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I HATE being LIED to!

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Ken-L, Dec 19, 2005.

  1. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    I really hate being lied to. I also hate when people do not meet their commitments.

    Some time ago I asked B&H (b&hphotovideo.com) to notify me when the Nikon D200 was available; they said they would. I never received a notice that they had the D200 for sale. I am a long time customer.

    Yesterday, Sunday, I was on a Forum and learned that B&H was selling the D200 on their web site and that others had purchased that camera. I went to the site ordered a D200 and was given an order number.

    Today I got an email saying that B&H made a “mistake” and that there was no D200 to send me.

    I called Customer Service. The rep there first implied that I had made some kind of error, or my email address might not be correct and that is why I did not receive their notification that the Nikon D200 was available. Then the rep said that there was “no time” to send out notices, because the D200 came in on Friday and was sold out in an hour. When the rep could not answer as to how they were selling them on the Web on Sunday, or why his answers made no sense I asked for a supervisor.

    The supervisor admitted that they never sent out notices to their loyal, long-time customers (“we’re the biggest company”) because someone made a decision to NOT send notices and instead just sell them on the web. He also had no reasonable explanation as to why orders were accepted and order numbers given out when there were no longer any cameras available. The supervisor didn’t see anything wrong with their business practices (failure to meet a commitment, and lying to a customer), because the “rep” just tells you what he thinks might be an answer, right or wrong, and, that not notifying a customer when they said they would is just the way it is. But, the supervisor apologized profusely and said they would waive shipping charges for me when a camera comes in.

    I hate being lied to. I hate it when a company makes a commitment and then deliberately ignores it. There is an old saying, “You can forgive, but not forget.” I don’t expect anyone to refuse to buy from B&H. If they have a product and you can’t get it elsewhere, that’s understandable. As for me, I will always try to find another source and will even pay more (just a very little more) so I don’t have to do business with a company like B&H that has given me such bad service, and lied on top of it.
  2. I can understand your feelings; however, anytime there is a new release of a camera as popular and the D200 appears to be you can expect some problems with the distribution chain. It would be best if you could have been on a wait list but I realize that B&H didn't see to have one. Others did and in retrospect you may have been better off with one of those. An example would have been Adorama. By the way, I like B&H and they have always treated me fairly. Their packing for fragile equipment leaves a little to be desired.
  3. heiko


    May 15, 2005
    Ken, sorry to hear this. Seems like B&H forgot who made them #1. This is certainly a very short-term thinking.

    I must confess I have no experience with B&H, but heard lots of good stuff so far. But with your story, I wonder if I would buy there, or look for a more reliable source.

    I had a similar experience with a local camera store here. Ever since this incidence I buy elsewhere. A friend of mine who bought around 10-20 times as much from them also switched supplier, for same reason.

    Hope your D200 arrives soon.
  4. Baywing


    Feb 22, 2005
    CT USA
    I understand your frustration. You think you are at least in the loop then find out you've been left out in the cold. Not what I would have expected from B&H given their reputation, but yet not totally a surprize considering the size of the outfit. The bigger they are, the more internal communications problems there are. Have you tried talking with Henry Posner? He seems to be the internet watcher for B&H and seems to be in a position to get things done. In this case, I doubt they can do much more than offer the free shipping on a unit from the next batch, which is alot more than you would get from most places.
    There is no dispute B&H has stuff in stock most places don't and at good prices. Wherever possible, though, I deal with a smaller store. True, they only got 10 D200s, but I was 8 on the list. They called me this am to see that I got the D200 on Sat and to get my feedback on it. How many stores do that? In general, the prices are the same as B&H, even if they are a touch higher, the Service is worth it!
  5. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    I used to like B&H and used to be treated fairly. If I lied to them, or tried any "funny-business" when ordering, they would never sell to me again.

    The past was fine, but now that they have lied to me, and not fulfilled a committment, regardless of the "reason" (Gee, your honor I only stole that TV because my poor sick relation needed it."), I'll find another "reputable" dealer to do business with.
  6. Ken,
    I fully understand how you are feeling about this. Question... what could they have done or said, once the error had already occurred that would make you feel differently? Not joking, I am really curious if there was room for a resolve.
  7. Derrel

    Derrel Guest

    Big retailing and sales help

    THis type of problem occurs quite often in larger retail businesses. A customer calls up and talks with one person,who makes a promise of some type, but then FAILS TO FOLLOW THROUGH, usually by failure to do sales paperwork right then and there,on the spot. Typically, this is a one-time cusotmore/retailer communication,with the customer having been given an assurance by,typically, ONE sales person,and nothing more. Employee fails to fill out his paperwork/forms, and by lunchtime of that afternoon, sales guy forgets who ordered what. Time passes,and the customer waits for notification that XYZ Product has arrived. Only the sales guy/order clerk/help desk guy never did the work on time, or correctly.With no credit card pre-order, no written,indexed,and Customer Order Numbered transaction paperwork behind it, this is how this type of telephone-sales types of orders,special orders-and pre-orders get messed up. Counting on retail sales and telephone/web-phone order sales people to successfully carry out their paperwork end of business is why this type of one-shot, no-credit card, no pre-paid, no-deposit types of special order sales go wrong. I know....I've worked in the business,and this is how these types of transactions can be allowed to fail.
    It's not that you were "lied to",so much, except that somebody probably failed to do his job correctly. As I said, by lunch of the same day, your name can be tossed, on the business card it was scrawled on, as the fellow took your pre-order oer the phone. And,not to blame YOU,the customer, but counting on somebody to fulfill a one-shot,no-money, no-credit card # pre-order or special order or special "request" allows the transaction to fail. The customer pre-pays for nothing, and the sales people have no product to actualy SELL at the time they take your request, and there's little incentive to fill out forms,since there's no spiff,no commision, and no monetary "earnest money" from the customer. Trying to be delicate here, but in today's world, the request to be first in line with no up-front digits (VIsa, M/C,Discover) means a sales person will accidentally let you slip through,for all the reasons as outlined above. You're old-school,and honor-bound, but salespeople are often 20-something,underpaid,and taking orders but not filling out the paperwork.
  8. general


    Apr 30, 2005

    While I have never had a bad experience with BH or Adorama and I have done considerable business with both, a few months ago I decided to look for a smaller company where I could depend on their word. They do exist.
  9. strobel


    Apr 30, 2005
    Algonquin, IL
    I know the feeling, I purchased the DK-17 from B&H over a month ago (some one on this forum said they were in stock, so I ordered). The item showed in stock, then the next day I received the letter the next telling me sorry they over sold. I paid with PayPal so they still have my money and to this day I do not have the DK-17, still on back-order.

    I still like B&H, they are huge so overselling is bound to happen and all and all my past experiences with them have all been positive.
  10. Gale


    Jan 26, 2005
    Viera Fl
    I am really sorry this happened to you..

    Was on an e-mail notification list also. I just decided to ignore waiting and call.
    So far I still look like it is still ok. Has not shown picked up and scanned by UPS yet though. Only through thier system.
    Will keep you posted.
    Hope you get one soon.
    I feel so bad for ya , I thought of sending mine to ya when I get it :>))

    Merry Christmas.
  11. PJohnP


    Feb 5, 2005
    Ken :

    Call B&H and ask for Henry Posner. He's active over at DPR, and takes a keen interest in customer service for the company. I think his e-mail is henryp@bhphotovideo.com, but that might be incorrect. Telephoning might work better, or might not.

    B&H can be brusque and a bit blunt, in the New York City style, but in my experience, they want to keep a reputation as fair. Posner's stepped up to the plate in the past, and IMO, is worth contacting over this.


    John P.
  12. GaryW

    GaryW Guest

    Wow, Ken.

    If you followed your's and my threads, you know that I agreed with you that I had reservations in ordering the D200.

    Then, after reading a lot of posts, and seeing that you ordered a D200, I ordered one from B&H (note: it was after you ordered).

    I got a shipping notice today that they were shipping my D200 via UPS. They gave me a tracking number, which UPS says is "in transit".

    So sorry for your problem. I don't understand why this has happened to you.
  13. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    Nothing would make me feel differently, even if they shipped immediately. I would take the camera, but NOT change how I feel. I was lied to by their customer service, period. More than once.

    Now, I understand the situation and I accept that lying is a way of life, or should I say it's "one of the facts of life", but that doesn't mean there are not some consequences. Losing my business won't matter to them at all; they won't even notice it. But it matters to me.....
  14. I certainly understand Ken. I just wanted to know that if one of MY employees had lied to you, could I have recovered the situation with you.
  15. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    I can accept mistakes, incompetence, and even a poor attitude....somewhat.

    If someone makes a mistake and admits it, that's fine. I had many employees over ten years in business and if an employee screwed up it was okay unless they lied about it or tried to cover it up - that was instant termination.

    B&H lied. Big bald-faced lies. Whether or not it was caused by someone failing to "do his job correctly", or not, the problem arose when they CHOSE to lie to me rather than admit they screwed up.

    But it goes further than that! B&H management made a conscious decision to sell the few cameras they got in on the Web, first come-first served, and ignored their notification/waiting list. The Customer Service Manager I spoke to admitted that, was not happy about it, but was powerless to do anything about it. That is more than just lying to a customer. It was then compounded by their lies.
  16. I understand
  17. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    If your employee lied to me and I made you aware of it, you would have some choices. What you did to the employee would be of little concern to me. In this situation if I received apologies and you offered to ship the camera right away, I would consider that and accept that an employee's action does not make the whole company "at fault".

    But, here we had a different situation. A major management decision was made that disregarded their client's trust and implied contract to advise when a product was available. Then their customer service rep tried first to put the "blame" on me, and when that failed, lied more than twice again in an attempt to "get rid of me", he was "very busy" according to the manager! And, the manager could not satisfy me, could not undo the wrong that was done, and could only show me that the underlying problem was top-level management to begin with!

    Certainly this is more than just some "crummy" employee being a loose cannon and creating a problem for the company and customers.

    I owned a large telephone answering service for ten years. Mistakes by operators were impossible to avoid considering they are under extreme pressure and when you're taking over a million calls per year, even a .001% error rate is unnaceptable to your clients! When employees made a mistake, and it was admitted, we would do what we could to mollify the client, and if extra training was needed we would give it to the employee - no big deal. But, if the employee lied or tried to cover up, they were fired on the spot! Likewise, if we were accused of any "wrong doing" and found a customer was lying, their service was stopped. Our systems were all computerized and we could track any transaction coming in or going out, and even record the entire conversation if needed - in fact any time an employee had a "problem" they were trained to begin recording immediately to protect themselves.
  18. I once told a service rep that told me I was being recorded for quality assurance, that i was recording them, they said that they did not "agree" or "allow" that. I hate poor customer service and in my company I strive for an understanding that we are all "people" and things can be resolved if we remember that.
  19. I buy from a variety of vendors. Don't put all your eggs in one basket. I've gone through many routes: ebay, buydig.com, beachcamera.com, cameta camera, pro pro photosupply, b&h, adorama, etc. Seriously, I've ordered everywhere!

    I pretty much buy from anywhere but in California. If I can avoid sales tax, I will!
  20. I agree with you Jonathan. I buy my stuff here in europe all over the places. I even got my 70-200mm F/2.8 lens all the way from Nepal Kathmandu. I got my 85mm F/1.8 from Hong Kong. Here they promise so often things but then in the end i keep on waiting.

    I am still waiting allready 6 months for a eyepiece of the D70 (is allready paid). I am still waiting for a trigger for my flash lights (3 months and paid). I am still waiting for a Tokina 12-24mm lens for my D2X but still not heared anything about it. You know with big companies not all workers know you so they want to make the people happy they know.

    I have seen many people buy D200 in america and in the uk in smaller shops. If i was you Ken i would pick up the phone book and call all the photoshops you know in the neighberhood. I would even drive 125 miles for it. So i have to photograph something on the way back.

    Good luck and i am sorry for your bad experience hope it all works out fine.
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