Non Sequitur: The RCA 8-Device Backlit Learning Universal Remote

RCA 8-Device Backlit LCD Learning Universal Remote ControlDate: Wed, 14 Jun 2006 08:36:42
From: Woot
To: KJToo
Subject: Woot Order Tracking Number

Kris Johnson,

Your order for 1 RCA 8 Device Backlit LCD Learning Universal Remote on 06/08/2006 has been recently shipped via FEDEX Ground.

Your tracking number is: xxxxxxxxxxx1385.

Your order may contain multiple packages that arrive on different days. If you don’t receive your entire order at the same time, please wait a couple of days after you receive your first package before contacting us at

For future reference, your order number is: xxxxx759.

Please check out the Product Forum at the following link:
[Link Removed]

Your friendly neighborhood Wootbot

Date: Mon, 19 Jun 2006 14:44:45
To: Woot Customer Service
From: Kris Johnson
Subject: Order No. xxxxx759


I have been checking the FedEx website to track my recent Woot order (#xxxxx759) for almost a week, and the status has not changed from “Package data transmitted to FedEx” since 13 June. The package was estimated to arrive on Friday, 16 June, but it has not arrived and the FedEx status has not changed.

Please advise me as to the actual status of my order.

Thank you.

Kris Johnson

Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2006 16:17:02
From: Kris Johnson
To: Woot Customer Service
Subject: Fwd: Order No. xxxxx759


Two long days have passed since my initial inquiry as to the status of my order (xxxxx759), and the FedEx website – which I checked only moments ago – still indicates that my RCA 8-device remote control is in Carrollton, TX. During those two days, my wife and I have had little choice but to rely on separate remote controls to wirelessly bend the various audio/video components that comprise our home theater system (which resides not in Carrollton, TX but Willoughby, OH) to our whims.

I had hoped that my initial inquiry would at least have resulted in a response, even if it was simply to say, “We are listening and concerned about your experience as a customer.” Alas, I have received no such communication, so I must assume that no one is listening and/or concerned.

It will be most unfortunate if I have to post a lengthy (yet eloquent and amusing) rant in my personal blog, detailing my very one-sided experience thus far with your organization. I can assure you that at least three people – one of whom is not related to me by blood or marriage – read said blog on a regular basis, so you must ask yourself if you are prepared to deal with that kind of negative publicity. I suspect that you can ill-afford to be painted as the heartless, uncaring, monolithic corporation in this case, so you may wish to at least acknowledge that my attempts at electronic communication are being received.

Yours in eroding patience,

Kris Johnson

Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2006 16:20:40
From: “Woot : Service”
To: Kris Johnson
Subject: RE: Order No. xxxxx759

I can go ahead and refund you for that order if you like, as im not sure what is going on with it. Im sorry that i have no good info for you, just being random cs employee #3, i really wish i had more to tell you : /

Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2006 16:33:21
From: Kris Johnson
To: Woot Customer Service
Subject: RE: Order No. xxxxx759

Random CS Employee #3,

Although a refund would certainly resolve the issue of me paying for a remote control that I have not yet received, I would much rather actually receive the remote. Perhaps you could make a call to Random Shipping Employee #7 to inquire as to whether they can provide you with information about the remote beyond what is available on the FedEx website (which seems to indicate that the package containing the remote was never actually picked up by FedEx). Perhaps, to stretch the hypothetical even further, Random Shipping Employee #7 could contact FedEx on behalf of and a customer whose satisfaction can still be salvaged.

If such extreme measures are beyond your capacity, then by all means refund my order.

Yours in potential gratitude,

Kris Johnson

Date: Wed, 21 Jun 2006 16:49:56
From: Woot Customer Service
To: KJToo
Subject: Your order for RCA 8 Device Backlit LCD Learning Universal Remote


Order number xxxxx759

Our records show that you ordered the RCA 8 Device Backlit LCD Learning Universal Remote during the woot-off on June 8. After shipping other woot-off orders, we discovered that we were missing a large part of the shipment from RCA . Unfortunately, your order was one of the last ones that was processed and we don’t have any more remotes to ship. We are crediting your credit card for the purchase price and are issuing a free shipping coupon code “[Code Withheld]” for use on a future order. We apologize for the inconvenience and appreciate your continued patronage.

7 thoughts on “Non Sequitur: The RCA 8-Device Backlit Learning Universal Remote”

  1. *snicker*

    Kinda like being the first person waiting at a red light.

    See the nice shiny new absolutely-gotta-have-it electronic whoosis at the unbelievable price?

    NOT YOURS!!!!!

    My ire knows no bounds, really.

  2. [Comment ID #2836 Will Be Quoted Here]

    It’s the old “bait-and-switch” with a new twist: what you’re left with after the switch is a handful of nothing!

  3. [Comment ID #2838 Will Be Quoted Here]

    As far as I can tell, Woot is an American company. It just goes to show that the Swedes don’t have a monopoly on dodgy customer service.

    If the rest of you are wondering why Rae would ask such a thing, head on over to Misfit Brew and download Episode 13. There’s a lot of great geeky goodness from Mick Bradley (including some spiffy fiction), as well as the bittersweet tale of a Scottish lass who has a run-in with a certain Swedish furniture company.

    Which Swedish furniture company? Well, that would be telling; but here’s a hint:

    Long ago, in days of yore
    It all began with a god named Thor
    There were Vikings and boats
    and some plans for a furniture store

    It’s not a bodega, it’s not a mall
    They sell things for apartments smaller
    than mine, as if there were
    apartments smaller than mine!

  4. I do believe your Swedish furniture company opened up a new store near Metro recently, causing near-orgasmic reactions from the local dames.

    Opening day saw a waiting throng of hundreds if not thousands with a full complement of Law Enforcement.

    A store opening which included directions on the digital traffic ‘billboards’, coverage by all local TV stations and as I heard, police snipers.

    One of these things is not like the other…

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