If It’s Free What Does ‘Pay Separate Fee’ On TV Commercials Mean?
I watch old TV channels.
Wait, that's not right. What I mean is, I watch the channels that air the old TV shows. You know, channels like METV, Cozi, Antenna, Insp, and RFD. Not familiar with those? Well, the run the old Westerns (Gunsmoke, Rifleman, Wagon Train, Bonanza, and More), the old comedies (MASH, Andy Griffith Show, Gomer Pyle, Green Acres), the old dramas (Perry Mason, Matlock, Murder She Wrote) and the like. Never heard of those?
Okay, you're young. Or younger. I get it.
Anyway, on these channels, there's a lot of ads for things you don't really need. Or at least things I don't really need. Hoses that somehow magically roll themselves back up when you're done watering. Little appliances that magically make the perfect sausage or egg or burger...and then magically clean themselves up. Gadgets and widgets and glue and paste and little this and that's. If you check in the back of a closet or in the garage you might well find something.
I've noticed on these commercials they'll often throw in a second one free! All you have to do is pay a separate fee. But of course, they never say what that 'separate fee' is.
Hmmm. Sounds a little fishy.
I remember the, ah, old days they'd give you the second one 'free' if you just paid shipping and handling. So this must be something different, right?
Nope. It's essentially the same thing with different words. I Googled it and found out:
The “separate fee” is still shipping & handling for additional units - it's just a legally compliant way of saying it.
I don't quite understand the difference, but that I'm not super-duper educated. You can read what I found here.
I guess I've just been skeptical of these kinds of ads in my old age. Kind of reminds me of when I was a younger fella and was absolutely positive I could score any 10 albums I wanted for a penny! All I had to do was join the club and agree...
Well, I won't get into all that. I'd tell you the rest, but you'd have to pay a 'separate fee'.