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treycranson

I find it hard to believe a Netflix Distribtution Center has no equipment for sending something through the mail. It seems they could easily have the manager of sed distribution center toss the game into a fancy red envelope with a hand written address. Liability is not really an issue because they are no more liable than actually keeping the game.

urban bohemian

Seeing as they have people to verify that the returned movie is in fact the DVD and not something else, I can't imagine that maintaining a "lost and found" of sorts is that outrageous.

That apology must be very cold comfort to that customer especially when followed right up with, "and by the way, don't forget to send back the RIGHT disc next time!" I'm betting he could spin this into a little PR nightmare for them and at least get some reimbursement equivalent to replacing the disc he sent in by mistake. Now I feel a little paranoid as well.

Account Deleted

C'mon now. We have to think about the impact to the processing of incoming discs if an operator were to stop everything, determine which customer sent in the erroneous disc, label it, and set it aside to be processed and returned later.

It's much faster for the operator to pocket the game for personal use or to sell on ebay.

Aron

They should charge him the extra 10 cents it costs them to deal with his mistake. :p

Old Timer Too

Who Killed the Customer? The "you send us one of yours and we keep it" policy is understandable, but if NF took the time to track down and verify that yes, he had returned an expensive game by mistake, then they have the time to at least mail it out. Like Aron said, charge the customer with shipping and handling, but at least have the courtesy to return it.

On the other hand, why was a game disc shipped back in the first place? I suspect it was an honest mistake and not much more than sloppiness on the part of the customer... like when I locked myself out of my condo yesterday with no keys. First time in over sixty years? Yup. Last time? Maybe and I'll be sure to be more careful next time I go get the mail...

Anyway, the customer learned a valuable lesson and maybe the rest of us did, too. If we haven't then we deserve to get the wrong series disc in the wrong envelope once in a while. That should remind us all that things like this do happen and they aren't always caught.

NF, do the right thing and return the disc.

I gotta agree, there should be some way to allow for accommodating consumer error in cases like these.
Maybe time for a little public shaming, to get them on the right track? submit this to consumerist.com, and see if they'll post it and help follow up. Most companies seem to pay attention after negative publicity on that site.

deadrose

I have done the same thing, and they sent my disk back to me, in a red envelope and a plain white cardboard sleeve. This was over a year ago, though, perhaps they've decided it's no longer cost-effective. Certainly bad PR if they *don't* return it, though.

Lamont

They do not seem to be set up to accommodate any kind of out of the ordinary situation.

I returned a disc because I lost "the white inner envelope", this was some years back. I put the disc inside a letter-sized envelope, folded and taped it shut, and put my name, address and telephone number on the outside of the inner envelope. Then I mailed it back in a regular red return envelope. I put my name and return address on that too to play it safe.


Netflix never acknowledged receiving this disc and to this day it remains shown as "lost" on my history. My mistake? Forgetting to put my e-mail address on the inner envelope.

If they would not bother to look up my account with my name and address with one of their own discs do you possibly think they could care about mailing back Cheesemold's disc? Uh uh. Does not fit into thier business model.

anonymouscoworker

My friend once mailed back a movie he had burned. Netflix mailed it back with a note saying, "You seem to have sent us a movie from your personal collection. Please send back the Netflix movie when you can. Thanks."

Lisa Wolfisch

I know this isn't the case because Netflix has returned a CD to me. The funny thing was that it wasn't my CD. I sent it back with a note.

BoB

"C'mon now. We have to think about the impact to the processing of incoming discs if an operator were to stop everything, determine which customer sent in the erroneous disc, label it, and set it aside to be processed and returned later."

No much trouble there. Every sleeve's barcode has a unique one that identifies the movie as well as which disc it is (#24 of 200 lets say). They can tell who they sent it to and who must have returned that sleeve. Easy to send it back if they want.

Why won't they anymore? The bottom line. To save as much money as they can; postage, time for an employee to do it, etc.

It all comes down to money these days. We're just material girls in a material world!

cheesemold

Yeah I would have been happy to pay for shipping.Also i emailed them before they received the disc.I watch my netflix at work on my laptop, so instead of leaving my game exposed I put in in the netflix sleeve for safe keeping.I have learned a lesson and no longer do this.Also Urban Bohemian you are right about the cold comfort of the "be sure and return our disc" line.

brianw

I got the same response about sending back my personal dvd about a month ago. I just never returned theirs. Since they just scanned in the envelope and never checked the movie inside, I never got billed for it. I even replied and told them I was going to keep it.

aw

A few months ago I sent back my 2 year old son's copy of Dumbo. I got the exact same e-mail response. I was so mad I decided I wasn't going to send their DVD back but ultimately I chickened out and sent it anyways. Thankfully Dumbo is still available on DVD so I had to shell out 20 bucks to replace it for him but what if it had been one of the Disney movies in "the vault"? It still irks me. It seems to me it would be fairly easy to set up some sort of return process for good customer service at least but what do I know.

Bunkey

Blockbuster's policy is stated:

Question
What do I do if I accidentally send you one of my personal DVDs?

Answer
Let us know that you have sent us your personal DVD by reporting in the My Queue section (to the right of the page), and select the appropriate title to report the issue. This can be done by clicking the "Report Problem" link on the right side of the page. We will try to return the DVD to you as soon as possible. However, Blockbuster cannot be held responsible for personal DVDs sent to us in error.

Netflix's policy:
Q: I accidentally returned a personal CD or DVD. How do I get it back?

A: Unfortunately, we're unable to return personal CDs or DVDs that are mistakenly sent to us.

Seems Blockbusuter is a bit more friendly.
I would assume that BB takes the same approach that stores do...try and return it to the customer.

Personally, I feel that if you make the mistake and call them directly and demand to speak to a supervisor and be firm and not take no for an answer, you can get your DVD back or make them credit you if they "disposed" of it (in someone's pocket)

Lamarr Wilson

I don't know; I'm not feeling so sorry for the customer on this one. This is clearly his fault, and it's not up to Netflix to stop operations to and inventory discs that are mailed in error. It's just one of those life lesson scenarios. I would feel the same way if I did it myself. If that can't help, then I take the loss. It never hurts to ask though, but I wouldn't put too much stock in a result anytime soon.

spiderfly

I used to work at one of the Netflix hubs. Worked there for 3 long years. When I first started we would send them back to the customer. After a year of being there, if a customer accidently sent a wrong movie or a game to us....this is what our supervisor would do....If us as employees didn't take them, the supervisor would put them through a shredder.

We would get porn, games(even newer 360 games),by now they're probably ps3 & wii games coming through.

Bunkey

In response to Spiderfly..just curious about that statement.
That sounds awfully vindictive of the supervisor. Was that policy or just the supervisor being a jerk?
I can't really compare the working at a hub to a store because I have no experience, but I worked at a very busy, understaffed Blockbuster store for 5 years and we never ever discarded a personal movie. or game. We would put it aside and not check it in. Eventually someone would get to it. We had different drawers for damages, personal tapes, etc. Most of the time the customer would contact us within a day or two but if they didn't we would call them eventually. We would get porn, homemovies and such.
It just seems wrong to destroy property due to a mistake.

pediddle

BoB, dude... can you please remember to hit the spacebar after a full stop?

/offtopic

pediddle

I mean, that would be cheesemold forgetting his spaces. If he can't remember a space, maybe that explains how he sent in the wrong disc. :-)

darthmoll

A month ago I accidently returned a movie that belonged to the library. I called netflix and they were not helpful. I took matters into my own hands I put the movie the library was missing at the top of my queue and gave the netflix's copy to the library and returned netflix's movie in that envelope. Fair trade I thing. Then I cancelled my account and am now with Blockbuster. Happy with twice as many movies and I here they actually return movies.

geo

Funny this topic would come up, as just a few days ago for the first time I inadvertently sent a "wrong" personal dvd (I'll refrain from saying exactly how I got it mixed up with the "original") to netflix. I read on the website "help" area their statement that they are unable to return personal disks sent to them by mistake. The next day i got an email from netflix entitled "Problem with your recent return". Here is the body of that email:

"It appears that you accidently returned one of your personal DVDs or CDs in a Netflix envelope. Rest assured, we will send your disc right back to you."

"If you haven't already sent back the Netflix movie you intended to return, please include it with your next return along with a note including your name and email address so we can match the movie to your account."

So... I'll have to wait and see if the website or the email has the correct information about returning personal disks...

spiderfly

In response to Bunkey....our supervisor there wasn't the brightest crayon in the box(to say the least).

We wondered why he done it too, at times we thought he did just to spite us all....but then we just started taking them so at least they weren't wasted.

type-cast

It seems this was discussed before. The best bet is to double-check every disc you return and don't count on them doing it. Maybe they will return it, maybe not. "A stitch in time saves nine." I've never made a mistake on my returns.

Milena

A few years ago, my roommate sent Netflix back one DVD from my other roommate's Felicity set. When she tried to get it back, the Netflix customer service rep said they weren't able to locate the DVD to return it, but suggested that she request the DVD from Netflix, and just keep it, saying it was lost in the mail. They assume there is going to be some loss, and as long as you don't do it often enough to flag your account, this might be a solution for Cheesemold.

ninjagrrl

Wow, that seems so very sad. I can understand why they can't mail personal discs back, but you would think that it doesn't happen very often and even though they might say they don't do it, perhaps they could for the unlucky few that make this error. Oh well, guess we just have to be extra careful that we are returning the correct movie before sealing that red envelope.

swanksalot

A couple of years ago I mistakenly sent in an audio disc (burned in iTunes). It was sent back to me, albeit cracked, with a note.

delemi

I work for NetFlix in the Mid-West. This is the process your disks go through.
4:30am US Mail drops off between 5 to 10 carts of media. About 30k to 69k keep in mind my work is one of 42 sorting facilities.
4:35am 18 to 22 employees begin opening the mailers and remove the disks looking for 5 possible problems. Quality Control - Notes by customers, Mismatch - Wrong disk or multiple disks in one sleeve, Cracks, scratches - major marks on top or bottom and Other - disks that people have used disk doctors on or bite marks (animals). If a personal disk is found the sleeve is scanned and the customer info is retrieved and the disk is returned. This week I found several Xbox 360 games and PS2 and 3 games. We find burned copies of the movies and these are never returned, not my call but we know there are laws against this.
8:00am the disks are put into a sorting machine that checks the disk in and sorts out the next list of disks to be sent out and this also records who checked the disks for problems.
8:30am Employees start repacking the disks into mailers, this is a long process that goes on till about an hour before everyone goes home.. Every mailer has a unique bar code as do the disk sleeves
9:00am The finished mailers get tabs put on them and this continues trough out the day.
10:30 The entire library of disks has been sorted and all outgoing disks are pulled to be packed.
10:35 Finished mailers begin to be ran through the sorters and both bar codes are recorded and a shipping name and address is printed on the mailer.
1:30pm The second pass is started that sorts the out going disks into regions.
2:30 The third pass is started that sorts regions into zip codes for that specific region.
3:30 to 5:30 The day ends and we all go home. Some of the times differ but it close. We MAIL ALL PERSONAL DISKS BACK unless it is a copy of one of the movies you rented that week. Don't ask which depot I work at.

delemi

I work for NetFlix in the Mid-West. This is the process your disks go through.
4:30am US Mail drops off between 5 to 10 carts of media. About 30k to 69k keep in mind my work is one of 42 sorting facilities.
4:35am 18 to 22 employees begin opening the mailers and remove the disks looking for 5 possible problems. Quality Control - Notes by customers, Mismatch - Wrong disk or multiple disks in one sleeve, Cracks, scratches - major marks on top or bottom and Other - disks that people have used disk doctors on or bite marks (animals). If a personal disk is found the sleeve is scanned and the customer info is retrieved and the disk is returned. This week I found several Xbox 360 games and PS2 and 3 games. We find burned copies of the movies and these are never returned, not my call but we know there are laws against this.
8:00am the disks are put into a sorting machine that checks the disk in and sorts out the next list of disks to be sent out and this also records who checked the disks for problems.
8:30am Employees start repacking the disks into mailers, this is a long process that goes on till about an hour before everyone goes home.. Every mailer has a unique bar code as do the disk sleeves
9:00am The finished mailers get tabs put on them and this continues trough out the day.
10:30 The entire library of disks has been sorted and all outgoing disks are pulled to be packed.
10:35 Finished mailers begin to be ran through the sorters and both bar codes are recorded and a shipping name and address is printed on the mailer.
1:30pm The second pass is started that sorts the out going disks into regions.
2:30 The third pass is started that sorts regions into zip codes for that specific region.
3:30 to 5:30 The day ends and we all go home. Some of the times differ but it close. We MAIL ALL PERSONAL DISKS BACK unless it is a copy of one of the movies you rented that week. Don't ask which depot I work at.

delemi

I work for NetFlix in the Mid-West. This is the process your disks go through.
4:30am US Mail drops off between 5 to 10 carts of media. About 30k to 69k keep in mind my work is one of 42 sorting facilities.
4:35am 18 to 22 employees begin opening the mailers and remove the disks looking for 5 possible problems. Quality Control - Notes by customers, Mismatch - Wrong disk or multiple disks in one sleeve, Cracks, scratches - major marks on top or bottom and Other - disks that people have used disk doctors on or bite marks (animals). If a personal disk is found the sleeve is scanned and the customer info is retrieved and the disk is returned. This week I found several Xbox 360 games and PS2 and 3 games. We find burned copies of the movies and these are never returned, not my call but we know there are laws against this.
8:00am the disks are put into a sorting machine that checks the disk in and sorts out the next list of disks to be sent out and this also records who checked the disks for problems.
8:30am Employees start repacking the disks into mailers, this is a long process that goes on till about an hour before everyone goes home.. Every mailer has a unique bar code as do the disk sleeves
9:00am The finished mailers get tabs put on them and this continues trough out the day.
10:30 The entire library of disks has been sorted and all outgoing disks are pulled to be packed.
10:35 Finished mailers begin to be ran through the sorters and both bar codes are recorded and a shipping name and address is printed on the mailer.
1:30pm The second pass is started that sorts the out going disks into regions.
2:30 The third pass is started that sorts regions into zip codes for that specific region.
3:30 to 5:30 The day ends and we all go home. Some of the times differ but it close. We MAIL ALL PERSONAL DISKS BACK unless it is a copy of one of the movies you rented that week. Don't ask which depot I work at.

Tabetha

Netflix sent us back a movie that we mistakenly had sent in. That was about 2 months ago. There was no additional charge or anything. Blockbuster pales in comparison to Netflix. Without a doubt. Blockbuster has longer turnaround time. Less of a selection of Blue Ray movies, and more of a wait to get the things you want. Ever decided to watch an entire season of a tv show on dvd? We do constantly, and Netflix always seems to get them out in the order we need them without mistakes, and Blockbuster will tend to skip a disc in the series so that you have to go to a local video store to rent the disc in between. And as for receiving discs with errors, or that don't play, with Netflix it happens occasionally, but with Blockbuster it happens all of the time! I subscribe to both but I definetely LOVE Netflix compared to Blockbuster.

paper shredders ratings

i think i must say Thanks for bringing this to my attention - I’ve reviewed it myself now. A very enjoyable read

Wyatt

I returned the wrong disc, and when I realised that I did, i immediatly knew what i had acciedantally sent back. I got my movie back. But inside it was not the DVD I had expected. It was one of my CDs!!

Brenna

I sent back big bang season 1. They refuse to send it back to me saying it'll mess up their inventory. Looks like I'll be cancelling netflix!

Susan

I sent back one of my husbands expensive games by accident yesterday. Less then 24hours later I got an email from Netflix saying this.
"Problem With Your Recent Return

It appears that you accidently returned one of your personal DVDs or CDs in a Netflix envelope. Rest assured, we will send your disc right back to you.

If you haven't already sent back the Netflix movie you intended to return, please include it with your next return along with a note including your name and email address so we can match the movie to your account.

-The Netflix Team"

I think they have made a lot of improvements in the last few years. We'll see how long it takes to get back to me now.

Kelly

Netflix FAQ now says:
Q:
I accidentally returned a personal CD or DVD. How do I get it back?
A:

If we can identify that a CD or DVD does not belong to us, and we recognize the customer who sent it, we will automatically return the disc.

If you return a personal DVD of a movie we carry in our own inventory, our systems unfortunately will not recognize the disc as belonging to you and we regrettably will not be able to return it.

Eli

I did pretty much the same thing - sent in Twilight Princess for Wii instead of the The Da Vinci code.

I called customer service about 4 days after sending it in, told them I was an idiot, and asked if there was any chance of getting it back. The service rep said no guarantees, but they would try to track it down and send it back to me. If they can't find it, then they'll give me a $10 credit.

I didn't ask for the credit, she actually offered. It sounded practiced, probably their standard for this situation (which probably happens often) to take a bit of the edge off losing the game if they can't return it.

She actually said that since it was a game, there was a better chance of them finding it, as it wouldn't be mistaken for one of their movies.

All in all, better than I was hoping for after reading of all the problems other people have had with this type of thing.

This was in November 2010, which is a bit after CheeseMoulds issue. Maybe they have responded to the negative publicity over this kind of stuff, or maybe it's just hit and miss, but their site says they will *try* to return personal disks now.

We'll see what happens... =o)

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