Read the CNET postings -they've screwed a lot of people
by jsbx747 - 9/14/06 1:20 AM
In Reply to: Need advice on InPhonic/CellularChoices.net Rebate Scam by eeo1973
You're believing that you won't get screwed based on what the site says. But the cite is not giving you complete information. Your actual rebate process might go something like this:
1) Once your phone order goes through, you'll find out that you can't qualify for the rebates until you show that you've been paying your cell phone bills with the same provider for 6 months. This means that you will need to keep the original receipt, bar code, etc., plus records of paying your cell phone bills for 6 months.
2) Then you will find out that there is a 30 or 60 day window for you to mail in all of your documentation, and that the documentation needs to be sent in duplicate in two separate envelopes (1 for each rebate). Make sure to make copies and keep the originals of everything, because you may need to do this step again. It's also a good idea to send all the documents in insured mail so that you have a record of when the they were mailed and when they were received -- in case the company says that it never received what you mailed (this has happened to other CNET posters).
3) After you follow all of their rules, they will send you a cryptic postcard saying that you did not send one or more of the things that you actually sent. You will need to make copies of the documents you kept and send in everything again.
4) They will send you the same cryptic postcard again.
5) If you try to contact the company to ask them what other documentation they need, you will find that there is no phone number that you can use to call a representative. If you try to email them, using their website's email form, your email will never be answered or responded to.
6) You will get annoyed and will post complaints on CNET (like the 100 or so other people who already have), to the Better Business Bureau, etc.
7) You will decide to take them to small claims court. At this point, when you try to look at the site again, in order to compile your records for your case, you will find that someone has made the company try to get its act together. There will be a number to call. You will call it, get put on hold, and finally talk to a person who will tell you that their company (in Minnesota or somewhere) is now handling CNET's claims and that they can reprocess the documentation that you sent before. At this point,mentioning that you're considering taking them to small claims court may help expedite this process. The woman will tell you that you can expect a response in 7-10 business days.
8) In 2-3 weeks, you MIGHT get your checks. If not, repeat steps 2-7.
This is what happened to me, anyway. . . I got the phone last November, mailed the forms in on May 12, and finally got a check in mid-August. Fortunately, I was able to absorb being out $200 for 9 months. Still, considering all the time it took me to get the checks, I might have just been better off purchasing the phone for $200 and saving myself the headache.