Can anyone here offer any input on Ultrarunning magazine's attitude toward refunds for an unwanted subscription?
(I apologize for the length of this post but I consider several details essential for a full and fair representation of the concerns.)
Wanting to see the magazine, I first called several months ago. (Assuming it was Mr. Don Allison personally with whom I spoke) he told me that they don't provide a sample copy. By contrast, when I asked Trail Runner magazine where I could find their magazine locally, their rep gladly said she'd send me a sample -- right there I see a major difference in the two publications' evident attitudes toward customer service.
Having not seen a copy of Ultrarunning firsthand, I asked Mr. Allison about a prorated refund policy for unwanted issues -- which any truly professional publisher provides without dispute -- and it surprised me that he said only something like either "We'll work something out" or "We'll see about it" -- he definitely did NOT say "No refunds." Had he done so, I'd definitely not have bothered subscribing.
Reviewing the first issue I found it wasn't anywhere near what I'd hoped. A few weeks later, I requested a refund. A week or two later, another copy arrived -- which I understood, as publishing cycles overlap and it may take a few weeks to process a refund. But having received no response at all to my request by August 14, I mailed a letter and again politely requested a prorated refund, reminding him of our discussion. (I saved a copy. Totally polite, totally respectful.)
I received no response after several weeks. Not even a message on my recorder at home, not even showing the basic courtesy to tell me that he will NOT refund my money.
Finally I sent an e-mail on October 14, more emphatically reminding him of the discussion and again requesting a prorated refund. (And again I saved a copy.)
Now some six weeks later, two or three more issues have arrived since I first requested a refund. I can only infer that Mr. Allison's stance seems to say: "I know that Runner's World and other professional mags do provide prorated refunds. But I don't."
Thank goodness I paid through Visa, as they act professionally, like Runner's World and Trail Runner. Even though I asked for Visa's help outside the stipulated time frame for denying charges, they still offered to credit me -- as their customer -- the majority of what I'd requested from Mr. Allison. I told them that if Mr. Allison did in fact follow through responsibly and professionally, that I would then reimburse Visa.
Obviously, he hasn't done so.
As I see it, I'd still like Mr. Allison to refund the other $5.00 of the $25.00 that I estimated as a prorated refund. To this date he has not responded at all to (1) a phone message, (2) a mailed letter, and (3) an e-mail. Thus, having patiently waited all this time and having made more than ample effort to contact him and offered plenty of opportunity for Ultrarunning magazine to respond professionally, I turn to this board for assistance or clarification from anyone who knows more about the situation than I. Can anyone advise?
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