The best salesman in the world knows how to sell you what you already have for twice the price. At least now we know why Multichoice changed all those channel numbers from simple digits to huge figures (anything from 101 to 604) in 2007.
It's the oldest trick in the book: the bigger the numbers, the more we would think we were getting for our money. Where previously we were able to access a variety of overseas channels at no extra cost, we now have to pay (for example) R120 a month for the Portuguese "bouquet" or R190 a month for the German "bouquet". Goodness knows where the "bouquet" comes into play: every bouquet has only one expensive flower to boot.
Since signing up for their PVR service, my monthly account has jumped from R437 to R848 a month. So I am now paying double for much less. When I called recently to complain about several channels that had mysteriously disappeared, they asked for my ID number.
After repeating it four times they assured me that though they were already billing me, I was not on their system and the fault in my reception was probably because of my faulty satellite dish. I just hope my letter will warn other would-be subscribers of Multichoice's shoddy service.
Eddie Jansen, Moreleta Park