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Friday, March 03, 2006


Holy Cow, He Called Me a F&@#ing A-Hole and threatened to sue my F-ing Ass

I've read accounts like this on Boardgamegeek for years now. I thought it was just... well... I didn't know what to think. You gotta take what you read on the net with a ten pound grain of salt, but there has to be some grain of truth to so many reports...

Ordered Antiquity from Boulder games a couple weeks ago. Ordered one game, got charged $36.78 for priority shipping which is the only shipping option to Alaska. A little steep, but OK, I'm going in with eyes wide open, and I'll have the game in 2-3 days.

Still I have no game. I went back and looked at my e-mail receipt and I noted that they sent the game parcel post.

(Disclaimer: I am well aware that Boulder games advertises low prices and recoups some of that by charging a little extra for shipping and handling. I am a capitalist, I understand marketing. I don't begrudge them making a buck. Like I said, I was prepared to pay an extra shipping fee with the understanding that the game was sent by priority mail.)

Well crap, no wonder I still don't have my game. $36.78 is a pretty hefty shipping charge for one game. Since the game wasn't sent by priority mail I decided to dispute the shipping charge. I called the credit card company and estimated that the difference in shipping is probably $15 to $20. The guy at the credit card company entered $20.

Of course $20 is probably a little on the high side, but I don't yet have the package to calculate the difference in postage. When I get the package I will correct that figure either up or down, I'm not interested in screwing anyone.

After I called the credit card company I called Boulder games to notify them of the reason for the dispute.

Holy Crap! What did Boulder Jim have to say, you ask? Don't ask.

I was leaving a message on the answering machine, I gave my name, address and such, as soon as I mentioned "dispute the charges" someone answered the phone and I got an earful.

Of course he told me that I should have e-mailed him first. Haaaaaaaaaaa, hooooooooo, haaaaaaaaaaaaa. No kidding. The guy who wouldn't respond to my inquiries for over a year as to why his software was charging me for "military base shipping" (which is outrageous, btw. Military shipping bumps a $40 game to $120 after shipping, no kidding, at least according to Boulder calculations) thinks I should trust him with another e-mail.

Haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa, haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa. Any way, when I got done laughing (figuratively speaking) I told him that he had never responded to e-mails in the past. He called me a "F-ing liar", went on to say that anyone who states he doesn't respond to e-mail is a "God-Damned liar". No kidding.

It just degenerated from there. I put the phone down and ran to my room to grab a digital recorder. Couldn't find it, but when I got back he was still ranting, didn't even notice that I had been gone for nearly a minute, hadn't even taken a breath I don't think.

He could not get it through his head that I wasn't disputing the entire charge, just the excess shipping. He kept going on and on and on and on and on and on about how he was getting screwed out of $180.

I just hung up when he threatened to "sue my f-ing ass".

If you read this, just relax Jim. I'll take the package to the post office and ask how much it would have been to ship it with priority mail. I'll subtract that number from the actual shipping and dispute that amount. You'll still get your "handling charge". The only thing you lost is my business. Now that the military shipping glitch is fixed I might have utilized Boulder games more often.

As I said on the phone, in the off chance that the game was sent priority and the game is stuck in the postal system I'll drop the dispute.


Son of a gun. In the 20 minutes since I posted this "Here I Stand" just arrived from GMT games. It was sent 3 days ago via Priority Mail and cost $9 in postage. The total amount of my dispute with Boulder games will probably be less than $5.

For Five stinking dollars he lost my business and threatened to sue me.

You go Jim.

Next Edit:

Several years ago Boulder games published a game newsletter on their website. It was pretty good. I submitted an article that was published. Compensation for contributions was a $10 store credit. I tried to use my store credit on numerous occasions and it was never accepted. I contacted Boulder games 3 or 4 times asking about that. Do you think I ever got a response? I must have missed it because he responds to every e-mail.

What a loser. The more I think about it the madder I get. I'm going to get off the computer right now and go watch Veggie Tales. That should put me in a better mood.

Sorry, I know you didn't mean it, but it's a hilarious story. Great!
Thanks, and am glad you got your game...
Yeah, the "Alaska shipping" kills me when I try to order some items from Amazon. You know, export controlled items like memory sticks.
Going to watch Veggie Tales when we get infuriated by morons is a practice we should all adopt. There's very few sour moods that Bob and Larry can't fix.

If it makes you feel any better, your story caused Boulder Games to lose all my business too. Granted, I probably would never have ordered from them, but now I certainly won't.

I've had good experiences with Boards and Bits, and my local gaming group swears by ThoughtHammer.
Great story! I had similar (far less rude) dealings with another vendor a while back, and reached exactly the same conclusion.

It's a shame, really. Boulder used to be such a pioneer in discount mailorder board games, and back in the day their service was topnotch. I don't know what's going on with Jim but I do know he's made a blunder or two, this one included.

There was a long time period where I wouldn't deal with anyone else, now I use ThoughtHammer for a lot of my mail order business.

I've ordered from Boulder a few times in the past and have never had any problem.

Of course that must have been a couple years ago. The whole "military base shipping" glitch started well over a year ago.
I have always found Jim extremely easy to work with and resolve any problems in my favor. More than once.

If you have a dispute with a retailer you should contact them first.
Instead, you called your credit card company to dispute the charge.

People make mistakes, but your first reaction was to save your $20.
You didn't even call Boulder to question what happened to give them the benefit of an explanation.

An associate of mine once said to me

When YOU make a mistake, do other people ASSUME you're out to screw them? I think not.
Would you like it if they did?
Would you want your boss to react to a mistake that you made the way you reacted to Jim?

You were obviously angry from the tone of your post, and Jim it seems, responded in kind.
If you treat people with respect, they usually give it back.
I will grant you that someone in retail should have patience and be respectful.

I have received bonus credits for rebates on orders, etc. from Boulder Games and never had one hitch redeeming them.

I feel it unsettling that you would disparage someone's business the way you have.
In fact, from your tone and actions I would say that you were incendiary and inappropriate.
Yet you take no responsibility for your actions.

Do you know what it's like to runs a small business?
Do you know how easy it is to make a mistake?
Do you know that sometimes employees mess up your well oiled business plans?
Do you know that people don't make mistakes intentionally?
Do you think Jim was out to get you for $20 lousy bucks?

I repeat
People that screw other people assume that people are out to screw them.

From your behavior, I would say that I am probably pretty close to home.

Coldfoot? No. Cold heart.
I mentioned that I ran to my room to grab a voice recorder, but couldn't find one.

That is not entirely true. For the sake of brevity I skipped the entire story. I grabbed my recorder, ran back to the phone and... and... the battery was dead. I set it down. Yesterday I went to change the battery and what to my wondering eyes should appear, but something was recorded.

Apparently the battery was too weak to light up the LED lights, but did record. It only recorded my side of the conversation (and 30 minutes afterward), because I set it down assuming it wasn't working.

I considered posting the recording as an audio post. I decided not to just because I want to get this eposode behind me, and someone would accuse me of faking it.

I listened to it. I was not angry. I think I mostly sound appalled.

Furthermore, I have a two year history of trying to contact Boulder games for various reasons. He has never responded to my inquiries... EVAR.

Furthermore, I have never disputed a charge before. I had no idea how to do it. I had some vague idea that if I disputed it I would need to do so within 10-20 days and if I was going to do it I would need to do it soon.

I contacted the credit card company to ask what the time limit for a dispute was. I was on hold for 40 minutes. The credit card employee suggested I dispute the charge now and I could adjust it or drop the dispute later with no repurcussions.

As soon as I got off the phone with the Credit Card Company I called Boulder games. And I mean as soon as I got off the phone with the CC company.

I CALLED BECAUSE I KNOW THAT BOULDER GAMES DOES NOT ANSWER E-MAIL, AND I WANTED TO MAKE SURE THE ISSUE WAS HANDLED AS PAINLESSLY AS POSSIBLE. Don't give me any crap about wanting to screw anyone, or that I was assuming that I was getting screwed.

I considered it an honest mistake. I also figured that I would have to actually dispute the charge to get a response from Boulder games based upon my previous experience with them.

It was Jim who was assuming that it was I who was out to screw him as he repeated over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over.

I asked Jim several times to simply recalculate the shipping charges. He adamantly refused. Not only did he refuse he chewed me up one side and down the other.

It boils down to this. Priority was advertised, Parcel post was delivered. Jim blew it up into a big thing, much bigger than it needed to be.

Go preach to someone else about showing respect.

Start with the guy who repeatedly called me a f-ing a-hole, as I was trying to hold an intelligent conversation. You know him I assume.
yeah, as soon as the conversation starts with "f-ing" the conversation is OVAH!! That said, you should have hanged fire, waited for the item to arrive THEN called your credit card company. By the way you have 60 days by law to dispute mistakes/problems...and the clock doesn't start ticking until you receive the item and/or can show dates subsequent to that that you tried to resolve it with the merchant.
"Jim -Bould", is that long for Jimbo? Now there is a guy who doesn't derserve my business....its all about customer service, what with the internet, one can find a title virtually anywhere in the world at every price point..so its all about service.

Apparently "Jim" has forgotten that concept? or doesn't f-ing care.
I figure he's either a guy who hates what he is doing, OR really, really, really, really, really likes swearing; so much so, he'd do it at the drop of a hat to anyone, about anything including customers.
People that screw other people assume that people are out to screw them.

That's some genius analysis, there.

In a phrase, that's horse apples.

Coldfoot took action to correct a mistake where he was overcharged. He is the customer and he has every right to protect his intereste. When you hang out your shingle, you are somewhat bound behave in accordance to some ethical business standard, if not by law. Coldfoot is bound to pay for services rendered. Holding CC payments doesn't release him from that obligation, but it does protect him in exactly this situation while the issue gets resolved. That's why Credit Card companies do that sort of thing, "anonymous".
You know, I've heard of other stories like this about Jim, and I've had less than stellar customer service from him in the past (though not this bad). Methinks I should remove Boulder from my list of game companies from whom I will buy.
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