Rich ordered an ASUS Zenbook from Amazon. It wasn’t cheap, totaling $1415 including tax. When it arrived, it had a stuck pixel. No one wants to drop that much money on a computer with a stuck pixel, so he sent it back to ASUS to have the display fixed. The company has a guarantee that their computers won’t have this kind of defect, after all. He waited patiently for the computer to come back. It didn’t. He became less patient. ASUS has given him two different explanations for why they won’t let his computer come home, and they’ve had it for a month and a half when their own policies state that they won’t hold on to a customer’s computer for more than two weeks.
Movie Gallery/Hollywood Video went bankrupt with only one real asset: enough outstanding overdue notices to make a librarian weep. Americans owed the chains something like $125,000,000, which is not a typo. These debts were sold, and the new owners zombified them and really, really want to get their paws on that money. A year and a half after we first reported that customers and even employees were receiving invoices from collection agencies for zombie debts, they’re still at it.
UPDATE: The owner of the theater has issued a statement to Consumerist regarding the situation:
Many people in Pennsylvania and New Jersey speak highly of the Wawa chain of convenience stores. Which is why it was a bit of surprise to folks in the area when a man was kicked out of a store earlier this summer because he brought his service dog into the building. Now the chain has not only agreed to fork over a bit of cash to the customer, but to also make sure its employees don’t repeat the mistake.
UPDATE: After becoming the object of Internet ridicule, 1-800-Flowers has decided to change its position and not only provide the rescue group with the year’s supply of dog food, but two years’ of supply.
You may already have heard about the icky cab driver here in Philadelphia who was caught on camera using a street corner as his personal pooping ground. What you may not know is that — even though the man and his cab company have been identified — no one has come out to actually do much about removing all the offending fecal matter.
Threatening to stalk, rape, mutilate, and kill your customers over a $150 chargeback is not a sustainable business model. We could have told you that, but it took a New York Times investigation, a Google algorithm change, and federal prosecution to stop the Brooklyn entrepreneur who built his eyewear business on the idea that online, there is no such thing as bad publicity. He allegedly sent out counterfeit designer eyewear, or no merchandise at all, then harassed and threatened customers who wanted their money back. When customers complained online, it boosted the profile of his brand. Now a federal judge has revoked the man’s bail ahead of sentencing after listening to testimony from some of those customers.
Matt has an issue with NetZero’s e-mail technical support. “Wait,” you might be saying. “People still use NetZero?” Well, Matt does. His e-mail address on the service is very old, but he just hasn’t got around to changing the places where it’s his e-mail of record. So he keeps paying for it, year after year, importing the messages into Gmail. At least, he did until he was locked out of his account, and couldn’t reset the password. NetZero charges by the minute for tech support, but Matt was assured that he wouldn’t be charged for a simple password reset. This was incorrect.
Kristan, like many sensible and awesome people, was excited when GPS maker TomTom produced a limited edition unit for fans of the BBC program “Top Gear.” The biggest draw: the recorded voice of Jeremy Clarkson, the show’s lead presenter and an internationally beloved contrarian jerk. Clarkson’s voice isn’t available for separate purchase from TomTom, at least for American consumers. Oh, no. We have to shell out $269 for this spiffy satnav, and that’s what Kristan did. It turned out that the unit….wasn’t all that great. But the final insult came when it failed, and TomTom sent a warranty replacement of an inferior unit that contained no Top Gear content and required an additional $60 fee to reactivate the GO LIVE that Kristan had already paid for.
A man in California says that what should have been the simple exchange of a leaf blower at his local Lowe’s store instead blew up into an incident that involved a Lowe’s staffer allegedly using anti-gay slurs and threatening the customer and his partner with physical violence.
Earlier this week, we told you about the engaged couple who had gone to IHOP with the intention of enjoying a nice pancake dinner, only to end up with a waitress who treated them horribly, mocking the woman’s Huntington’s disease and referring to her to other employees as a “junkie.” The couple had received a half-hearted apology from the manager back in March, but none of the promised follow-up. Then the Internet got involved…
Welcome to the T-Mobile Customer Service Labyrinth, where every turn brings you back to the center, where headset wearing minotaurs tell you that the exit is right in front of you but it’s not the exit, and where the company can admit in writing to making an error that costs you $250 but says it’s your fault.
Comcast may care, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s competent. A chronic, unidentified problem is reportedly wrecking customers’ phone, cable and internet service in a Holiday City, New Jersey neighborhood, and the problems continue despite countless service calls.
This week, a massive customer service clusterfracas swept the gaming world, then the rest of the Internet. It involved a game console controller that was late in shipping, a a marketing firm in over its head, a popular webcomic, the unholy wrath of the Internet hate machine, and one humble customer who just wanted to know whether he was going to get his gadget by Christmas or not. What did we learn here? That there is such a thing as bad publicity, and that sometimes people on the Internet actually are who they claim to be.
One would think that by this point in the internet’s existence that employees at any sort of business that puts customers’ names on receipts might be aware of the fact that putting a potentially offensive nickname, description or slur on said receipts is probably nowhere near as hilarious as it initially seems.
As I’m sitting here waiting for my new washer/dryer to be dropped off — They are still within the not-at-all-narrow 6-hour window of delivery — I stumble upon this new study that attempts to put a dollar value on the time spent idling while waiting for everything from cable installers to home deliveries.
All commercial businesses are in it to make a dollar, but they go about it in so many different ways. Some retailers (and airlines, banks, hotels, food services, etc.) see the customer as a money sponge from which they can — and should — wring every cent through consumer-antagonizing fees and policies. And on the other end of the spectrum are companies that keep their customers happy and coming back with policies that favor the consumer.