More pricing glitches for

On last Thursday, price savvy DVD shoppers placed dozens of orders for drastically discounted movies and box sets such as the The Beatles DVD Collector’s Set. But Seattle-based Amazon has since told customers that the prices–some were more than 75 percent off the list price–were a mistake and has asked customers to pay the higher price or cancel their orders.

That has several saying they will not return to the leading e-tailer.

‘This is the last time I will do business with Amazon, ’ said Bristol, Conn., resident Michael Cucka, who was asked to pay $79.99 for the Jet Li Collection–Box Set that he originally ordered for $16.99. ‘There are too many other places online that don’t pull stunts like that.’

Amazon spokesman Bill Curry declined to give details on the problem or on how many customers or DVD titles were affected, saying only that it was a ‘temporary glitch.’ Curry said Amazon sent email notices to customers warning of the price change n accordance with the policy on our site.’

‘End of story,’ Curry said.

The pricing glitch is the second in two months at the e-tail giant. Last month, a similar problem in Amazon’s toy store led to dozens of orders, some of which Amazon actually shipped. In response, several customers, upset by what they felt was deceptive advertising and unfair treatment, filed complaints with the Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau about Amazon’s handling of the toy store glitch.

The DVD store glitch also comes on the heels of a price test in Amazon’s DVD department (see below). Early last week, Amazon tested out different prices on dozens of its top-selling DVDs. The variable prices meant that one customer could pay up to $15 more for the same DVD than another customer, even if they placed their orders at the same time.

Unlike the price test, the glitch seems to have led to far greater discounts on a more limited selection of titles. And the discounted prices were available to all customers. Availability dates were also affected. Curry said he did not know why the availability dates had changed.

Several customers speculated that the discounted DVD prices might be related to the price test from earlier in the week. Max Armstrong, of Scottsdale, Ariz., said at least one Amazon customer-service representative told him the discounted prices were part of the price test. Armstrong, who runs his own computer consulting business, called on Amazon to honor the discounted prices.

And for another war front, read on…

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