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Hope this distinction is clear to everyone... the Amazon vs. DTSOnline errors of late

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Hope this distinction is clear to everyone... the Amazon vs. DTSOnline errors of late

Old 07-17-01, 05:29 PM
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Hope this distinction is clear to everyone... the Amazon vs. DTSOnline errors of late

Guys/Gals -

The latest screw up from DTSOnline, I think, illustrates a situation where the retailer has made a mistake which is NOT merely typographical, but clearly the result of careless or deceitful business practice.

I know a bunch of people jumped all over Amazon for the Monster Pack pricing error, but after all, that really was just a price mismarking. Nothing more. I know that I've found Amazon to be the most reliable of all the online retailers I've dealt with. And while, yeah, they've had the occassional error like that, and have not decided to fork over the tons of $$ it would cost to give everyone a ridiculous bargain... you know, they did actually send out all those Insiders for free, remember? That alone should give them a free pass when they occassionally make this kind of error.

Want to criticize their policies on shipping, or preorder pricing... fine. If you want to, go ahead. But don't give them crap over the Monster typo.

As for DTSOnline... this one is bad, in my opinion. It wasn't an mispricing. Nor was it some survey which people not intended to be polled were filling out for GCs. This was a legitimate sale, to clean out inventory. From, I might add, a major company in the industry.

There are a lot of people here, myself included, who love the DTS format. But that does not excuse this error. This is the type of a situation where the retailer MUST find a way to make good. Somehow, in some way. Or at least offer a token of their respect for their customers by some other form of offer/discount. It's just good business.

I don't mean to beat a dead horse here. Most of you, I believe, understand/agree with both of these statements. I only put them side by side like this to illustrate how unfair I believe the criticism of Amazon ON THAT PARTICULAR ISSUE was. It made us sound ungrateful, which in the long run is not going to keep the flow of deals and good will from these companies coming.

Just my $0.02.

Ok, it was a long e-mail. Maybe that was $0.04.
Old 07-17-01, 05:54 PM
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IMHO, it's the other way around:

DTS Online held a legitimate sale with clearly stated rules: purchase 2 of these DTS titles and get one of these other DTS titles free. People then went to the site and placed the free titles into their carts without purchasing any of the 2 other titles. In that case, the software (or the programmers) made the mistake, by not recognizing that people would just try and pick up the free titles without purchasing the required two. DTS Online stuck to the rules of the sale clearly stated on the page: You must purchase 2 to get the 1 title free.

In the Amazon Classic Monster situation, the price listed was not honored, even though it was clearly stated on the page. There was no software error or a trick to getting the price - it was listed in bold with the product description. Amazon claims is was a "misprice," but it would be simple for them to program their pricing software to double-check, verify or force an authorization for price listings that are 90% (more in this case) below MSRP. They choose not to because these "misprices" bring people to the site where they order other things - while Amazon has no intention of honoring the price. At least when B&M stores use loss-leaders, they actually intend to sell the items listed.

Regards,
Joel
Old 07-17-01, 06:03 PM
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If the terms was clearly written on the site (which it was) and yet the computer system allowed you to get them, then how is it dishonest? It's like this, go to your local B&M. It is clear that you must go through the cash registers area. But if there is a nice aisle that you can walk through and the alarms don't go off you got a deal. If they do, it's a scam.

Now I knwo that's stretching it a bit but think about it. You didn't lose anything but scamming a company. Who cares?
Old 07-17-01, 09:29 PM
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Actually, I wasn't referring to DTSOnline's deal where they were allowing people to put just free titles in their cart. I do think that is an honest mistake, much like a misprice.. since there were stated rules. I don't think they should honor that. As for the Amazon deal... yes the listed price was $14.99.... but be serious. It was eight movies. In no way did ANYONE think that was intentionally the price. If it was listed at $99 or something, or even $50... something that might make you think, hey they're clearing this out.. then maybe. (of course this ignores the fact that it was a preorder!)

No, with DTSOnline, I'm referring to their recent "blowout" sale, of $5 titles. They basically took all these orders. Never said anythign was out of stock, and now are just saying "Oh, sorry. We're cancelling your order. Bye" Hey, if you can't internally track inventory and update your site.. then you need to honor the price. That, I feel, is disregard for their customers.
Old 07-18-01, 10:05 AM
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I agree. I know many have come to the defense of DTS in the bargain thread and having read each of these defenses, I am still under the opinion that DTS Management is to blame.

I can excuse the original blunder in their web site that allowed for free titles, and never expected to receive those that I added to my cart. And for the record, I ordered 2 LOTM, not hundreds of copies of all the titles like some.

But when I participate in an offer that is openly promoted on their store front, taking the time to follow their rules, adhering to their terms, giving them my personal info and CC #, being told the items are in stock, receiving a confirmation e-mail, et al....Then, yes, I expect a little more than I received.

I do not expect to have to call to find out my order had already been cancelled with no notification.
I do not expect to be told that these were a one time deal, with no chance of replenishment of stock.
I do not expect to not at least be offered a replacement title (not some freebie demo crap)
I do not expect to continue to find these so-called sold out items to still be listed on their website in the regular titles section.(Dreamscape was still listed as of yesterday evening)

I won't waste anymore time on this issue. I only ordered two discs, and two that I would not have ordered normally but for the $5 price tag. In my opinion, DTSOnline failed miserably to uphold the high standards normally associated with DTS.
Old 07-18-01, 10:34 AM
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Yeah, DTS online is still in the minor leagues as far as their ordering system, and customer support go.

I can't wait until Dolby Digital Online has a sale
Old 07-20-01, 09:51 PM
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DTS blunder

Well, I did receive my orders from DTS Online, all 3 out of the 15 that I originally ordered. It took them a week to deliver the DVDs, and I live under 20 miles from there store. That aside, they charged me $28.50 for the 3 DVDs. I'm not a math major, but I assume that at $5 a piece, $28.50 is too high. Rather than try to go through DTS to get my money back, I called up my credit card company (Citibank) and refuted the charges for the actual price that I should have been charged, or $16.
Old 07-21-01, 12:14 PM
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If I could ask a favor, could anyone who received any part of their order, could you list when you actually got confirmation for your order, date and time please. I want to make sure that they were filling orders first come first served, which would have been the only fair way. I ordered 20 DVDz, 1 copy each, mostly of the classical and I want to make sure that those that received their copies placed their orders before I did. Thanking you for your time, Chris
Old 07-21-01, 01:30 PM
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order #27211
E-mail on the 16th said that "a few of the titles that i ordered are sold out
E-mail on the 19th says that my partial order has been shipped
received partial shipment on the 20th
Old 07-21-01, 04:50 PM
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Originally posted by Frank_M

No, with DTSOnline, I'm referring to their recent "blowout" sale, of $5 titles. They basically took all these orders. Never said anythign was out of stock, and now are just saying "Oh, sorry. We're cancelling your order. Bye" Hey, if you can't internally track inventory and update your site.. then you need to honor the price. That, I feel, is disregard for their customers.
I still don't understand how people feel DTS Online owes them these DVDs. The only complaint is that the inventory isn't real time. People have tried to say how easy it is to make real time invenotry. I disagree. You have a system currently in place, now they'll have to hire someone to take down that system, implement a new real-time inventory section. They'll have to account for returns, credict card cancellations, new shipments, theft, and exactly when a person makes an order. I don't do that much shopping online, but I don't know any store that does that. Buy.com has a DOTD which I once ordered. Of course the item went on backorder before I ever got anything despite the fact the DOTD has an "item avaliable" order. Now why should DTS, a small organization spend the money to upgrade their system? Just to convience you? Normally they probably do a very small amount of business. So they handle things in a reasonable matter. It make take a while to process the orders, but these are DVDs not kidney transplants. I think a small wait is reasonable and you knew with limited quantities that you might not get something.
Old 07-21-01, 04:54 PM
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Originally posted by robertmee

I do not expect to be told that these were a one time deal, with no chance of replenishment of stock.
I do not expect to not at least be offered a replacement title (not some freebie demo crap)
I don't know, blow-out sale seems pretty self explanatory, and the fact they stated quantities are limited only furthers this. Of course there would be no replenishment of stock.

And if you miss out of the original quantity, why offer a replacement? They have no obligation to do so and probably can't afford to be giving away stuff.
Old 07-21-01, 06:22 PM
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should DTS, a small organization spend the money to upgrade their system? Just to convience you?
Because they are in business to make money and promote their brand. The way to do that is to make the customer happy.

We all agree that they don't have the resources to create a better web page. It is not unreasonable though to start the sale at say 9:00 AM during their office hours and monitor the sales. I'll bet by lunch time they would be sold out and they could have turned off the sale web page and made everyone happy... Both their sales fiascos were accepting orders over one-two days and nights. Is that unreasonable for a small company?????

Last edited by JimB; 07-21-01 at 06:27 PM.
Old 07-22-01, 01:49 AM
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Originally posted by JimB


Because they are in business to make money and promote their brand. The way to do that is to make the customer happy.

We all agree that they don't have the resources to create a better web page. It is not unreasonable though to start the sale at say 9:00 AM during their office hours and monitor the sales. I'll bet by lunch time they would be sold out and they could have turned off the sale web page and made everyone happy... Both their sales fiascos were accepting orders over one-two days and nights. Is that unreasonable for a small company?????
That may have made more sense, and I suspect they didn't quite realize how quickly they would get orders in. It's like that commerical for the dot com and everybody's waiting for the first order, than all of a sudden tons of them start pouring in.

So they didn't have the best business sense, they still acted fairly reasonably in their response. I mean 1-2 days is not life-threating when we're talking about DVDs. And people who still got in early enough, should get their DVDs. It just seems like most people here want to call up DTSonline and demand some cheap DVD simply because their website isn't spectacular or because they took a whole day to remove an item from their webpage. And that idea seems absurd to me. I'd hate to be a customer service rep on those calls.
Old 07-23-01, 08:42 PM
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For those of you who only got a partial order, call up or e-mail DTS Online CSR. They said that they would credit me for shipping and tax ( I live in CA).
Old 07-23-01, 08:57 PM
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Oh my gosh....

I just got my order from them today, I was totally not expecting this. I received my entire order which included two dvd's: LOTM (yes, the non-animated one) AND the ultimate dvd platinum. For reference, I never called or emailed about my order. I just figured it had gotten cacelled and then it showed up today.

Hopefully this will happen for more people than just me.

Well, I'm off to hear them on my dts system...
Old 07-23-01, 09:16 PM
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For the record, I received my Ultimate DVD Platium and LOTM today...

With that said, I really can't fault DTS with what happened in both times in their blowout sale.

They clearly f***ed up the coding of their checkout the first time around. It's not like, say, Amazon where some folks would have gotten in on the deal and others did not (remember cookie/flux pricing last year?). As far as I know everyone got the same thing... squat.They could have handled it better from consumer communcation stance, but I'll give them the benefit of the doubt that they're small, e-commerce isn't their focus... and to say they've learned there lesson on that one.

So to correct mistake number one, they started a new promo about a week later... $5 titles, first-come, first-served, while supplies last, no additional purchase nessicary. Isn't that how a regular B&M handles all their blowout sales?

Amazon on the other hand has always has a subjective policy concerning misprices. If they feel like honoring it... they will, if they don't... they won't. this is just the way Amzon has been going about their business for the past few years. Even the misprice policy as written is vague and open to interpertation.

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