Our temp designer's little boy likes the old 1966 Batman TV series (and really, who doesn't. Great camp series.), so our guy's been trying to find the series on DVD. After a look around online, he found a store that did indeed have it. Ordered it up and waited for UPS to send some classic comic book superhero TV.
And waited. A check of status indicated that his order shipped from Beijing, China.
Uh oh. That hint of scarlet is the first red flag being run up the flagpole.
He got his Batman boxed set. 16 discs-in what appears to be a videocassette box. The box cover looks like it was done by a five-year-old and run off on a mimeograph. The DVDs have cheap decals glued on them, and someone actually wrote the disc number on with a ballpoint pen! The store does say that the DVD sets are 'custom crafted'.
They also say that the DVD's will work equally well in all regions. This is true. They don't work on ANY DVD player. He got one to run from his DVD burner and he snapped a picture of the title screen for us to see. The screen has a picture that honest to God looks like someone ripped out of a Batman comic. Special features? Noooo. Just a 'Play All' button.
I got a good laugh out of this, but not at our guy for getting taken. Rather, it was the just horrible quality of this particular bunch. Good God on a bicycle. You pirates, take a little pride in your work! Turn out a product that has a little bit of production value. At least make the DVD case look good. Even a crap computer would help you do better than what I saw.
I'd love to see these people try to do counterfeit money. They'd probably run off an enlarged copy of a Monopoly dollar, stick a picture of Bill Clinton on it, handwrite 'THE UNTIED STATES OF AMERICA' (that was the spelling I meant) on the top, and call it good.
I hope he can get his money back (if he did the transaction with Paypal, he might. Fat chance from the store). Hell, I hope this bunch don't steal his credit/debit card number to clean him out. Of course, the website has no physical address, just a page to request an email response.
Amazing places countries like India and China must be. High-tech factories making electronic stuff that we buy, right alongside several hundred million people turning out complete and utter and in many cases illegal crap in their hutung factories. One hopes their military equipment is built by the latter and not the former.
I don't know it I should use my blog to be a consumer advocate. It probably isn't my place to say anything good or bad about someone's particular enterprise. So I won't strongly advise you to steer clear of Epic DVD Store if you should run across it in your travels and shopping in cyberspace. And I don't know any of the parties involved with the company, so I can't really in good conscience call them a bunch of minor-league copyright pirates. Did I say pirates? I meant parties. Damn dyslexia... And I don't speak Latin, so I'm not quite sure I know the meaning of caveat emptor.
Just another reason to be doubly careful when doing online shopping, especially with the holidays coming up.