Round 29: Countrywide Home Loans vs Dish Network

This is Round 29 in our Worst Company in America contest, Countrywide Home Loans vs Dish Network. Vote which sucks more, inside…

Here’s what our readers said when they nominated these two companies:

“For creating moral hazard and helping to destroy our economy.”
“Poster Child of the subprime meltdown”
“Best Buy has problems, but they’re not scamming people out of their homes. ..The only competition to Countrywide is Blackwater”
“The symbolic damage they’ve done to this country alone oughta be enough.”
“for enabling the credit crisis.”
“Because 12% of your loans being subprime can cause 120% of your troubles (and nearly wreck the American economy in the process)”
“Who else has been so completely destructive to the entire economy”
“for causing this shitty market by preying on the uninformed.”
“what housing bubble?”

Dish Network
“No one has nominated Dish Network yet?”

This is a post in our Worst Company In America 2008 series. The companies nominated for this honor were chosen by you, the readers. Keep track of all the goings on at

Sprint vs Hewlett Packard
Blue Cross Blue Shield vs CNN
Gamestop vs Monster Cable
Bank Of America vs Toys R’ Us
Toshiba vs Microsoft
US Airways vs Washington Mutual
American Airlines vs Blockbuster
Time Warner Cable vs Radioshack
Wellpoint vs Charter Cable
Dell vs Home Depot
Sears vs Citibank
Wal-Mart vs TJMaxx
Mattel vs ATT
Capital One vs Video Professor
eBay/Paypal vs COX
Apple vs SallieMae
Diebold Vs Pfizer
MTV vs TransUnion
CompUSA vs DirecTV
Target vs Best Buy
Allstate vs Verizon
DeBeers vs 1800 flowers
Starbucks vs United Airlines
Exxon vs Crocs
Google Vs Sony
Ticketmaster vs Wachovia
Facebook vs The American Arbitration Association
Comcast vs Menu Foods

(Photo: Ric Francis/AP)


Edit Your Comment

  1. nrich239 says:

    This is a no-brainer….

    One of the biggest factors to the subprime mortgage meltdown VS a company people are running towards to get away from comcast…..

  2. AaronZ says:

    Wow, why not just give Dish Network a free pass? If you’re not going to put Contrywide up against a real contender, you might as well have put them up agsinst ‘free puppies’.

  3. Buran says:

    So what if you can’t watch TV? That’s nothing compared with having your home taken away and you left on the street.

  4. fluiddruid says:

    Wow, it’s a great day for Dish Network. Next up: Comcast vs Hitler and Lex Luthor?

  5. Landru says:

    Countrywide for the win. And I’m actually pretty happy with Dish Nework. I swore years ago that I would never have cable again, and even though I once had to resort to their Executive Customer Service, Dish has allowed me to keep that promise.

  6. Booji_Boy says:

    So the evidence against Dish is:
    “No one has nominated Dish Network yet?”

    Isn’t that a good thing?

  7. Verklemptomaniac says:

    @AaronZ: I dunno, I’d bet that there are enough cat people lurking around the site that ‘free puppies’ would get at least 5-10%.

  8. BigElectricCat says:

    We’ve been Dish customers for over six years, and DISH EFFING ROCKS. The only problem we ever had was when we moved, the contractor who came to set up the new dish was grumpy and difficult to work with, and aligned the dish poorly (resulting in a weak/intermittent signal). One call to Dish Customer Service had a Dish employee out to fix the problem within about a week, and we’ve had no problems since.

    Dish *adds* channels all the time without raising our rate, and in six years, they’ve only jacked our subscription rate once — by five bucks. More channels and no egregious rate increases — how can you not love that?

    I have nothing bad to say about Dish Network, and I would buy Charlie Ergen a beer any time he wants one.

  9. badhatharry says:

    Seriously? 24 votes for Dish? Are those votes Chase Carey and his family?

    Also, @fluiddruid: Yay bassets!

  10. backbroken says:

    Dish customer service sucks donkey nuts.

    But come on, it’s Countrywide. Game Over.

  11. anatak says:

    This must be the Consumerist equivalent of a 1 vs 16.

  12. Nighthawke says:

    Countrywide gets my tick for destroying a lot of lives and homes. As far as i’m concerned, they and Citi should burn in a special place in hell made just for them for taking advantage of the deregulation to go hog wild on the mortgage market like that.

    I’ve been a Dish custie for 5 years going and Ben, I’m going to have to ding you for even thinking about putting them up for the vote. I never had a single problem with my 2nd hand receiver even though it was a pain finding a remote that was compatible, plus it was 65 bucks. The rece finally started to die and I got extremely lucky at a local Walmart. THey had a rece on the clearance rack that went for 50 bucks. Pretty painless save for waiting for a replacement card to get shipped in. I’m eager to see If I can get a larger dish and hardware to get more than the 150 I got now. It’s a pain running the extra cable.

  13. KyleOrton says:

    I don’t even think Mozillo would vote Dish in this one.

  14. Geekybiker says:

    I love dish. Prices aren’t bad, their dvr is awesome.

  15. ratsgnawingatmyface says:

    Dish rocks. Not an issue in 10 years other than a wayward branch once. That tree is gone now.

    Countrywide’s involvement in the mortgage meltdown cannot be overlooked though we have been with them for a while and never had an issue. Guess there is something to be said for not being a sub-prime borrower trying to live beyond their means though. 30-year fixed and not overextended…not that hard.

  16. NotATool says:

    Countrywide FTW. What a bunch of scammy scumbags.

  17. huadpe says:

    @AaronZ: This is the first round. It’s designed to have the heavyweights knock out welterweights, and then have the heavyweights duke it out later.

    This goes for everyone who complains about unbalanced matches.

    It’s called seeding

  18. BuriedCaesar says:

    And Dish is the play-in team.

  19. IrisMR says:

    No brainer. Countrywide.

  20. Sndtrkman says:

    Countrywide is just awful. Especially when they run their commercials over and over again on Dish Network.

    I’ve been a Dish subscriber for a few years now and have been very happy with their service. Beats the heck out of Suckcast and their exorbitant rates. The only problems we had were “Remote Wars” (we used to fight with the TV to watch a show and found out that if anyone is within 500 feet would interfere with the signal) and got that fixed just by changing the frequency on the remotes because the remotes were set on the standard which was 1. The last thing was that the Square box on the Dish went out so we lost 2 of the 3 satellites, had that fixed the next day at no charge. Dish = Awesome.

  21. Trai_Dep says:

    @Verklemptomaniac: Death to frolicking puppies!*

    * Of course, I kid.

  22. privatejoker75 says:

    i have nothing agains dish network. i love them compared to my experiences with comcast and directv

  23. howie_in_az says:

    Wow, this is like asking someone if they’d prefer cake or death.

  24. penarestel says:

    I’m not voting in these things anymore. All that I see is a bunch of random quotes, but nothing that actually explains what makes the company worthy of the nomination.

    In fact, just looking at the quote for Dish Network I can’t see anything wrong with the company. Maybe I should sign up with them.

  25. RulesLawyer says:

    We’ve had Dish Network service for 10 years, and Countrywide as our mortgagor for six. My only complaint with Dish is their software’s mild incompatibility with Tivo (gotta reboot the box once a month). The fact that a Comcast truck seems like it’s been working at the end of our cul de sac once a week for those 10 yesrs makes me confident that I was right to go with the Dish.

    My only complaints with Countrywide are their unavailability on weekend and their lack of detail on their web site. Sure would be nice to find out things about my HELOC — like due dates.

    Personally, Dish Network gets a “harmless”; Countrywide gets a “mostly harmless.” Countrywide FTW!

    (because I can’t vote for “free puppies.”)

  26. lalawgirl says:

    I actualy really like Dish. Had them for 3 years with no complaints.

  27. SonicMan says:

    I have to guess that the companies were all put on slips of paper and drawn. making the companies that go up for vote random.

  28. Illusio26 says:

    The only reason I would vote for dish is that they stole my NFL network away. Still not as bad as countrywide though…

  29. kc2idf says:

    I actually like Dish Network.

  30. I’m thinking I might vote for Countrywide just because their logo looks like Enron’s.

  31. czarofthegerbils says:

    Dish is one of the worst carriers I have ever worked with.
    20+ hours on the phone. Many many calls. Finally I’m getting a refund after I wrote BBB (surprise surprise). But having said that, Countrywide should be a favorite to be the worst of the worst. Personally though, I think Dish could have made it to the final 4. This way they now think they are pretty good. Oh well……..

  32. sgodun says:

    C’mon, Consumerist. Y’all needed to do at least a LITTLE filtering, y’know? Do we really need an entire voting block to get rid of companies like Dish? I mean, what’s next? The Umbrella Corporation vs a fuzzy kitten?

  33. PunditGuy says:

    Weyland-Yutani vs. Umbrella

    A fictional company debate would be more interesting than Dish vs. Countrywide.

  34. JustaConsumer says:

    Consumerist – Please hire a new Bracketologist.

  35. Lambasted says:

    If it weren’t for Dish some people would be stuck using Comcast.

    If it weren’t for Countrywide, some people would have their life savings and a roof over their heads.

  36. DwightIsMyCopilot says:

    I’ve been a Dish Network customer for 3 years now and haven’t had any problems. I vastly prefer them to Time Warner — better prices and better service any day. The only thing I don’t like is that they lock you in with a 2-year contract, but even that is better than dealing with the constant hassle that is Time Warner.

  37. LooseLips says:

    It seems Countrywide is the #1 seed in this faux competition. It’s no surprise that it’s going to slay the early contenders.

  38. @Landru: I used to be a Dish Network customer, and I wish I never left. Adelphia (now Time/Warner Cable) made me an offer I couldn’t refuse, but I should have.

    Countrywide vs. fluffy kittens. Hmm. That’s a tough one (rolls eyes).

  39. No Contest

  40. This is like a fight between Mike Tyson (in his prime) and Richard Simmons.

  41. arras says:

    gee…I dunno the company that’s largely responsible for putting thousands of families out of their homes, disrupting our economy


    a lousy satellite tv service.

    Tough choice, gonna have to think on this one.

  42. mmunson says:

    I would basically say Dish Network since they add channels I do not care for each year and raise my bill for those channels.

    I have asked them to add Logo to their lineup, but they only gave me canned form letters.

    Countrywide may have affected our economy, but Dish Network is not that friendly to LGBT viewers. You can get LOGO on Directv and Time Warner, but not on Dish network.

    If the next fee increase does not include LOGO in 2009, I am moving to cable.

  43. homerjay says:

    Can we just pull out all the companies that don’t stand a chance of winning this thing so it doesn’t take until 2009?

  44. chenry says:

    Wow that’s a real tough one.

    Next up, Grizzly Bear vs. Me in 9 rounds of bare-knuckle boxing.

  45. Radoman says:

    Countrywide’s excellent customer service made it possible for me to easily own a home. They didn’t sell my mortgage to a third party, and they continue to provide exceptional service and value.

    When I was ready to buy, Washington Mutual’s home loan center tried to tell me that all I was qualified for was an adjustable rate mortgage. I knew for a fact, that was an absolute lie. Countrywide gave me almost the exact rate that and said my credit score qualified me for. Closing was easy and affordable. (non-adjustable)

    Countrywide RULES.

    So they have 12% of their mortgages tied up in sub-prime. So what? They’re a huge lender. I’m sure other companies have higher percentages of sub-prime. Poor people and people with less-than-stellar credit have a right to a place to live too. I’m surprised people aren’t upset that they didn’t cater to enough sub-prime borrowers.

    Cake or Death, LOL. I know nothing of Dish, so I’m gonna vote: C) None of the above.

  46. TonyTriple says:

    Wow, a one hitter-quitter.

    So can we finally get a bracket or like a season schedule for these companies?

    We should really make this an event. I need to practice my bracketography…

  47. grungyparadigm says:

    @male roof blower (CFB): that’s not the Countrywide logo.

    Also… Countrywide is such a huge lender that it has obtained bad loans from second rate mortgage companies that had no business being in the business to begin with.

    Some of the blame could be handed to the homeowners themselves… $500 payment a month for a $400,000 loan? Simple math. If it seems to good to be true, it is. There is such a thing as a right of recission. People aren’t willing to do the research it takes to be an informed homeowner. They treat it like a cell phone contract or an electric bill. Some borrowers don’t even know what their escrow account is for, or how it works. I have very little sympathy for people who are so cavalier with something as important as their home.

  48. Rectilinear Propagation says:

    @penarestel: The random quotes are the comments from the nomination thread. There are Dish Network stories on Consumerist though:

  49. drewB says:

    Honestly, who are the 300+ who vote for Dish? Sure their service may suck and they steal ideas, but getting trapped into a service contract does not a recession make.

  50. engfish says:

    I left Dish after 7+ years of service, pending upgrades to HD service. I was told I’d have to pay (take-it-or-leave-it) $100 extra for the equipment and monthly fees for the channels, so I switched away. It took twenty minutes, on hold and otherwise; I had to talk to several people to officially cancel, listening to how the first few refused to accept my cancellation (from the AOL playbook, I guess). In refusing to believe me, Dish offered me discounts, price breaks… too little, too late, as I’d shopped for cheaper and “better” alternatives for about a month. But to qualify as a “worst” company? Nah. I used Countrywide several decades ago and was satisfied; all Countrywide did was take advantage of 1999 legislation that allowed it to take advantage and get away with what it did. So… worst company in America? USA, Inc.

  51. ok, these ‘worst company in america’ posts are getting ridiculous.

    you need to have some discretion…
    toyota vs CC?
    seriously. wtf.

  52. lincolnparadox says:

    When Dish screws up, apparently they really screw up.

    But, for the most part, I haven’t had a single problem with them for almost 10 years now for TV service.

    I still have to go through Mediacom for internet, but eh…

  53. heintzer says:

    I did IT stuff for Countrywide for about a year.

    You can bet I’m clicking that vote button *real* hard.

  54. Does anybody else think that the countrywide logo reminds them of the enron logo?

  55. Wynner3 says:

    I’ve had Dish since fall 2001 and have loved it. Some problems here and their but minor. We recently got a dvr and gave us new receivers to get new HD channels. The picture is amazing.