Towerrecords.com "Antz" promo - Bait and switch?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Doug Pyle, Jul 9, 2001.

  1. Doug Pyle

    Doug Pyle Second Unit

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    Towerrecords.com placed Antz "on sale" for $16.99 recently. I ordered it along with another DVD on July 1. The web site stated the DVD was "avail. in 3-5 days" so I ordered it along with another DVD (not on sale).
    But instead, on July 6 I received an email notice stating the other DVD was shipped, but Antz was not currently available. In addition, if it was still unavailable within 30 days of the order, they would cancel the order! No mention of refunding the shipping charge already collected, let alone offering a rain check for the sale price when it does become available.
    To me, this 30-day cancellation policy on a sale item that was listed as available at a price well below its common retail price, smells of bait-and-switch. This is my first Towerrecords.com experience, and I hope this is not a common experience of customers.
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  2. alan halvorson

    alan halvorson Cinematographer

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    Well, it may be sleazy of Tower but it isn't bait and switch. Bait and switch is a come-on to get you to buy something else, normally more expensive and more profitable to the retailer, and that isn't the case here.
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  3. Doug Pyle

    Doug Pyle Second Unit

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    Right. That's exactly what happened. The other DVD I purchased was not on sale but at their higher, regular price (presumedly for more profit).
    What I'm waiting to see is if they actually fail to fulfill the Antz order then cancel after 30 days. So far nothing. They also haven't replied to my email to customer service, so that's another complaint to add.
    The result if 30 days goes by without fulfilling the Antz order (if they follow the procedure in their email): they will have sold a higher, regular price DVD to me, kept my full shipping charges (for both DVDs, including the on-sale Antz), and didn't sell Antz at all for the sale price advertised. If that is how it turns out, that seems to be bait and switch.
    The appropriate thing for Tower to do would be to make every effort to fill the order and if for a legitimate reason they can't fulfill it in 30 days, then offer a 'rain check' to get Antz at the sale price after the sale is ended.
    And a reply from customer service would help too.
    Is this experience typical of Towerrecords.com? I hope not.
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  4. Sarah S

    Sarah S Second Unit

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    While they should have refunded the shipping charges for "Antz" to you, I think Alan is right about this not being a bait-and-switch. After all, Tower.com didn't force you to buy the higher-priced dvd in order to get "Antz" for the sales price, which is a more common bait-and-switch technique.
     
  5. Doug Pyle

    Doug Pyle Second Unit

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    Actually, my comments were for Towerrecords.com. I'd appreciate replies that are also intended as feedback to Tower, since I started this thread not as a discussion but direct communication ("vendors feedback") to Tower.
    However, some obviously have different ideas about what bait-and-switch is.
    For Tower's benefit, this is why I think my experience with them is akin to bait-and-switch:
    Bait and switch is simply advertising a great deal, but when the customer arrives to buy it, it's not available. The seller doesn't try to honor the advertised deal, and instead redirects you to a more expensive item with a higher profit for the seller. (When seller is a web-site, there's nobody actually there to redirect you - but the web-design IS intended to interest you in other items.)
    There's no force, just deceipt. Customer either buys the higher-profit item(s) or not, that's not the issue. The issue is that it is dishonest to offer a deal to attract customers into the store, but fail intentionally to have the deal available when the customer arrives. Honest sellers who run out of advertised deals either (1) issue a rain check, or (2) make clear up-front that the deal was limited to items in-stock. Tower has done neither of these, and in fact said the item was available.
    I'm still waiting for Tower to 1) fulfill the order instead of cancelling it when 30 days pass, 2) alternatively offer a rain check, and 3) reply to my many-days-old email to customer service to let me know their intention.
    So far, I'm not impressed with my first purchase at Towerrecords.com. I am interested in others' experience with Tower (I hope this is not typical). I am not really interested in a debate over whether I had a good experience or not, since I'm a bit grumpy about that you know. [​IMG]
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