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I do admire the "passion" some of you guys have on this topic. (More than a hint of sarcasm in that sentence!)
On a lighter note my two orders came today, both had a VW polybag. I won the Lego lottery!!
I have a gold minifigure key chain on back order... I wonder if that will ship with a VW in too?
I don't understand how this company behaviour can be condoned. It doesn't matter how this is turned, spun and twisted. A contract is a contract. Take it or leave it. There is a provision for palpable unilateral mistakes, but it works a bit differently, is not applied by TLG, and wouldn't be applicable anyway:
1. It's a palpable unilateral mistake is if the mistake is palpable to the buyer - if the buyer should reasonably know that TLG made a mistake. For example, if TLG offers to sell 275 Death Stars for GBP 1.00, that is palpable and hence not enforceable, i.e. TLG can either refuse to deliver, or even pick up the Death Stars after they delivered them.
This is not the case here: It is entirely plausible that TLG would send a camper poly. Point in fact, this very thread contains reports of AFOLS who received more than one.
Even if the buyer knew about the ad, he still has two conflicting pieces of information. How would he know that it's not the ad that is wrong? This is an ambiguity on the side of Lego's marketing material and their invoices. At best, the buyer is confused, and that would be TLGs fault, not a palpable unilateral mistake.
The legal idea behind the palpable unilateral mistake is to provide protection against major financial losses or even bancrupcy due to simple errors such as typos, misprints, calculation mistakes, etc.
2. There is a very important distinction between a unilateral mistake and a palpable unilateral mistake:
- unilateral mistake: contract is still valid
- palpable unilateral mistake: contract is void
So, merely making a mistake does not excuse TLG from fulfilling the contract.
Even if this was a palpable unilateral mistake, then TLG should cancel the order. (And to be fair, if they did, I don't think there is anything you can do.) But TLG doesn't cancel the order. TLG fulfills the part it suits them, and refuses to fulfill the rest.
This is the part that bothers me. , where TLG is wrong, and where I can't understand that anyone would defend that behaviour. Not sure what your point is. A court would certainly uphold the claim for a camper and award compensation rather than forcing a reversal, that was my point. TLG's ability to deliver has nothing to do with it. If TLG can't deliver, there'd be additional compensation. Did I really have to spell that out? Good point about the contract between VW and Lego. So what do you know for a fact about it?
Interesting, if shit really hit the fan about this and it got in the press, what would VW think? ;)l
If we stop trying to convince each other that "I'm right" and "you're wrong," and accept that there will always be opposing views that we can do nothing about, it might just fade to silence, like other contentious threads have in the past.
I don't accept that people who know the rules come on here to bitch about it if they tried their luck and didn't get what they want. This site has plenty of negativity without that. Here's an idea, call Customer Services and be told by them "It's one per household". Then if you want to call your lawyer do so, and six months from now let us know the outcome...
And I have never claimed to know the agreement between VW and Lego, whereas you stated they could clearly make more. WRONG!
@mressin Please ignore my post/s above, I cannot delete them.
It is what it is, people will do as they feel fit. These are my last comments on the subject, as I was informed, all that this is doing is creating even more negativity, the thing that was winding me up in the first place.
We do need some ventilation in here, it's become a hothouse of rumors and conflicting information. Or just conflicted opinions. Just because we talk about it (a lot) doesn't mean that it corresponds with reality. It's a boatload of hypotheticals: "IF" they are doing "THIS" "THEN" x, y, and z follow, when really much of it is just our insular commentary on our own shadow puppets.
"The sky is falling!!"
The reason for that is simple. How many people here placed a second order just to see if the Camper van appeared? You them clicked "buy" and paid for the product because the camper van was included in the second order. You then didn't get the camper van, but got the product you would not have otherwise purchased in that order but for the camper van. That is strictly prohibited by consumer laws in the US. I've gotta think it is prohibited in Europe as well.
I understand consumerism and entitlement in this country has made people think they are always right, but that is not the case. The reality is people are losing power and businesses are gaining them. Remember, government now thinks corporations are people too. Consumer appeasement is unsustainable and will collapse in the near future especially with emerging Asian markets.
Oh, and I doubt a case over a polybag vs Lego would even make it to court. Why would TLG make a $5 issue even make it to court. Then again, maybe they just let it go forth to watch the plaintiff get scolded by a judge and then laughed out of court by everybody.
Worst part about class actions is that the plaintiff lawyers don't have to win huge awards for their clients. They only need to recover a nominal award (small gift card or refund) and the court will award ALL attorneys fees (which usually runs into the millions of $$). I had a case with AT&T where the consumers received a $.27 credit on their next phone bill and plaintiffs' attorney recovered $13 million in fees.
Like I said, I defend these cases, I don't file them, but if Lego came to me with this current practice, my advice would be to a) include the camper van if it appeared on the terms sheet or 2) greatly increases the scrutiny on orders where the camper van is being excluded and cancel the order before it ships. Not to do so puts them in peril. Again IMHO.
Considering thousands of real NFL players just won a class action case over REAL BRAIN injuries while the league was evidently covering stuff up and the plaintiffs only won 40% of what they were asking for, I doubt anything like this would go very far at all once the details and rules were laid out to the court.
I doubt that what was being indicated was that this issue is important enough to warrant a suit, but, the thing with lawsuits is that the fact of their existence does not necessarily correlate with their importance or frivolity. I'm sure you can think of lots of dopey examples of suits that people have brought against large corporations in the past (spilling McDonalds coffee in your own lap and then suing, etc.).
If Lego won't sort out their order system to ensure items are not automatically added when they should not, then maybe they should go down the route of making the customer add the freebie, charging for it then giving one rebate per address.
Short-sighted of them, and unfortunate for their own bottom line. They'd rather withhold their $5 item and forego a $75 sales, whose profit would be at least $25. They save $5, lose $25. So be it.
Monitor your inventory, not your shoppers.
McDonalds knew that some of its restaurants was serving coffee that was far too hot and it had no label on it's cups saying it was extremely hot. I worked at Dunkin Donuts for a couple years, they use styrofoam cups so people don't burn as easy and they buy much better machines that shut off when the pot is brewed to the right temp.
When the lady went to McDonalds she only asked they pay for her medical expenses, but McDonalds refused even though they knew they weren't supposed to serve coffee immediately after it gets off the burner. After seeing McDonald's complete disregard for the woman's safety and injuries a jury awarded her $3 million which got reduced to $.6 million by a judge. Her medical expenses were $160,000. That means 3rd degree burns to your groin are only worth about half a million. That's a steep price to pay to go sterile and have genital scaring your whole life. I mean do you really think a safe temperature of coffee is going to cause 3rd degree burns on a person even after that person has driven off and started driving?
Looking at the aftermath, McDonalds now competes with many coffee super restaurants like Dunking Donuts and Starbucks. The added customer base interested just in their coffee brings up their sales for everything else too. A $600,000 payout seems small compared the the millions in increased revenue they gained after winning a successful campaign to compete against other businesses in the coffee market through which they risked their customers safety by lesser regulated means of brewing coffee.
Compare this to the deceitful marketing tools and blatant lying in advertisement that they sell anything healthy. Sure, they've gotten a tad better now if you can call it that, but when Morgan Spurlock put out his 30 day documentary "Super Size Me" they sure did make it look like they were doing a lot to change when they were actually not changing much and just becoming more deceitful in their advertisements. It's no wonder why they account for 60-70% of the fast food industry these days.
Add all this to the advantage companies have now in the courts when they say "Look, these people are sue happy, they sue over frivolous stuff daily" all because we never were explained the facts in the first place. It's sad that a multi-billion dollar business really won big on a case in which they clearly disregarded a human beings safety.
So, I'm sorry @chromedigi , I guess the whole problem here is our definition of what is frivolous and what is not.
Well, that's pretty clear. Spend $75 twice, and get two campers. It doesnt work that way? That's not frivolous...that's misleading.
Edit: I read the terms, so I'll backpedal a bit.
LEGO® Mini Volkswagen T1 Camper Van (item 40079) offer is valid on shop.LEGO.com and at LEGO Stores from September 1 through 11:59pm EST, September 30, 2013, or while supplies last only. Qualifying purchase must be equal to or greater than $75 in merchandise only; any applicable taxes, shipping charges, or value of gift cards purchased do not apply to merchandise total. Offers exclude backorder items, and cannot be applied to previous purchases or combined with any other discount, offer or free gift. One free set per household. Set is valued at approximately a $4.99 (US) / $6.99 (CA) retail value and cannot be exchanged or substituted for any other item or cash value. Set is available exclusively through this offer; additional sets cannot be purchased. Offers not valid at LEGOLAND® Parks or LEGOLAND Discovery Centers. The LEGO Group reserves the right to cancel or modify these promotions at any time without advance notice.
I still agree that *IF they are adding it to the order, that's a "them" issue.
It's clear to me the only reason why people care about this is because it directly affects them, not because they are justified, not because the one per person promo tricked them into placing multiple orders, not because TLG is making attempts to harm their loyal customers. They are upset because they want to get a free toy and not have to spend real money for it on eBay which I assume they would if they though it was SOOOOOO cool. Oh, look it's $20 on eBay, maybe people are upset because they don't view it as a free toy but rather a $20 bill which wasn't included in their box. Oh, well too bad
It's weird to me that a customer would get one with each $75 purchase at a physical store, and they add it to an online order...but drop it after the fact. Along with all the inconsistency of people getting 2 or getting 1, blah blah blah.
People have a right to scratch their heads, and say "huh?"
1) Lego offers a promotion of a freebie with purchase (with a limit).
2) You buy one and receive.
3) You like the freebie, so you fill out a second order that you wouldn't normally order and the freebie is automatically placed in your cart.
4) You go to the checkout and the freebie is in your cart
5) You receive your final invoice and pay and the freebie is included.
6) You receive your package and the freebie is not included.
7) You are out $4.99 for the freebie and the $75 minimum for the order you really only ordered because of the freebie.
8) Multiply buy 1,000 or 10,000 or 50,000 transactions and this is what the company is profiting by? They are allegedly misleading the consumer at the point of purchase, according to consumer laws.
The fact that there was limiting language in the offer is immaterial because the party placing the limits allowed the freebie to be part of the transaction at the point of sale. At that point, they have waived the limits and MUST deliver what was included on the original invoice.
Damages are damages whether they are NFL concussions or small $5 transactions multiplied thousands of times. Class action lawyers don't care what the damages are to the individual class members, they only care what kinds of fees they can generate. Those fees are not related to the actual damages alleged or won by the individual class members.
To bring it to this situation, a savvy plaintiff lawyer in my particular jurisdiction (Madison County, Illinois...Google it and "class action" and see what you get.) would have no problem making an argument that his class clients were deprived not only of the freebie, but were enticed by the offer to spend money they otherwise would not have spent. Regardless of the limits on the website, they were allowed to include that freebie in the transaction. This is a case that could be filed and might have some legs in the hands of the right lawyer and in the right courtroom.
Lego could simply eliminate this by enforcement before checkout or enforcement before payment and delivery.
I am not offering this as an endorsement or defense of the law, just simply stating a fact that this could occur if Lego was not more mindful of how its policies are implemented. I'm sure there will be responses as to how ridiculous the system or the laws are, but to apply the current law to the current situation, what I have stated here is fact. If I were asked to advise Lego, I would advise them to change their practice.
Like "oh this guy says he wants to sue us here"
"we better go out of our way and reverse changes because this guy anonymously states he's going to form a class action suit"
This attitude severely overly states the importance some consumers have to Lego
Again, I am not advocating this, simply stating that the elements are there for an argument to be made.
I got my email confirmation and the promo is in it, so it will be interesting to see if I receive my second promo or not. They seem to be implementing weird techniques which I can only assume is their attempts at targeting certain suspected "abusers" and then persuading them to minimize their habits. It's hard to say who buys too much and who is just buying for themselves based on many different types of customers, but I would assume by now they have a couple years of data to determine some customers that are less beneficial than others.
outside of limited items (promos or things like 41999), why would a company not want to sell more product to a willing buyer? It's not like they don't have as many of random set X (exclusive or otherwise) as they can sell. As a manufacturer and a retailer, they should want to sell as many widgets as possible.
Implementing policies where orders are reviewed and judgments are made such as "hey, this guy already bought two death stars, we better refuse the sale on number 3" are, to be frank, insane.
Again, brand new, discounted, or limited items - hey, no problem. weekly or per order limits. again, no problem. but lifetime maximums on sets produced by the hundreds of thousands or millions? Wow, I just don't see any rational reason for that.
Sorry, no sympathy here.
No mention of anything that justifies removing promotional items or modifying the order in any way. If anything, it's the other way round: TLG adds a free poly to the invoice when they have no intention of fulfilling the deal.
Why can you only assume they are targeting anyone? Is it not another perfectly reasonable possibility that this polybag was made in smaller quantities than usual and they are trying to ensure that this reaches as many households as possible?
You are right though, there are other possible reasons and I am going to try and stop speculating.
It instantly gets attention, and from pretty high up in the company.
Maybe not the best attention, maybe the company doesn't like it very much, but it draws far more attention far faster than an e-mail to customer service.
If I filed such a lawsuit and TLG quickly said, "you're right, please let us fix this", I'd be happy to drop the suit in exchange for them simply sending out polybags to anyone who had them in their cart at the time of checkout.
All TLG has to do here is stop putting them in the cart at time of checkout, it is really a simple thing, far easier than manually removing them from some (but not all) orders after the fact.
Just because someone puts something in T&C doesn't make it enforceable or legal.
TLG could perhaps properly manage their promotions and not cause the problem in the first place.
They don't have the excuse of not being able to afford competent legal advice. :)
We are not a nation of men with opinions and "mob justice", we are a nation of laws.
The law is the law, the court's job is to read the law and interpret its meaning and to settle disputes between two or more parties who disagree on what it means or who have wronged someone.
If you don't like the law, there is a peaceful system in which to change it via the legislative process.
This is a far superior system to how many other countries in the world do it, either via direct bribes (Mexico) or outright war (Syria).
I'll take the USA version any day.