Tuesday, May 24, 2011

If you get one of these, throw it away!  Right click on the picture and click on "open
in a new window" for a better view.



I wanted to share the above "magazine renewal form" we have received in the mail, because it is fraudulent.  You will actually receive a subscription to the magazine in question, but it is not sent out by the magazine, but by a third party firm, United Publishers Services, in Reno, Nevada.  They charge $59.95 for a two year subscription, and Countryside Magazine actually charges $30 for two years  as you can see here.  In a recent issue of the magazine, Countryside Magazine displayed a picture of the form and said it is fraudulent and not affiliated with them. 

On the back of the form, United Publishers Services acknowledges that they are an independent subscription agent, and that you are automatically enrolled in "Orphans Waiting," a nonprofit group, where, they'd have you assume, some portion of the 100% markup on the magazine subscription is going.  The Better Business Bureau gives United Publishers Services an "F" rating here.  Ripoff Report says Orphans Waiting is a scam here.  I tried calling Orphans Waiting, but "no one is available to answer" my call. 

Donating money to help orphans is a worthy cause.  But I think most people would like to donate on their own instead of through an overpriced magazine subscription, if any of the money even does go to the orphans.  I guess the only way United Publishers Services stays in business is because they actually do give you the product you pay for, albeit at an inflated price.  As always, buyer beware! Double-check the price of those magazine subscriptions you pay for before you write the check, and if you get a form like the above one in the mail, throw it away.

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