Newsday, the Long Island newspaper, had a really great subscription deal and advertised it on TV. If you signed up for a one-year subscription and paid in advance, you got the paper for $3.99 a week and you got a $100 gift card. This made the net cost of daily home delivery roughly the same as the cost of buying the Sunday paper at the newsstand. I watched this commercial many times before I decided to call on February 26th. Never one to do anything at the first minute, my timing was impeccable, because the offer expired two days later. During my call, I thought I ordered the paper. I gave them my address, my credit card number and everything. At the end, I asked when the subscription would start. The lady on the phone said she didn’t know, but would have someone call me.
I thought they might begin it on the first day of a week, as the Daily News had when I ordered a home delivery subscription from them. Therefore, I thought the subscription was most likely to start on February 27th or March 6th. As I found out later, Newsday starts your subscription the very next day. Nobody called me back and I didn’t get a paper. So, on March 6th, I called and asked why my subscription hadn’t started. After researching it, the nice lady I spoke to said I had only inquired about a subscription, not ordered one. She offered me the subscription without the gift card, which would have made the net cost to me 93% higher.
On the 6th and again on the 7th, I argued that if Newsday or its agents made a mistake, the paper should stand by the original offer. On the 8th, the nice lady in circulation called me back and said that Newsday would honor the offer.
Everybody makes mistakes. I certainly do. The test is what you do when you learn you’ve made a mistake. I’m sure I did order the paper on the 26th; Newsday isn’t as sure as I am. But today, the nice lady in circulation, called me back and said Newsday would honor my order, start my subscription tomorrow and send me the gift card in a couple of weeks.
So, kudos to Newsday for rectifying a mistake and kudos to the nice lady in circulation, whose name, by the way, is Diane.