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Thread: Exasperated with Fine Woodworking Magazine!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Perth, Australia
    Posts
    6,396

    Exasperated with Fine Woodworking Magazine!

    About 10 days ago I received an email to say that my on-line subscription with FWW magazine could not be renewed as the credit card details were incorrect. I checked, and they were up to date.

    I have been a longstanding on-line member and paying a low fee ($19.95) because of this. To renew, I now have to pay the full fee ($99). So I contact Customer Service, who send me a form reply after 2 days to say I should log in and renew my account. I explain that I am an existing customer, and wish to continue the discounted rate. Two days later there is another form email ton say that they have discontinued the old subscription and replaced with a new super duper version for everyone. Well, why did they not say so in the first place?

    Now I decide that, what the Hell, I shall subscribe at the new rate. It is only money and you cannot take it with you. I enter my details and country (Australia), and then am asked for my state. This is where it all comes to a grinding halt as only USA states are displayed. I try this every which way ... but only USA states are displayed. (I have completed similar forms on other websites - I am not a doofus).

    I contact Customer Support again, explaining the situation, and begging that they take my money. Two days later I get another form email, explaining that I need to log and and renew my account. OK, perhaps something has changed in the past two days. So I log on again. Same as before - I can be resident of Wyoming but never Western Australia. OK, I have a new idea ... I'll go in and sign up as a brand new subscriber! Yeah right ... same again. Apparently no one resides outside the USA in states with names that are dissimilar to those in the USA.

    I have emailed Customer Service one last time. What do you think that they will reply?

    I wonder if the penny will drop when all international subscribers suddenly stop being subscribers ...?!

    Regards from Perth

    Derek (hoping that FWW magazine are reading this)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Posts
    26,948
    Just a wild guess Derek, but I think you'll get a form reply in about 2 days?
    Ken

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Missouri
    Posts
    1,513
    lol Derek, very soon the cyber machine will make the connection and you will get 3 subscriptions and your card will get the charges. About a year from now you may get it all straightened out, just enough time to start all over again.��
    Jim

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Perth, Australia
    Posts
    6,396
    Here's another oddity ...

    If you connect to the Customer Service web page, there is a box "make a payment". Now if you attempt to make a payment (to subscribe), you are asked to first sign in. If you sign in, the "make a payment" box disappears.

    Their web designer must have trained in sadism.

    Regards from Perth

    Derek

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2019
    Location
    White Lake, Michigan
    Posts
    40
    Derek...

    I was told when renewing my subscription (a couple of months ago) that my dual subscription (to the magazine and website) was "grandfathered in" and I would not have to move to the new subscription model. I suggest you use skype to call them during business hours and speak to a real human being to get this resolved.

    - David

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Dickinson, Texas
    Posts
    6,353
    I would send a certified letter to the editors of the magazine.
    I still take it, but like all the other woodworking magazines, it is a mere shadow of it self.

    I guess it is difficult to to come up with new material. A recent magazine (not Fine Woodworking) has an article using concrete.
    I probably will not renew it. Maybe they read these forums.
    Last edited by lowell holmes; 06-29-2019 at 2:10 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Wayland, MA
    Posts
    1,434
    Wiegand's First Law of Retail: "Make it easy for people to give you money"

    Somehow this one seems to have been missed among the Ferenghi Rules of Acquisition, so I'm claiming it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    DuBois, PA
    Posts
    1,650
    Maybe FWW recognizes the dwindling number of print mags and are trying to monetize things while they can?
    If the thunder don't get you, the lightning will.

  9. #9
    Derek,
    It's definitely not only you that's problems with them. And it's not just FWW. I have several subscriptions to Taunton publications, and they're universally screwed up. And they don't seem to be aware of it nor give a damn. Frustrating that their bean counters can't do a better job of supporting the excellent writers and editors that actually create that income stream.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Inwood, WV
    Posts
    871
    I suspect that FWW has hired someone from Popular Woodworking Magazine.....
    "Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned". The Buddha

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Leland, NC
    Posts
    449
    You guys got it all wrong!

    We are starting to deal with what some nitwits like to call "Artificial Intelligence". The marketing types really love that term. It solves lots of problems for them. Obviously their programming has more "intelligence" than the customer base. So that means they are doing everything the right way because, well, their "AI" told them so.

    It seems that no one has explained to them the definition of "Crazy": Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. That is what "AI" computer programs do, the same thing, over and over. They are anything but intelligent.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    SoCal
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    19,558
    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Cohen View Post
    Their web designer must have trained in sadism.
    Alas, their web designer may not know that a country named Australia exists. I.T.'s race to the bottom continues. I retired a few years too late and carry a lot of bitterness about the collapse of pride and quality in the industry. I.T. is not alone in this today, of course.

    I feel your pain and SWMBO has learned to ignore my verbal railings against the various disciplines of I.T. 'professionals' she hears coming from down the hall when I am online. I grow weary of people who are unaware of the scale of the planet and the scope of their responsibilities.

    We often used simple litmus tests to weed out individuals who had disguised themselves as professionals. These are the folks who have hacked a career history by being their previous employer's "computer guy" just because they stayed up late playing video games or could get a printer to work most of the time.

    Giveaways used to be things like the absence of use of the 24 hour clock (it must be 17:00 hours somewhere) or the use of physical location designators including the numbers zero and one (easily confused with the letters O and I and therefor omitted).

    But, time marches on and the current wave of talent have brought with them many wonderful leaps forward along with their sloppy work methods. The 'race for cash' of the dot-coms catapulted us forward. Anyone who watches Star Trek knows the dangers of too much technology in the hands of those ill-prepared to use it.

    OMG! I've become that cranky old man in the neighborhood who yells at the kids to 'get off my lawn!'. . Just so y'all don't think I'm that guy . . . Although the folks that brought you the '57 Chevy Bel Air did a great job, I do realize they would be of minimal value at Tesla.
    Last edited by glenn bradley; 06-30-2019 at 9:03 AM.
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


  13. #13
    Glenn,
    I get it Sir. And there's nothing wrong with being angry that the high professional standards you upheld have declined so miserably. You know what an I.T. Pro is supposed to be.

    On the lighter side, were drinking Mountain Dew and living in their Mom's basement/garage other "giveaways" ?

    Fred
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    N. Texas
    Posts
    1,294
    Quote Originally Posted by Derek Cohen View Post
    ... I can be resident of Wyoming ...
    Texas would be better.

    So a big WELCOME!! And when will you be moving? I think I can get you a deal on the house 2 doors down, if I can come watch you work - - occasionally.

    ....Amazing the things we'll do for a good read.
    Molann an obair an saor.

  15. #15
    Glenn,

    I remember looking forward to new processors, and software upgrades....now I just want it all to stay the same....

    That makes me officially old too....

    Cheers,

    Rob
    ( who programmed in assembler for IBM as a co-op student)

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