July 24th, 2010

"His turn to die a martyr was yet to com

Almost two years of fail...

In December 2008 a friend arranged a pretty generous Christmas present - a year's subscription to Creative Screenwriting magazine, which included a gift DVD of interviews with Joss Whedon.  She sent me a card - "Your present is in the post - you'll know who it's from when it arrives.

Except - nothing arrived.  Fast forward to May 2009.  Transatlantic phone call,

Friend: "How's the magazine?"

Me: "What magazine...."

Embarrassing pause as friend checks her email confirmation, dated 6 months before, and then contacts the Subscription department, who confirm her order, that they do ship to the UK, and that everything is in order...

But, come November 2009, and the gentle fall of leaves - still no magazine, still no DVD.

I email them myself:  The reply: " We will send out the DVD immediately.  I apologize for getting out so late.  That's our fault.  I'm not sure why you are not receiving the magazine. Is the address below correct [it was].  I will be extending your subscription for another year for free because of our mistake."

A few weeks later - joy! I finally get a single copy AND the DVD.  Another copy arrived in January 2010 - and you know, it's a good read.  It's sad that I had to wait, but at least I'm going to get a full year's worth...

Except of course, that in March 2010 I started to get daily automated email reminders to "renew my subscription for the bargain price of £XX.XX" and I never received a single further issue. 

Not one of my emails since March has been answered.

TLDR - Publisher takes subsription charge plus international shipping premium, delivers 2 of 6 magazine, reneges on offer to extend subscription, sends spam pestering me to send them more money, doesn't answer email.

Service? What service?

On 14th June I bought some steel toe capped boots from http://www.uksafetyfootwear.com/. The boots were about £16 and shipping was another £5 or so. The website said items were usually dispatched within 4 business days, and to wait 7-10 days before pursuing undelivered items. I actually waited 14 days before calling them to find out why the boots hadn't arrived, but the line was engaged (busy) constantly for over 30 minutes. This happened three days in a row, the line was engaged every time. I then sent them an e-mail asking why the items hadn't been shipped.

About a week later I still had no reply to my e-mail, but I got a text saying the boots would be delivered the next day between 17:44 and 18:44. Surprise surprise, they didn't come. I tried to call again, once more I couldn't get through, and my second e-mail was also ignored.

Finally I called the delivery company to see if they could help. They told me the company had asked for my package to be returned because they had sent out the wrong boots. By this time I was furious at the lack of communication and sent a third e-mail and HALLELUJAH I got a reply! The lady who wrote back said the boots had been delivered by I had refused to accept the parcel (wtf?), with a tone that suggested I was lying for telling her what the delivery company had told me, and they would refund the money as soon as the parcel was returned to them. I wrote back again, demanding an immediate refund since it was now well over a month since I had paid for the boots and they knew I had not received them whichever version of the story was correct.

I think I'm more pissed off about being called a liar than about being constantly ignored and waiting so long for the damn boots.

I just went to paypal to file a dispute and get my money back, and I see they have just refunded my money about 6 weeks after I first sent it. They didn't bother e-mailing me to let me know they had done it. Customer service really doesn't mean much to them...