Consumerist’s Most Popular Stories From 2013

Consumerist’s Most Popular Stories From 2013

2013 ends in a few hours, and in the year since we last popped champagne corks and pretended to know the words to “Auld Lang Syne,” we’ve posted more than 5,000 stories to Consumerist, covering everything from Wall Street to Capitol Hill to the drive-thru lane. Some of these posts attracted a few more readers than others. [More]

(TimmyGUNZ)

How An EECB To DirecTV Gave Me A Glimpse Into An Alternate Reality

Eric was living in two different realities simultaneously. In one, he was a frustrated DirecTV customer who was trying to get new and modern equipment by using the regular customer service channels, and no one would help him. In the other timeline, he was a Consumerist reader who had fired off an Executive E-mail Carpet Bomb when DirecTV couldn’t get it together and had an installer right there in his house within only a few hours. [More]

http://www.flickr.com/photos/robrrt/6692982433/

My Late Mother’s Broken Kindle Leaves Me Brokenhearted, Amazon Goes Above & Beyond

Consumerist reader K. had one very important reminder of her late mother — her mom’s beloved Kindle. She says her mom treated it like a sensitive piece of electronic equipment, and really loved it. Every night when K. went to bed, she would read a book on the device and says it always made her smile and think of her mother. But when that Kindle broke, it seemed those sentimental moments would be over for good. [More]

Some Jiffy Lubes Still Charging Customers For Unnecessary And Undone Repairs

Some Jiffy Lubes Still Charging Customers For Unnecessary And Undone Repairs

For years, Jiffy Lube employees around the country have repeatedly been accused — and sometimes caught — charging for repairs that weren’t necessary or weren’t even performed. The company has promised change, but that memo didn’t seem to reach everyone. [More]

The EECB Gets T-Mobile Off My Back, $300 Refund

The EECB Gets T-Mobile Off My Back, $300 Refund

By harnessing the power of the executive e-mail carpet bomb, D. was able to end a nine-month “saga” with T-Mobile in less than 24 hours. “Go away,” they said (we’re paraphrasing.) “We didn’t take $297 from you without your permission.” Only they kinda did. [More]

(Chris Rief aka Spodie Odie)

Can’t Find Executives’ Names For An EECB? Use LinkedIn

Since we published our original guide to launching an executive e-mail carpet bomb in 2007, one thing has changed: social media has become a lot more ubiquitous for people who aren’t currently enrolled in college. Reader Tiana recently had the same problem over and over with an item that she bought at a regional jewelry chain, and got it resolved by contacting some higher-ups. It’s how she figured out who to write to that’s worth filing away in the consumer toolkit in your brain. [More]

Searching for a SimCity happy ending ain't easy.

Using The EECB Gets Me A SimCity Refund, But What About Everyone Else?

Consumerist reader Kevin was one of many SimCity gamers ticked off last week (likely plenty are still fuming this week), but unlike many of his fellow players, he was able to procure a refund for the deluxe digital edition. What in the what? “But EA doesn’t seem to be giving out refunds!” you might’ve just yelled at the screen. Kevin attributes his success to the executive email carpet bomb, or the EECB. [More]

(Cayusa)

How I Straightened Out A Verizon FiOS Mess With A Single E-Mail

Edwin wanted to stay with Verizon FiOS, but they didn’t want to stay with him as he moved to a new city. He tried, really, he did. Before packing it all in and giving up on Big Fiber, he tried what is a standard move to Consumerist users but a little more novel to most people. That is, of course, the executive e-mail carpet bomb. [More]

(Ron Dauphin)

T-Mobile Wants $250 ETF After I Move Out Of Their Towers’ Reach

Smoo has been a loyal T-Mobile customer of more than a decade, but it’s time to go. She just moved to a town where T-Mo has next to no service, so obviously she needs to cancel. There was a catch: she had just signed a new contract to get a better deal. No problem, said T-Mobile! Just send proof of her new address along, and they would let her out of her contract. Oh, if only it were that easy. [More]

(Louis Abate)

Am I Asking Too Much, Or Does Logitech Not Care About Harmony Remote Line Anymore?

It wasn’t that long ago that readers routinely wrote to us with joyful accounts of how Logitech replaced their pricey Harmony remote controls for free when something went wrong. Winning Harmony customers’ loyalty and gratitude isn’t a priority anymore, though. Along with their disappointing third-quarter results, Logitech announced late last month that they will be selling off their remote control and video security systems, and ending their lines of console accessories and speaker docks. Mike heard those tales of wondrous service from the past, and expected something similar when his replacement remote broke and needed replacing. [More]

(catastrophegirl)

My TV Breaks After 3 Weeks, Westinghouse Digital Really Doesn’t Care

Mark’s wife is a Target employee and got them a pretty sweet discount on a Westinghouse Digital TV. That doesn’t mean that they got any special treatment when the TV broke down, though. He got the same, evidently crappy, treatment as everyone else whose relatively new TV has failed within the first month. [More]

(Studio d'Xavier)

D-Link Doesn’t Want To Sell Me A New AC Adapter, Needs Personal Space

Waldon would like to buy a new AC adapter from D-Link. He doesn’t want them to give him one for free, necessarily. He just wants to be able to buy one so he doesn’t have to go out and buy a whole new network switch. Unfortunately for him, no one at D-Link is capable of doing this. In theory, the adapter should be available from the company’s website, but it isn’t. Their own employees couldn’t find it. Then, things got really confusing. [More]

Sprint Authorized Retailer Promises No Activation Fees, Guess What Happens Next

Sprint Authorized Retailer Promises No Activation Fees, Guess What Happens Next

Tom had a problem with Sprint: an authorized retailer had broken a promise and/or set up his phone upgrade incorrectly. He set out to remedy it by deploying an exquisitely crafted executive e-mail carpet bomb. Now, when you deploy an EECB, we recommend that you provide relevant details, but also that you open with a short executive summary so that the busy people you’re emailing (or their busy underlings) can get a quick idea of what you’re complaining about, and route it to the correct person instead of immediately trashing your missive.

If you spend a lot of time online, think of an executive summary as a “tl;dr” summary that you put first, instead of at the end. Combine that with a clear letter and spelling out his (quite reasonable) expectations, and it’s no wonder that Sprint whipped a response and a resolution to him within the hour. [More]

It only took a month, several e-mails, a visit to the Lids store and an EECB to company management to get Michael the hat he'd ordered.

EECB To Lids Finally Gets Me Out Of Dead-End Customer Service Maze

You buy something online and the wrong item shows up. You try to exchange it in the store but the item you ordered is out of stock there. You call other stores and customer service, only to be made a worse offer than what you’d paid for weeks earlier. [More]

The leaky Nexuses at right and left; an iPad in the middle.

EECB Saves Nexus 10 Owner From Restocking Fee

Shaunessy was displeased with his Nexus 10 tablet, and customer service couldn’t help. The tablet they set had light bleed around the edges: sort of a glowing gap at the corners. He returned the tablet to get a replacement, less glowy device, but the new one had the same problem as well. He gave up on the prospect of Nexus ownership, but there was a catch: returning both tablets meant paying a 15% restocking fee, or about $75. That struck Shaunessy as unfair, so he decided to appeal his case to a higher authority: a mass mailing to a dozen Google executives. [More]

(bclinesmith)

Toys R Us Keeps Canceling Orders, Ignoring Customers

Sure, some hiccups in the ordering and delivery process are to be expected at a toy store during the toy-buying-frenzy that is the holiday season. You’d think, though, that Toys ‘R’ Us would be aware that their business picks up quite a bit in the winter, and would prepare for this kind of thing. If our mailbox is any indication, not so. They’re canceling orders and leaving customers on hold for extended periods. At least they aren’t canceling all of these orders a few days before Christmas? [More]

This looks super fun.

Little Tikes Pizza Play Kitchen Does Not Come With 30-Minute Delivery Guarantee

JC’s child is an aspiring pizzeria owner, or maybe just a 3-year-old who appreciates a cool play kitchen. Whatever the case, the Little Tikes pizza kitchen of his kid’s dreams went on sale at Toys R Us back in October, and he ordered one to be shipped to the local store. Then it vanished. Well, it didn’t vanish, but the kitchen is stuck at “in progress” in the store’s delivery system. JC’s debit card was charged, but where did the toy go? [More]

(Cool_colonial4711)

T-Mobile Tells Me I Can Cancel Son’s Line With No ETF After His Move – Now I Can’t

Mobile phone carriers are supposed to let you out of your contract without an early termination fee if you move outside of a coverage area. That’s a theoretical exercise as far as Tom is concerned. His son uses one of the lines on his family plan, and moved outside of a coverage area. Should be easy enough to end that line without an Early Termination fee, right? Nope. [More]