Vistaprint, get fucked in the eyesocket!

The reason for the demand for optic fornication is this:

Back before Christmas my SO ordered some Xmas cards from Vistaprint online. They came to a grand total of $14.95. Money paid, cards received, everybody happy. Then, a few weeks later two charges shows up on the bank statement for $14.95 each. " WTF?", we cry. SO gets angry. Believe me, you don’t want to make my girl angry. She calls them, rips some new ass, tears out a throat or two and rearranges thoracic contents. She demands that they refund these two charges and cancel her “membership.” A membership, mind you, that she had no idea she signed up for by buying stupid xmas cards. Well, they agree, (wouldn’t you after all of that carnage?) and refund the money as well as cancelling her “membership.”

Fast forward to this morning. We are discussing our budget for the month of July and I ask her what this “Shopping Essence” charge is for in June. She looks at me like there’s a wombat eating my head. “Shopping who?” she asks. “Yep” says I.
“$14.95 is how much they charged you”
We get online and scour our accounts. Jumpin’ Jeezuz! They’ve been charging us $14.95 monthly for 6 months! Now I’m sure this part is purely coincidental :rolleyes: as the charges began a week after we cancelled and received the refund from frickin’ VistaPrint.
So, little bored at work today Chao decides to do some research online. Holy shit these people have built an empire out of ripping people off. They are part of this huge buying group that pulls this shit on their customers and shares the account info with all of their subsidiaries. I found tons of complaints online from people who’ve been ripped off just like us and the Better Business Bureau report is pages long.
So I called our bank’s fraud department and filed a dispute against the charges. Kind Bank Lady says we can only dispute as recently as 3 months ago. “Not acceptable” I reply. “I want all 6 charges disputed since these charges were made fraudulently” I went on to explain how I was sitting in front of a stack of papers I printed off about the fraudulent practices of this company. She acquiesced and said she would file disputes against all of the charges.
I then hang up with Kind Bank Lady and start a file. I’m kickin’ ass and takin’ names.
Now it’s time to call Shopping Fucking Essentials. I call the number that’s on the bank statement next to their bullshit charges. A man answers, a man who clearly is benefiting from a common practice called “outsourcing.” He cheerfully says “Thank you for calling Vistapr…I mean Shopping Essentials how can I help you?”
Ha fucker. I tell him he just confirmed my suspicion that the two companies were pretty much one in the same. He didn’t deny it but he stammered something about a buying group, blah blah. I tell him he can help me by refunding the FRAUDULENT and ILLEGAL charges made against our account. Funny, he never denied any wrongdoing, he never asked what had happened, never asked me to explain any transactions or membership with the company. He just said, “Ok, we’ll refund this months charge.”


At this point, we experienced technical difficulties because my face exploded, missiles were launched, flesh was torn, blood was spilled, earthquakes split the lands and volcanoes reduced everything to a molten goo.

Resume play:

I calmly, yet sternly, in a voice that would’ve shaken Hannibal Lechter, told him that no, he was not going to refund only one of the ILLEGAL charges, but ALL OF THEM, since I had not received any goods or services to justify the ILLEGAL charges. And I went on about how I knew about their practices, and mentioned the Attorney General of Connecticut (where they appear to be based out of).

The shrivled little miscreant then tells me he needs to “check with his supervisor.”
I tell him to go ahead and do that in my best Dirty Harry voice.
After 5 long minutes of brain numbing hold music, the little simpleton comes back. “I’ve got good news!” he squeals. “We can refund ALL of your money”
“Good” I say flatly. “When will I see this money?”
“Three business days” he replies like a true confidence man.

I get his name, I get his employee ID # which is mostly likely as fake as Joan River’s face then I snarl and hang up.

So, tonight, the SO and I are off to the bank to get a new card and we wait and see if we get our $89.70 back from either the fucking dickless wonders that ripped us off or from our bank which is obligated to help us deal with such fraud.

Hey, I know it’s only $89.70, it could’ve been worse, but it’s the principle.

Letters are being written, complaints are being filed, skullfucking will ensue.

Goddammit I’m pissed. :mad:

Good job. I hope you get it all back and good on you for being polite to the telephone underlings.

If you don’t get it, dispute the charges. Usually 6 months is the limit though, so act soon.

Oh yeah, that’s the first thing I did. The bank claimed I could only dispute up to 3 months. I told them I was disputing all 6 months worth. They accepted.

I just don’t understand how companies like this can remain in business. Their BBB report reads like a rap sheet.

So then were saving the other one for later? Oh joy!

Yes. Yes we are saving the other socket for later. Why do you ask?

Well, it was probably smart to be nice to the guy, as that’s more likely to get her money back, but let’s not pretend this guy’s an innocent in this. Considering the volume of complaints Chao unearthed, and his reactions to her refund demands, it’s pretty clear that he knows he’s working for thieves, and being paid with stolen funds. Which makes him every bit as much of a thief as his bosses.

Wow weird - I was just going through my mail and I noticed an ad for VistaPrint (before I read this thread). For some reason it caught my eye, but I don’t remember if it was because it was a good deal or seemed too good to be true (it was for business cards).

I don’t know if it was in one of my credit card statements or an ad in the monthly magazine from the Council of Smaller Enterprises my company belongs to. If it’s from the latter, I might just write COSE a letter and tell them what scammers these guys are.

Uh, if you cancel your account number now, how will they apply the refund three days later? The merchant only has your old number. Get your refund first or have them send it by check.

As far as Vistaprint goes, I love them for the quick and easy service they provide me frequently. However, it’s easy to fall for their sales tactics and I find their offers misleading and annoying. I just want to print some postcards, dammit, and I don’t need stickers, stamps, letterhead, envelopes or magnetic refrigerator magnets with my name on them even if it is a “special offer for a limited time only!”

Yeah, telephone minion isn’t wholly innocent here, but I doubt the guy goes home to his mansion and swims in his vault of gold dubloons.

Banks have all that stuff linked together. I’ve had to get a new card and the credit union honored all the charges to the old one.


Well, no, but a petty thief is still a thief.

Charges or credits? If they honored charges, why change numbers, as you haven’t gained any security. Don’t you mean credits?

Nope. I lost my card and had to get a new one. I knew I had some outstanding charges and asked about them. The credit union person said that they have ways of dealing with those and that I shouldn’t worry about them not being honored. But once the outstanding charges went through, the old card would no longer be valid.


I’m reading Crazy '08, a book about the 1908 baseball season (and related matters), and there’s a story about Ty Cobb holding out for a better contract at the start of the season.

“It’s not about the principle of the thing” he says. “I want the money”.

Are they charging you money for your username on vistaprint? What membership are you speaking about because I’m wondering if I’ve been charged one monthly. Anyhow I’ve bought stationary, magnets and envelopes from them twice and they’ve been pretty good so far. Although I’ve never checked to see if I was overcharged but we haven’t noticed anything out of the ordinary. Is this common for Vistaprint? You’re getting me worried that I’m choosing an online service from a scammer. I hope things work out for you.

This is not an issue, since the account number won’t be cancelled. Instead the cardnumber will be cancelled and a new one issued. Depending on the cancellation code attached to the old cardnumber, transactions coming through on it after the cancellation date may be handled in different ways, but the card issuer will still be able to pass them through to the account holder if they wish.

I had a similar experience with After making a purchase, I was offered a coupon for $10 off on future purchases. Apparently, merely clicking on the coupon offer signed me up for Travel Values Plus, and a $9.95 charge every month. I caught it after a couple of months, and went through what you did to finally get them reversed.

I guess it depends on what you mean by “outstanding”. I have changed card numbers on occasion just to prevent charges from being applied, and if any came in after the date and time I cancelled the old number, I would be very upset. That was the whole point.

OTOH, I wouldn’t mind if credits were applied thru the old card number as long as I got the money in the long run.

Then I guess my credit union operates under different procedures, since I don’t have to get a new number to keep unwanted charges from hitting my account. The last time I had an unwanted charge, I just went down to the local branch and they took care of it for me.

Basically, what the credit union does is they cancel the number, issue a new one, but any charges made under the old number before the cancellation will still be posted. After the cancellation, all bets are off.