WSJ Complaint: Great Newspaper Jacks Up Subscription Price Improperly, Reader Claims

October 29, 2009
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David Jackson, former Columbia, Ct., now a resident in the Keys south of Miami, has a bone to pick with the Wall Street Journal’s circulation department, and I can’t blame him.

As most of you know, I am – and have been for years – a huge fan of the WSJ. I consider it the best paper (sorry NYT) in the world.

However, that doesn’t mean that its circulation department is as good as the newspaper.

Jackson, a friend of mine who used to work in the state judicial system, is in the middle of a multi-year subscription to the WSJ. He recently moved from one location where the paper is mailed to another where it also arrives by mail.

 “I just received an additional bill from the WSJ for $24.75 because ‘of slightly higher costs associated with this change.’  There was no higher cost to them,” he wrote me today.

“The WSJ  and I contracted for “x” dollars for them to provide me with the journal. What right do they have to change the agreement during
the middle of this subscription? It reminds me of a car salesman  adding a hidden cost as you buy a car, except in this case, it’s like 
the salesman charged me a hidden cost after I drove the car for six months,” Jackson wrote me from a sunny key close to Key West.

Jackson says he thinks its a scam. I don’t know if I buy that, but he makes a good point about the added charges.

Whether he wins of loses I have a suggestion that will pay off for readers of ALL newspapers. Once your paid up subscription is over. Don’t renew. Let them come to you and they will cut the price by AT LEAST 50 percent to get you back. They need you to pad their circulation numbers.

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3 Responses to WSJ Complaint: Great Newspaper Jacks Up Subscription Price Improperly, Reader Claims

  1. Stephen - nyc on October 29, 2009 at 1:00 pm

    Maybe his new location is actually further away from the city and therefore the rate has to go up? I am not familiar with how the WSJ charges for out-of-ny deliveries, so it’s possible there’s no justification for the new charge. OTOH, unless his initial subscription agreement says they can bill him if he moves during the period, then they are on the hook for the original rate. Of course, what if someone signs up and are 1,000 miles away but then (like after 4 months) moves to Princeton, NJ, do they give him a refund of whatever to account for his new and closer address?

  2. Larry Berk on November 19, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    I was a little disappointed too.I pay $150 a year for an online subscription, but they now want to charge me an additional $52 a year to read it online… on my Blackberry. I guess when you’re good and you know it, you can charge more.

  3. Joan Preston on September 27, 2016 at 9:03 am

    Now it is 2016 and I am going through all the same scenarios as numerous others have posted online. They raised the price without telling me and claimed they must have sent my notice to the wrong email. in the meantime, they sent me frequent emails touting their wine, travel, special events, etc. They know my email address.
    They did not honor the price originally quoted on the phone and expect me to renew without anything in print to guarantee their offer. I don’t want to pay for digital or WSJ magazine with gaunt young models on the cover. I have never subscribed to anything without knowing the cost in writing. ALL of my other subscriptions reward me for being a good customer by making offers at renewal time and keeping their commitment. It is a contract, isn’t it? I do have confirmation that I have been removed from Auto Renew. I still feel they owe me for raising the price without notice by about $100 a year. Maybe Trump could teach them a lesson in how to make money. WSJ – You’re Fired!

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