It sounds like your sites must have been on the Blingy cluster … and there is no arguing that was a horrible experience. There is no point at all in trying to represent that as anything less than the disaster that it was.
As you have “been IT Director of various web related companies for the last 10 years” and “know what to expect…” you should be able to recognize that the situation with that cluster of servers was atypical. That doesn’t make it any more palatable for those that suffered through it, and I don’t thank anyone here has any difficulty understanding why someone with that experience would feel the way you do.
My experience is very different than yours. Yes, I had a few clients impacted by the Blingy cluster fiasco (those that had created accounts the most recently), but the overwhelming majority of my clients didn’t notice a thing as their sites were not on that cluster and were not impacted at all. That’s relevant because it shows that everyones experience with DreamHost is not as horrific as yours has been.
I can’t help you there; I’ve got clients hosted all over creation, with many different hosting companies, and they all have problems of one kind or another. A lot of it is just “the luck of the draw” at this price level; sometimes you have no problems at all, and other times you do. In spite your experience more and more of my clients eventually end up on DreamHost for sites that need to operate at this cost level, becuase, warts and all, it’s still a better value than about anything else around, and at some point that is hard to argue with.
That fact, plus over 10 years of history (both for DH and for my clients on DH) puts a very different perspective on the problems you had - it was a bad time to be sure, but overall my experience, and that of my clients who are hosted here, has been good.
In summary: If your website is critical to your business, invest in it properly. If you website isn’t critical, but you’d like to, you know, actually see it sometimes, do your research and consider the totality of the information you come across. You will find that, for DreamHost, there are thousands of satisfied customers, most of whom say nothing, for every unsatisfied customer that goes “vocal”.
This is particularly true on DreamHost’s “Curious about Dreamhost” forum where an “IT Director of various web related companies for the last 10 years” solicits help finding a suitable web host and can only say “Their shared hosting might be as good” as a competitor’s “cheap dedicated server” when dropping that competitor’s name on the forum.
Different people have different experiences, YMMV, and all that … but DreamHost continues to be doing more right than they are doing wrong IMHO, and more than a few others agree with me.