Sunday, September 1, 2013

Readers Digest pathetic marketing ploy---beware!

I remember many years ago receiving those little magazines form the Readers Digest. I also remember how hard it was to stop them coming. It was very difficult to cancel the contract. Eventually, probably because I moved house a few times, I was free of them. Peace---yeah right!
A few weeks ago I received something through the mail, going on about some sort of sweepstake. I ignored it in spite of the fact that the said correspondence implied that I could win a lot of money. I have long since arrived at the fact that you generally don't get anything for nothing. I put the letters in the bin. I forgot all about it.
Silly me. Today I get home to hear that a parcel had arrived by courier; a parcel containing a radio and a BBQ recipe booklet. 'What the hell,' I thought. Initially we thought we would just sell it on Trade Me but the more honest side of me emerged and I searched for a number to ring to send the message that I did not want to be part of their stupid sweepstake; you all know the ones I mean, where all sorts of things are paraded as your chance to 'win big time.'
I got through to  number that I can only assume was in the Philippines (judging by the delay and the accent) and a very nice but insistent, repetitive sounding lady informed me that I had entered into a contract to buy the magazines. Bullshit! I had not even replied to them. Do they use the fact that I did not reply as an agreement to participate in their dumb-arse schemes? What dishonest business practice. The lady kept on saying that she had documentation that I had initiated the delivery. I told her that I throw away everything that ever comes from Readers Digest because I simply want nothing to do with them. She repeated her insinuation that I had sent an order. I wanted to scream at the lovely bit---oops. I didn't. I remained calm and then said that they could pick up the radio as I was not prepared to pay the cost of returning it. She then offered (after I became a little less agitated) a Free Post number and an address to send back the radio. I took up the offer but will take my time in returning the radio. Maybe I should have a little play with it. No--- better to keep it pristine and send it back with the damned invoice and all the crap about winning 'this and that'--all in the box. I asked her to remove me from any further Contact and that any more correspondence will be chucked in the dunny---OK I will 'return to sender just once more but then I shall carry out my threat, only I won't stick it down the toilet because that will only 'bounce back on me.'
To Readers Digest, I say---'stop your stupid, inane unsolicited marketing and leave those of us who wish to have no connection with you alone! Getting you to stop is so hard.' Damn, is this Fair Go territory? One final word: I know I push my books online, but at least I don't send accounts for things that people do not want and I am very easy to BLOCK!
www.authorneilcoleman.com