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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Rip-off

After years of doing commerce on-line I've finally been ripped-off. I ordered what I though to be a replacement remote control from remotecontrolwarehouse.com. This company also operates under the banner of New Remotes, Inc, electronicadventure.us. The image here shows the item I ordered and paid for on-line.


What I got was far from the image presented.



For nearly 40 bucks ($6.95 shipping and handling and the envelope had $1.35 in stamps on it) I got a cheap knock-off remote that didn't have the same features or controls as my original remote.

The first thing missing is the logo. I paid for a Mitsubishi remote to go with my Mitsubishi TV. It may seem silly, but I can buy a $10 universal from Wal-mart if that's what I wanted. I wanted OEM, and that's what I was led to believe I was getting.

Second, my original remote controlled 5 devices. What they sent me was a remote programmed for my TV and no instructions on how to program it for the one other device it can control.

Third, this "replacement" remote can't even change the aspect ratio of the TV. In truth, it's the only reason I need the brand-specific/OEM remote. I haven't seen a universal remote with that button on it, and since my old remote is destroyed, I have nothing to "teach" a learning remote with.

Fourth... well I don't need a fourth reason. But here's the kicker: they include a letter in the package that, in summary, says you'll be satisfied or your money back. That of course translates to we'll be operating on your 40 bucks for the two weeks it takes to deliver, find out we screwed you, then get the remote returned to us. But the part that got me was this line from the letter:

"...Your original remote is not available but no need to worry. Enclosed you will find a full function replacement remote... ...We have sent you the best replacement remote available so you can fully control your unit... ...Often customers are concered when they receive something different then what they ordered. Please try it for a few days. If for any reason you are not satisfied, ou can take advantage of our 30 day no questions asked refund policy."


If what I ordered wasn't available, they should have cancelled my transaction and notified me, plain and simple. I would bet serious money that their business model depends on people just taking what they get instead of going through the hassle of being without a remote control and having to go through the returns process.

So, in true geek fashion, I'll be linking the words "scam" and "rip-off" to their domain. Hopefully the next person looking to do business with that site will find this blog entry and avoid them at all costs.

In addition I'll be reporting this incident to the Better Busines Bureau.

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9 Comments:

Blogger Kara said...

I'd tell the Missouri Attorney General too... that usually gets their attention.

3:39 PM  
Blogger Sniderman said...

And I hear Nixon's really into making a big deal of just about everything. Go for it.

Either way... it sux.

8:51 PM  
Anonymous cpolka said...

I can't help but laugh at the admonition they sent you with the remote: come on you lazy @**, try this cheap knock-off! I'd also publish to www.ripoffreport.com.

9:28 PM  
Anonymous Will said...

Thanks for the warning.

1:07 PM  
Blogger Duane Keys said...

You're welcome!

2:29 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wish I saw your blog earlier. The exact same thing just happened to me (also with a Mitsubishi remote order). I see your entry was from nearly two years ago - Unfortunately they are still using the same "business" tactics. I can't imagine this is legal.

4:09 AM  
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9:06 AM  
Anonymous Dlaten said...

I got ripped off too. I tried to buy the exact same remote and I got a different remote than you did, although it is still a piece of junk. If you got your money back please email me at junk589@hotmail.com.

7:59 PM  
Blogger instanz7 said...

I wish I would have known sooner, I have a replacement on the way, and now am nervous to see what I receive.

2:43 AM  

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