Barnes & Noble NOOKcolor is frauding its customers | Gripevine
My NOOKcolor used to be okay till 1 Nov 2011. Then B&N changed its software & website, and everything good about this product was destroyed. Now they've changed it again, and it's worse than ever.
Over 1.8 free books but all self-published (most by Smashwords) and so poorly written they're not worth your time. Because of the way the books are arranged, you get the same books coming up over and over, with absolutely no way to search among the free boooks for particular titles or authors. So, review the books and tell other readers that they're poor quality, you suggest. Ah, there's the rub.
B&N claims you can share reviews with friends, but the latest software updates took all names, pennames, and titles off reviews.
Kids keep "reviewing" books but, instead, are trying to start Justin Bieber fan clubs; then adults get on & "review" same book by telling kids, who admit they're only 10-12 (violation of user terms in itself), to "shut up" and "go do their homework" (TIGER EYE by M Liu).
B&N's "Most useful critical review" under Suzanne Collins' THE HUNGER GAMES is a link to a pirated Chinese version (free, no royalties for author), yet B&N won't remove it, no matter how many times I've flagged it, written to them about it, and called them. They claimed that they didn't understand what my complaint was about. How about, Intellectual Property Theft?
Also, people are using THE HUNGER GAMES reviews as chat rooms, sexting sites, etc. No matter how many times inappropriate "reviews" are flagged, they remain posted, wasting readers' valuable time. I even contacted corporate offices in NY and was told, 2 weeks later, that the off-topic reviews "weren't hurting anybody". How about potential readers? How about author's sales? They ignored me after my initial complaints and requests that these very inappropriate reviews be removed.
Also, you can post reviews without purchasing the books (something Amazon never allows), and, more horrifying to me as an author and editor myself, I was specifically instructed to do so by B&N's customer support from my NOOKcolor and from my computer (two different reviews, both "bad" as instructed, with words I'd recognize, from different places - the Nook itself and the B&N website - to determine if my reviews would show. They did, but I'd never read the book. I immediately asked that those pseudo-reviews be removed. Customer Support asked, "Why?" Because I'd never read the books and was told by customer service to write a bad review, that's why. As of the Planting of this Gripe, the bad reviews I was instructed to write about books I'd never read (or even heard of: they picked the books) are still on-site.
You can also give products stars, like 5 out of 5, without purchasing books, writing anything, and doing it from multiple devices (apparently, each device registers separately, so the starred blank reviews all get listed: self-published authors, friends, family, enemies: anyone can star & review books without ever purchasing them or reading them). To an author, editor at a publishing house, and avid reader, this is absolutely horrifying.
And customer support? What a joke! The people who operate the 800-the-book line can't speak English, don't know the product, promise you - no, GUARANTEE ON THEIR WORD OF HONOR to follow up on your problems & issues, but do not.
Since I didn't get resolution from them, I contacted the NY corporate office. I've written more than 9 original emails, gotten 3 supervisors, and written 15 follow-up emails asking for help with same issues (reviews flagged as inappropriate & removed from site/NookColor when they're 5* reviews with praise! Penname taken off all reviews! Free books which include graphic pedophilia reported but still for sale on site (Z A Maxfield WHEN ANGELS FALL)!
I even sent a copy of my emails to customer service to the CEO, Mr. Lynch. No response from anyone.
Phone Customer service for the Nook does not speak English as native tongue! Neither do supervisors! No one does follow-up! Software updates ruined product AND website & No one at B&N cares.
Corporate offices answered one phone call, told me I was worried about nothing, then never responded to any of my other emails.
Tired of non-English-speaking customer support reps who make you spell your name 300 times and tell you they'll personally look into it and get back to you BY PHONE no later than 7-10 days (it's been over 15 weeks)!
I want a full refund for my NOOK color since it is useless as an e-book reader for all the reasons listed above. It is useless to me as a reader, an author, an editor, and a publisher. I have my receipt, the original packaging, etc. I have been trying to get a refund ever since the B&N Nook site stopped working on 1 November 2011 and the NOOKcolor began malfunctioning (only B&N claims that it's a software issue that they'll have fixed within 24 hours. For the last 5 months...)
The Kindle Fire is magnificent, works perfectly, customer support calls YOU within 2 minutes of online request (which can be made from Tablet itself) anf they are Americans who speak English perfectly & don't lie about when or how issues will be resolved! Also, I had a problem with my KindleFire the other day, and the rep told me that people have been calling and asking if they could download the Kindle.app software onto the Nook and use it as a Kindle instead, so I'm not the only one who's having serious problems with the Nook, with B&N, etc.
All I want is a refund since this is worthless to me as an author, reader, editor, and publisher's employee whose company is moving into ebooks as we will never publish with a company that does not require reviewers to purchase books before posting reviews, that does not remove inappropriate chatroom/dating/sexting comments which are placed in review section of books, arbitrarily removes someone's good reviews about a book (after I complained several times about other reviews - coincidence? I think not), does not follow up on customer complaints (and, in fact, ignores them even if you write to their corporate offices).
I bought the $249 + tax NOOKcolor to use it to view our authors' books once they're published as e-books, but am horrified by what's happening on the NOOK. We will not be publishing any of our authors' books with Barnes & Noble, and I simply cannot get a resolution, despite my months of trying, my contacting corporate, my very detailed complaints (always politely presented: I'm a professional, even if they aren't).
I'd like a refund.
I'm sticking with the KindleFire and the reliable, dependable, honorable Amazon.
Adah (pseudonym, so they won't de-activate my account)
My address is my real company address. Don't take messages on phone (all cell phones), so can't verify my phone, though I tried several times. If you contact me privately, I'll give you a phone number to verify me, as well as my real name.