CHOICE membership

#SpotAShonky - Expose Shonky products and services here


I have another entry for the Spot-A-Shonky competition.

When is a “free pub” not a free pub?

When at least 20,000 people have to buy a $100 entry to “win” it.


We received this submission via our Facebook page. The BBQ Galore ‘20% OFF STORE WIDE’ sale apparently didn’t include dining packages, despite the sign sitting on top of the package. The customer was not informed at the point of sale, and only realised after paying and organising delivery.

Has anyone experienced this or a similar tricky sales restriction?


There is some microfine print at the bottom of the sign which appears to state there are terms and conditions, and to see in store for details. and there is an asterisk after “WIDE”.

However, as I had to expand the image by 155% to attempt to read the microprint, I don’t believe tis is acceptable under the ACL.

I can hear the ACCC growling already.

“Here Kitty, Kitty”.


In a similar style we recently received a Myer store voucher for one of our birthdays. In the very fine print on the bottom is a list of excluded brands. It appears as a footer including various Myer Business details etc.

Ok, but the exclusions are not complete! The reality is the store POS will only accept the voucher for any Myer exclusive branded product. So Wedgewood for example is excluded from the choices, and who knows how many more that will not fit into the footer?

We did actually find something we wanted while in store looking for other items, and the sales staff persisted in trying to redeem the voucher for a brand that was not listed in the exclusions. It took the store manager to authorise an exception for what turned out to be a nationally branded non exclusive item!

Apologies we no longer obviously have the original voucher for display.


just thought to bring this deceptive product packaging to peoples attention.
Dotted line on sachet is where the product contents finish.
Packaging states “This packaging is not recyclable. Please dispose of thoughtfully”. How about they put more thought into their packaging instead.
“Now with even more packaging” to head straight to landfill.


They forgot one word…nearly. …20% OFF NEARLY* STORE WIDE (STUPID)…well maybe two?


We received the below submission via email from Bruce B.

Wanted to congratulate Mainland Cheese on the greatest product rip-off in recent times. Thought it might be worth Choice including in its Shonky file. I have attached the photo of the two products side by side. They have taken a 500 gram product and shrunk it to a 400 gram product - same product, 20% less and the same price as 500 gram, but you only get 400 grams. The vintage cheese is a ripping cheese, but will be going elsewhere for my cheese in the future. Love to hear why Mainland think that kind of treatment of customers is OK.


That example is a perfect advertisement for the importance of unit pricing :slight_smile:


Vintage trickery and chicanery! :skull_and_crossbones:


Next they’ll be ageing it for just 19.2 months … and in one of the primary food groups! it’s unconscionable …


@TheBBG Good point, I’ll mention it to our campaigns team

It’s enough to cheese people off.

Fantastic effort @draughtrider :joy: I’ll be sure to share this around

split this topic #136

3 posts were split to a new topic: Hangover reducing wine drops


That would be great, let us know how you go. Perhaps it is worth a MythDefied thread.

Seems like the Shonkys are coming thick and fast today. Qantas promises to refund your fare in the event of a cancellation, but as reported on Twitter the refund is in the form of a voucher and there’s a $99 fee to use it.



I agree. It does seem iniquitous for Qantas’ to be forcing the client to pay.


We’ve received a nomination from Glennys via Facebook about the Bose SoundTouch Wireless speaker.
“I would like to nominate the Bose Sound Touch 20 for a shonky award. With unsolicited software “upgrades” they are able to remove features from the product you bought - firstly they removed support for the phone I was using and now they have removed the Internet Wireless feature. You now have to use their app and if you don’t want adverts whilst listening to the ABC radio then you will have to pay for a premium streaming product Deceptive and misleading a say the least. Who knows what they will do next.”

Unsolicited software updates can be a real pain and can dramatically change the way you use a product from one update to the next. It sounds like Glennys has had a really frustrating experience :-1:


Terry contacted us on Facebook to report a ‘pink tax’ case.

“I bought a pair of Haviannah thongs from City Beach the were the premium printed variety. They broke while I was away on business and I bought another pair. When I got back I decided to trade the broken pair under warranty for a pair for my girlfriend. She just wanted the plain ones. The cashier said the difference was and additional $5! So less material and manufacturing processing for more money. Its an outrage how women are charged more to be honest.”

Have you ever been in a situation where you found the women in your life paying more for the same product/service as men?


Have a look at Aldi’s 36 month vintage chees. Made in Warnambool.


This submission came via our Facebook page. The Xbox controller pictured below and found at EB Games is actually $60, the price listed is the Afterpay repayments breakdown.

What do you think, is this possibly misleading?


All I see is an XBox controller for $14.xx with an unclear number of cents!

Ah, there is some fine print under the word Afterpay talking about 4 equal payments, and an even smaller font with what appears to be a total.

Definitely suspect, although a cautious person may work it out. The low cost prominently displayed is really baiting you to look at the product more closely!

For anyone who uses or is familiar with Afterpay this may not be an issue as they would know what to look for and understand how it works. In some ways it is a bit like a 12 month mobile phone plan. The monthly figure is bold and upfront. There is a total contact value tucked away in the fine print. We tend to accept this now for mobile plans as nearly everyone has that experience and knowledge of mobile phone plans and contracts. They are however a negotiated and controlled transaction. Not an off the shelf item purchase?

For the Xbox controller, I’d suggest that knowledge of Afterpay or use of Afterpay is far from universal or within the experience of everyday customers. It’s also possible to suggest that you can alternately make one single payment and purchase the controller outright without using Afterpay?

On that basis it might be reasonable to expect the outright purchase price displayed prominently and more substantially than the instalment plan amount! Otherwise the product is for sale through Afterpay only. Any clarity is missing from the price label and would be out of the norm anyway for similar merchandise?

It is certainly confusing. Is that misleading also?
Does the store get off the hook if they are only selling the product through Payment using Afterpay?
It could be telling to know what the store response is to that specific question. Neither response is acceptable given the detail or lack thereof on the price label.


Thanks for the thought @mark_m.

We received another nomination via Twitter that I thought was worth sharing. Check out the automatic ‘adjustment’ of this credit card account with the cardholder had a positive balance…