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RodgerHouTex
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 06/02/09

Loc: Houston, Texas, USA
Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam
      #5530489 - 11/20/12 03:50 PM

I just received from Astronomy magazine a bill for a DVD that they included in my magazine this month (I subscribe by mail). The two options on the bill are pay for it and they will start sending me the "Infinite Cosmos DVD Series" or return it in the included White Product Return Envelope which I don't recall receiving.

Anyway, I know that a company can NOT send you something that you have not asked for and then expect you to pay for it unless say UPS delivered it to the wrong address or something like that. But if you did not solicit them for it it is a GIFT.

So I was a little annoyed until I read the fine print in the box at the bottom of the letter attached to the bill. Quote "Service Guarantee: You are under no obligation to participate in the program. Because you didn't order the DVD, you don't have to participate or send it back and can consider it a free gift."

Hmmm! I guess I will let my subscription expire because I don't deal with companies that are this deceptive.


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helpwanted
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 07/04/07

Loc: Phoenix, AZ
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: RodgerHouTex]
      #5530698 - 11/20/12 05:45 PM

just to be fair... and i am not positive, but i think the editorial staff of the magazine have nothing to do with the distribution and sales of the magz, so it really isn't the editorial staff's fault.
just consider it a modern day annoyance, like Spam email, and delete it... but keep the magz!!!


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LivingNDixie
TSP Chowhound
*****

Reged: 04/23/03

Loc: Trussville, AL
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: helpwanted]
      #5531184 - 11/20/12 10:28 PM

How much was the charge?

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RodgerHouTex
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 06/02/09

Loc: Houston, Texas, USA
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: LivingNDixie]
      #5531239 - 11/20/12 10:49 PM

$16.95 and they continue to send you the next in the series each month for which you would pay another $16.95.

And if the staff at Astronomy isn't aware of it they should be. It is illegal to do this. They could face legal action. I just posted this so folks here at CN would know that.


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Rick Woods
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: RodgerHouTex]
      #5531257 - 11/20/12 11:02 PM

They've done this before.

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jsiska
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 07/12/06

Loc: NW Ohio
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5531455 - 11/21/12 02:00 AM

I have a Funk & Wagnalls Encyclopedia from the early 1980ís. For years I use to receive the annual yearbooks and the science yearbooks because I enjoyed the light reading. I always promptly paid the invoice for the yearbooks. By the year 2000 I tired of reading the yearbooks and right after receiving the year 2000 yearbooks, I decided to inform Funk & Wagnalls via a formal letter that in the future I no longer want them to send me any more yearbooks. Even though I sent the letter, the following year they sent me a 2001 yearbook. I promptly returned the yearbook to Funk & Wagnalls along with a second letter explaining that a year previous I had already sent them a letter asking them to stop sending me the yearbooks. I even personally paid for the return postage of the book via certified mail to be certain that they received the unwanted book I was sending back. After another 6 months, I began getting statements from Funk & Wagnalls that I still owed them the money for the returned book. After another 6 months, I received a letter from a collection agency advising that if I donít pay for the book legal action will be taken against me. I then sent Funk & Wagnalls copies of the letters that I had previously sent them along with a copy of the U.S. Post office record that the book had been returned to them. I asked them to inform their collection agency that the account is settled. That still didnít stop the letters from the collection agency. After several more threatening letters from the collection agency each getting more intense, I decided enough is enough. I finally took all my records with me to an attorney to assist me so that the collection agency would not hurt my credit. Shortly after that I received a letter of apology from the collection agency but none from Funk & Wagnalls. That was about 10 years ago and I still am bitter over the fact that it took an attorney to settle the situation.

Although a different publisher, Astronomy magazine has been sending unsolicited DVDís for a several years now. There have been few other threads relating to this problem. In all those threads, I havenít read any posts that publisher of Astronomy magazine has resorted to using a collection agency; but these threads certainly remind me of the experience I had with Funk & Wagnalls. I donít subscribe to Astronomy magazine.

Edited by jsiska (11/21/12 02:03 AM)


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Rich (RLTYS)
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 12/18/04

Loc: New York (Long Island)
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: jsiska]
      #5531637 - 11/21/12 07:59 AM

I would just keep the DVD and not do anything. As you stated you didn't ask for it.

Rich (RLTYS)


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poodle
sage
*****

Reged: 01/21/05

Loc: Breckenridge, Texas
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5531674 - 11/21/12 08:30 AM

They did this to me a couple of years ago. I just ignored it kept the CD and never heard a word from them about it. I have kept my subscription with them cause I really enjoy their magazine. I also have a subscription to S&T. Internet is cool, but nothing replaces a good paper magazine.

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cliff mygatt
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 01/27/09

Loc: Kitsap County, WA
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: poodle]
      #5531824 - 11/21/12 09:55 AM

I have been purchasing the DVD series for a couple of years, it is a good series. I teach an astronomy class at my wifes junior high and it is nice to have.

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desertstars

*****

Reged: 11/05/03

Loc: Tucson, AZ
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5533182 - 11/22/12 12:09 AM

Quote:

They've done this before.





Yeah, this is nothing new at all. Don't sweat it.


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Fimpster
Carpal Tunnel
*****

Reged: 09/24/09

Loc: Aprox. 1 AU from Sun
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: desertstars]
      #5550956 - 12/02/12 08:06 PM

I was annoyed by the same bit of trickery a few years ago. I decided at that time that I would not be renewing my subscription. I prefer S&T anyhow.

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Rick Woods
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 01/27/05

Loc: Inner Solar System
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Fimpster]
      #5551188 - 12/02/12 10:33 PM

To be fair, it's not a scam, just a stupid marketing strategy. The NRA has done the same thing, and others have reported this tactic being used by various vendors. They must think we're all new!

I'm glad S&T has always shown enough respect for their readership that they don't use an irritating trick like this.


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7331Peg
Sirius Observer
*****

Reged: 09/01/08

Loc: North coast of Oregon
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Rick Woods]
      #5551338 - 12/03/12 12:37 AM

If it's a marketing strategy, it's an incredibly poor one. They WILL continue to send you notices if you don't return the DVD. Whoever decided that was a good marketing strategy should have been fired before the first DVD was mailed. It's amazing that they're still doing it.


John


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Rich (RLTYS)
Post Laureate
*****

Reged: 12/18/04

Loc: New York (Long Island)
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: 7331Peg]
      #5551689 - 12/03/12 09:04 AM

I didn't return mine and never heard anything.

Rich (RLTYS)


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7331Peg
Sirius Observer
*****

Reged: 09/01/08

Loc: North coast of Oregon
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: Rich (RLTYS)]
      #5552075 - 12/03/12 01:41 PM

That's surprising -- I had three notices mailed to me. They finally stopped coming after that.


John


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opticsguy
sage


Reged: 02/02/09

Loc: Washington State
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: 7331Peg]
      #5553703 - 12/04/12 10:27 AM

They have not yet tried that with me. When they do i will immediately cancel my subscription.

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cliff mygatt
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 01/27/09

Loc: Kitsap County, WA
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: opticsguy]
      #5553894 - 12/04/12 12:35 PM

I have purchased all the DVDs that have come and wondering if they will ever end, I am up to about 20 now!

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rmollise
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 07/06/07

Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: cliff mygatt]
      #5555399 - 12/05/12 10:09 AM

What I didn't like, more than the dumb fake "dun" notices, was that what was on the DVD was an episode of _Universe_. That is all well and good, but the fact of the matter is, I bought an entire SEASON of the program for what Astronomy wanted for one disk: http://uncle-rods.blogspot.com/2009/04/of-dvds-and-binoculars.html

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beatlejuice
Pooh-Bah
*****

Reged: 04/05/11

Loc: Hamilton, ON,Canada
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: rmollise]
      #5555650 - 12/05/12 01:04 PM

Quote:

What I didn't like, more than the dumb fake "dun" notices




Ya, whats up with that, what a waste of paper. My last issue is Feb and I start getting them end of Aug!!

Eric


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cliff mygatt
Carpal Tunnel


Reged: 01/27/09

Loc: Kitsap County, WA
Re: Astronomy Magazine DVD Scam new [Re: rmollise]
      #5555851 - 12/05/12 03:24 PM

Rod, I am not sure I agree with your statement. I find the Universe "mega collection" on Amazon for about $90 so not the price of one DVD. Still less expensive than the Astronomy DVDs, though.

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