Tag: worst companies

Sprint, Fox and 24: A Rant

Sprint must be the dumbest cell phone company around right now.  First, they have those black and white ads with Dan Hesse, their CEO, walking down the street.  Who is going to buy a cool phone because the CEO tells you about the company?  I can answer that.  Nobody.  They also have that annoying classical music playing throughout the commercials.  You can see it here:

I decided to watch 24 on Fox’s website since I missed last week’s episode because I was working.  This is a great idea and a great service, especially for a series like 24, where it is essential to see every episode in the correct order so that the show makes sense.  The only problem is that Fox has to put commercials into the middle of the show.
I understand completely why they need to do it and it makes perfect sense, but the execution is curious at best, moronic at worst, which brings me back to Sprint.
There are 7 commercial spots during a 43 minute episode of 24.  For whatever reason, Sprint and Fox decided the best way to advertise would be for the same company to put the same ad in all 7 spots.  This is a horrible idea in the first place, but its even worse when the 7 commercials are all Sprint’s horrible commercials.  Not only are the commercials bad, but they are also ironic.  The phone they are advertising is called the Rant.  Whoever named that phone must have had this commercial in mind because that’s what it inspires: Rants.
By the 3rd commercial break, I vowed I would write a Rant in my blog.  By the 5th, I decided that I would never buy a sprint product and would look to watch 24 any other way possible, including the myriad of pirated broadcasts.  By the 6th, I was about to break my computer and by the 7th, I was thinking to myself that I wouldn’t complain if Mr. Bauer had to use some of his tricks of the trade to get some info out of Mr. Hesse.  Luckily for Mr. Hesse, my computer and me, there wasn’t an 8th commercial break.
I do not know what both Sprint and Fox were thinking, but whatever it was, they failed miserably.  Not only do I now hate Sprint, but the repetitive commercials are going to drive me away from Fox’s service, onto a different website that does not make Fox any money.  If companies want to continue to make online content like this a viable ancillary revenue stream, they are going to have to learn to continue to adapt.  They cannot show the same commercial, even a great one, 7 times to a viewer in 40 minutes.  It will never work.
Maybe someone at AT&T or Verizon paid Fox to put seven Sprint commercials in a row during 24.  That’s about the only explanation that makes sense.
Here’s the offending ad:

Matt Millen…Football Expert?

Matt Millen is now an “expert” on NBC’s coverage of the NFL playoffs.


Millen’s old team, the Detroit Lions, just finished this season with the worst record ever, 0-16.  Why would anyone want to listen insight on football from a guy who’s team went 31-84 under his leadership?  Why would NBC trot out a complete failure who said himself that the Lions under his command were “beyond awful” and who football executives say “has made more bad draft decisions than anyone else in two centuries.”
With all of the bailouts of other failures going on today like Citi, AIG and the Automakers, its fitting that one of the biggest failures in the last decade of the NFL has landed on his feet so quickly.

Madison Property Management: How Not to do Business

I currently rent from Madison Property Management and absolutely hate it.  

Dishonesty, unfair treatment, security deposit theft and outright lies has caused MPM to quickly jump to the top of my list of Worst Companies I Deal With.  They’ve found a way to beat out my old Worst Company, Charter Communications.  I am not alone.

Our house is nice, the rent is reasonable and the owner is a great guy.  
Enter MPM.
When we first saw the house in July, about a month before the leases in Madison turn over, the MPM rep told us that we would receive August rent free.  We were expecting this, as this was MPM’s special on their website.  When we went to sign the lease, we were told that we would receive this discount.  My roommates and I trusted them to be true to their word and we were pressured to quickly skim the lease.  We signed the lease and did not pay August rent.  In the first week of September, we received an eviction notice.  I called and asked why.  They said that we had not paid August rent and that it did not say anything about it in the lease.  The guy who showed us the house, plus the guy who had us sign the lease both denied that they had said anything.  MPM also changed the website.
I know it is our fault that we did not re-read the lease carefully, but come on.  Can you be more dishonest?  I am waiting for the WayBackMachine to show MPM’s website from the summer with the special on it and then I will go back and demand the money back.
We should have been wary about renting from MPM because of a previous roommate’s experience with MPM. Upon move out, MPM deducted $300 for a “hole in the door.” He demanded that they accompany him back to his apartment to see this “hole” so that they could justify payment. Three hours later, MPM called back and said “sorry, it’s just a nail hole. we won’t charge you.”  That’s a great response from a reputable company.
Next, it is their job to show the house for people who are going to live here next year.  Our rent is 1995 per month.  MPM has raised the rent to 2475 for next year.  Nice try ripping off students.  Not only have they raised the rent by almost 25%, but they have also lowered the quality of the house.
They also show the place at ungodly hours for a college student and for whatever reason, do not have a key to our house.  This means that they get locked out and cannot show the house unless someone is home.  We’ve alerted MPM about this, but they do not seem to care.
The next problem with MPM is their snow removal people have twice created 2 foot high snow banks across the front of our garage that I have to shovel out.  When I called to complain, the MPM rep said that they “do not do the snow removal” at our house, so they can’t do anything about it.  This is the second time they have lied to me.
Going to college and renting from MPM has taught me exactly how not to run a business.  Incompetent employees who are not responsive to customers, managers who tell outright lies and ridiculous prices will not work for most companies.  MPM gets away with it because students are lazy and do not know their rights.  I will never live in an MPM house or apartment again.