GoDaddy Offers Employees a Holiday Bonus, But…

Just before Christmas, Internet service company GoDaddy apologized for not having a holiday party this year because of the coronavirus, but instead emailed employees news of a holiday bonus they could sign up for.

GoDaddy invitation

The email from HappyHoliday@GoDaddy.com directed employees to a link to sign up for the bonus, and presumably asked them to verify their identity by entering their official login credentials, etc. so the bonus could be processed.

A few days later the 500 or so employees who signed up got another email from the company.

*MOUSE PRINT: (details that were missing from the first email)

This time they were told the invitation was really a phishing test by the company, that they just failed it, and they would have to attend a remedial class on Internet security. And incidentally, there really was no company bonus this year.

Employees were livid and ultimately GoDaddy apologized for pulling this stunt so close to the holidays when money was short for many people.

[This story was originally reported by the Copper Courier.]

Walgreens Shortchanges Customers on Some Coupons

MrConsumer became a victim of a sneaky practice by Walgreens a few weeks ago. He spotted a great deal on Crest 3D White toothpaste, and even promoted it to readers as a “Bargain of the Week” in Consumer World.

Walgreens Crest offer

In this offer, if you bought four tubes of Crest, one of them would be free, plus there was an additional $1 electronic coupon and also an $8 one. Conceivably you could snare all four tubes for only $1.77. It was unclear if one of these coupons was a store coupon and one a manufacturers coupon, so I e-clipped both. I thought if the $1 coupon could not be used in combination with the $8 coupon, obviously I would just use the $8 one.

At the store, the cashier scanned my loyalty card and the four tubes. The total on the screen said $9.77 (before tax) rather than the $1.77 or $2.77 that I expected. This happened because it only took off the $1 coupon. I told her something was wrong because I had also e-clipped an $8 coupon. What she said next floored me.

*MOUSE PRINT:

“The system only takes off the LOWEST value coupon.”

Say what? She said that she could not manually remove the $1 coupon, that I would have to do it in my e-wallet, and then the system would accept the $8 one. I showed the cashier that I didn’t see any apparent way to remove a coupon at the Walgreens website on my cellphone. She said that can only be done in the Walgreens app, which I did not have.

So I left the four tubes at the checkout and headed home to install the Walgreens app and try to remove the $1 coupon. That part of this saga was successful, so I drove back to the store. A different cashier found my four tubes of Crest behind the counter and rang up the order. This time the system took off the $8 coupon properly, which I pointed out to the cashier. She too reiterated that Walgreens’ checkouts only deduct the lowest value coupon applicable to the order.

I couldn’t believe that any company would deliberately create a system to deny customers the use of a legitimate high-value coupon that was properly clipped particularly since the company was getting reimbursed in full for it by the manufacturer.

So we asked Walgreens why they had such an anti-consumer policy. A PR spokesperson for the company replied:

“Thanks for bringing this to our attention. Our current POS [point-of-sale] system is not able to logically determine the best offer at the customer transaction level. Our system applies digital coupons based on the order that the customer activated them along with corresponding expiration dates. We are working with our CPG partners as well as our digital coupon provider to develop remedies outside of our POS. In addition, we are developing a capability for our team members at POS to be able to add and remove coupons at the time of checkout on behalf of the customer. We will follow-up with you as we have more information to share.”

A number of shoppers have posted complaints online including saying that the Walgreens policy noted just above was changed toward the end of 2019 to a lowest value first one.

While we are pleased to have prompted Walgreens to work on a variety of solutions, this never should have happened. A simple highest value first policy would benefit shoppers the most, just like the one used by supermarket chain Hy-Vee:

*MOUSE PRINT:

“If more than one digital coupon is loaded for the same product, the best value will be redeemed at checkout.”

That Computer Tablet From China May Not Be Up to Spec

This is the story of a guy who bought a couple of computer tablets on eBay from China and got less than he bargained for.

Phil S. wasn’t a stranger to buying on eBay, and had purchased many computer items from sellers in the USA, China, and other countries around the globe. Phil was also a “power user” and adept at resolving just about any problem that he came across since he used to run a computer store.

Last month, he saw a tablet being offered by a highly-rated seller with excellent specifications like Android 9, a ten-core very fast processor, and tons of ram and storage. So, he bought two of them.

Phil ad pic

The tablets arrived from China a few weeks after ordering them. A quick double-check of the specs according to the “about” section of settings revealed he got exactly what he paid for, an even got an Android upgrade to version 10.

Phil tablet fake specs

However, when he started using the tablet, he noticed problems immediately. There was something off. The specs claimed that the unit was running Android 10, but the screen had the exact appearance of Android 4.4. The units seemed slow. After running a few tests, he found that they were old units hacked to appear like new, high capacity fast tablets. In other words, the seller or his henchmen went into the “about” page on the tablet (shown above in the black picture) and actually changed the wording that it displayed.

Using some sophisticated sniffing tools, Phil found some of the real specs of his tablets.

*Mouse Print:

phil actual specs

The fraud pervaded every specification that the seller had listed, speed, resolution, capacity, processor, and software version. For example, the resolution was not the 2560 x 1600 promised, but only 1280 x 720; and the processor only had four cores and not 10.

When Phil complained to eBay, they refunded his money. But he wanted to warn others about this scam. If you see ads online for no name computers with great specs but at ridiculously low prices (Phil’s tablets were only $69), you might want to think twice before hitting the buy button.