The purpose of this is to document the facts surrounding what happened / is happening with the advertised $-5.01 after rebate for the Axion 3.6 DVD player offer Radio Shack made on December 23rd 2005. Basically Radio Shack ran an advertised promotion on this date involving rebates and is now indicating that they will be refusing to honor one of the two rebates worth $70. The official Radio Shack Rebate Center confirmed to several hundred callers on the 23rd (and even through 12/30/05) that this was not a mistake and BOTH rebates would be honored. The problem now is that Radio Shack Corporate is telling and emailing people that they will NOT be honoring both of the rebates. The worst part is that many of these DVD players were given to the kids on Christmas morning and are now un-returnable because either the UPC was cut out and sent in for the rebates or the kids just like them too much.
1 It is customary for national retailers to promote some items for free or at a small loss around the Holidays to generate traffic into the stores.
2 Radio Shack clearly advertised the Axion DVD player for $-5.01 after rebate on its web site as part of a special one day promotion on December 23rd 2005. This promotion was valid for both online and in-store transactions as per the rebate forms.
3 The Radio Shack web site never showed the DVD player as being in-sock online but most all retail stores had the product available for pickup as indicated by the web site inventory lookup tool.
4 Radio Shack produced and distributed two separate rebate forms with separate rebate offer numbers on the web site that added up to the $-5.01 advertised final price after rebates.
5 The Radio Shack Rebate Center (1-888-326-8188) confirmed from December 23rd through December 30th that they would honor both rebates as advertised.
6 Radio Shack never issued a retraction either in print or on its web site claiming that one of the rebates was somehow invalid.
7 Radio Shack corporate (1-800-843-7422) started informing customers that contacted them either by phone or email during the week of December 26th that Radio Shack will NOT honor the $70 rebate contrary to items 1 thru 6 above because it was some kind of a mistake. Notice that during this time the Radio Shack Rebate Center was saying they would be honoring both rebates while Radio Shack Corporate was saying they would not.
The bottom line is that Radio Shack made a deliberate business decision to run this promotion as is illustrated by the original advertisement, individual rebate forms / offer numbers, and lack of any formal retraction. Now Radio Shack needs to live with that business decision and meet the obligation they have to the consumers that bought this product based on the advertisement and terms of the rebates.
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