DirecTV is reportedly allowing at least some sports fans who disagree with NFL players’ protests to cancel their subscription and receive a refund.
Customer-service representatives told The Wall Street Journal that the company was letting some customers cancel subscriptions if they cited players’ national anthem protests. Typically, DirecTV does not allow refunds for its Sunday Ticket subscription once the NFL season begins.
Over the past week, President Donald Trump has encouraged teams to fire players who kneel during the national anthem and has said NFL fans should “refuse to go to games until players stop disrespecting our Flag & Country.”
While many support players’ right to protest, with a Reuters/Ipsos poll this week finding that 61% of people who watch at least a few NFL games a season do not think players who kneel should be fired, many others hold Trump’s view, and even those who don’t hold his view often disapprove of kneeling during the anthem. Trump’s supporters spoke out against players on social media, burned their NFL merchandise, and canceled their DirecTV subscriptions.
Many who have spoken out against the NFL protests voiced support of DirecTV’s apparent policy change.
DirectTV allows customers to get refunds if they cite NFL kneeling. Well done DirecTV. https://t.co/8FOcvHCMS7
— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) September 27, 2017
— Red Nation Rising (@RedNationRising) September 27, 2017
I applaud @DIRECTV for "getting it" and offering their customers refunds over the un-American NFL disrespect of our nation, anthem & flag!
— Doomsday Library (@DoomsdayLibrary) September 27, 2017
NFL players: 68% black.
NFL audience: 78% White.
— Ann Kelly (@LadyAodh) September 27, 2017
Others, who support the NFL players’ protests – which Colin Kaepernick, then a quarterback for the San Francisco 49ers, started last year to raise attention to racial inequality in the US – said DirecTV’s decision lacked integrity.
— David Kniola (@davidkniola) September 27, 2017
— Marc Christopher (@MarcC856) September 27, 2017
So, a cupcake company is “virtue signaling” by saying they support the players who took a knee? DirecTV is just GIVING MONEY TO RACISTS. https://t.co/fSon0J28Yf
— Paul F. Tompkins (@PFTompkins) September 27, 2017
DirecTV service representatives contacted by The Journal seemed confused about the company’s cancellation policy, with some saying certain protest-related complaints could result in refunds, while others believed the policy had not changed.
DirecTV’s parent company AT&T didn’t respond to Business Insider’s request for comment or clarification of the policy.