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消费者可用合同利器与大公司贪婪较量
Consumers can protect themselves by fighting corporate greedy

 
受贪婪文化驱使,许多加国企业为赚取高额利润而不择手段,即使牺牲消费者利益也在所不辞。由于企业赚钱的胃口越来越大,商家拿消费者开涮的丑闻接连不断。在加拿大的大型企业名誉扫地的同时,消费者的利益受到严重威胁,而那些弱势群体,尤其老年人和新移民,极易成为大公司不良商业行为的猎取对象。

In a relentless effort to improve bottom line, many Canadian companies have adopted an aggressive culture that allows them to rake in record profits at the expense of consumers. As corporate greed reached new heights across the business landscape, scandals involving abusive practices have engulfed major Canadian corporations, leaving consumers’ interests being seriously endangered. Marginalized groups – such as seniors and immigrants – are particularly vulnerable to company’s wrongdoings. 


最近,加拿大广播公司(CBC)的电视节目"大庭广众"(Go Public)披露了贝尔员工迫于公司压力而采取 误导手段向消费者推销公司产品和服务后,该节目收到了大量消费者的投诉。根据报道, 一位连电脑都没有的老人 却毫不知情地一直向贝尔支付网络费用。另一位收到巨额账单的消费者,发现贝尔推销员向他兜售的超值产品根本就是无中生有。其他投诉贝尔的事件包括网络还没有接通就开始收费, 以及要求取消贝尔产品和服务时遇到令人难以想象的障碍等。

In the wake of CBC Go Public report that exposed the misleading sales practices by Bell employees under the company’s high-pressured sales culture, the program has received an influx of complaints from consumers who believed to be victimized by the upselling practice. One senior who did not even have a computer was charged for internet service unbeknown to them; another customer who faced a bill shock have found that a fantastic deal offered by a sales rep had never existed. Other complaints range from being charged for internet services that had yet to be installed to having a nightmare trying to cancel a product and services from Bell.


在这一桩桩令人震惊的丑闻面前,消费者自己要提高警惕和学会自我保护。除了要有消费常识外, 在与向自己兜售产品和服务的销售代表打交道时要谨慎,在决定掏钱时要做到货比三家。消费者必须掌握防止上当受骗的自我保护技巧, 不让骗子有机可乘。如果已成为贝尔客户的消费者, 可以与贝尔公司合同为利器,迫使其为其错误行为做出赔偿, 包括退赔多收的费用及为造成的损失提供补偿等。

The shocking exposure has prompted the need for consumers’ vigilance and self-protection. Apart from the common tips of treating every sales encounter with a dash of scepticism, erroring on the side of caution and giving yourself the opportunities to do due diligence before making any decision, consumers must acquire deception-protection skills that can effectively prevent themselves from falling prey to the abuse.  Existing customers can use their current contract with Bell as a leverage to demand the company to correct their wrongdoings – such as lower the excessive billing or compensating for customer’s loss. 


去年,一家贝尔的承包商在我家附近铺设光纤电缆时,意外切断了我家的天然气管道。事故造成煤气泄漏,我们一家被要求紧急疏散。为此,我和我85岁的老母亲在大门外被迫逗留了6个多小时之久,使我无法在家上班, 也无法烧晚饭 ,一家老小只好到附近的餐馆就餐。在我要求承包商赔偿遭到拒绝后,我只好找到贝尔。经过数论交涉后,我的投诉被升级到贝尔的客户服务经理。

Last year, a Bell’s contractor accidently cut off my gas line in their process to install fibre optic network in my neighbourhood. As gas was leaked out from my home, an emergency evacuation protocol was in effect, forcing my 85-year-old mother and me out of the house for as long as six hours. As a result, I was neither able to work nor to cook, and must spend extra dollars to eat at a nearby restaurant.  After my demand for compensation from the contractor failed, I contacted Bell. After a few rounds of discussion, the matter was escalated to the customer service manager.


经理: "对不起,我无法向你提供任何补偿,因为事故不是我们(贝尔)造成的。 “
“Sorry, I am unable to offer any deal, because it wasn’t us (Bell) that has caused the problem.”


“没错,但事故是贝尔雇用的承包商造成的,因此贝尔应该为承包商给客户带来的任何损失承担责任。”
“Yeah, but it was the contractor you’ve hired, and you should take responsibility for any inconvenience they’ve caused to your customer.” 


“很抱歉,夫人,我还是无法对此提供赔偿,”经理一点也不松口。
“I am sorry, ma’am. I can’t do anything at this point,” the manager dug in her heels.


显然,贝尔向由商业事故造成损失的客户提供补偿是天经地义的事。我认为同向客户多收费一样,客户经理一推625的做法是出于商家的贪婪和对消费者缺乏关心。

Apparently, Bell is obligated to provide reasonable compensations for damages caused by business malpractices. In a similar way to billing customer excessively, I believe that her refusal to customers’ legitimate claims was driven by corporate greed and lack of care for customers. 


穷途末路之际,我拿出了我的杀手锏 - 威胁要取消贝尔的服务。
Seeing no other ways to protect my interest, I resorted to the last option – threatening to cancel my services with Bell.


“我们作为贝尔的客户已有长达10几年的历史,每个月都在向贝尔上交上百元的服务费......没想到你竟然会如此拒绝一个重要客户的合理需求...如果你坚持拒付,我将别无选择,取消我所有与贝尔的合同而投奔罗渣士!“

“I’ve been a Bell customer for over decades and we’ve paying hundreds of dollars each month for your services… I can’t believe that you would refuse such a reasonable demand from a valued customer… I don’t think I have any other options except to cancel all my contract with you and switch to Rogers!”


“取消”这个词显然触动了她的神经。毕竟,作为一名客户服务经理,她必须记住一个经常被引用的统计数字,那就是要获得一名新客户所花费精力和成本是保存一名老客户的10倍!显然,如果我取消与贝尔的合同,那么他们要花上10倍的精力去误导,剥削另一名新客户。

The word “cancel” may have appealed to her on a personal level. After all, she, as a customer service manager, must remember an often-cited stat that it costs 10 times as much to get a new customer as it does to retain an old one. Apparently, if I cancel the contract with Bell, they must exploit another customer -- with ten times the misleading effort!


两个星期后,我从信箱里拿到了一张贝尔支付我误工和吃餐馆的支票。
Two weeks later, I received a cheque from Bell in the mailbox, covering the costs for my lost productivity and the family meal at the restaurant.   
 

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