10 April 2011

My beef with ESPN: The Magazine

For years, I have subscribed to ESPN: The Magazine.  In fact, if memory serves, I have subscribed to it pretty regularly since its inception in 1998.  I'm not willing to swear that I was an inaugural subscriber whose subscription has NEVER lapsed, but I know that I HAVE been pretty regular with my subscription renewals.  And I know that I've given my fair share of gift subscriptions over the years.

I'm not quite sure how or why, but my most recent subscription ended in April (it's usually around the holidays).  I always renew my subscription and Dale's/Mom's at the same time, plus anyone else's who I might be throwing in.  At Christmas, I gave Dale the annual piece of paper (the gift subscription is technically Dale's, and Mom steals it every other week) that promised a renewal.

Because things have been so hectic lately and I've got some things on my mind (as you may have noticed), I hadn't really noticed that my ESPN renewal notice hadn't come.  Every once in awhile I'd wonder about it, then I'd think "maybe it did come and I paid it, and I just can't remember - I HAVE been preoccupied with other things," but then it would slip my mind and I'd forget to look it up later.

But then come March, the magazine stopped coming.  So I emailed ESPN with the pertinent details.  A week later, I was informed of the reason I never got a renewal notice.  "In May of 2010 you had requested that we stop mailing promotions.  Once this was changed on your account, it also changed your status for being
mailed renewals."

What?  Really????  Do you not WANT people to renew their subscriptions????  I wrote back and explained the ridiculousness of this policy, in addition to asking them to looking up my record as a subscriber, my record for giving gift subscriptions, and politely but firmly requesting that I be given the holiday subscription rate (which is half that of the regular rate).

It took (another week), but now I have been told that, "Your subscription and gift subscription renewal(s) has been entered on our files for the number of issues you requested.  You will receive an invoice in the near future. Upon receipt of your payment, your subscription will continue for the full number of issues ordered.  We have honored the holiday pricing for the gifts.  We are sorry for the inconvenience this has caused."

So now I have to wait to receive an invoice, wait for them to receive the payment, and then everyone can start getting magazines again.  All because I didn't want to receive "promotions."

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