Being scammed on eBay is just as likely as rain in Monsoon Season. Just last week I was caught out again. Lots of private traders have their own crooked ways around eBay trading. On a lesser note even big companies act badly at times.
I signed up to the Official Nintendo Magazine with the offer of a free Star Wars Wii or DS game. Three issues with a FREE game. I read all the small print – no clauses, no limited availability, but when the free gift never arrived I asked Future Publishing several times and they just make excuses saying it was limited to the first 200. The advert that I kept is on page 72 from October ’07 issue also reads a ‘cash alternative to the same value’, but I can’t get that either.
This is how their Gotcha works. You telephone ONM with the FREE offer code, if you succeed in being inside the first 200 subscribers they take your details to complete the order. If the free gift offer limit has been reached, the telephone advisor asks you to visit the ONM website to place your order. Placing the order on the website makes ONM exempt from responsibility to tell you that there are no more FREE gifts.
Subscribers do not know who got a free gift. The telephone advisor said that the FREE gifts go almost immediately after publication. The Richard & Judy phone in competition is another example of unacceptable deception – picking a winner long before closing the premium rate phone lines – shame on you!
I will cancel, but it makes little difference as I’ve paid up. But never mind it’s a minor issue. The feeling of being “done” got me annoyed more than anything.