Thursday, September 22, 2005

The Horror Continues! The Undead Walk The Earth! Bloodsucking Vampires From Chicago Invade LA!

Mickey Kaus continues his valiant - but ultimately hopeless - battle to cancel a subscription to the LA Times!!

LAT Desperation Update: After cancelling the L.A. Times, then cancelling again when I got a bill showing an ongoing account (with only a "stop delivery adjustment"), I got a phone call from the Times this morning. ""Thank you," the Times rep said, "[We] want to welcome you back!" It seems the Times was "in [my] neighborhood" and he was offering me a rate of $2.99 a week! I told him I'd cancelled. He said, "It's on hold right now." I said no, I'd cancelled it twice. He said "So you don't want the paper right now" and rang off. ... Something about that final "right now" tells me I'm going to be "welcomed back" again soon. ... Is the Times telling advertisers and shareholders that a lot of subscriptions are "on hold" when really they're cancelled? ... Attention resisters of sleazy LAT death-spiral circ. tactics: Here's the California Attorney General's handy Web complaint form! It only took a minute to fill out. ... Update: As if battered by kf's near-avalanche of anecdotal doubt, Tribune Co. stock fell 2.1% today (twice as much as the Dow). ... 9:06 A.M. link


Anonymous said...

A couple of weekends ago, I was shopping at the Pavilions on Vine Street. Unable to find a certain item, I approached a couple of men standing at a lectern at the head (front of the store) of one of the aisles.

They didn't work for the store, one of them told me, but he'd give me $15 credit toward my groceries if I'd answer two questions for him. Always up for a marketing survey, I said "sure."

First question: "Do you read the Los Angeles Times?" I have some pride, but we're talking $15, so I admitted that I was a subscriber.

"How often do you read the paper?" I told him, "every day," and asked for my $15. He refused to give it to me, saying that it was only for new subscribers. "That's not what you told me," I noted. "You said answer two questions, and I answered them." He continued to withhold my credit.

I mentioned the incident to a clerk, who said he'd told her the same thing, a couple of days earlier.

I wrote an e-mail to The Times' circulation department, certain that they wouldn't want to be misrepresented in such a way. Maybe not, but it's been nearly two weeks and I haven't heard a word.

Brady Westwater said...

It's clear to this cowboy, any way, the LA Times makes the $15 offer because the odds of them of running across an paying subscriber are... zero! So when the poor marketer ran across one - he simply didn't know what to do.