With my latest issue of Running Times I received a renewal notice:
It states a one-year subscription renewal will cost $24.95. Quite frankly, I haven't enjoyed the magazine enough or gotten enough out of it to renew it at that price. And let's face it, a near 40 year old man keeping up with the exploits of high school aged runners he doesn't know is pretty skeevy anyway.
So I'm thumbing through the magazine and this card falls out:
While I'm not all that impressed with the magazine for $25, I think $10 for a one year subscription is pretty worthwhile, even if this subscription offer card is meant as a gift. There's no fine print and no reason I couldn't send the gift subscription to anyone at my address, like my daughter's goldfish Henry.
Then I thumbed a little further and this fell out:
THREE YEARS FOR $20! And there is no fine print/restrictions/etc. on who can use the card. Well that just ticked me off. They're trying to stick me, a loyal customer, with an inflated bill just because they think I'm a sucker who can't live without their magazine when they're practically giving it away to anyone else who hasn't been dubbed a rube by the magazine yet. To make it worse, the year they do charge in this offer is still $5 less than they're trying to get out of me! And they'll tack two years on to that for free! WTF!
This is sort of the same thing that happened with me and DirecTV. Verizon FiOS came to town offering me the world to switch to it, and when I called DirecTV to ask them what they'd be willing to do to keep me considering all Verizon was offering to steal me away they basically told me to go screw. Until I called back to cancel my service. THEN they wanted to do whatever it took to keep me, but it was too late.
This grovelling for subscriptions in front of me while expecting me to gladly pay the regular subscription price the way Running Times is doing it is just too much. I'm going to ignore this renewal notice and I'll look forward to each successive one getting a little more desperate for me to respond while offering me no break on the price like they would for any yokel who hasn't invested a dime into their product to this point.
If Running Times was smart it'd hook up an auto-renew the way Runner's World does. Then they could maybe at least screw me into renewing if I didn't act fast enough upon discovering how little they value me as a subscriber.