer prorated refunds? I know some companies do, and I imagine some companies do not. Cable companies do. ISPs usually do. My cell phone company does. But pre-paid phone companies do not ("My phone broke so I can't use my minutes." "Tough luck! Want a new phone?"). Many service providers will not, if you sign a service contract. Cleaning people, for example, will keep a prepaid appointment you cancel. Apartments will partially refund (well, refund? "Not demand you pay") if you break your lease early. Dentists will charge you a cancellation fee sometimes. Amazon won't refund you a digital movie if you don't watch it, or can't watch it, for whatever reason.

So, no, I do not think there's a SOP here. I think different companies work differently.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:06 PM   #145
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please stop the "extortion" and "threat" comparisons and accusations.

this is an interaction between a paying customer and a service provider, with differences of opinion over policy, during a billing dispute. quit the drama, already.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:07 PM   #146
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Originally Posted by Darichard View Post
I really don't know how else to say it. Based on this practice and my experience with this transaction they are not a company with whom I want to do business. It had never occurred to me to get rid of my TiVo. I've had one so long it's just how I watch TV. Not that I watch much TV, particularly in the last few months.

I already mentioned Wal-mart. There are many other businesses I won't patronize. It's about principle. Does it inconvenience me to now have TiVo? Probably. Does it inconvenience me and cost me more to not shop at Wal-mart? Absolutely. We all make choices.
I think we question why this principle is so important? I mean, there are principles that will make me stop doing business with a company... but they have to REALLY make me mad. I don't think "refusing to refund a pre-paid digital service that I am now unable to use" is one of those things. I think it might be the last straw if I was already mad at a company... but if it were a company I already liked, I would just shrug and move on. They have earned too much good will for me to scrap it all over that.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:08 PM   #147
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Originally Posted by NorthAlabama View Post
please stop the "extortion" and "threat" comparisons and accusations.

this is an interaction between a paying customer and a service provider, with differences of opinion over policy, during a billing dispute. quit the drama, already.
It's not drama, it's semantics. If semantics don't matter to you, then by all means, don't engage in the discussion.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:13 PM   #148
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Originally Posted by Grakthis View Post
It's not drama, it's semantics. If semantics don't matter to you, then by all means, don't engage in the discussion.
no, it's not semantics, not by a long shot, it's an abuse of the english language. any claim that the op is resorting to "extortion" or "threats" is false on its face.

to describe the op's interaction as such, if not an outright lie, is a total disregard of any common sense or the meanings of those words.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:14 PM   #149
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Originally Posted by NorthAlabama View Post
no, it's not semantics, not by a long shot, it's an abuse of the english language. any claim that the op is resorting to "extortion" or "threats" is false on its face.

to describe the op's interaction as such, if not an outright lie, is a total disregard of any common sense and meanings of those words.
"the branch of linguistics and logic concerned with meaning. There are a number of branches and subbranches of semantics, including formal semantics, which studies the logical aspects of meaning, such as sense, reference, implication, and logical form, lexical semantics, which studies word meanings and word relations, and conceptual semantics, which studies the cognitive structure of meaning."

I don't know what else to say to you here. It's kind of hilarious that you're wrong about how word meanings is not semantics, which means your wrong about what semantics means, which produces this infinite loop of you being wrong.
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Old 07-16-2014, 05:17 PM   #150
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Originally Posted by Darichard View Post
I really don't know how else to say it. Based on this practice and my experience with this transaction they are not a company with whom I want to do business. It had never occurred to me to get rid of my TiVo. I've had one so long it's just how I watch TV. Not that I watch much TV, particularly in the last few months.

I already mentioned Wal-mart. There are many other businesses I won't patronize. It's about principle. Does it inconvenience me to now have TiVo? Probably. Does it inconvenience me and cost me more to not shop at Wal-mart? Absolutely. We all make choices.
But it doesn't smell like it's about principle because it seems like a pretty petty disagreement to draw your "principle" line over. It's like saying well my friend didn't want to go with me to the new Planet of the Apes movie so he's not my friend any more. I didn't threaten him. He made his choice. And I made mine. We all make choices.

..to me that person isn't very wise or already had an issue with the friend who wouldn't go to the movie with him. It smells like there is a bit more to the story than the person wants to admit. That's how I see you and Tivo.

Last edited by trip1eX : 07-16-2014 at 06:47 PM.
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