This is way long, important phrases are bolded. LOL there are only three or so bolded phrases LOL.
So here goes:
Co-op member gets her order, is missing an item. I state I don't have it, send out a special notice for everyone to take a look at their orders to see if they do. Meanwhile, orders ship slowly because I'm having a busy two weeks and people are paying slowly, but nobody's order sits for more than 4 days at my house after they've paid. So even now, not everyone has received their order, there are still a few that aren't paid up. Co-op member sends a couple messages to the group, spaced several days apart, really reasonable "check your boxes please" kinds of messages, and then drops THIS on me last night:
hi there. my last message was ignored again. do you have ANY updates on the status of my missing KK? what is going to happen? will i get a refund? will i get new ones for the ones that i never received? please reply back with something so i know this message was at least seen! its been a long time since i got my package now. thanks, co-op member
OK nothing was addressed directly to me in the previous messages, so as busy as I was I didn't respond, but whatever. I write back:
Hello co-op member,
Like I said, I do not have it here. I was really hoping that with that last round of shipping, SOMEBODY would turn up with the extras. It doesn't seem to be happening.
I cannot credit you, I don't make money off these things. Yes, I'm serious. I don't. And I am absolutely certain at this point that your missing items are not just sitting here in my house.
I can take up a collection to pay for your missing items (worth $5) or ask for minor donations for the next KK co-op so that you can get them. It is looking like KK will be run again soon. I wasn't expecting the 12oz KKs to be so handy and would like a couple more myself, so it's cool with me that it is the firm leader in the "what to do next" poll. So I guess it depends on which of those things you'd like to do.
Lookie what I got in the email this morning:
I have honestly never heard of such a thing and I have been a part of many co-op groups over the past year and 1/2.so basically you're saying 'so sorry, thanks for playing, better luck next time?' That's crap. If you took an inventory of all the KK items when they arrived then that means my missing items arrived AOK and got lost somewhere in your possesion. So b/c they got lost in your possesion I LOSE OUT ON MY ITEMS AND MY MONEY?!?! how is this fair?!?!? EVERY co-op I have ever been in,if there is a missing item the person running the co-op(and none of them make money off of the co-ops either)re-ordereds that item for the person OR they give them their money back. I don't mean to be rude here but this situation is beyond ridiculous. $5 may not seem like a lot to you but it's a lot to me and I can not just throw it down the toilet. Please either purchase the items for me again or give me a refund or I will be forced to report you and take further action. I'm sorry ,I really don't want to but you've pushed me this far. I never knew fellow MDC mamas could be this way :(
You know what?
1) I am not running these on MDC anymore. Go ahead, report me. I'll tell them right where to shove it.
2) I told you I'd get you the money or get it reordered, you just had to tell me which. Did you even read that far? All I meant by "I can't refund you" is that I can't just flat-out send back money to people all the time...I just want that understood. I offered later in the email to get you your money back. ALL I MEANT was that I can't just shoot off money the second something turns up missing. Your items are obviously long missing and you won't end up paying for them...but I didn't refund you right when you first noticed missing items because if I made that a policy, it would be a mess.
3) If other co-op organizers are paying people back out of pocket, I have to wonder why the hell they've even kept running co-ops. I've done DOZENS of co-ops spanning over four years and I would have burned out a long time ago if I had to pay money out of pocket. Hence the collection. This is more a strategy thing on my part and maybe I shouldn't have mentioned it, since it obviously is beyond YOUR understanding.
4) I inventoried. You don't have your items. This doesn't meant that I have them. It does mean that SOMEONE has them, and not everyone even has their order yet. What with all this "I've been ignored, I've been ignored" whining, did you even NOTICE that I've repeatedly asked people if they looked for extras?
5) I am living below the poverty line. Don't pull that "5 dollars may not be a lot to you" shit with me.
I obviously needed to be clearer in my original email and for that I apologize. If you understand the above, feel free to tell me what you'd like. That was what I was after in the original - money back, or reorder?
I am quite sick and last week was the week from HELL, and have been tending this co-op the best I can during it. Excuse me for not venting my issues all over the group, but if I had been you'd all be surprised I was shipping at all last week, much less paying any attention at all to the group messages.
So we'll see, eh?
I can't believe I was threatened with MDC. "I'll tell on youuuuuu...." OMG, how old are we?
UPDATE: She wrote me back saying to give her the money and she'll leave the group. Saves me the trouble, I was going to kick her out...holy fly off the handle batman. I think I need some be-super-direct lessons from Angela. This is precisely why I didn't vent all my issues of the last two weeks on the group...the second I whine about something it gets misinterpretted, or I get judged about just how hard my life is (my IRL friends would agree I was HASHED last week, I didn't really have any business bothering to ship the 40-odd packages I managed to get out that week). I think it takes running a co-op to realize just how much work it is to, well, run a co-op. When you have 50 orders to deal with, it isn't just a matter of throwing them in a box and taping on a label, you know?
FURTHER UPDATE: She then posted a pity-me, make-Niki-look-like-an-asshole MDC thread. I couldn't let it go. I did a straight cut-and-paste of the blog right up to where it says "update". Yes, the whole thing. It got locked and removed almost as fast as I could blink.