Microsoft hasn’t returned Tiffany’s XBox 360 for four months because they think she is a thief, even though she has her original receipt and a credit card statement proving that she is the console’s rightful owner. Microsoft repaired the XBox back in January and tried to return it via FedEx, but a shipping snafu landed the box back at Microsoft’s service center. Tiffany has called repeatedly. She even sent a letter to Microsoft’s legal department, after sending her receipt and statement, asking how else she could prove ownership. That was 22 days ago. She has yet to receive a response.
I’m writing to you in hopes (just like Dustin at the military base, but possibly a little more desperate) that some day in the near future I can get my Xbox360 back.
I sent it to Microsoft to fix on January 5, 2008 and shipped it back to me on February 2, 2008; however, FedEx shipped it to my home address and I unfortunately couldn’t sign for it because I was stuck at work. I requested that FedEx change the delivery address to my work address, but they said they couldn’t without Microsoft’s permission. I asked FedEx to hold it at the shipping center but it accidentally got returned to Microsoft’s service center.
At that point, Microsoft had done no wrong, but this is where it starts to get frustratingly nightmarish. I contacted Microsoft who assured me that they would send the package back, this time to my work address where the package could be signed for during normal work hours; however, somewhere along the line, Microsoft decided I had stolen the Xbox from the original owner since it was suspicious that I was “opening two repair orders” in such a short time. Countless (I lost track after 10ish) phone calls were made to Microsoft customer support about my case in a fruitless battle to get them to send me my console back, but they kept dancing around the reason(s) they were refusing to send it back to me. Eventually, a customer service representative admitted that all along they were unauthorized and had no means to actually help me, so all the times they claimed a supervisor assigned to my case would contact me about my case were lies. They eventually coughed up an address to the Microsoft Legal Department and said if I sent a letter their way, they would help me out. She hinted that the reason corporate had put a hold on my console may be because they didn’t believe I was the original owner, despite the fact that I sent them a copy of my receipt and credit card statement as bona fide proof of purchase.
My coworker had suffered similar bad luck with his console repair and also had to write the legal department several letters before finally receiving his console back, so I felt like I finally had a chance to get my missing console returned to me. I sent a letter to the Microsoft Legal Department and CC’d a copy to the Vice President of Consumer Affairs at Microsoft 22 days ago begging for at least a response to my letter. Thus far, my e-mail inbox has remained vacant and my phone has not rung with news from Microsoft.
At this point, I’m quite at the end of my line and know that contacting customer support would just wring what little humanity I have left out of my soul. I noticed last week you posted about Dustin’s grief with Microsoft not sending him a box to ship his Xbox in for repairs and also provided some links to file a small claim and contact my attorney general. I’m wondering if you can assist me further in any way, or know of someone who can since you’ve mentioned that multitudes of people of submitted similar complaints. Being completely left in the dark as to why they won’t send my Xbox back to me after four months is making me more than a little crazy.
Looks like Alberto Gonzalez got a job with Microsoft. Your XBox may be transfered to Gitmo until it provides irrefutable proof of its owner’s true identity. Efforts to identify you will result in an extended and unchallengable sentence.
You can try going even higher, straight to the top, and emailing big firstname.lastname@example.org, but reason apparently has no home at Microsoft.
Our advice to reader Dustin, who, after three months, still hadn’t received a shipping box, was to speak with his credit card company, consider small claims court, and to launch the mighty Executive Email Carpet Bomb. Tiffany wants even more, a customer service weapon so powerful, so effective, that it hides beyond our conception. For that, we’re going to turn this one over to you, our beloved and infallible Consumerists. Tiffany has reasoned, waited, begged, all without results. What should she do next?