Gift subscriptions are hard

Bob buys a gift newspaper subscription for Alice.

Sometimes Alice wants the subscription, sometimes she doesn’t.

Sometimes Alice will renew the subscription, sometimes she won’t.

Sometimes Bob wants to pay for all future renewals, sometimes he wants to just pay for one renewal, and sometimes he wants Alice to pay for the renewal on her own.

Sometimes Bob wants the gift subscription to start right away, but sometimes he wants it to start after a birthday or holiday.

Sometimes Bob buys seven gift subscriptions at once, and some of those people are new subscribers while others are renewing subscribers.

Sometimes Bob tries to buy a gift subscription for Alice when she already has a subscription that someone else bought her as a gift.

Sometimes Bob expects us to send Alice a notice of his gift, sometimes he wants to send it himself.

Sometimes Bob gets Alice’s name or mailing address wrong when setting up the gift.

Sometimes Bob calls asking for private information about Alice’s gift past subscription and we can’t verify if Bob is involved enough to get that information.

Sometimes Bob wants to buy the gift of an online subscription, but Bob or Alice or both are not very comfortable setting up online accounts.

Sometimes Bob forgets that he already renewed Alice’s subscription and sends a second payment.

Sometimes Alice moves to a new address and because Bob didn’t provide any contact information for Alice when buying the subscription and Bob has since died, we don’t have a good way to reach Alice about the change.

Gift subscriptions are hard.

Chris Hardie is a journalist, newspaper publisher, software developer and entrepreneur based in Indiana, USA. Read more from Chris on this site, learn more on his personal website, subscribe for updates or follow Chris on Mastodon.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *