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#17704 by oomg
Fri Aug 28, 2009 4:32 pm
mikepa wrote:
oomg wrote:
There is a fellow in my office complex who came with his family from Spain a few years back. He tells me his wife spends an hour or more each day talking to her family (using Skype as I recall). Whe his wife and kids are visiting Spain, he spends at least a half hour each day talking to them.

I take it you have not used any of the international minutes because you have no need for international calling at this time.


Anyone with such a high need as this would be best to get two Ooma's and send one to Spain. With both Ooma's having a US number all calls between them would be free.

My wife is from the Philippines and calls her family once a week or so for maybe half an hour. We're still using up the pre-paid Skype minutes and sometimes she chats with the family through the computer which is of course free.


I have suggested, but at least for the moment, they are satisfied with Skype.
#17708 by oomg
Fri Aug 28, 2009 4:48 pm
mikepa wrote:Bait and switch is advertising something that you do not have available (or do not have sufficient quantities available) in the hope that customers will purchase another product instead. Costco advertised one thing and is selling another. In this case, the switch happened after the sale.


Well... if you are in California, you're wrong. In California, deceptive business practices include: "Advertising goods or services with intent not to supply reasonably expectable demand, unless the advertisement discloses a limitation of quantity." Such a practice is deceptive even without an attempt to steer the consumer to another product. See, Cal. Civil Code section 1770 for a list of unfair/deceptive practices.
http://www.leginfo.ca.gov/cgi-bin/displ ... &file=1770
Maybe you can find something concrete there.

mikepa wrote:Regardless of what you want to call it (and you can call it a genuine mistake if you want) Costo is advertising a product that they can not deliver. They are now doing so knowingly since they have been advised on the problem by several parties and have acknowledged (at least to me) several days ago that the web site needs updating, yet it still remains the same today. You can bet if the price was incorrect, they would have fixed that immediately.


O.K. Costco is advertising the product incorrectly (or deceptively if you prefer). Put your complaint in writing and send it to Costco's HQ.

mikepa wrote:Would have been nice if some Ooma representative could have chimed in here to state why Ooma was not doing the right thing for those who request it.


You are assuming that ooma has an obligation to do anything. Let's say for the sake of discussion only that Costco had been fully informed of all limitations and restrictions, but still misrepresented the product. What olbigation, if any, does ooma have vis-a-vis those who purchase from Costco?
#17776 by mikepa
Sat Aug 29, 2009 7:02 am
I'm in Florida and you may be correct that it may not be officially classed as bait & switch. but, as you have agreed it is deceptive advertising. I emailed Costco customer service and they said they'd fix the site - but so far, several days later they haven't.

Costo & Ooma are partners in business. When one partner screws up it is not unheard of for the other partner to step up and save the day - especially since we are not talking about a huge costs to do so.

Bottom line here is Ooma's response to this situation has been less than ideal. The easy and relatively low cost solution would have been to remove the expiration date for those people who complained.

As it is now I return the unit to Costo, Costco returns the unit to Ooma. Ooma refurbs the unit and sells it for less through Frys. I believe they will lose more than the $50 international credit. I purchase a unit from J&R for $50 less than Costo's price. Minimal hassle to save $60+.
#18099 by oomg
Sat Aug 29, 2009 9:30 pm
mikepa wrote:I'm in Florida and you may be correct that it may not be officially classed as bait & switch. but, as you have agreed it is deceptive advertising. I emailed Costco customer service and they said they'd fix the site - but so far, several days later they haven't.

Costo & Ooma are partners in business. When one partner screws up it is not unheard of for the other partner to step up and save the day - especially since we are not talking about a huge costs to do so.

Bottom line here is Ooma's response to this situation has been less than ideal. The easy and relatively low cost solution would have been to remove the expiration date for those people who complained.

As it is now I return the unit to Costo, Costco returns the unit to Ooma. Ooma refurbs the unit and sells it for less through Frys. I believe they will lose more than the $50 international credit. I purchase a unit from J&R for $50 less than Costo's price. Minimal hassle to save $60+.


"...as you have agreed it is deceptive advertising." I don't necessarily agree that it is deceptive advertising. I don't know all the facts, but do know one thing. I was fully aware that the Costco.com deal which provides the $50 international calling credit included a 90 day credit expiration.

"Costo & Ooma are partners in business." Really! Maybe I just don't understand partnership law. Let's see, Costco sells thousands of items that are manufactured by hundreds of suppliers. Are you suggesting that each of these suppliers are "partners" with Costco?

I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that you have never operated a business.
#18112 by mikepa
Sun Aug 30, 2009 5:04 am
oomg wrote:"...as you have agreed it is deceptive advertising." I don't necessarily agree that it is deceptive advertising. I don't know all the facts, but do know one thing. I was fully aware that the Costco.com deal which provides the $50 international calling credit included a 90 day credit expiration.

"Costo & Ooma are partners in business." Really! Maybe I just don't understand partnership law. Let's see, Costco sells thousands of items that are manufactured by hundreds of suppliers. Are you suggesting that each of these suppliers are "partners" with Costco?

I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that you have never operated a business.


How were you aware of the 90 day limitation since it doesn't seem to be conspicously displayed anywhere, unless you work for either Costo or Ooma?

Costco and Ooma have a contract therefore they are "partners" in providing the Ooma for sale to the public. "A partner is a person or organization who shares or is associated with another in some action or endeavor."

I run two successful businesses both of which are built on customer service, satisfaction and loyalty. The same principals most successful companies are built on. Happy customers bring more happy customers - unhappy customers warn their friends to stay away. Simple really.

What is your relationship with Ooma? Just a happy passionate customer?
#18134 by oomg
Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:02 am
mikepa wrote:
oomg wrote:"...as you have agreed it is deceptive advertising." I don't necessarily agree that it is deceptive advertising. I don't know all the facts, but do know one thing. I was fully aware that the Costco.com deal which provides the $50 international calling credit included a 90 day credit expiration.

"Costo & Ooma are partners in business." Really! Maybe I just don't understand partnership law. Let's see, Costco sells thousands of items that are manufactured by hundreds of suppliers. Are you suggesting that each of these suppliers are "partners" with Costco?

I am going to go out on a limb here and suggest that you have never operated a business.


How were you aware of the 90 day limitation since it doesn't seem to be conspicously displayed anywhere, unless you work for either Costo or Ooma?


As I said before, I frankly do not recall how I acquired this information.

mikepa wrote:Costco and Ooma have a contract therefore they are "partners" in providing the Ooma for sale to the public. "A partner is a person or organization who shares or is associated with another in some action or endeavor."

Hmmm... "They have a contract and therefore they are 'partners' in providing the Ooma for sale to the public." WOW... where did you get that?

Since you live in Florida... read this:
http://www.law.fsu.edu/Journals/lawrevi ... arson.html

Short version: "Under the Revised Florida Act...a partnership is defined as an association of two or more persons to carry on as co-owners a business for profit..."

"One important attribute... partners remain jointly and severally liable for all of the partnership's debts and obligations."

I'm sure ooma will be happy to hear that they can count on Costco to pay for all their debts and obligations.

mikepa wrote:I run two successful businesses both of which are built on customer service, satisfaction and loyalty. The same principals most successful companies are built on. Happy customers bring more happy customers - unhappy customers warn their friends to stay away. Simple really.

...and how many "partners" did you have?

So... let me see if I understand. Are you happy or unhappy with ooma product? Are you happy or unhappy with Costco?

As I understand your posts, you have no problem with ooma. In fact, as I understand, you will return the Hub/Scout so you can get what you perceive to be a better deal elsewhere. Thus, I would expect that you would recommend ooma to your friends. By the way, assuming for the sake of discussion that you ran a smaller "mom & pop" business that sold a certain product (say lawn mowers). Customer returns his lawnmower to you because you sold it to him at MSRP... says manufacturer's ad was deceptive because it contained an inflated MSRP, and he has since found it cheaper at Costco or some other big box store. How would you feel? (2nd Query? Are you a partner with the mfr because you sold the product at MSRP?) Isn't that similar to what you are suggesting?

Now, it seems that you are unhappy with Costco. Thus, I'm sure you will tell your friends to quit shopping there.

mikepa wrote:What is your relationship with Ooma? Just a happy passionate customer?

I have absolutely no relationship with ooma other than being a very satisfied paying customer.
#18294 by Lola
Sun Aug 30, 2009 8:31 pm
Does anyone have a contact info at ooma that you can send me. I would be interested in contacting someone higher up to know whether they are aware of this issue with the costco's ad and whether any attempts have been made to add expiration date disclosure.

I think anyone who owns this device has made an investment in the company and should be concerned and interested in at least clearing up this issue.
#18305 by southsound
Sun Aug 30, 2009 9:21 pm
Lola wrote:Does anyone have a contact info at ooma that you can send me. I would be interested in contacting someone higher up to know whether they are aware of this issue with the costco's ad and whether any attempts have been made to add expiration date disclosure.

I think anyone who owns this device has made an investment in the company and should be concerned and interested in at least clearing up this issue.

You can go to the ooma home page and select news and reviews. From that location, you will see a link for Management. The corporate address is also available on the Contact us link, including driving instructions.

I drive a Honda Civic Hybrid. When I bought it, I made an investment in an automobile. I hardly think I made an investment in Honda Motors. I have had good fortune with it so far, but if I discovered that it came with only 3 wheels instead of the 4 advertised by my dealer, I would contact the dealer where I purchased it. Especially if they had a no questions asked return policy. Or I could choose to call the managment of Honda Motors and they would send me to the local dealer. Either way, my dealer is where I would turn first. The promotion was a Costco/ooma promotion. Nobody has to keep their system. What do people want, a public flogging for the Costco buyer, job loss for the president of ooma, and imprisonment for the checkout person who made the fraudulent sale?

And yes, I did buy my hub/scout system at Costco. And I was under the impression that I would get a $50 International Calling credit. And I was a little miffed when 6 months later I was told that the credit I never saw would have been expired even if I had received it. Of course, I made no international calls during that period and probably will not make $50 worth of calls in the next 5 years. My choices? Enjoy the benefits of a really good VOIP system that has no ongoing costs or return it to Costco for a full refund. As you might have guessed, I kept my system.
#18314 by mikepa
Mon Aug 31, 2009 4:17 am
Oomg, you seem to defend your statements by choosing overly restrictive definitions of terms I used in a general manner.

Companies working together is what makes the world go around. When one screws up, it is often a "partner" who steps in to take up the slack. An example would be a Delta Airlines flight to L.A. arrives three hours late, so you miss your connecting flight to Singapore. Even if you have a non-refundable fare on Singapore Airlines that would normally require a change fee, under these circumstances the change fee would be waved and a new reservation booked with no fuss. DL & SQ are not in business together, but they are serving the public and working together as "partners" to get you to Singapore happy.

Ooma could have done the right thing at minimal cost and avoided alienating customers.

P.S. If I bought the mower and it was supposed to come with a free grass catcher and then I had to give the grass catcher back after 90 days, I probably would return the mower and buy one elsewhere.
#18353 by Groundhound
Mon Aug 31, 2009 7:19 am
I can see the future judge's decision:

"I award to the plaintiff a full reimbursement of all monies paid. In addition I award to the plaintiff the free use of Ooma's services until such time that a full refund is made."

Of course you could get that award anytime you want to return your Ooma system to Costco without the need for judges or lawyers - but what's the fun in that?

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