12 23 06 380 W - + 160 - 217 Why I love Columbia House, but don't.

ColumbiaHouse reigns you in with this whole "5 dvds for 50 cents" thing, and you're like, "OMG, yay! I'll just score those 5 and never order another thing from them!"

Strategy through Apathy. I dig.

Here's where it gets insidious. They use apathy against you. You actually have to cancel having a "Director's Selection" mailed to you every month, and they're usually utterly crap movies for like $22. My crap pile of DVD's has been growing because I got dangerously lazy about this whole thing. It's a retail with a twist- they make money off of you forgetting they exist.

They're also the worst kind of business model- one that keeps customers not through any sort of actual loyalty, but through a convoluted cancellation process to weed out the people who aren't truly committed to freeing themselves from the wretched beast.

As an example- I just called to cancel.

To continue in english, press 1. Para continuar en espanol, (press) dos.

Hit 1 (I assume)

Phone menu 1: 1-4, stuff that doesn't matter. 5, more options.

Hit 5.

1-4, Bunch of options that people would use the website for instead of the phone. To cancel your account, hit 5.

Hit 5.

Then, enter in your 11 digit membership number, which can only be found in tiny print after you've logged into their buggy-as-shit-website, OR in the statement that came with the last DVD you didn't want in the first place.

TO SPEAK WITH THE NEXT AVAILABLE AGENT, HIT 0. Otherwise, hit 2.

Ec-fucking-SCUSE-me? OTHERWISE? Are they asking if I want to let someone cut in line? Has our society become that utopian? Or are they asking if, navigating the menus, I've discovered deep within me a change of heart, a love for this dystopian capitalism that burns like the flame of a thousand suns, like the very pit of hell that will one day consume and burn the flesh of the founder of this deplorable corporation for all eternity?

I say that all rage like, but so confounded was I, so utterly curious as to the meaning, the extent, the mysteries of that "Otherwise", that I hit 2.

"Thank you for calling. Goodbye."

Treacherous.

-Alex


  
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