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Dick Van Dyke rebate outrage!


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46 replies to this topic

#1 of 47 OFFLINE   george kaplan

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Posted December 24 2003 - 09:22 AM

I just recieved the following letter from Image:

Dear Consumer:

Thank you so much for buying Dick Van Dyke Season 1 and Season 2, we guarantee you'll love the series.

We have recieved your completed forms for the rebate, however you had received a $20.00 Gift Card from Best Buy at the time of purchase. The $20.00 Best Buy Gift Card you recieved was in lieu of the rebate from Image.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Pardon my french, but that's complete bullshit. Nowhere did it say that anywhere. Needless to say I will be fighting this.

I am totally pissed.

Posted Image
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#2 of 47 OFFLINE   Jeff_HR

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Posted December 24 2003 - 09:28 AM

It is because of crap like this that I don't bother with rebates. They're just too much hassle. Sorry about your problem. Try to have a happy holiday season.
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#3 of 47 OFFLINE   Walter Kittel

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Posted December 24 2003 - 09:28 AM

You did get $20.00 back. Yes?

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#4 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 24 2003 - 09:37 AM

the $20 was advertised as in addition to the $20 rebate- not either/or.
i agree this is complete BS.
its a nice set, but i specifically sprung for 1 & 2 becasue the per set cost came down to $35 with the rebate and gift card.

#5 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul Drake

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Posted December 24 2003 - 03:09 PM

I haven't gotten the letter (or the rebate) back yet, but if I get a letter I will definitely be sending a letter of my own to Image.

This is totally unacceptable. As Paul Scott indicated, consumers were definitely led to believe that the Best Buy gift card was in addition to the Image rebate. There was nothing to the contrary indicated elsewhere.

I would really hate for Image to ruin the enormous goodwill they've built up related to these sets by doing something as dishonest as this. Let's hope that they "make it right".

For that to happen though, people who get letters need to make their feelings known to Image.

#6 of 47 OFFLINE   Randy A Salas

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Posted December 24 2003 - 03:10 PM

It seems your problem is with Best Buy, not Image. If it advertised the gift card as being in addition to the Image rebate (I don't recall that), it was in error.

From the terms and conditions listed by Image for its rebate: "This offer is not valid with any other rebate."

Best Buy's $20 gift card is considered a rebate. That's how the retailer describes its current gift-card deal for the Indiana Jones set. It also describes another gift-card deal as "not valid in combination with any other offers."
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#7 of 47 OFFLINE   george kaplan

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Posted December 24 2003 - 03:33 PM

Well you may be right, but I'm still pissed at Image at well if they do this. I would never have bought this at Best Buy if instead of a $20 cash rebate I was getting just a card for spending $20 at Best Buy, especially when the set could have been bought cheaper at Costco.

Image may be technically within their rights to refuse the rebate, and Best Buy may be at fault, but Image is going to lose a lot of goodwill over this since as a consumer it was NEVER made clear to me that this wasn't in addition to the gift card. I don't know where the wording "This offer is not valid with any other rebate." appeared, but if it was not on the cover of the dvd then it isn't sufficient. And frankly, I don't see why a free Best Buy gift card should be considered a rebate. I could use it right there.

If Image wants to pull this interpretation, then it should have said in large letters on the front of the package "This offer is not valid with any other rebate, gift card, sale or promotion, so don't expect to get our $20 back unless you pay full price for this somewhere with no special offer!"

Hiding behind legalese is no excuse for screwing over a customer, and I swear as much as I want the remaining 3 seasons of Dick Van Dyke I'll boycott this and wait to buy it used somewhere because I'll be damned if I'm going to put any more money in their pocket if they screw me over on this.
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#8 of 47 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted December 24 2003 - 09:47 PM

George,
Not many of us around this forum are rookies when it comes to the validity terms of coupons and rebates. Therefore, we and I mean "we" as knowledgeable consumers should know enough to read the "Terms and Conditions" clause of any coupon/rebate program, no matter how small the writing of those terms. When I see the following:
This offer is not valid with any other rebate.

Then I'm going to make sure that no other rebate is applied to my sales ticket that would void the rebate offer that I'm trying to use for this purchase. Blaming Image or even Best Buy might make you feel better, but as consumers we also have some responsibility in understanding and complying with the terms of a rebate program we're trying to take advantage of. Furthermore, I know you can't read the full terms of the rebate offer until you open the dvd set up, but past history should have taught us that most rebate offers are not going allow more than one rebate to be applied to any purchase. We as consumers don't like to be double dipped, neither do companies trying to make a profit.

I don't mean to be preachy, but it's the way I see this situation.





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#9 of 47 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted December 24 2003 - 10:56 PM

I have to lean toward siding with George on this one:

1) Best Buy did not promote this $20 gift card as "get your rebate instantly instead of waiting for it by mail". They advertised it to the effect of "Free $20 gift card instantly with purchase at the same time of The Dick Van Dyke Show Season 1 and Season 2"...that's the exact wording I used on the Weekly Roundup to describe the offer. I don't always cut-and-paste from the ad, because you really can't from many of these web-based ads. But I would have paraphrased it based on the wording they used in the ad...and I definately didn't see anything that told me it would be DIFFERENT than the mail-in rebate. I saw it as IN ADDITION TO, just like George did.

2) If Best Buy wanted to ensure that there was no mixup, they could have either ordered copies without the rebate stickers on the front of the boxes, or else have employees strip off those tags. Not all the stock, because the mail-in rebate would still be needed after the "sale" period was over, but enough to last the initial week.


It was misleading, and unclear. It potentially caused buyers to purchase from Best Buy instead of a less expensive competitor (in-store or online).

It could have been handled very differently, and better. His upset is very understandable.
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#10 of 47 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted December 25 2003 - 12:43 AM

Well you may be right, but I'm still pissed at Image at well if they do this.

David,
Then his beef should be with Best Buy and not Image.

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#11 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 25 2003 - 01:42 AM

i see a 'gift card' as a store-centric 'gift' for purchasing said item.

a rebate is a manufacture reimbursement, (irrespective of) where it was purchased new.

i think we'll get farther taking Best Buy to task for this one.
for one thing you can actually go there in person and be a squeaky wheel.

i think this is pretty snarky, on either of their parts (although the onus for owning up to the offer rests with Image). and i'm with George.
Next to the Alien Quad set, these would have been my choices for sets of the year, but this episode will leave a foul taste in my mouth, and i will take my sweet ole time finishing compiling these sets (if i even do).


oh by the way, Merry Christmas everybody.

#12 of 47 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted December 25 2003 - 01:45 AM

too bad no one still has a copy of the best buy add.

either way it was misleading.
we can't assume that everyone truly understands the wording on these disclaimers.
if it only said no other rebate, then i dont see a gift card being a rebate.
a rebate would be cash or a check to be spent anywere or anyway you want.

best buy said it was a giftcard not a rebate.

so regardless of who george has to deal with someone was wrong and mislead a consumer.
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#13 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul.Little

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Posted December 25 2003 - 02:14 AM

Best Buy made a deal with Image Entertainment to get the $20 off invoice themselves, in return for offering the consumer the $20 gift card. Same deal for Image, but a way better deal for Best Buy. They get a second purchase out of it, and at retail, so the cost to them is substantially less than $20 per unit. Best Buy should have made it more clear that the gift card was in lieu of the rebate, but unless they specifically told you you could claim both, you don't have a leg to stand on.
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#14 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 25 2003 - 02:23 AM

thats ok.
i'll be into BB in a few days and make it know that i will never buy anything from the chain again, if a rebate is involved.

the fact that they didn't specify that the gift card voided the rebate- when there were rebate stickers plastered on every set along with display tags advertising the gift card, is just shifty.
Best Buys discounting is no longer such an incentive anyway.
i will relish telling them to shove their gift card (i will be taking back what i purchased with it- since it hasn't been opened yet).
looking forward to he return crowds thinning, cause i want elbow room to do this right Posted Image

i just remembered something-
isnt the rebate an offer for buying the two within a certain time-period?
you didn't have to buy them on the same reciept, iirc.

the offer for the gift card was that both had to be purchased at the same time- that was the incentive and expressed "offer/inducement"

#15 of 47 OFFLINE   David Lambert

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Posted December 25 2003 - 02:33 AM

Quote:
David,
Then his beef should be with Best Buy and not Image.


Maybe. I was considering that when Randy said it.

My thought, though, is that they are "in cahoots with each other" on this. If, as Image said in their letter, the deal was "to get the rebate immediately, instead of waiting for a mail-in redemption", then Image should have worked with Best Buy to make sure that this meaning was clear.

If Image didn't communicate this intention to BB beforehand (that the mail-in rebate wouldn't be honored to those that were issued $20 giftcards), then of course the fault is entirely Image's.

If Image communicated it to BB, but left execution 100% in BB's hands, then that might have been stupid on Image's part since it now makes them look like the bad guy for refusing to honor the rebate.

On the other hand, perhaps it was never Image's intention to do things this way, and you've just got a reckless kid in the rebate center who decided this rule on his own, without checking with Image's policy makers about it. "It made sense at the time", yeah?


In any case, George is within his rights to pursue this question, since there is reasonable doubt. He should pursue it with both companies before giving up, but it makes sense to start with the company that turned him down, which is Image.

It also is laudable of George to take the time and communicate to others what his experience was, so that there are no suprises for others when they get the same response. It's also a good test to see if other people get treated differently. And it's natural for him to express his upsetness along the way.
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#16 of 47 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted December 25 2003 - 03:48 AM

What I want to know is what's on the sales receipt from Best Buy. Does it specifically state a $20.00 rebate on the receipt when he bought the dvd set. If it does, then good luck trying to get another $20.00 rebate from Image.

In any case, George is within his rights to pursue this question, since there is reasonable doubt.

What does rights of a consumer have to do with this discussion????????? I don't think anybody in this discussion has question his right to pursue anything.




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#17 of 47 OFFLINE   Paul Drake

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Posted December 25 2003 - 04:47 AM

Quote:
What I want to know is what's on the sales receipt from Best Buy. Does it specifically state a $20.00 rebate on the receipt when he bought the dvd set. If it does, then good luck trying to get another $20.00 rebate from Image.


My receipt shows 2 Dick Van Dyke DVDs for $44.95 each plus one "gift certificate" for $20. The word "rebate" is not used.

Merry Christmas everyone! (Although it will be disappointing to get a letter, I refuse to let it put me in a bad mood. I will certainly buy the other 3 seasons also.) This isn't the first time (and it certainly won't be the last) where poor communication has led to a bad taste in my mouth concerning a retail transaction.

My wife and I are off to join other family members and revel in all the blessings this season brings.....

#18 of 47 OFFLINE   george kaplan

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Posted December 25 2003 - 05:08 AM

Therefore, we and I mean "we" as knowledgeable consumers should know enough to read the "Terms and Conditions" clause of any coupon/rebate program, no matter how small the writing of those terms.
Well I guess I, and many others, are not as knowledgeable as we should be. Frankly, there were lots of discussions about this in a couple of different threads on this board, and not once did anybody express the opinion that the best buy gift card was a rebate that would cancel out the image rebate. I sincerely doubt that I'm going to be alone in getting this letter. I don't see why I should assume that a gift card is a rebate anymore than a $20 mouse pad with purchase would be a rebate.

I don't know who's responsible for this or how it came about between Best Buy and Image. But I do know that if Image insists on viewing the Best Buy free gift as a rebate that nulls their offer, then I will not buy any further Image dvds, except used ones which will put no money in their pocket. They will save $20 and cost themselves the profit from at least the other 3 DvD seasons, and perhaps other dvds I'd buy from them in the future.

If Best Buy made a deal with Image to replace their rebate offer with a Best Buy gift card then, since they did not make this known to consumers, and did not label their gift card a rebate and still had the rebate offer on the front of the dvds, then this is not a case of my being a poor consumer, it is a case of them engaging in immoral and unethical, if technically not illegal, consumer practices, which in my mind is no better than fraud. However, I see no hope in pursuing this with Best Buy, and I will simply not buy any non-dvd items there anymore. Since I only buy dvds from them when they are the cheapest, and hence loss-leaders, I won't be doing them any favors by continuing to buy dvds there. But I'll be damned if I ever again purchase other things that I've bought there in the past like computers, tvs, or palmpilots.

I disagree that this is a case of my being at fault as an uninformed consumer, but if that's your opinion, then you are entitled to it.
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#19 of 47 OFFLINE   Robert Crawford

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Posted December 25 2003 - 07:03 AM

I disagree that this is a case of my being at fault as an uninformed consumer, but if that's your opinion, then you are entitled to it.

I never said you were an uninformed consumer, matter of fact, I stated the opposite.
My receipt shows 2 Dick Van Dyke DVDs for $44.95 each plus one "gift certificate" for $20. The word "rebate" is not used.

Hmmmm, now that's a point of contention that I would pursue with Image. However, they will probably argue that a gift certificate is a rebate, but it is still worth pursuing because the language is not specific enough and is very misleading to the consumers.

George,
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#20 of 47 OFFLINE   TonyD

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Posted December 25 2003 - 12:18 PM

i always have a problem with best buy 's way of giving a gift card as an incentive for a purchase.
it lowers the price of the product the am't of the gift card.

i would prefer a different way then that.

and i wish i could think of a different way.Posted Image
if i buy the DVD 2 sets and something else it lowers everything on the receipt by an equal am't of the gift card. so if i have to retrun the product that is not DVD i only get back what the lowered amount is.
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