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Author Topic: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers  (Read 2578768 times)

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Elfmama

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #300 on: January 08, 2013, 02:43:54 PM »
Those people who call and say they are from Reader's Digest, and you have to resubscribe NOW because the price is going up to $60 a year -- they aren't from RD, they're a subscription service.  And the price of a subscription is still nowhere near $60.

I've also stopped taking magazines that try to trick me into extending my subscription.  One of them was Quilter's Newsletter Magazine, which I really liked.  But when they sent me a notice marked on the outside with OVERDUE:  SUSPENSION OF SERVICE NOTICE in order to trick me into opening the envelope in a panic, wondering what vital bill I'd neglected to pay, well, THAT is not something I will put up with.  I called the handy number and not only did NOT extend my subscription, I cancelled the remainder of the current subscription and demanded a rebate for the unused months.  I then bundled up the whole thing and sent it to the company CEO, asking if he was aware that whoever was handling subscriptions was pulling this kind of shenanigans?  I never got an answer.
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~
Common sense is not a gift, but a curse.  Because then
you have to deal with all the people who don't have it.
~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

Hillia

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #301 on: January 08, 2013, 04:59:11 PM »
Wejust bought a used car, and we've gotten several very official notices telling us that our warranty is about to expire, and just call this number to keep that from happening.  Of course the number is to a shady 3rd party warranty company that wants to sell you an overpriced, worthless contract.

siamesecat2965

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #302 on: January 08, 2013, 05:13:02 PM »
I get a lot of stuff, due to my large credit card debt, that LOOKS official, but really are from shady companies who want to try and get you to sign up with them, adn they can magically make a big chunk of your debt disappear! and they'll lower your monthly payments, yada, yada, yada.  Sorry, but I'm not falling for that. I'm just plugging away, paying it down every month....

hobish

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #303 on: January 08, 2013, 06:20:38 PM »
Moochers of the year 2012: my brother and his family.  They are continually claiming to be poor because they spend their money on things for themselves (constant ordering out because they don't want to cook, for instance).  None of them are able to hold a job for very long, partially because they all think they're the best thing since sliced bread and the world should fall and worship at their feet.

My mother gives them very nice Christmas gifts (usually cash actually).  They actually gave her a Christmas gift this year too... one of those cards that, if you use your store credit card, you get $10 per $100 spent put back on this gift card.  But you have to use it in a certain week and I'm sure you have to buy a minimum amount. But my brother is at least supposed to take Mom to the store to do this shopping.  We'll see. So it means they spent $200 at this department store on themselves and got her gift for free(that doesn't sell ANYTHING they couldn't have gotten way cheaper at Walmart).

Mom's birthday is near Christmas, and she decided to take brother and family out for dinner.  They suggested a steakhouse.  She assumed they'd all order appetizers to share (poor naive mom).  Brother and family all ordered steak and lobster.

And they didn't give Mom anything for her birthday.  Not a card even.

If I was still talking to my brother he'd get an earful.  As it is I am glad I was there to hug Mom when she cried afterwards.

Ohh, give her an extra hug from me. :(

Me, too. That actually teared me up a little. Your poor Mom  :'(
It's alright, man. I'm only bleeding, man. Stay hungry, stay free, and do the best you can.
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Otterpop

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #304 on: January 08, 2013, 08:43:23 PM »
Moochers of the year 2012: my brother and his family.  They are continually claiming to be poor because they spend their money on things for themselves (constant ordering out because they don't want to cook, for instance).  None of them are able to hold a job for very long, partially because they all think they're the best thing since sliced bread and the world should fall and worship at their feet.

My mother gives them very nice Christmas gifts (usually cash actually).  They actually gave her a Christmas gift this year too... one of those cards that, if you use your store credit card, you get $10 per $100 spent put back on this gift card.  But you have to use it in a certain week and I'm sure you have to buy a minimum amount. But my brother is at least supposed to take Mom to the store to do this shopping.  We'll see. So it means they spent $200 at this department store on themselves and got her gift for free(that doesn't sell ANYTHING they couldn't have gotten way cheaper at Walmart).

Mom's birthday is near Christmas, and she decided to take brother and family out for dinner.  They suggested a steakhouse.  She assumed they'd all order appetizers to share (poor naive mom).  Brother and family all ordered steak and lobster.

And they didn't give Mom anything for her birthday.  Not a card even.

If I was still talking to my brother he'd get an earful.  As it is I am glad I was there to hug Mom when she cried afterwards.

Ohh, give her an extra hug from me. :(

Me, too. That actually teared me up a little. Your poor Mom  :'(

I think steam came out of my ears.  (My mom is deceased.  :'(  Treat her nicely while you can).
« Last Edit: January 08, 2013, 08:45:45 PM by Otterpop »

Ida

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #305 on: January 08, 2013, 10:47:14 PM »
We've been getting "renew NOW cheaper" notices regarding at least three of the magazines we subscribe to -- and we don't get all that many. We both thought the renewal prices looked high, and DH keeps an Excel spreadsheet of subscriptions* and due dates besides, so we don't take anybody's word on due dates.

Then our mags started running notices that there are fake subscription services that send these. The services seem to change their names often, but the mailings themselves look oddly similar.

Protip: DO NOT pay anybody but the magazines or their own services for subscriptions. You can find the relevant addresses and names on the mastheads along with those of all the senior dogwalkers' and poobahs emeritus, usually on one of the first few pages near the table of contents.


*Some are tax write-offs.
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AuntieA

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #306 on: January 08, 2013, 11:18:20 PM »
I had a problem in the past with both Reader's Digest  and RN magazine (which I had taken on a 3-month trial basis) automatically renewing my subscription. I was then dunned to pay for said auto-renewed subscription. Unfortunately for both publications, in the province where I live (Alberta) *"negative notification renewals" are illegal. I was able to convey this to both publications and never heard from either again. I did have to threaten RN that I would direct my complaint to the U.S. Postmaster General about this, but it worked.

*"negative notification renewal" = if you don't tell the publisher you no longer want to subscribe, they will automatically renew your subscription.
I dream of a world where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned.

Thipu1

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #307 on: January 09, 2013, 07:52:21 AM »
On the other side, Harper's Magazine prints a prominent 'Subscriber Alert' notice in each issue.  The notice warns subscribers against solicitation from unauthorized subscription services. 

Also, Harper's does not send out renewal alerts until the subscription really is about to expire in a month or two.

MissRose

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #308 on: January 09, 2013, 10:13:20 AM »
Wejust bought a used car, and we've gotten several very official notices telling us that our warranty is about to expire, and just call this number to keep that from happening.  Of course the number is to a shady 3rd party warranty company that wants to sell you an overpriced, worthless contract.

I've gotten several 'warranty about to expire' notices about a car that has been dead for 10 years!
Yeah, like anyone would buy a warrenty for a 1990 car!

I have reason to believe those places are complete scams that send stuff out of the blue & word things in a way to scare people.  I got my extended warranty on my car the day of purchase and if there is any issue with it, I will visit the dealer first not reply to a mail to a place that may not be reputable.

stitchygreyanonymouse

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #309 on: January 09, 2013, 10:14:02 AM »
Some car dealers are just about as bad. "We need more used cars on our lot! We’ll buy yours from you for a good price!" trying to get you to buy a new one from them. I started getting those notices within months of buying my car.

The kicker was when I continued to receive ones that mentioned my exact car—two years after I had turned it in to that dealership at the end of the SmartBuy! (A thing GM did for a while that worked a lot like a lease, and you could relinquish the car at the end, but you technically owned it and could instead keep it and refi the remaining balance after the 3 or 4 years).

learningtofly

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #310 on: January 09, 2013, 10:17:25 AM »
Newsweek sent renewal notices every few months for years.  I would buy two or three years at a time, so I'd check the expiration date and toss the notice.  They were still sending them, and I was considering renewing, when it was announced they were no longer printing.  I'll read it online for the time I have left, but I really like holding a magazine.

Kaymyth

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #311 on: January 09, 2013, 10:27:25 AM »
I got the famous Windows virus scam over the weekend.  So I said 'I don't have a Windows computer.  Please take me off your calling list and stop trying to scam me.  Thank you so much.' Click.

My computer runs Ubuntu Linux. Someone phoned trying the Windows virus scam and told me off as they said all PCs run Windows underneath everything and I must not know what I was talking about.

I would've just started laughing hysterically.  Man, I would be the wrong person for them to target.  My husband is a Linux sys admin.   ;D

RebeccainGA

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #312 on: January 09, 2013, 12:52:34 PM »
A friend of mine got targeted by that Windows scam. She had a wonderful story:

The guy told her to sign on to her computer, hit this key, look at that screen, etc. etc.  She pretended to do everything he was telling her to do (she was actually sweeping the floor).  Finally, he asked "What do you see on the screen?"  She said "Huh - a warning message just popped up."  He was obviously not expecting that and asked "Really?  What does it say?"

"WARNING:  THE A****** ON THE PHONE IS TRYING TO RIP YOU OFF."

There was a brief pause followed by a very rude exclamation, then he hung up.   ;D

Where's the LOVE button for this post? Language aside, this is the best way to handle these sort of scammers - takes away their time to harass others, and gives them no money.

FauxFoodist

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #313 on: January 09, 2013, 01:07:57 PM »
We noticed we were paying repair insurance on our phone lines through our phone bill every month, so I stopped it after about 2 years. Then 30 years later, we had a problem. The service representative was rather stern with me when pointing out that if the problem was in the home, we would have to pay for the service call, but if we had been paying this free repair item it would be no charge. I pointed out how long ago we had stopped the fee and that we never had a problem. so paying for the service call would still be money ahead. I simply said, "You do the math." His answer was, "Oh." ( I do realize that if we had, for example, a mouse probem, the fee would have been worth it.)

A few weeks ago, the heater in the house stopped working so DF called a repair company.  The rep got there early and since I was still at my house 25 minutes away, when I arrived at the house, rather than get there before the rep arrived, I got there just as the rep was doing paperwork with DF.

I walked into the house, and DF says, "I'm signing us up for a maintenance agreement that'll be $XX.XX every month, and it can be canceled at any time so it's not a contract."  Service guy (notice the change in words) "confirms," "Yes, the service agreement can be CHANGED at any time and, with this service agreement, you get two air vent cleanings 'free' twice a year and a XX% discount on repairs when your heater gives out, which it will be 'cause it's so old and dirty." :o  >:(

Red flags immediately went off in my head since I'd heard about scams when I lived in SD from someone whose elderly mother was talked into paying $XXX to have her vents cleaned when they didn't need to be (and weren't).  I looked at DF and said, "We need to discuss it first."

DF's face fell, and the rep offered, "I could go outside while you discuss it."  I said no and asked if we could fax the agreement to them should we change our minds.  The rep (I really was amazed he said this) then said, "No, if you fax it, then it just creates additional work for HR." (how HR was involved in this is beyond me so I figured he was a dumb-bunny who was pulling tales out of his butt -- anything to make the sale).  He also went through this whole spiel about how to return to pick up the agreement would cost the company extra money so it was in THEIR best interest for us to sign the agreement right then (again, couldn't believe someone trying to sell us something would think I would care that THEY would be "inconvenienced" to have to close the sale).

I stood my ground and, as soon as the rep left, asked DF to call his brother (who would know whether or not a maintenance agreement would be necessary).  I explained to DF that that is why I wanted to wait; I simply wanted him to check with FBIL and get his expert opinion.

FBIL said it wouldn't be a bad idea so DF called the service guy immediately and said we'd sign the agreement.  Fortunately (for us), the guy wasn't interested in coming back and said to go ahead and mail it in.  Well, upon closer reading of this agreement, I discovered that this was a CONTRACT and that there was a penalty for terminating earlier than one year (I pointed out that while DF said "cancel," the service guy said "change" -- he KNEW it was a contract and deliberately didn't correct DF's notion that there was no time commitment).  I'd also pointed out that those cleanings wouldn't be "free" as we would be paying for them every month.  I pointed out a lot of things wrong with the whole mess.  DF realized the next day that I was right and thanked me for not letting him proceed with the agreement.

The service guy really screwed his company out of future business because we'll never go back to them.
 

hjaye

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Re: S/O Beggars, Moochers and Scammers
« Reply #314 on: January 09, 2013, 11:26:23 PM »
Talking about the service contracts made me think of these two things that are legitimate, but I think a little on the shady side the way the companies promote them like they are doing you such a great big favor:
Rental car companies, prepaying for the gas you will use so you don't have to worry about filling up the car when you bring it back, just bring it back empty.  They will tell you it's such a great deal because they are charging you a cheaper rate per gallon of gas.  They will point out how a gallon of gas in the local area will cost x.xx per gallon, and their price is x-20cents.xx per gallon, what a great deal!!!!
However, if it's a twenty gallon gas tank, they are charging you for twenty gallons of gas.  So say a gallon of gas costs 3.20cents, and they charge you for a full tank at 3.00 per gallon they will charge you 60.00 dollars.
However, very few people are going to be able to bring the car back with it just sucking gas fumes to get back.  More likely than not there will be a few gallons of gas in the tank.  So if you filled it yourself , and it took 18 gallons at 3.20 per gallon, that's 57.60 to fill the tank.  If you just have a gallon then it will cost you  60.80 so it cost you an extra .80 cents.  Personally I think there is a better chance of having two or more gallons left in the tank than bringing it back bone dry, and in the scheme of things five dollars, or ten dollars or even twenty dollars is not that big a deal, but it bugs me when they try to convince me about what a great deal they're offering.  Actually it's not, so even though most of travel is business related, and the company pays for it, and it would be a convenience for me to prepay, I refuse to do it.

The other one is the service contract for my cable or satellite TV service.  For just an additional 6.00 a month I can get a service contract so if there is any problem with the equipment, a service call will only cost me twenty dollars, other wise I have to pay the full price of 85.00.  I told one person who tried to sell me on this that the problem they had is that I knew how to do simple math.
6.00 a month was 72.00 dollars a year, a service call would cost me 20.00 so the first service call would actually cost me 92.00, as opposed to the 85.00 I would have to pay if I did not have the contract.  I would need to have two service calls in one year before it would be beneficial, I never take them up on it.