Does anyone know what Directv's streaming architecture is like? Is everything streamed from their LA office or do they have a distributed system using Akamai or similar? If no one knows for sure, we could find out via people who live in various places around the country streaming something from them and checking the NAT table on their router to see where the endpoint of the connection is.
If everything goes through LA, then people on the east coast are always going to have more problems than people who live closer to LA - unless they have a mirror datacenter out east, in which case the people who live in the central US are most likely to have problems. The further you are from the server you're streaming from, the more chance there is of a problem along the path. Latency doesn't matter for streaming, but larger latency does magnify the effect of any dropped packets.
If everyone is having problems all at the same time no matter where they are located, for instance if a bunch of people all report problems streaming from Directv at 11 PM EDT this Friday, then we can conclude it is a problem on Directv's end, which they can fix by adding more servers and/or more bandwidth to the outside.
When you read about Apple, Google, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft continually building big datacenters in various places around the country and around the world, a lot of it is for this reason - get their content closer to the customer. Directv can't afford to do something like that, so they'd likely use a content delivery network like Akamai or Level3.
SL5, PI-6S, SA-6AL 3xSWM16, 21 H20-100, 1 H20-600, 7 H24-700/AM21