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Arrogant companies - Micro Direct (Read 30,196 times)
Dave
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Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Mar 23rd, 2005 at 1:48pm
 
I've just spoken to someone at Micro Direct in the hope that they would verify the geographical numbers. I explained repeatedly that 0870 numbers cost more to call than geographical numbers.

He repeated that they are a "national call rate" and said that they cost the same to call from anywhere in the country (10p/min!!?), when apparently geographical numbers do not.  When I pointed out that I made the call on the 0161 number for 1p (with Call18866) and said I cannot get such a rate to 0870, he didn't really have an answer, apart from saying that it's down to the provider.

Eventually, he put the phone down. What hope is there when people are as stupid as this??

If there is anyone else using this company who is reading this, please inform them of your discust at their rip-off numbers.

Also, feel free to ring them on 0161 2484848. Maybe you can talk sense into this numpty.

PS All the numbers for Micro Direct are here. Wink
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stephen160
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #1 - Mar 23rd, 2005 at 4:20pm
 
Just spoke to Micro Direct myself, also tried telling the girl at Micro about 0870 numbers, it was like talking to a brick wall. Will try again next week, hopefully a different sales rep.
steve
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juby
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #2 - Mar 23rd, 2005 at 10:33pm
 
I had personally not heard of MicroDirect but out of interest I looked them up.

This company is worried and has offered a direct challenge to anybody prepared to take them up.

See http://www.microdirect.co.uk/Contact.aspx

Give them BT for a start, then Leicester and then your own?

"National rates NOT at Premium"?

Good Hunting,

juby
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dorf
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #3 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 11:12am
 
juby, why do you say this company is worried. There is no indication of any concern about their use of these numbers which I can see on the link you give?
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juby
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #4 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 11:38am
 
Dorf, you have to open up the link a little, until you you see the telephone number and attached comments.

I have just checked and they are still there.

Press Customer service twice.

Wink
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« Last Edit: Mar 24th, 2005 at 11:43am by juby »  
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #5 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 12:28pm
 
Surely they can be reported to Trading Standards given that BT describe 0870 as premium rate??
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #6 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 2:33pm
 
juby, I had already previously tried what you suggested, but it did not work for me. Then I suddenly thought it could be my browser. Yes indeed it was. Apparently those links work with IE only. This is an increasingly common problem on ill-conceived web-sites; their nerds who set them up do not make them compatible with all browsers. Apparently they only want the business of those who use IE slavishly and nobody else!

So after trying IE I found the links worked. Even then what MD state is "Tel: 0870 44 22 233
Please note: The above number is charged at National rates NOT at Premium." That to me does not show that they are "worried" in any way. What it shows to me is that they are attempting to keep up the pretence of this whole scam. That is what it is about. They know in reality that these numbers are disguised Premium numbers. They know that because of the revenue which they receive! That is why they changed to using them. They are still attempting to claim that calls to 0870 are at "National rate". This of course is grossly incorrect now and a deliberate ploy to mislead their customers.

I shall send a message to their Customer Services making this point, since I am in fact a substantial customer of theirs at present, but will not continue to be if they persist with this pretence.
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #7 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 3:10pm
 
I have now sent the following message to their Customer Services.

I am incensed at your latest statement on your web-site related to your published disguised Premium number for contact with Customer Services. It is bad enough that you are amongst those dishonest organisations who use these disguised Premium numbers. To deliberately attempt to mislead your customers and to contravene the latest Ofcom requirements in this way is completely unacceptable. You are in fact well aware that this type of number is a disguised Premium number, since that is why you have changed over to using them and that is why you receive the revenue which you do by using them.

I prefer to do business with a company that is honest and trustworthy. Since BT forced their customers to their Option 1 there is no longer any such rate as a "National" rate even with BT. With all other call carriers 0870 and other similar disguised Premium numbers can be charged at as much as 600 times more than the lowest cost call carrier's rate to call the same location. These numbers are thus very expensive for customers to call, and this is solely because of the Premiums which have to be paid, since they are Premium numnbers. Please therefore desist from the dishonest statements on your web-site. BT have now admitted that these numbers are Premium numbers and Ofcom have admitted the same thing. I have been a substantial customer of yours in the past, but if you continue to be so dishonest I shall cease to give you any of my business.  If you wish to continue to use such numbers admit on your website that they are Premium numbers which may be charged by some call carriers at rates as high as 15 p per minute. To state  "Tel: 0870 44 22 233 Please note: The above number is charged at National rates NOT at Premium."  is deliberately and blatantly dishonest.

Additionally it appears that some buttons/links on your web-site only work if your potential customer is using MS Internet Explorer. You should be aware that increasing numbers of aware web users, who are concerned about their security do not use IE and a result you may be excluding them as your potential customers.
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #8 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 9:13pm
 
Well done dorf, a good letter.

You queried my suggestion that they were worried, what I meant was that they were nervous about their telephone number, they obviously are because they make it as difficult as possible to access it. In your case impossible.

Is this the actions of a company that is trying to make money out of 0870? Definately not, it is the action of a company that is trying to stop you ringing them!

They want you to e-mail them. You are a regular customer of theirs, do you get good service? Do they respond to e-mails promptly? Have you had any problems that could not be addressed promptly by sending an e-mail?

The comments after their phone number are unnecessary, illegal and should be removed but to suggest that you are not going to do business with them any more because of something you have heard from me and ors is I think over the top?

They were probably sold that number by conmen from neg.

By the way it is possible to make every page of a website selective on who can access it by which browser, they are not nerds.

juby

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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #9 - Mar 24th, 2005 at 9:29pm
 
Quote:
Surely they can be reported to Trading Standards given that BT describe 0870 as premium rate??


Everyone can make a complaint against any company to Trading Standards Office about a company making a false statement.

It should be made to TSO in the area in which the companies Registered Office is.




In this case Manchester. http://www.tradingstandards.gov.uk/manchester/linksc.htm

I would quote the Leicester decision to them.
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Reply #10 - Mar 25th, 2005 at 12:16am
 
Quote:
Everyone can make a complaint against any company to Trading Standards Office about a company making a false statement.

Done.  Wink

Another one to look at is Miller Brothers. I am very disapointed that this company has sunk to the level of generating revenue with 0870 numbers. They seem to be changing into another Comet, Currys or Dixons. Their old geographical numbers for all stores now have messages on directing the caller to 0870s.

If you select Customer Information -> Contact Details it states at the bottom of the page: "Calls to Miller Brothers are designated by OFTEL as National Rate and are charged as such. The exact cost may be obtained from your Telephone Service Provider."

I've pointed this out to them in emails and they cannot be bothered to reply. I've emailed Martin Foster, who I believe is the MD. The email never returned unsent, so I assume it got to its destination.

Feel free to contact Doncaster Trading Standards.
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #11 - Mar 25th, 2005 at 12:15pm
 
Hi juby,

glad you liked my complaint to Micro Direct.

I take your point that " By the way it is possible to make every page of a website selective on who can access it by which browser, they are not nerds." I do realise that it can be done of course. My point was that if web sites for marketing are properly designed they will be accessible by any browser, not just one particular one.

If you are marketing on the Internet, then if you are commercially aware you understand that your web site is a bit like a shop, but with a much larger potential international clientelle. If you open a shop and put a notice in the window "Only blonde haired people, wearing bowler hats, a red pullover, having green eyes, carrying a Diners Club credit card, wearing Nike trainers and wearing a pink raincoat are allowed in this shop. We do not sell to others." then your sales volume is likely to be extremely small indeed. There have been articles about exactly this type of stupidity in web configuration in the technical press (such as Computer Weekly and Computing) over the last few years.

Nerds configure marketing web sites when they are allowed to run out of control with no proper commercial manager supervising them, mandating one marque of browser only, the lowest possible operating level of security and privacy, Active X, Flash, Real Player, O'Grady Jumping Up and Down utility and Uncle Tom Cobley and all, whatever is the latest vogue widget which they wish to inflict on everyone for their own peculiar motives. Rather than helping to sell a companies products all this stupidity does is to drastically reduce the potential market which might be reached.

It is possible to design a perfectly adequate marketing web site which does not mandate or dictate any requirements to one's potential cusomers, and as a direct result all may visit and browse. (Trolleys may be executed without resorting to mandating cookies for example.) This sensible strategy will obviously result in the highest sales and potentially the greatest profits. This is what effective professional web site design is truly about, and the papers in various trade press vehicles have made this point over and over; however the young nerds still just don't get it.

That was the point I was attempting to make, not that it is not possible to configure a web site so that only one marque of browser can access it. Clearly you can do this, with severe consequences. Hope you see the point?
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« Last Edit: Mar 25th, 2005 at 12:19pm by dorf »  

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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #12 - Mar 25th, 2005 at 1:13pm
 
Hi Juby

I have never received a consistent answer as to which Trading Standards Office a complaint should be made. I have found that the best policy to send two; first to complain to the Trading Standards Office in the location in which the company trades and second, to complain to your own local Trading Standards Office.

I may be completely wrong, but I don’t think it is necessary to send a complaint to the TS Office in the location of the Registered Office of the Company  - of course it would do no harm to send one.

[By way of analogy: A Court Writ (now called a Claim) can be served at: (1) the Principal Office of the company OR  (2) Any place or business of the company within the jurisdiction …  The requirement to serve on the Registered Office has now been removed.  Source: Civil Procedure Rules – Part 6]
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« Last Edit: Mar 25th, 2005 at 4:31pm by kk »  

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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #13 - Mar 25th, 2005 at 3:14pm
 
[A Court Writ (now called a Claim) can be served at: (1) the Principal Office of the company OR  (2) Any place or business of the company within the jurisdiction …  The requirement to serve on the Registered Office has now been removed.  Source: Civil Procedure Rules – Part 6]

If anybody is considering doing this, then the best idea is to contact your own trading standards.

The reason behind this, is if you contact Edinburgh trading standards, about an Edinburgh company, then they will of course take action, and this may require the directors of a compny to travel to their local trading standards office, or local court and of if they have legal representation, their legal team would also have to travel the short distance to Edinburgh court.

However, if you wish to take this Edinburgh company to trading standards at Plymouth, think of the logistics of travelling down to Plymouth from Edinburgh.  One day for travel down, 1 day for court, 1 day for travel back, 2 nights hotel accommodation for each person travelling, along with train/plane fares, or petrol costs. 

Plus the fact that the people involved in legal representation would be paid for working 3 extra full days on a case, and managers of the company would spend 3 days out of the office, instead of chasing up contracts, or playing golf!!

And that's assuming the road or rail networks have no problems, and the mettings take place on time!!

The moral of the story, take a company to court in your own area.  Let them chose between the travelling problems or agreeing to settle the claim against them!!
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I realy hait itt wen peeple canot spel proply. Itt getts onn mye nervs sew mutch annd streses mee owt. Knot onley iz itt vary bade speling butt allso bade gramer.
 
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Re: Arrogant companies - Micro Direct
Reply #14 - Mar 25th, 2005 at 4:28pm
 
My inclusion at the end of my post, regarding service of documents relating to the service of a Claim, may on reflection be confusing.  The comment was included by way of analogy only; and to illustrate that the location of the Registered Office, of a Company, may no longer be a relevant consideration.  The actual trading address may be the relevant address.

Any court action (usually the last resort)  is invariably taken by the Trading Standards Department and not the individual making the complaint.
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