Talk the talk and walk the walk.
UPDATED. For those who haven't read the first two articles in this case, check out the first and second report here:
Company to Avoid: QMS Inc./MacPadd.com and the second:
After publishing two reports about MacPadd.com/QMS Inc./David Free, yesterday, we did not receive any further response from Free, even though we continually updated him in regards to actions we were taking. Free, has remained silent.
However, Free himself signed up for an account to Tom's Hardware (under the name meek48) comments and posted accusations about me. The following are all of Free's accusations about me and Tom's Hardware:
- I lied about ordering the product
- I asked for free products initially
- I committed extortion
- I harassed him as his home phone number
- I don't know how to use shipment tracking information
- I didn't pay for tracking information
- I lied about him and his company
- I did not provide all of the information
- I need "emotional therapy" and I am "a disturbed person"
First, we want to say that, no matter how large or small one's business is, it is simply wrong to mislead, scam, or otherwise steal your customer's money. Now, to address each of Free's accusations.
Free claims I lied about ordering the product
The following screenshot is of the original invoice, dated October 23rd, 2009. The order was for 2 aluminum MacPadds.
In the invoice, the number given for contact is (519) 429-0126.
When you call this number, the voice mail says you have reached "QMS Canada".
This is the same number listed on MacPadd.com.
Unfortunately, no one ever picks up the phone (this may have changed after our reports).
There is no other number listed on MacPadd.com and the contact address is a post office box, located in Simcoe, Ontario, Canada.
The transaction was paid using PayPal, with a transaction number of 5J82548055150974H, on October 23rd, 2009.
Free claims I demanded free samples
The following is a screenshot of the first email I sent to MacPadd.com, dated October 30th, 2009.
This initial email occurred 7 days after I placed the order.
Notice there is nothing about requesting free products. Simply, a request to respond and question about why no one answers the phone or emails. Free claims he sent the product "yesterday" which would be October 29th, 2009.
In the first email sent out, I disclosed working for media not once but twice, through my email signatures. I also informed Free of the PayPal payment transaction number. I also informed Free that if I do not receive a tracking number, I would file for a refund through PayPal.
Free responds saying he will see about giving me a tracking number.
Free claims I committed extortion
Free claims that I exerted power after the fact to try and "get free product" and get a tracking number. I think he needs to look up the word extortion. Based on the above two emails, I did not try to "get free product" and fully disclosed to Free that I was press. Extortion to get a tracking number? When was the last time someone was accused of extortion for fully paying for a product, and then having no one reply, and then demanding a tracking number?
Free claims I harassed him at his home phone number
After a futile attempt to call the business number listed on MacPadd.com, I found another number listed as a "Customer Service Phone" for MacPadd.com which is (519) 429-3141. This is the number Free claims that is his home phone number that I called to harass him at.
At this point, the number is officially listed as customer service, not "residential" or "home."
So you have three options, try emailing, try calling the main line, or try calling the customer service line. Only one of those gets answered. From roughly 12:30 PM EST to 6:30 PM EST, I attempted to call MacPadd.com's listed numbers 13 times. Only the last 3 times were they answered. This is roughly 1 call every 30 minutes to a business, who had my money, and refuses to provide shipping information.
Free claims I do not know how to use tracking information and did not pay for tracking information
In the first email screenshot, Free offers to look up the tracking information for me. He does not ask me to "pay extra" for it. In the screenshot on the left, after the dispute, Free emails me a tracking number for a Canada Post shipment: cx245270096ca
Unfortunately for Free (and myself), Canada post indicates that this number is for a shipment that occurred on October 3rd, 2009. I didn't order until October 23rd, 2009. Free appears to have sent us a fake or invalid tracking number. The live Canada Post tracking results can be seen here. Attempts to reconnect with Free for an honest tracking number are denied. As of this writing, we still don't know the real tracking information.
Free claims I lied/misrepresented his company
I really don't see how. I provided all documents, screenshots, and PayPal logs, to prove my point. Free hasn't provided anything except a statement claiming that I am wrong about him and his company on www.macpadd.com.
Free claims I exclude details from my reports
I've already pasted the first two emails in this report. The remaining 2 are above. So far, I have provided all necessary documents for my report. The same cannot be said for David Free and his business practices and ethics--of which he highlights on his site. The only details I exlucded are what Tom's Hardware readers already see in my first report.
Free claims I need emotional therapy and am a disturbed person
This may or may not be true. Sometimes I find myself pretty upset about certain things, like in this case. But I'm not the one who wanted to "start world war 3" instead of just supplying a simple tracking number. I'm also not the one who explodes and swears at their customer over the phone.
I am still boggled by the fact that Free still refuses to release a tracking number instead of continuing his charade. I can only conclude that Free took this approach because his claims were dishonest.
WHAT HAPPENS NOW
Since Free has stopped communication with us entirely to get this situation resolved, the only course of action was to provide information to the Canadian Competition Bureau and to the RCMP Fraud Prevention Department.
The CCB is a Canadian enforcement agency that helps to seek out, close, and prevent fraudulant business practices. They focus on businesses that do false advertising, display misleading claims, and just outright lie. David Free and MacPadd.com have been reported to the CCB for some of the claims listed on MacPadd.com, such as being resistant to H1N1 flu virus. MacPadd.com claims that the product is antibacterial, yet Free fails to realize that H1N1 is not a bacteria. Also, claiming false medical features is a serious misrepresentation and a serious offense. The CCB has a record of my reports, as well as a full record on David Free and MacPadd.com.
As for the RCMP Fraud Prevention Department, I spent about an hour on the phone with them. They asked for all the details I had on MacPadd.com and David Free. The RCMP FPD is also aware of these reports, as well as other reports made by MacPadd.com's previous customers.
The CCB can be reached at:
Toll-free: 1-800-348-5358 (Canada)
Toll-free TTY: 1-800-642-3844 (for hearing-impaired only)
50 Victoria Street
As for the RCMP Fraud Prevent Department, they can be reached here:
General Inquiries: 613-993-7267
Toll Free: 1-888-495-8501
Fraud Prevention Department: 1-705-495-8501
Fax: (705) 494-4008 Toll Free Fax: 1-888-654-9426
A report has already been submitted tothe CCB and the RCMP FPD. For the record, the BBB in Ontario gave MacPadd.com/QMS a "F" rating. According to the BBB report:
Based on BBB files, this business has a BBB Rating of F
- BBB does not have sufficient information to determine how long this business has been operating
- Failure to respond to complaints filed against business
- BBB does not have sufficient background information on this business
Dear Mr. David Free
You claim over the last 4 days that we here at Tom's Hardware are liars. Yet, throughout this debacle, you still refuse to produce a real, valid, honest, tracking number for a product you said shipped. You also continually say our reports are dishonest, yet have provided nothing to support your claim.
What arguments do you have left in your arsenal?
UPDATE: It appears Free has opened up a blog about Tom's Hardware and I on LiveJournal.com and linked to it from his MacPadd.com website. You can find his blog here.
UPDATE2: Free himself admits on his blog that there wasn't a tracking number for products shipped using Canada Post for travel to the USA. This claim in itself is wrong. But the most appalling part is the fact that Free forgot he emailed me a tracking number on the day of our original dispute--even though the tracking number he sent didn't work.
UPDATE3: Free removes all comments from his blog, including his own. New comments starting to appear.