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SIRIUS S50 You asked for it, now you got it! A forum all about the SIRIUS S50.

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Old 11-20-2006, 06:46 PM   #1
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Wasn’t the S50 the device that Howard promoted on Larry King? Or was it Letterman? Or both? I’ve always admired Howard the businessman. I don’t ever remember him selling coffee mugs or T-shirts. He was more progressive. He focused on selling his show, and like a great salesman he sold his personality first and his product second. It’s a natural fit because his product “The Howard Stern Show,” is an extension of his personality.

The problem with Sirius is that they are not good business operators. If they were, they would have dealt with their problems in an ethical and professional manner. I understand that they have several problems with their S50 device. Mocking their customers with deception and the general run-around is not going to resolve those problems. A clever businessman could deflect some of those problems and buy some time and do it a manner that would not alienate customers. A good businessman should not alienate any serious customers but especially those customers that are month-to-month.

Sometimes a problem can become an opportunity. One of their problems is the FM modulators exceeding the strength regulated by the FCC. If they were good operators they would have deflected the delay in resolving ALL claims on to the FCC even if there were other mitigating factors like the botched firmware updates. The Stern Show listeners have no sympathy for the FCC, and without saying it in so many words, Sirius could have made the FCC look like a passive/aggressive bully lashing out at Howard. Being a victim of the FCC could almost be a shared experience with Howard. Customer service is programmed with a series of canned responses that are often quoted in this forum. The following are the canned responses I would have written for customer service. The intent is to buy some time and salvage the customer’s commitment at the expense of the FCC.

Customer: I want check on the status of my S50 claim.

CS: I’m sorry that your claim is unresolved. We’re still waiting on a FCC ruling determining the modifications to the signal strength of the FM modulators built into the S50.

Customer: When do you expect to ship out my replacement?

CS: We’re hoping it’s just a matter of a few weeks. First we need the FCC ruling. Second we need to manufacture the devices to the new approved specs. They are a government bureaucracy and we cannot predict when they will release Sirius to start manufacturing. My managers aren’t sure, but they’re thinking it will be very soon.

Customer: Can you at least send me temporary backup unit?

CS: Unfortunetly, we cannot distribute any more devices that do not comply with the FCC

When I placed a pre-order for the S50 a year ago, I was buying the Howard Stern Show. My decision process was oblivious to the Sirius company and its other channels. Sirius just happened to be the “Brand X” means of delivery. Brand X has shown itself to be a deceptive, manipulative and unethical company. It is somewhat acceptable to deflect and be evasive about problems in the business world, but it is unethical to make the numerous lies and the broken commitments I’ve experienced. Unfortunetly some unethical companies can be very good operators. Sirius is neither ethical nor are they good operators, they are just a terrible company. My commute has been Howard-free for several months and it will continue to be that way. I cannot be dignified person and support a company that operates with a culture of mistreating and deceiving their customers especially when it happens to be me. That does not come from the individual CS reps. It comes from the management. And at the top of Sirius, it’s hard to tell who works for who.

I take the time and energy to write this piece not to help the Sirius company correct its faults. This company has turned me into a idiot for calling so often. Any alienation could have been avoided with some honest and selective answers. If I felt locked out of listening to the Stern show by the FCC, I would have probably solved it by buying another device. Primarily to listen to the show and secondly to regain my control from the government. Maybe better answers wouldn’t have given me my replacement sooner, but I wouldn’t have had to endure my current experiences during the wait. I should have moved on a long time ago but I’ve invested too much of my free time to just let it go. I write this in the hope somebody will find comfort in the shared experience. The only positive experience I’ve had regarding my S50 claim is the information I’ve gained from this forum. Receiving a favor from strangers is a nice thing. Before I started to read here, I was working blind. I thought my return experience was remarkable. Now I find it’s not so remarkable after all. Most writers who have low number of posts get treated with much skepticism. Maybe they should, and maybe I’m an infiltrator from the competition. Or maybe I’m a former fan of the Howard Stern Show that got burned too many times and nobody, including the talent, seems to care.
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Old 11-21-2006, 01:11 PM   #2
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