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Misrepresentation and Overcharging
Posted by on 12/23/2002
On 12/14, I placed an order with Barnes & Noble.com for Christmas presents consisting of a CD, a movie, & two books. All four items were said to be in stock and available for shipping within 24 hours. I requested that all the items be shipped at the same time. On the 16th, two of the items were shipped with no explanation for why the other items were not. That day I sent an e-mail to service@barnesandnoble.com find out why my other items were not shipped, and to find when they would be sent. I did not get a response, so I called 1-800-THE-BOOK. After over 20 minutes of sitting on hold, I hung up. The next day I sent another e-mail asking the same questions. On the 18th, Felicia a CSR wrote back to me apologizing for the delay and telling me that the remaining items would be expedited, and that I would get an e-mail confirming when the items were shipped. Two days later, I still have not received anything telling me that the items have been shipped. After nearly a half an hour of being on hold, I finally talked to someone, who said that my items would be shipped and the shipping method would be upgraded. I was also told that an e-mail confirming shipping would be sent to me. I did not receive one, however after checking the website I found out that my "In stock and ready for delivery in 24 hours" items were shipped on 12/20, after ONLY a week! Barnes and Noble did indeed upgrade my shipping to make sure that I would receive the items in a timely manner based on when I ordered them (if you call Christmas Eve as timely), however while looking at the web site I discovered that Barnes and Noble was charging me more than I had agreed to pay based on the e-mail receipt I received when I first placed the order. Yes, Barnes and Noble has decided to charge me for their mistake. Not only have they misrepresented themselves and their items, but also they have charged me more than I agreed to pay.
     
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Misrepresentation for the Nook Notebook
Posted by Amaria711 on 03/21/2013
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- I was given the Nook for Christmas with a $25.00 B&N gift card. When I tried to purchase nook books with my gift card, it was declined. B&N states you must have a credit card on file in order to download a nook book using my B&N gift card. I find this to be misleading and misrepresenting the Nook. Many people don`t have credit cards nor do I want one. The crazy thing is that it`s their own gift card and one should be able to buy anything at B&N whether online or in the store. Barnes and Noble have a big problem if they can`t handle their own gift card with their customers regarding purchasing the nook books.

If they don`t change this requirement then I don`t think their going to have a long future with the nook especially in competing with the Kindle.
     
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Posted by Alain on 2013-03-22:
You'd think they would be more accommodating since their nook purchases and their sales in general are down.
Posted by Obsfucation on 2013-03-22:
I think you will find the exact same thing with the Kindle. To use a gift card it has to be associated with an account that has download rights. The account setup requires a credit card.
Maybe not optimal, but that's how it works.
If you don't have or want a credit card, how would you pruchase books after the gift card is used up? It's great that you can download from your library, but sometimes you just want to own the book.
Posted by clutzycook on 2013-03-22:
Obs is right. I have a Kindle (3 in fact) and each one had to be associated to my Amazon account and I had to have a credit card (I actually use my debit card) associated to purchase e-books. It's the same with all E-book companies I think. Do you have a debit card you can (even temporarily) associate with your amazon account?
Posted by Michelle on 2013-03-22:
Kobo e-book readers do no have this issue. They might be a better option for people who don't have credit cards.
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Barne's & Noble refuses to repair thier own product
Posted by ATOMCK on 01/28/2013
GLASTONBURY, CONNECTICUT -- A year ago last Christmas,(12-25-11), I received a "NOOK Color" as a gift. Two weeks ago, the speaker stopped working. I called their tech support line and was told that, since it was no longer under warranty, that they could not repair the unit. They said that if it had still been under warranty, they would have sent me a "Refurbished" unit and I would have to send back my broken one. I asked why they couldn't just fix mine and bill me for parts (a speaker) and labor. (about 15 min. worth). It's amazing how these companies, either accidentally or purposefully, confuse the words "can't" and "won't". I used to be an electronics "bench tech", repairing caller I. D. boxes and we did both warranty work and direct customer repair work. The fact that they REFUSE to repair one of their products says a lot about Barne's and Noble.

They think that this is the best way to get me to cough up over $300 for one of their new "NOOK H. D." units. (The NOOK color is no longer available.) Also, In the NOOK H. D, The 8g memory card, The kind that fits into many cameras and costs only $40 has been replaced with an 8g , (same amount of memory),disc that costs $90.
     
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Posted by localgod on 2013-01-29:
This is not just a Barnes and Noble thing, you'll find this across the board on all tablet/e-readers; be it Apple, Samsung, Amazon, Barnes, Asus, etc. The products are sealed (for the most part) at production (in China, to boot) and there is little to no repair option, regardless of who you buy from. The manufacturers' warranties are words on paper only (production defects only, limited at their discretion, read the fine print to truly discover what it covers, if anything).
I am truly sorry that the electronics industry has come to this, good luck. - lg
Posted by trmn8r on 2013-01-29:
What localgod said makes sense. The unit is probably not repairable, at least not locally. There is probably a closet somewhere in China, where two people handle all the refurbishing of units that will be sent back as warranty replacements.
Posted by onlooker on 2013-01-29:
There are few companies that actually make, assemble or can service what they sell. It is frustrating, and shabby service to consumers... but someone is making money off of your inability to get your product repaired. And it ain't necessarily B&N.
Too bad headphones or external speakers can not be used.
And those kids in the closet in china doing refurbishment, usually don't have a clue how the product will be used by US or foreign consumer. They just put parts together.
Posted by Obsfucation on 2013-01-29:
They are telling you this, but you are just not hearing it. They don't repair these...for anyone. There is NO repair department, instead they replace them, when in warranty.

Does the unit work with headphones? Are you able to determine that the speaker is really gone, and not just disabled in a setting?
Posted by clutzycook on 2013-01-29:
Amazon actually did good by me the other week. Baby Clutzy dropped her Kindle Fire one day and shattered the screen. Since it was less than 6 months old, I went ahead and contacted Amazon to see if they could do anything for me under the warranty; but I wasn't expecting much since most screen breakage is not covered in my experience (especially if it was the user's fault). To my shock, they sent me a brand new Kindle Fire. I just sent back the old one in the new one's box and that was it.
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After 30 years in store and on-line adios knuckleheads
Posted by Onlooker on 08/13/2012
Two weeks before a visit to the US, I ordered a book on line.
One book at less than 35.00

When order was first placed the credit dept could not handle ....what...the difference in mail to and ship to address???

Amazon does, most places do.....I needed to call to have some 'voice' in NYC tell me that this was for my protection .....yeah right, I'm not shipping to Nigeria or China......it cost me some time - ok I wanted the book... and money on the more expensive call back ' for my protection' but I thought no problem, it is all ok now. My mistake.

The order is 'approved' and then not shipped... no notice no nothing, just a 'canceled order email' and when I call to check why, a bogus answer was given.

I called to find out why B&N again screwed up an order I placed - yup 2nd time on 3cents for this company.

I was given a totally bogus excuse as to why this order was cancelled:

'USPS returned the box after 15 days' - Oh really -

The post office that handles the mail to that specific address:
Knew there was a death in the family - they confirmed they would handle
the extra volume of mail and keep it for us.

Knows the specific family with that address and holds all mail 30 days especially as it is a school and gets much mail.

This Post office serves a rural vacation area and does not return mail for the year round population within 30 days.

The customer service person passed on a BS excuse that was patently false.

So I still need the book and reorder:

- well what a surprise, expedited shipment (provided free from B&N as a result of the prior cancellation) direct ship from b&n warehouse service can't ship in 4 days....

But wait, the offer is made: pay for a NOT B&N warehouse shipment which surprise... costs more and what a surprise their regular mail ships faster than expedited B&N warehouse - it isn't free and it isn't B&N.

That is NOT service.

That is crap. That is supplier lies, B&N own warehouse expedited shipping and 'service' that has no meaning. Pretty sad when an outside shipper's regular shipping is faster than B&N's own expedited shipping is.

Don't worry when my new order with foreign ship to address gets messed up - and in my experience it will. I will not need B&N Knucklehead protection.

I have shopped and ordered with B&N for over 30 years, I wanted to work with the Amazon alternative. No longer.

My future orders will be with Amazon. The B&N organization has finally messed up to the point that I will no longer order with them.

Amazon and kindle here I come. B&N dipsticks have lost a more than 30 year customer. Knuckleheads.
     
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Posted by trmn8r on 2012-08-14:
I love B&N - been using them since 1979, but always in person.
Posted by Alain on 2012-08-14:
I've never had this problem with Barnes and Noble, but I'll be alerted to the possibly from your review.
Posted by onlooker on 2012-08-14:
I do hope you both continue to have positive experiences with B&N.
As for me as much as I have tried to support shopping with them, they have consistently failed to fill orders appropriately. I'm going to be a very very reluctant amazon customer.
Posted by onlooker on 2012-09-13:
10 Sept the book was delivered - dropped in the mailbox. I now no longer have to do anything with B&N.
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Mold on Bargain Book
Posted by Huppsusan on 04/25/2012
BRIGHTON, MICHIGAN -- I have been sick for two days now after picking up a book at the store, opening it up to find the pages seemed a bit bent. Closed it and began having asthma problems....clear sign of mold on the book. The clerk, when I reported it, said "What do you want ME to do about it?" I would think she would have informed a manager but no, she said well you never know where theses books come from. I'd like to know. And I think anyone else who is allergic to mold and may venture into that store and pick up that book would also like to know.
     
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Posted by Buddy01 on 2012-04-25:
Since she wouldn't report it, maybe you can.
Posted by CrystalSword on 2012-04-25:
I'd call and talk to the manager yourself. Its evident that this clerk could have cared less!
Posted by signs of signs on 2012-04-27:
did you actually SEE mold on the book? this sounds like you decided it had mold because you had an asthma attack.


I know you want them to DO something about it - but they can't take action if there's no sign of mold other than a customer's decision that it "must be moldy!"
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Barnes and Noble have kept a customer
Posted by Onlooker on 09/08/2011
First order completed, confirmed to me, but I found no record 3 days later when I checked on the status of my order. (approx 400US$ order)

I was an unhappy customer as time was lost and I needed the books. They were to be used during an extended trip.

Second -reorder completed, confirmed to me, again no record when I then checked on the status of the reorder. (approx 400US$ order)

After checking with customer service, who had no records of the orders, leaving both sides perplexed: first and second orders were cancelled -

I got confirmation of cancellations. Customer service was notified by me of all numbers involved in order and cancellations. They had no other records from their system??.

Guess I found the bug in the system.

I was an irate customer when over a 11 days later, B&N later confirmed that both orders were found and were to be shipped to me. (I was traveling at the time)

After more emails with B&N, orders were stopped. A more senior service representative confirmed all was cancelled and that any and all charges were to be credited on my credit card - one or two charge cycles at most.

Then an email arrived, 'we note problems, and cancellations with your orders, but one book was shipped' just return in 15 days blah blah blah. I went ballistic.

Feckless service person who had not read the chain of mails, sent in response to that email, provided a bland just send it back and we will credit you email. I went ballistic again. And little mr feckless has not responded to any follow up.

(These emails occurred during even more exciting than planned travel due to Irene, can't fly anywhere but emails arrived)

Today the credit card bill came and it is reported that the credit is there.

So, I will purchase from B&N again.

My time constraint was part of the problem, traveling was an issue, and non-US banking/credit card systems that do not challenge problem billing was another issue. B&N resolved the issue in one month.

Moral of the story - check on your orders, contact customer service at first sign of a problem, and do not waste time with staff that do not know the issues - dog them until you work with someone who has the ability to resolve the issues.




     
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Posted by lexophiliac on 2011-12-22:
B&N did me up right this Christmas.
Posted by onlooker on 2011-12-28:
excellent to know. I like them, just dont get to use them much.
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HP Touchpad incompetency
Posted by Mad at BN on 08/26/2011
Recently I purchased an HP Touchpad from Barnes and Nobel. I received confirmation that the sale had gone through and that I was billed on my Visa Account. The HP was listed at a good price and since I received confirmation of the product, I did not think I had to place other orders and other stores. 2 days later after the product was sold out on other web sites, I received a letter from B&N saying that because of the demand, they could not place my order, which in my view was a done deal. This shows a real problem with their billing department and computer department. Buyer beware if dealing with Barnes and Nobel.
     
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Posted by trmn8r on 2011-08-26:
This internet inventory problem is more common than a lot of people realize. It becomes obvious when something like this HP goes on sale for 20% of its former price. Many times the usual number of orders are placed, and many customers potentially end up with cancelled orders.

Unfortunately, many web portals do not seem to have accurate inventory information. As they stated, the problem was caused by an unusual demand.
Posted by GreenstarYT on 2011-08-26:
It's just one of those things in retail. In theory inventory should be easy, but multiply it by hundreds of stores and items selling at each one every second, it just can't keep up. Unfortunately you're not the one who is having this issue, and it is happening at more then just B&N. The price drop created a frenzy and some people are going to get shut out.
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Wouldn't Allow Me To Cancel Order.
Posted by SHAYNA on 07/03/2011
NEW YORK, NEW YORK -- I purchased my order on a Sunday morning. I had an emergency, so I wanted to cancel my order after midnight. They ignored me til Monday evening, saying my order couldn't be cancelled because it was already shipped Sunday. There are no deliverires Sundays. I still had the option to cancel it. They even sent me a review of my order saying I could cancel. My bank disputed it. I also contacted the Better Business Bureau, the federal trade center, and the internet crime complaint center ( ic3. )The bank did give me my money back.

Better business bureau did investigate. Barnes and noble never did send me my 2 books. I wanted to take these people to court. This isn't a respectable website like a lot of people think it is. Thank you.
     
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Posted by Alain on 2011-07-03:
Why did you cancel the order? Was it a special order? You didn't get the books, but you did get the charge removed. It looks like Barnes and Noble didn't handle this well. On the other hand, it doesn't seem like it was crime. Regardless, I'd make a guess that you and B & N won't be doing business anymore.
Posted by trmn8r on 2011-07-03:
It isn't uncommon to see complaints of a person who orders something not being able to cancel it prior to shipping.

I don't know what goes on in the logistics channel of this or other companies, but it seems logical that their processes are streamlined to ship as quickly as possible.

I've never had to cancel an order before shipping, but I'd like to think that I would give the company a break and pay for return shipping due to my change of heart.
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Still a Traditional Bookstore
Posted by Alain on 04/21/2011
HOMESTEAD, PENNSYLVANIA -- This afternoon my wife and I are making yet another trip down to our local Barnes and Noble. We like their selection, service and environment. It's a quiet store with comfortable seats so I can start reading my selections while my wife (who takes a bit longer in picking her books than I do) browses. After we've checked out, which is an easy process since our store keeps an eye on the register to make sure the line doesn't get too long, we grab a seat in the in store Starbucks and take a few minutes to enjoy some coffee and share a pastry.

It has the feel of a good old fashioned bookstore and it makes for a very relaxing afternoon.
     
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Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
Enjoy it while you can, Alain, before B&N suffers the fate of Borders. B&N is holding on, but I'm afraid bookstores might be a thing of the past. It will be a sad day when bookstores no longer exist.
Posted by MRM on 2011-04-21:
I hope B&N stays around because I buy Photshop magazines that is from UK.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
One of my favorite haunts.
Posted by momsey on 2011-04-21:
Nice review. I love B&N!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
I can spend hours in B&N browsing. It's great a great place.

Good review Alain!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
Nice review, Alain!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
Good review! With all the hype about the Kindle and other e-books, I prefer the old fashioned and lost art of physically turning pages by hand.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
I do not think they will be a thing of the past. I have an ipad and a Kindle and I still love reading paper books. I can loan them out when I am finished reading them (unlike an e-book) and the discount offered on the e-books isn't quite as deep as they originally promised. The e-book fad isn't catching on as they hoped it would. I think we have quite a ways to go before we start seeing these major bookstores go down.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
I love this book store. Before I had kids, I used to really enjoy going to get a coffee and browsing around their store for hours. I met some very interesting people there, too. Good review.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
I love Barnes and Noble. There's one near my house and I go there sometimes when I need some peace and quiet away from my house. I like that I can curl up in a chair and read and nobody bothers me. I hope they can survive this economy.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
The books you bought weren't 'flagged' for being in the bathroom, were they?

I was just thinking about that lastnight DIRM, when was the last time I seen someone reading a BOOK instead of a screen? My Grandfather treasured his books, they were hard to come by for him and I now have them. Some of his books he had actually wired the pages together to save them. I look at them and see the wire, and think about his hands as he twisted those wires himself. Anyone else would have tossed those out years ago, but because I know they meant so much to him, I keep them protected. Now, people just throw books away without a second thought. It's sad.
Posted by MRM on 2011-04-21:
I remember that hilarious Seinfeld episode!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
My house is filled with books from the basement to the attic. I have a lot of very old books that are collector's items. We have also donated books to the library. Books are not appreciated as much as they should be.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
B&N is a favorite of mine as well. The annual membership fee of $25 is a huge bonus as well - the in-store savings are great, as well as the online savings + free shipping. It definitely pays for itself after just a couple of purchases.

Nice review, Alain!
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
I had alot of books from my Mom's house that I wanted to donate to the library in a little town in Pa...but I just didn't have the time or space to keep them until I was able to get them to their library. Being such a small town, they are very appreciative to donations.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
Mr. Mike, that Seinfeld episode was just on yesterday. My Dad got a kick out of it when George tried to donate the book to charity and the woman said it was flagged and it was bad enough someone was tying Rickshaws to the homeless...LOL..
Man-O-Man, I sure miss Rick Shaw!!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
That book has been on one wildride.
Posted by Inat on 2011-04-21:
i love the idea of the kindle...but i collect books so it just doesnt work for me. Now, if there was some way to somehow get the physical book to the kindle, i would be alll over it
Posted by Skye on 2011-04-21:
Nice review Alain. We just went to a locally owned mom and pop book store the other day, and it was like heaven. Glad to know Barnes and Noble still is what you expect.
Posted by Alain on 2011-04-21:
I appreciate all the comments! We came back with books on Civil War history, 2 Calvin and Hobbes, a Far Side and 4 Nora Roberts. Good of you to mention the membership, JC. We used ours and it definitely saved some money! DB, the Calvin and Hobbes are for the bathroom along with my paperback collection from...never mind...
Posted by trmn8r on 2011-04-21:
Great review Alain. B & N was the first bookstore I was in as an adult, to buy books for college. I think they sold textbooks in the Manhattan store. I was impressed then and in subsequent visits.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
I LOVE Calvin and Hobbes!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
Garfield rocks.
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
I never cared for Garfield...or that Yak Yak or whatever that was.
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
What?.. no Lio?!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-04-21:
I like Calvin too. Reminds me a bit of "Dennis The Menace".
Posted by DebtorBasher on 2011-04-21:
I only know of Lio from what I see on this website.
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
But Alain likes Lio. I'm surprised he didn't get a Lio boo, too.
Posted by olie on 2011-04-21:
I've found--if I know what I want, online is the way to go. For example, when the new Sue Grafton or Laura Lippman comes out. Or something I've read about. I swoop in, click, and get out. Minimal damages.

On the other hand, for travel books, I need to see it before I shell out. Maps. Teen.olie's books. She has her favorite authors, but is also drawn by book covers. If she wants to read--I'll buy it!! If I want a, say, Thai cook book, I need to skim it before I pay.

And with little kids--definitely must let them look, touch, hug before buying.

Bookstores are VERY dangerous places for me and my kids. But well worth it!!
Posted by Alain on 2011-04-21:
I couldn't find any Lio books (I did look), Venice. The humor section seemed smaller than it used to be. I may go online to get some, though! Olie, I'm a Sue Grafton fan, too!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
Alain, you can buy Lio merchandise from GoComics.com, including books. Lio may not be as popular as Calvin & Hobbs and harder to find in bookstores.
Posted by Alain on 2011-04-21:
Thank you for the lead, Venice! I'll be doing some ordering from them!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
Happy reading, Alain!
Posted by Alain on 2011-04-21:
Thank you very much and on that note, to all a very pleasant and restful Good Night!
Posted by Venice09 on 2011-04-21:
Sweet dreams!
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Don't Order an eGift Card from Barnes & Noble!
Posted by Gfroymovich on 03/08/2011
I ordered an eGift Card from B & N as a gift for a friend, who recently purchased a Nook. It never arrived and I've re-checked the e-mail addresses and can't find a reason for that. I have e-mailed them to ask to have this resolved to no avail. I called once and was told the representative couldn't do anything about it, could not take a phone number for a call back and could not transfer me to a supervisor. Though she was polite, I've never been in a customer service situation where the representative was so unempowered to do anything to help. Called another day to be given the transfer-and-hold runaround until I gave up. Complained to the Better Business Bureau and have been ignored.

It's been two months now. They literally scammed me out of $50, like some spammer! I would stay away from this company and would strongly recommend you get a different e-reader, so you're not beholden to such a useless company. Unless of course, you like paying for headaches!
     
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Posted by Anonymous on 2011-03-08:
Have you disputed the charge with your CC/bank yet? Initiating a dispute will force BN to research the matter. Good luck!
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