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Old 01-12-08, 01:39 PM   #1
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Sam Goody gift card disaster

I have to vent.

Over the years, I accumulated about $500 in Sam Goody gift cards. A year or so ago they were bought out by TWEC / FYE and the new computer system in the FYE stores would not accept the older Sam Goody gift cards. I complained/inquired and found out that my gift cards were still good online, and at any stores that remained "Sam Goody".

I even periodically called the 800 number on the back of the cards to confirm that my full balances were still there.

I place an order online a couple days ago, using the gift cards. The transaction is flawless. gift cards input properly, the right balances show up and are deducted, and my two orders go thru fine.

A few hours later, I get cancellation emails, not indicating a reason. After dozens of email exchanges, the first ten being auto replies where it is obvious that they aren't even reading my emails, they finally give me a thorough answer.

Their system has been updated to not accept the old gift cards, and corporate will not replace them.

I can still call the 800 # on the cards and see that I have $525 spread over 11 cards, but, according to FYE, I can not use them online. There is one location on their website within 100 miles of me still listed as Sam Goody, but I called them and they told me they have switched over to a FYE now. So it appears that my $525 is lost.

I guess my lesson is to not hold on to these things so long next time.
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Old 01-12-08, 02:31 PM   #2
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Thats bullshit. Call TWEC and state firmly that they bought all the assets and liabilities of Sam Goody and that your gift cards MUST be exchanged. Forget about regular CSR, call their corporate.

If they give you a problem, I would seriously consider filing a small claims lawsuit against them. First, I would send a certified letter to corporate demanding an in-kind gift card. File complaints with your state AG, the BBB, etc. If that fails, file the suit.

However, having that much in gift cards seems kinda shady.
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Old 01-12-08, 02:46 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chanster

However, having that much in gift cards seems kinda shady.
What's shady about it? I have more than that on various FYE gift cards that I got from trading in used DVDs.

Two weeks ago, FYE had a glitch where people were able to use a $5 coupon to buy a $10 virtual gift card for $5. Then they would use the $10 virtual gift card to get $20 in gift cards and they kept recycling until some got over $500 in virtual gift cards for $5. FYE discovered this fuck up and deleted all virtual gift cards and removed the gift card option as payment for over 10 days. They just started accepting gift cards online a couple of days ago, but it's obviously still screwed up. I think that your problem is related to this glitch and not because they are Sam Goody gift cards. Like chanster said, keep flooding them with emails and contact your AG. Good luck.
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Old 01-12-08, 03:07 PM   #4
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Thanks, I'm not giving up. I WILL get my money eventually.

Oh, and these gift cards weren't shady, just various things over the years. Rebates, returns, gifts, etc.

Wow, that glitch information is amazing. One, I'm amazed that they would allow a hole like that to be exploited so easily, and two, that people really do things like that.

I could see doing it once as an actual gift, but to keep doing it over and over to steal money? Incredible.

Hopefully my troubles are related to this locking out of gift cards.
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Old 01-13-08, 01:42 AM   #5
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Good luck, Trevor. I've had gift certificates and such nearly expire on me...which is a concept I have never understood from businesses. The concept is gift certificates are like cash, right?
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Old 01-13-08, 10:29 AM   #6
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I think that some states have laws that gift cards can NOT expire or charge "hidden" fees, like inactivity or service or annual fees. California comes to mind and I think other states are following and have followed.

This was a BIG issue and only recently been "fixed" to some extent.

All this to say that depending upon your state you may have other legal rights too. So definitely, as others have said, go to your AG and state authorities too, if TWEC will not make it right.
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Old 01-13-08, 11:12 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chanster
Thats bullshit. Call TWEC and state firmly that they bought all the assets and liabilities of Sam Goody and that your gift cards MUST be exchanged. Forget about regular CSR, call their corporate.

If they give you a problem, I would seriously consider filing a small claims lawsuit against them. First, I would send a certified letter to corporate demanding an in-kind gift card. File complaints with your state AG, the BBB, etc. If that fails, file the suit.

However, having that much in gift cards seems kinda shady.
You may want to determine if they actually did purchase all of the liabilities. It's not uncommon for an asset purchase not to also have the liability as well.

But yes, call corporate, be polite but firm. Keep elevating.
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Old 01-13-08, 11:21 AM   #8
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Seems like gift card usage on FYE.com is still screwed up, I placed an order using one the first day they were back on and my order status says "Error".
Anyway, yeah, I definitely think they "should" take care of you, morally if not legally, and I don't necessarily see anything wrong with a bunch of money in gift cards. I usually try to spend mine somewhat quickly, for fear of losing them or the store going out of business, but something like 30% of gift cards are never used or leave money on them, so gift cards are generally a win for the retailer.
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Old 01-13-08, 10:58 PM   #9
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I could be wrong, but I believe that although TWEC did in fact buy out Sam Goody, they only agreed to honor the SG gift cards for a little while after the acquisition. I have worked for TWEC for about seven years now, (I swear I'm getting out soon!!) and I remember the Sam Goody deal from a couple years back. All TWEC stores were sent a memo about the gift card stuff. Do the gift cards actually have any TWEC info on them, or are they strictly Sam Goody?

I would definitely try to call the corporate HQ at 1-800-540-1242 and get to the bottom of it, but you might be SOL.

Last edited by ltrain; 01-13-08 at 11:03 PM.
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Old 01-14-08, 02:30 PM   #10
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Yeah, there might be a corporate thing there that you can't necessarily control -- FYE refuses to honor cards, etc, due to some weird clause in the contract. It's happened before. I would definitely still complain, but one suggestion -- couldn't you try a gift card swap place like Leveragecard.com or something like that? It'd be difficult to find swappers for that amount of gift cards, but I'm sure shoppers of Sam Goody stores are still out there, and it would be better than losing the entire amount. Plus, you could register them in the system and earn interest in the meanwhile. Just a thought, but for the record this is one of the reasons gift cards are so troublesome. I'm guessing Virginia doesn't have depreciation on gift cards, eh?
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Old 01-14-08, 04:13 PM   #11
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I am pretty sure they are the old Sam Goody cards, with no mention of TWEC on them.

I plan to try them at the local store tomorrow. If they don't work there, the assistant manager at the 75 mile away store that recently was a Sam Goody, said that he would try the numbers over the phone with me, to make sure they worked before I drove all the way out there.

If those two plans don't work, I'll call/email corporate weekly until they have pity on me.

Ninhomes, thanks for the swap place idea. I was vaguely aware of sites like that, but doubt I'll use them, as it appears that I'd just be trading my problem on to someone else. But maybe I don't understand how those systems work, I'll check them out. As for the depreciation in Virginia, it is allowed, but must stores don't charge non-use fees, and there is no indication of service charges of any kind on these cards.

I have vowed to start using whatever gift cards I have, I don't want to have this happen again.

I get in the bad habit of saving these things, as I usually wait for a really great deal before I buy anything. I end up buying most of my DVDs from CH or places where I don't have gift cards. And even when I find a deal at a place where I have a gift card, I'm out and the gift card is at home.

So anyway, thanks for the advice all. I'll definitely post my final results.
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Old 01-14-08, 05:41 PM   #12
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wow! I'd hate to see the size of your wallet if you still have SG GC's!
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Old 01-14-08, 10:49 PM   #13
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well i just saw that sam goody filed bankruptcy before they were bought:

http://money.cnn.com/2006/01/13/news...oody_suncoast/

thats bad news for you...because bankruptcy pretty much invalidated those gift cards, and whatever twec acquired, it wasn't that liability...sorry I had no idea that Sam Goody filed bankruptcy...keep calling TWEC though, SHAME is your friend...
also try emailing [email protected] love those type of stories..especially with sam goody web site still in operation

that press release says gift cards should be able to redeemed for a certain period of time, but still that time has probably run out

Last edited by chanster; 01-14-08 at 10:51 PM.
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Old 04-10-16, 04:26 PM   #14
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

If you go to FYE website and scroll to bottom and select gift cards you can enter the numbers and get the balance on the card. Go to a SamGoody store and buy something and they can enter the amount and then you swipe the card and it will deduct the amount from the total.
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Old 04-10-16, 04:27 PM   #15
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I have to vent.

Over the years, I accumulated about $500 in Sam Goody gift cards. A year or so ago they were bought out by TWEC / FYE and the new computer system in the FYE stores would not accept the older Sam Goody gift cards. I complained/inquired and found out that my gift cards were still good online, and at any stores that remained "Sam Goody".

I even periodically called the 800 number on the back of the cards to confirm that my full balances were still there.

I place an order online a couple days ago, using the gift cards. The transaction is flawless. gift cards input properly, the right balances show up and are deducted, and my two orders go thru fine.

A few hours later, I get cancellation emails, not indicating a reason. After dozens of email exchanges, the first ten being auto replies where it is obvious that they aren't even reading my emails, they finally give me a thorough answer.

Their system has been updated to not accept the old gift cards, and corporate will not replace them.

I can still call the 800 # on the cards and see that I have $525 spread over 11 cards, but, according to FYE, I can not use them online. There is one location on their website within 100 miles of me still listed as Sam Goody, but I called them and they told me they have switched over to a FYE now. So it appears that my $525 is lost.

I guess my lesson is to not hold on to these things so long next time.
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Old 04-10-16, 04:28 PM   #16
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

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Originally Posted by Successfull View Post
If you go to FYE website and scroll to bottom and select gift cards you can enter the numbers and get the balance on the card. Go to a SamGoody store and buy something and they can enter the amount and then you swipe the card and it will deduct the amount from the total.
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Old 04-10-16, 04:31 PM   #17
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

I just did this with a card that was probably 10 years old to buy the new Star Wars movie and it worked! The workers in the store told me the card was no good and couldn't be used on my first trip into the store. The key is knowing the exact balance on the card.
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Old 04-10-16, 07:52 PM   #18
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Sam is that you?
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Old 04-10-16, 09:39 PM   #19
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

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Old 04-10-16, 11:09 PM   #20
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

What year is this?

Last edited by kyleblack; 04-10-16 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 04-10-16, 11:41 PM   #21
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Quote:
Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I'll definitely post my final results.
Still waiting.
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Old 04-11-16, 07:43 AM   #22
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Quote:
Originally Posted by kyleblack View Post
What year is this?
I don't know, but I just walked out of my Blockbuster on my way to the Borders when I saw this post using my free 50 hours on AOL.
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Old 04-11-16, 08:28 AM   #23
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

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Originally Posted by Cardsfan111 View Post
Still waiting.
Staged a sit-in at a closed Sam Goody location. No press showed up after three hours, so I ate the sandwiches I packed and went home.
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Old 04-11-16, 12:38 PM   #24
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Well that was a blast from the past. Sam Goody is a name ive not heard in a long time. A long time. Not surprised that people ahd trouble using their gift cards. There was always something sketchy going on with the Sam Goody gift cards. Mostly it was that they would charge a fee monthly on an unused balance. There was no chance of using them once they declared bankruptcy unfortunately. I actually got burned on a $10 certificate as well. Mine was the old paper style that they woudl put in teh cardboard sleeve. It was a present that I forgot to give a friend back in the day.
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Old 04-11-16, 01:07 PM   #25
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Re: Sam Goody gift card disaster

Oh good, this bump and that $10 you lost makes me feel a lot better.
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