March 15, 2007

The fine print

I saw this ad yesterday:


It seems pretty straightforward. If I join their club, I get to use these other services for free. Then I got closer and saw the fine print:


What definition of “free” are they using, exactly?


Obviously, this is “free as in speech,” not “free as in beer.”

I am guessing there will be a huge initiation fee of some kind, plus an application fee. There are some private shooting ranges near me that have similar policies to keep out the “undesirables.” You should call them up and see what they have to say.

Free: Without charge except shipping, handling, registration, licensing, application, administration, towel, and disposal fees.

That’s the kind of crappy advertising that will turn me off of a company. If they run ads like that you can only expect to be treated poorly while using their services also.

If a shooting range is trying to keep out undesirables, I suggest that they shut down their whole operation. Then nobody with guns will be showing up wanting to shoot at stuff anymore.

If it’s anything like some of the “health clubs” in some of the seedier parts of Denver, you really, really, really don’t want to know what that asterisk implies.

Free like the Sports Illustrated offers where the subscription with the “free” football phone costs five dollars more than the normal subscription.

It’s like the difference between a “gift” and a “free gift”. Sortof.

free as in “free tibet…with purchase”. have they no shame?