Report: #185383

Complaint Review: Active Periodicals And International Readers League

  • Submitted: Fri, April 07, 2006
  • Updated: Wed, July 29, 2009
  • Reported By: Newton North Carolina
  • Active Periodicals And International Readers League
    450 SW 12th Ave
    Deerfield Beach, Florida

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

My problem began in July 2005.
I received the call about 5pm and was kind of happy to hear that I had a running in the Publishers Clearing House. At that time, my husband's job was on the verge of going over seas- so being of sound mind and body was in question. I usually hang up on telemarketers- but for some reason of bad judgment I stayed on the line and listened to what seemed to me the silver lining on our very dark rain cloud.

They told me that I had a choice of 3 free magazine subscriptions if we bought a weekly magazine and I would be put in a drawing for $100,000. Again, low point in life- this sounded good. Too good to be true that is.
I gave them a card number, and waited for my ?diamond watch? to come in the mail.

We began to get the weekly magazine, which I really didn't care for and never saw hair or hide of the free ones till I called and complained. They said they were on their way.

When they did arrive- three months later, they were all messed up. I called again to straighten out the subscription and finally had it right. Except the X-Box Magazine which says on the cover that there was a free promo disk- mine never had a disk.

It is now October and I have been up and down calling them to fix stuff and got really mad and tried to cancel. The lady said I couldn't cancel, I had an obligation to pay. Then I get a call from Wender. They began to call and call and call like 4 times a day at very odd hours. I told them to take me off their list, their response was: ?We will if you buy a subscription?. At that moment I was furious. They were naming info that Active Periodicals had in their database. After hanging up with them I was crying my eyes out and called Active Periodicals to cancel and have my subscriptions cut and I would pay for what I have received. Nope. They wouldn't let me.

My husband who was getting really upset called up our card and reported it stolen and to send us a new one. He told me to never pay them another dime and watch the caller ID on the phone. Wender sent me their so-called contract which on all 3 copies I told them to delete my info and cancel all contracts that they were all obtained illegally and with force. I never heard from them again.

But my fight with Active Periodicals still goes on. Ever since my husband called our card number as stolen- they have harassed me to send them a new card number or they would ruin my credit. I have for almost every week a letter that looks like a bill asking for a credit card number and not a check.

Yesterday, I received a letter that had the header Magazine Subscription Company asking for me to subscribe to a magazine that I did receive from Active Periodicals from the past with the same color and paper stock as the ?bills?. (note: I went to collage as a graphic designer- I notice weird stuff like that).

I showed my husband and mother and they laughed at the ?credit card number only please?. Oh how they try so hard.
Today at 8:40pm I picked up the phone to a Blocked Number. It was our dear friends at Active Periodical's legal department. And the threats began. The lady who was very friendly at first, I thought she was a friend I was waiting by the phone for. Then began the threats. She stated that if I didn't pay up, I would be sued and that they would cut my payments in half if I cooperated. I told her that I would contact my lawyer and wait for the word. Not backing down, she gave me a list of information she had on my case account and gave me a few minutes to growl and tell her all my problems with the company. One was about the X-Box Magazine not having the playing demo. Her response was that they have two different magazines that I was receiving the one without the demos. That was never stated to me, they claimed they would send me my demos last few months that I complained.

Then she told me about the paper I signed to receive my ?diamond watch? was a legal binding document that stated that I agreed to pay $58.28 for the set amount of time. Well, I didn't agree it was legal binding. She then told me I was taped agreeing to pay $58.28 for 4 years. That made me mad. I never made that statement ever and told her to hold on.

I am a very tender hearted person, so the thought of my husbands hard earned money going to the blood sucking vipers really hurt. So I handed the phone to the hardest hearted person I know- my mother. She yelled at the lady, who now I was feeling just a smidge sorry for; that her corrupt company has no legal standing and will have to deal with our blood sucking viper of a lawyer. Seconds after hanging up the phone- they called back. I shut off the answer machine in the middle of the message. They called back a third time just to hang up after the second ring. Yeah?that hurt.

So that is my story. I have yet to contact the BBB, FTC and the FCC about this problem, but after that last call, I think I am obligated to do so.

Newton, North Carolina
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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 04/07/2006 12:04 AM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment


AUTHOR: Bear666420 - (U.S.A.)

what you described happend to me too! some guy named "Kevin Shepard" who was a supivisor for what he called API told me the same things that they told you. but when it came to giving credit card info i said "up yors a** hole"
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In The Nick of Time

AUTHOR: Amanda - (USA)

The reason I went searching for this company and it's correlation to running scams is that I, too, was pulled into their web. I am a 21 year old female who works 40 hours a week just to pay the bills. When I got a call on my cell phone, at work, and the number was blocked intentionally, of course I didn't answer.

However, over the next few days, the calls came in at an increasingly alarming rate. I was taking a lunch break one afternoon, when yet another call brought my cell to life. It was the fifth one that morning. I was tired to having to look for my phone all day, just in case the  call was an emergency from home, so I answered it, intending to tell them to lay off. This was my first mistake.

When I answered, a wonderfully pleasant woman named Paula cheerfully informed me that I had been entered into a $100,000 sweepstakes based on the fact that I owned either a Visa, Mastercard, or AmEx. She went so far as to claim that her company had been hired by the above mentioned to run the sweepstakes on their behalf. That sounded a little more than far-fetched to me, but I kept listening to Paula extrapolate. This was my second mistake.

There were many little clues throughout our conversation that should have tipped me off. For instance, even though I'd been entered into this "sweepstakes" because I owned a credit card, Paula needed to know specifically what kind of card I had. In the back of my mind, I thought "shouldn't they already know that?" Still, however, I listened.

Paula described the magazine membership in the best light possible, I must give her credit. From my end, it seemed like a good thing, as they all do at first. If I paid for a subscription to one magazine, I got three more free, plus a diamond watch and my entry into this "super prize" sweepstakes. I thought about it, thinking that I didn't particularly need any magazines, but Paula gladly informed me that I could switch magainzes to any of the 500 on a list they would send me.

While my mind was wandering to how cool it would be to get Popular Science for a year, Paula rattled on about what a great value it was. At this point, I was leaning towards agreeing with her. She wanted this sale, and went so far as to say that her boss might ask me a few questions about her performance, and would I put in a good word for her? She had my sympthaties. She was appealing to my logic. She was appealing to my illogic with the free things and the sweepstakes.

Make no mistake, the people who work for this company are very good at what they do.

Eventually, I ended up giving them my card information, which included my security code, unfortunately. This was my third folly in a long line. It was with joy that Paula told me, immediately after the transaction was spoken, that her boss had magically appeared behind her and wanted to speak with me.

I work for a large company, and I can tell when a call is transferred. Nick answered just as cheerfully (I was getting tired of the cheerfulness, to be honest) and asked how Paula did. I didn't want to be mean to the woman, so I told him she did fine. Nick was even better at his job than Paula. He launched into a story about how he wished he was in FL (where I'm from) and how cold it is in Montana where they were. He went so far as to tell me that, should I win the money, I could come up there, and he would teach me how to ski. He was charming, and charismatic, and a perfect con.

I didn't like the way this left me feeling, like I had just stepped on a roller coaster that I knew was going to crash. I thought, after I had disconnected the call, "I can't afford this. This is ridiculous. How did I get dragged into this? I'm not usually this guillable."

I considered it a welcome sign when they called again. I thought "This is it. I'll just cancel. Tell them they can keep that first charge, it'll be well worth getting rid of these people."

The man who called me that time sounded like an actual manager. He sounded older and more responsible. I figured that I could level with this man. When I told him I needed to cancel my "subscription" with them, he was very humble, and offered to reduce my plan at it's extreme. (Of course, this still icluded a $30 a month charge... for two magazines?) I fool myself into thinking I was relieved, because $30 is better than $50, right?

I waited two days, and I got the "release" form in the mail. I carefully read through the papers, and was not happy. Several times on the first sheet I was reminded to give my signature. ("REMINDER: Include your Signature" and the like) The Official award release form is the part that you absolutely do NOT want to sign. The very top, which states "I, ______, hereby authorize the release of my gift that I'm entitled to for participating in the magaine offere. I acknowledge and accept the terms of my magazine subscription as described on page 1. Please send it to me immediately at: (address form to follow).

After reading this page, which I just got today int he mail, I jumped on my computer and zipped over to the Ripoff Report. Finally, my stomach had enough. I needed to know if I was getting in over my head before I actually took that step.

I am immensely grateful that I found this before I signed and mailed the afformentioned form. I called the number at the top of the pages, the first time I had ever been able to, as they continually blocked their phonecalls. I realize now that this is deliberate.

When the second gentleman called, he did inform me that the call was being taped for "quality control". I didn't think much about it because my own bank does that, and it's perfectly acceptable. However, their purposes have a much worse intention. I thought back to that call, and remembered that the man had spoken very very quickly at one point, where I was agreeing to be billed the first charge. I remembered him saying "cannot cancel in the first three days", which I took to mean that they wanted to make sure they billed me before I could cancel. I was ready to accept that first charge, and cancel on the fourth day, if I needed to.

However, when I called the number on the forms, the woman, whose name I didn't get, told me that I was lucky to have called today, because this was the third day. I told her that I was led to believe I could NOT cancel within the first three day. She informed me that the opposite was true. I can ONLY cancel in the first three, not after. She was the best person to deal with during this entire ordeal. She asked my name, verified my address, and very politely informed me that my subscription was cancelled. She did ask me to explain why I wanted to cancel, so that she could record that on my account. Not only did I tell her that I couldn't afford it, because I know someone would have called me to reduce my plan, once again, but I also informed her that I read the reports on this scam, and I had no intention of falling into it. She thanked me very nicely and wished me a good day.

If you're getting these calls, don't answer them. If you did, don't accept their bogus plan. If you, like me, thouht it might be a good thing, and then had second, third, thirty-second thoughts, call them back immediately at 1-888-506-8304 and cancel within the first three days. That's the only way to get out of this ridiculous scheme.

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#3 Author of original report

they keep calling...

AUTHOR: Suzanna - (U.S.A.)

Today, we were receiving phone calls from Bemerton, Washington with the caller ID as "Urgent". The # was 360-362-5462 and they called at these times, 11:29am, 12:16pm, 12:42pm, 1:45pm, 2:40pm, 6:53pm, 7:26pm, and at 8:49pm. I finally got tired of it and unplugged the phone because they kept hanging up when I answered.

I called later to see who they were and why after so many calls they left no message. They claimed to be a collection agency working with Active Periodicals. I hung up not wanting to know anymore.
I'm mentaly drained from fightig these people and with my case, nothing seems to work. I never been called by a collection agency so I have no clue how they work and I'm afraid of giving in and giving any more money up to Active Periodicals.

Anyone else have a suggestion?
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#4 Consumer Comment

Thank you

AUTHOR: Suzanna - (U.S.A.)

The website deleted the number or e-mail you had posted.

I haven't received a phone call from Active Periodicals- or at least one that isn't unlisted or blocked since the 7th of April. I am really hoping that they will just leave me alone. But the magazines keep coming, so I know I have to contact the publishers.
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#5 Consumer Comment

Thank you

AUTHOR: Suzanna - (U.S.A.)

The website deleted the number or e-mail you had posted.

I haven't received a phone call from Active Periodicals- or at least one that isn't unlisted or blocked since the 7th of April. I am really hoping that they will just leave me alone. But the magazines keep coming, so I know I have to contact the publishers.
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#6 Consumer Comment

Contact Me

AUTHOR: Heather - (U.S.A.)

Hello, I know exactly what you are going through. I just got rid of them.

Contact me and I will tell you and give you the names and numbers of what I have. '

CLICK here to see why Rip-off Report, as a matter of policy, deleted either a phone number, link or e-mail address from this Report.
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