Sunday, 29 April 2012

The Voice - Consumer's Voice

Dear Consumer’s Voice #1

I just bought a quality Soviet t-shirt from people which are selling stuff on the streets. Unfortunately it just took 2 months and its value and colour was gone. It costed me P250 and I didn’t return it coz the waz no garantee.

Unfortunately I suspect there’s not a lot you can do in this situation. A legitimate product isn’t going to fade like that so long as you treat it well. A legitimate product that was sourced through normal channels would come with some sort of guarantee. It sounds like a fake to me.

If it’s a fake then you’re probably not going to get much support from the seller but it’s still worth a try. You might want to ask the seller whether the t-shirt was a fake or not. If it is they’ve broken the law. Whether or not it’s a fake they still owe you a replacement or a refund. However you’ll be lucky to get the seller of fake goods to honor their moral obligations. The sort of people who sell fakes are fakes themselves, they’re not decent people. If this particular seller doesn’t offer you a refund or a replacement I suggest you report them to the City Council for trading in illegal goods. Or the cops.

Dear Consumer’s Voice #2

I would ask advice from you good people. My car was involved in an accident at Mogoditshane, immediately after the accident some breakdown vehicles approached me to assist. I agreed with one of them that his garage will make a quotation for labor and all the parts to be repaired/replaced. They later informed me that they cannot find the parts which I ended up looked for them myself and handed to them. After a week they phoned me asking for deposit which we did not agreed at first of P2,100 which is half the price they charged for labor only (P4,200 total) and if I choose to take the car I should also pay rental plus towing.

I would now like to know if it’s right to pay that amount before I am sure the guys will properly do the work as they promised.

I think you’re being abused but that’s not a surprise. We’ve all been there. Within moments of breaking down the tow-trucks appear as if by magic and exploit your situation. They take your vehicle away from you, making promises about fixing it and then, very often, ripping you off. We’ve heard before of towing and repair companies that only mention storage and towing charges AFTER they’ve got your vehicle and can hold you to ransom. Often they only mention these charges after you stand up to them and ask for your vehicle back.

It is, of course, completely unacceptable for them to introduce all these charges without telling you about them up front. They simply can’t do this, at least not legally. But when has the law ever stopped crooks committing crimes?

I suggest you speak to the company and get a full written quote for what they plan to do. Insist on a full breakdown of the work they plan to do and how long it will take. Then you can decide if you want them to do the work for you.

If you then decide to take your car elsewhere and they demand storage of towing fees, ask them for a copy of the agreement you signed with them where you agreed to pay these fees. If you did sign such a document then you’re going to have to pay up. Otherwise you should call the cops if they refuse to return the car they stole from you!

Acid free coffee?

Several people have been in touch asking about repeated emails they’ve received about “acid free coffee”. In fact we received these emails as well, 15 times in 3 days and they show no sign of stopping. This is spam email. Under no circumstances should you reply to the email or even try to unsubscribe. All that does is confirm that your email address is real. This is just a scheme to sell enormously over-priced coffee (P4.50 per cup) from a company called Tyler’s Coffee in the USA. Just delete the emails and don’t fall for the “acid-free coffee” scam.

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