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Topic # 89308 30-Aug-2011 17:55
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And so the story begins...

Last week I started looking into buying an iPhone 4 and a plan to go with it, needless to say I was pretty gutted when I saw I had just missed out (by a couple of days) on getting in on the now "old" smart plans on Vodafone. Except while I was browsing the Vodafone website I was directed to one page that was still advertising the old plan... after they had been "retired".

The page in question was http://www.vodafone.co.nz/mobile-data/mobile-web (as of today it has now been updated)

But if you have a look at Google's cached page of the same page which can be found at http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:sOqtS_urVnoJ:www.vodafone.co.nz/mobile-data/mobile-web/+www.vodafone.co.nz/mobile-data/mobile-web&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=nz&source=www.google.co.nz
you can see that (as long as Google hasn't re-indexed it) it clearly shows that it was indexed on the 25th of August 2011 and at that time still showed the old plans. Keeping in mind that according to the Vodafone Forum customers only had until the 23rd of August 2011 to purchase a (old) Smart Plan.
Heres the link for your reference http://forum.vodafone.co.nz/topic/8474-3gb-for-the-life-of-your-smart-plan/page__pid__66623__st__0&#entry66623

Upon discovering this I had a look at the Commerce Commission website (specifically the Fair Trading Act Fact Sheet) and it basically says (and I summarise) "Its the responsibility of the business to keep its website up-to-date with advertising and promos so as to not mislead its customers (or potential customers).

I informed Vodafone of this and all I got was a "Thanks For Your Email", two in fact. It's not as though I'm saying "Give me a free iPhone and a free plan or I'll dob you in", because I'm NOT saying that. All I want is the opportunity to purchase an iPhone and Plan that I saw advertised (whether or not they were still selling them).

Fair?

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  Reply # 514023 30-Aug-2011 17:58
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Google is based in the USA, so those times and dates would likely not be NZ time. Also the cache date could be delayed and not 100% accurate. I have had problems with websites and them being out of date. In one case a very large NZ company who website was showing a promotion as well as incorrect pricing that was over 6 weeks out of date.



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  Reply # 514027 30-Aug-2011 18:11
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Valid point on the timezone and timing of Google's cache. Although I do know for a fact that up until either late yesterday or today Vodafone were still showing their old advertising on that page. I only really put the Google cache reference their so everyone could see what I was talking about.

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  Reply # 514030 30-Aug-2011 18:13
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bakermannz: Valid point on the timezone and timing of Google's cache. Although I do know for a fact that up until either late yesterday or today Vodafone were still showing their old advertising on that page. I only really put the Google cache reference their so everyone could see what I was talking about.


Theyshould honour it if you went into the store at the time and showed them the webpage. Or if you printed off the pages, and it had the printers time stamp on it. The google cached version may work

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  Reply # 514034 30-Aug-2011 18:26
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With timezones, wouldn't Google cache be a day behind, if anything? (eg: would say 25th when it was 26th here)

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  Reply # 514038 30-Aug-2011 18:48
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even if the website was still there, they do not have to honour it if it is a genuine mistake.

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  Reply # 514040 30-Aug-2011 19:07

NonprayingMantis: even if the website was still there, they do not have to honour it if it is a genuine mistake.


I believe that only applies to obvious mistakes made in an advertisement. Read http://www.comcom.govt.nz/media-releases/detail/2005/tonysvineyardfined3000formisleadin/

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  Reply # 514044 30-Aug-2011 19:27
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The Commission's investigation revealed that while the restaurant owner was well aware of the misrepresentations, no steps were taken to stop the offending and customers continued to be misled. "

If vodafone made a genuine mistake and, upon being notified, replaced the offending website within a reasonable amount of time, then they have not done false advertising.  This restaurant was fined because despite being told the pricing was wrong they made no changes even over a lengthy perod of time.

""They may have become so by virtue of becoming out of date but once the disparity was brought to the attention of the restaurant owner by the complainant and then by the Restaurant Association, the restaurateur took no steps to correct the disparity," said Judge Rota. "


Clearly in the case of the OP vodafone has already taken the old pages down, only a few days after the plan was withdrawn and after being notificed by the OP, a perfectly reasonable amount of time to correct a mistake.


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  Reply # 514072 30-Aug-2011 20:28
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NonprayingMantis: The Commission's investigation revealed that while the restaurant owner was well aware of the misrepresentations, no steps were taken to stop the offending and customers continued to be misled. "

If vodafone made a genuine mistake and, upon being notified, replaced the offending website within a reasonable amount of time, then they have not done false advertising.  This restaurant was fined because despite being told the pricing was wrong they made no changes even over a lengthy perod of time.

""They may have become so by virtue of becoming out of date but once the disparity was brought to the attention of the restaurant owner by the complainant and then by the Restaurant Association, the restaurateur took no steps to correct the disparity," said Judge Rota. "


Clearly in the case of the OP vodafone has already taken the old pages down, only a few days after the plan was withdrawn and after being notificed by the OP, a perfectly reasonable amount of time to correct a mistake.



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  Reply # 514111 30-Aug-2011 21:58
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blakamin: With timezones, wouldn't Google cache be a day behind, if anything? (eg: would say 25th when it was 26th here)


Yeah....whether they use PST/PDT or GMT....they will always be behind NZ.   




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  Reply # 514228 31-Aug-2011 09:19
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It did say on the website "signup before the 23rd of August to get the 3gig of data" even if you saw it on the 23rd/24th/25th then you still would not get the bonus data anyway.

Most you would get is one of the old smart plans with 250megs of data, and i don't think you would want that as the newer plans are a lot better (a part from the data side of things).



 

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  Reply # 514257 31-Aug-2011 09:56
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bakermannz:All I want is the opportunity to purchase an iPhone and Plan that I saw advertised (whether or not they were still selling them). 

So I have 3 oranges to sell and advertise them for sale, they all sell.
Next day someone comes up and says 'I want one of the oranges you advertised whether you have any left or not.'
mrtoken: It did say on the website "signup before the 23rd of August to get the 3gig of data" even if you saw it on the 23rd/24th/25th then you still would not get the bonus data anyway.

Is a webpage considered to be an advertisement?
An advert is considered to be an offer, an invitation. It's conditional on many things... time, date, number of oranges.
mrtoken: Most you would get is one of the old smart plans with 250megs of data, and i don't think you would want that as the newer plans are a lot better (a part from the data side of things). 

Unlikely, as the VF system may not have been able to offer it anymore. It may have been reconfigured. It may have been out of oranges.
 

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  Reply # 514266 31-Aug-2011 10:10

I think this is a case of trying very hard to get a promotion that is obviously over. I mean come on... You are basing your argument on Googles cache of a page of a website which is no longer available. Not to mention their promotion had an end date.

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  Reply # 514276 31-Aug-2011 10:18
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oxnsox:
bakermannz:All I want is the opportunity to purchase an iPhone and Plan that I saw advertised (whether or not they were still selling them). 

So I have 3 oranges to sell and advertise them for sale, they all sell.
Next day someone comes up and says 'I want one of the oranges you advertised whether you have any left or not.'
mrtoken: It did say on the website "signup before the 23rd of August to get the 3gig of data" even if you saw it on the 23rd/24th/25th then you still would not get the bonus data anyway.

Is a webpage considered to be an advertisement?
An advert is considered to be an offer, an invitation. It's conditional on many things... time, date, number of oranges.
mrtoken: Most you would get is one of the old smart plans with 250megs of data, and i don't think you would want that as the newer plans are a lot better (a part from the data side of things). 

Unlikely, as the VF system may not have been able to offer it anymore. It may have been reconfigured. It may have been out of oranges.
 


I was saying if he pushed the issue saying he saw it on the 24th or 25th (before the change of the website) that he could end up on 1 of the old plans however he would not get the 3gig of data as that expired on the 22nd Aug.

So its best to get the current smart plan as they are better value once you remove the 3gigs of bonus data. 

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  Reply # 514293 31-Aug-2011 10:29
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scuwp: +1

You missed out.  Build a bridge.


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  Reply # 514309 31-Aug-2011 10:46
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Look at the total cost of the handset + plan for the contract term , consider it fate... you've just dodged a bullet!

Get a nice mid-range Android or Windows Phone 7 device on prepay instead.





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