Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Todays Rant!


So last November my wife decided to get me a White Dwarf subscription because she was tired of me buying it at my local shop (where other items would come home with me along with the WD). She was swayed by these magical words from the GW website:

Subscribe With a subscription to White Dwarf you will never miss an issue, each issue will be delivered directly to your door and there is a huge saving over buying issues individually.

Wow she thought, if it comes to the door we will be saving money since he will not bring home anything else! She read further about the benefits:

Never miss an issue - A subscription guarantees your copy every single month.
Convenient - it's delivered straight to your door
Early - subscription copies are sent out to arrive before the magazine hits the stores
Save money - subscriptions offer a saving against buying White Dwarf every month.

Wow she thought, this sounds great, I will be happy saving money, he will be happy getting his White Dwarf at Home, everyone wins she thought. So she plunked in the Old Credit card number and informed me that I would be getting WD now at home.

So after the wife told me about the subscription I was overjoyed and figured that the following month I would get my first copy since I just missed the deadline for it to come out that month. So I wait a month and no WD had came. So I called GW and they informed me that it takes two months before I get my first issue! WTF? Two months, were they filing this subscription in slow motion?? Now I have had many magazine subscriptions in the past & all of them (including WD about 6 years ago) could get the subscriptions started in a month, why does it take GW so long?

So I wait and get my first copy, but on the second copy I find that it does not come to the mailbox, in fact my local store gets their copies before I get my second copy. So I call GW up to find out whats going on, they tell me that I should have received it and they would get it out ASAP. So I wait a week and it shows up followed the next day by issue 3.

So for the next few issues everything is fine, until issue 5 does not show up, so I call good old GW again and inquiry whats going on. After verifying my mailing address they tell me they will get it out in about 14 days! You see it has to be order from the warehouse and takes longer. So I wait. issue 5 shows up and about 13 days later and right before issue 6 shows up in the mail.

Issue 7 disappears into the warp & I call GW yet again, we verify same info, nothing has changed and they say they will send it out, so I sit and wait! It shows up just before issue 8 which arrives three days later.

I get issue number 9 on time (issue 356 with the Space Hulk release) and I am a happy camper.

So today, with it being September 30th, and no WD in the mail, I decided to give old GW a call to find out whats going on. I was told that I should have received WD#357 already but technically it's not late until tomorrow. Then the guy tells me I should re-new soon since the subscription will be ending in a few months with issue 359.

Hold the phone sparky, but to date I have had to call GW 4 times now to find out where my lost subscription is & you try to sell me another subscription??? So I tell the guy on the other end my woes but I can tell he is not listening, he then tells me that they are doing a new system that will make sure everyone gets there WD's at the same time and that he will put my name on the list for the lost issue. What the hell is going on people????

So lets review GW's own words about there subscription:

Subscribe With a subscription to White Dwarf you will never miss an issue, each issue will be delivered directly to your door and there is a huge saving over buying issues individually. Um never miss an issue, you have lost 4 issues now already with god only knows what will happen to the last 3 issues!

Never miss an issue - a subscription guarantees your copy every single month Well that's a broken guarantee!

Convenient - it's delivered straight to your door. Well it must be going to someone elses door but not making it to mine!

Early - subscription copies are sent out to arrive before the magazine hits the stores. Early? What before next years issues come out??

Save money - subscriptions offer a saving against buying White Dwarf every month. Okay I will give them that, I got my subscription at $60.00 for a year, so I beat the price increase, but the times on the phone off set the price.

So, where does it leave me now? I am not sure, I still have three issues that are due to me, so I am sure I will be on the phone again with GW looking for at least those issues. Sorry GW, but I will not subscribe to your magazine again, as the old saying goes, Burn me once, shame on you, Burn me twice shame on me!



RAZ said...

My local shop has their copies out 5-6 days before mine arrives in the mail every month. It's very frustrating to flip through it at the shop and know I can't buy it because I have one coming in the mail. With most other magazines it seems the subscribers get their copies first, but not White Dwarf.

Chicago Terrain Factory said...

I gave up on WD a year (2 years?) ago. Was worried I'd miss out on my monthly dose of gaming, but I can't say I miss it. Everything in a WD can be found online - painting tips, new products, event descriptions... No real reason to kill a tree and get the magazine.

Shrink to Fit said...

I often find that my issue arrives later than than it should, and I just have to shake my head and remember that I knew what I was getting into when I signed up for another year.

I received a subscription as a gift a while back. When the proposed price hikes got leaked, I decided to renew my subscription for $60 while I still could.

Later, I received two copies of the (then) current issue in the mail, stating I had 3 issues left on one subscription and 11 issues left on the other. Instead of renewing, they just decided to give me a whole new subscription.

Two irritated emails later, the problem was resolved. The customer service has always been helpful, but it makes no sense why problems like this even occur in the first place.

I think that I'm just going to have to get over my completist ideals and begin purchasing the magazine on an issue-by-issue basis--focusing only on issues that include content I care about.

John@Plastic.Legions said...

I used to get mine crazy early two weeks before the shop. since springtime I have gotten it up to month after shop. First year I was subscriber I was in your boat tim.
If GW cannot get it to people before the stores, seriously just give up. I keep hearing about the distribution problems with book rate mail and USPS, I call CRAP on that for what they charge for White Dwarf they should be doing direct mail.

suneokun said...

I have to agree with Chicago Terrain Factory. The WD deliveries are 'generally' ok here in the UK thanks to nationalised delivery services ... but buying WD is a 'option' based upon what's in it and what isn't.

What I generally do is pop down to my local independent GW studio store and leaf through the mag.

I'm there anyway to game, so it ain't no thing. Now, if only I could stop my fingers twitching from buying that Straken model over there...

Luckily i'm a 'mass-planning' buyer. So I either buy 1-2 models (Straken, Primaris Psyker, Zoanthrope looking VERY tempting) or £200 worth.

Hank Edley said...

I had the same issues a few years ago and did a bunch of research. Basically boiled down to the method of shipment. The method being that the postal service had a "window" of delivery. It had to be delivered by a certain date which is the "late" date the guy on the phone referenced. It also explains why it would some months come crazy early. It all depended on the mail load of the route during a couple week stretch whether it would be included in the route for the day. Course all could be solved with some other level of shipping I would imagine but that would mean increased costs.