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back to article Taiwan hits Dell with $30k fine in pricing saga

The hole Dell has dug for itself in Taiwan is getting deeper; the company has been fined a million Taiwan dollars (US $30,500) for its pricing cock-up and subsequent refusal to adequately compensate consumers. Dell mistakenly priced monitors and notebooks at sub-bargain-basement prices on its online store in Taiwan on June 25 …


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a bit harsh

its an automated system and surely if mistakes are made a company cannot be made to give away free money?

Its understandable if people get sent the goods and refuse to give them back; a perfectly legitamate transaction has taken place , but if Dell notice in time and don't send the items (that the customers have not paid enough for anyway) then fair enough - refunds and apologies are all that is needed for these Taiwanese Delltards (ooh do you see what i did there...)


'merkin perspective.

Since Dell is a US company I thought a little US law perspective might be handy. (IANAL)

Bait & switch

"It’s illegal to advertise a product when you have no intention of selling that product at the advertised price. Bait and switch tactics are illegal, period. If you advertise a product, the law says that you have to intend to sell it as advertised."

Advertising Law: Mis-marked Price

" If a product is marked or advertised at a certain price, your state laws may require you to sell it at that price. Check with your state's Attorney General’s Office."

And the little bit of research I did on the laws in Texas say that if you advertise it at that price, you must sell it at that price, even if it was a misprint or mistake.

So on the face of it, it would appear that Dell is screwed. The advertised it, they accepted payment for it at the price advertised, and they must now deliver the goods. If they tried to weasel out of it like they are currently doing, in the US they would get their asses sued off, and LOSE. I hope Taiwan makes them wear a good and proper asshat.

Silver badge

Just suck it up

Send the parts out. The only chance Dell really has it to threaten to pull operations and cut ties with Taiwan based suppliers. The question is, are they a big enough fish for Taiwan to really care and can they afford the impact it will have in China as well. Dell needs to remember that many of the Chinese companies have ties across the strait and there is a good chance that a loss of face in Taiwan will have the same result in China.

Their best bet is to try to soften the blow by pulling the old infomercial / eBay tactic...

19" monitor just three easy payments of $5* [buy it now for $15*]! Be sure to act soon! Call now and receive a FREE foldable corrugated cellulose fiber storage container! Supplies are limited so have your credit card ready!

*shipping & handling charges of $1200 not included.


Loss of revenue my hairy ass

They never would have sold that many monitors in that amount of time if the pricing was correct. Sensationalist journalism at its worst.

They will have made a slight loss on each monitor but I cannot see it being that huge. maybe $20 a piece which is mightily annoying I am sure. They can deduct it from their taxes and so I imagine the hit is even less.

Suck it up dell. That another 30k down the pan for being so stupid as to not honour your deal. Want to lose more? Hire some expensive lawyers to argue your flawed case.



re 'merikin perspective

"Dear Customer,

This is to notify you that, regrettably, we need to cancel your recent DELL order for a Dell G2410 24in Wide Green Flat Panel Monitor. Due to our error, the system was shown online at an incorrect price.

As specifically noted on our web pages, catalogs, ads, and customer order documentation, Dell reserves the right to cancel any orders resulting from such errors."

That's all me and thousands of others got after purchasing an LCD on sale for $148 which was on sale for $188 the previous week.

That's how Dell always handles this in the US.


Payment? What payment?

"Customers had paid for the goods and, they said, it was a contract and Dell had a duty to deliver the bought goods at the price displayed and paid."

Is there any proof that the customers actually PAID for the items? Or, put into the language of Mike 61's comment above, is there any proof that "[Dell] accepted payment for it at the price advertised"? No article I have read on this issue has claimed that Dell actually charged anybody's credit card. Being given a credit card number is not the same as accepting payment. The customers expressed an interest in a product and they OFFERED to pay the advertised price. Unless Dell actually created capture transactions with a CC processor, then there were no payments accepted. Period. No payment transaction means no sale and no purchase.

As for the comments about bait-and-switch, advertising fraud, etc, you might want to read up on various laws a bit more. There are many places in which companies are not held accountable for such typographical errors. Specifically, to be held accountable, a customer must reasonably believe that the advertised price is valid. In these two cases, the customers could not reasonably believe that Dell would give a 90% discount on a monitor and a 70% discount on a notebook.



How is this any different from when a price tag at a supermarket loses a digit for whatever reason?

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