December 24, 2010 - 3:30 PM
‘Tis the season to consume. Therefore, I find it fitting to write this blog about a recent movement I have tried to start for myself. As a college student, every dollar counts. Living on a budget means having to make decisions between different products and when and how much of things you can afford to buy. This type of product choice can be tough, but it can be significantly worse if the item you choose to spend your money on falls far below its expected satisfaction. After recent repeated disappointment from products I expected to meet a certain standard, I have found myself as a large proponent of consumer activism.
Consumer activism involves taking a stand for the moments where a product's value does not meet the dollar value that you paid for. For example, one of my recent consumer let downs involved a bag of chips that were supposed to be very crunchy, very crisp. When I began eating the chips, it became very clear to me very fast that the chips were not crunchy and delicious, but rather soggy and unsatisfactory. I could've just muddled about the rest of the evening in disappointment, throwing away the rest of the bag of chips and with it my budgeted cash, but instead, I chose consumer activism. I found the contact information for the company that produced the chips and wrote to them about my experience and why it was so disappointing. I included all the specific information I could about the particular bag of chips and then sent the letter off. This allowed me to work through some of the frustration I had about the product and also made me feel like a better citizen for speaking up for others who may happen to experience the same thing.
From my letter, I received a very wonderful response. The company seemed to have a very sincere concern for my product displeasure and sent me coupons to reimburse my loss. They were sure the next time around I would be satisfied like I had hoped to be. I very much appreciated their concern and quality costumer service and it will certainly bring me back to try the chips again. I also liked that they said they would look into the problem and even thanked me for writing.
I believe it is our duty as consumers to make sure we get what we pay for. Consumer activism helps to make this happen and I think that it also helps to better overall quality control for companies. It is always heart warming when a company cares enough to write back as well. I have had a few other times lately where I have had to write letters and each time it has led to a satisfactory experience. I urge all consumers to be activists!
This blog may also be an alarming look into the world of my procrastination and my fascination with communicating ideas through text.