The dailies make plenty of money (as someone who has worked in journalism all her life, with small groups of other journos, I can tell you we are often jealous of what looks like big budgets for unlimited reporting teams). And the last thing that Spar retailer Mark Canniford, Weston-super-Mare, wants to do is help fund the Daily Mail’s current promotion.
Mark, who runs a home news delivery (HND) service, says that the Daily Mail’s pre-paid voucher scheme, which offers discounts to its readers, is losing him money: about £100 in 2013 alone.
On the back of the voucher it says: To the customer - only valid for the date on the face of this voucher. Underneath it says: To the retailer - please return within two months of the date on the front.
As he says, customers are unlikely to bother to read this redemption date as it does not concern them they are receiving their home delivered copies on a daily basis.
His point is that a lot of his HND customers only come into the shop every few months to pay their bills, with vouchers that they regard still valid although they are invalid as far as the retailer attempting to redeem them is concerned. He managed to get a refund the first time, but not the next. He now has another bundle and knows there will be no refund. In fact, his Daily Mail rep no longer replies to messages left on his mobile. He feels he cannot refuse his customers or they will go elsewhere in future.
The DM didn’t reply to my request for a response. Not enough staff maybe.