CCS-Digital January 2020 Newsletter
Welcome to the CCS-Digital newsletter. Inside you will learn a number of things to improve your online experience, from scams to avoid, useful free software, discounts and deals available online and more.
The discount code of spring18 (upper or lower case) will give you 5% off orders of $20 and up.
We are no longer sending out email reminders of the newsletter.
As you are probably aware, if someone makes a purchase from a site, that site has the right to add them to their mailing list. This is not considered spam as long as there is an easy way to opt out. We do NOT add people to our mailing list unless they specifically request it. The email for our newsletter contains no ads, just a link to the newsletter online. It also begins by saying one can be removed from the list just by replying with remove.
Despite this, a few morons signed up for the discount and then reported us for spam. A few sites (AOL, Yahoo) will block a site or even an entire server on the basis of 2 or 3 spam complaints. Customers emailed us with questions and our replies were blocked because of the complaints of a few morons. On top of that, we could not even remove them from our list because in some cases their emails were forwarded to other IDs and the complaining ID was not even on our list.
Then there are the actual spammers who spoof IDs. Someone called to complain that she received 200 emails from bestinkandtoner.com. We never send mail from that domain. Some spammer spoofed that ID (which is very easy to do and there is no way for us to prevent it). It did NOT go through our server. A knowledgeable person can look at the email headers and figure out where it really came from. But AOL, Yahoo and other lazy companies don't bother. If it says Bestinkandtoner, then Bestinkandtoner must be blocked. I wonder how much spam is sent from AOL and Yahoo IDs and how they would feel if other ISPs blocked all their email over it.
So we will not be sending out any emails about the newsletter to cut down on complaints. You can visit this link at the beginning of each month to see the latest newsletter. It still won't solve the issue of spoofing.
Get money back on almost every purchase you make!
Join Rakuten for free and get $10 off your first qualifying purchase and a percentage back on subsequent qualifying purchases. No fees, no minimums, totally free! I have been a member for almost a year now and it's nice to get those paypal payments for doing nothing except buying things I would have otherwise bought anyway. Join Rakuten
Reduced Shipping Costs and Time on Canadian Orders
We located a supplier in Canada who will ship directly to Canadian customers. This will reduce both the shipping cost and the amount of time it will take to arrive. For credit card orders, you should see a lower total than what the website showed, once your order has been processed. For paypal orders, you should get a refund of the difference. If you want to know what your order will cost before placing it, choose Other Payment Methods. We will get notification of the order and reply with a total. You can then decide to proceed using paypal, credit card or other payment method.
The Epson Embargo Has Hit
We have been warning people for months that it will become very difficult to get Epson compatible cartridges. Customs has been stopping shipments from entering the country. Epson has been going after suppliers. Our biggest suppliers stopped providing Epson cartridges. We have removed some models from our site and prices on other models are moving up. Don't wait for the last minute. You might also want to consider refillable and reusable cartridges because you will always be able to find ink.
Now is the time to get a printer
Just about all the printer companies are jumping on the rip-off bandwagon where every printer needs a different cartridge. It used to be that a company would release 5 or 10 new printers a year and all would use the same cartridges. By making each printer use a different one, they know that the market for any one cartridge model will be limited so compatible manufacturers won't bother to make it. On top of that, they issue firmware upgrades via the Internet so even if you find a compatible cartridge, if you allow the upgrade to run, it will stop working.
For these reasons, we urge people to get one of the "older" printers now - the ones which still work with compatible cartridges. Otherwise you will be paying a fortune for ink. There are printers where the ink cost as much or more than the printer itself. HP and Epson have some inkjets where the cartridges are over $100 a set. HP has at least one where cartridges are $400!.
Right now the best inkjet is the Canon Maxify MB2720, currently $100 (and possibly $75 with $25 off coupon from staples) which uses cartridges in the $5 range. These cartridges are about 3x the size of standard cartridges (hence the name maxify) with about 1,000 page yield. Details on Best Printers. So far it seems the Canon models are not subject to the Epson firmware upgrade scam which follows but it's always a good idea to reject any upgrades a printer company tries to foist on you.
Texas AG May Sue Epson Over Dirty Tricks
I was a staunch advocate for Epson products for over 20 years but no longer. If you want all the details, you can read Epson dirty tricks.
Beware the firmware upgrade
Epson releases firmware upgrades which are sent to you via the net. All these do is prevent compatible cartridges from working. With single-use cartridges, most people use them within a few months of purchase so by the time the upgrade arrives, they are used. (Though we do get customers who hold them for months and then complain later - after running an upgrade - why they don't work. This is why our "official" warranty is 60 days. It's impossible to protect people from their own actions.) With refillable cartridges, people expect to use them for a long time. Then they run the upgrade which renders the cartridges useless.
Need a speaker for a user's group?
I have given online presentations to users' groups. If you have a group which meets regularly who would be interested in hearing about computer-related topics, drop me a line.
Inspirational, amazing and fun
Oscar-winning best animated movie (3 minutes and well worth it)
the voice in the underground - a modern love story
man who had electricity cut off in 1983 just paid the electric bill for 36 families
cop pulls couple over on the way to a funeral and prays with them
Heisman Trophy winner's speech raises over $200k for food pantry
security video of thieves stealing a TV looks like slapstick comedy
Dad discovers his daughter bullying another girl who had lost her father. He takes the money he saved to take his daughter shopping and spends it on the victim.
Mother hears son mock a classmate for shopping at Goodwill. She makes him take his savings and shop there Mom's karma
Albanian man sheltered Jews during WWII. Now Jews are working to restored his son's earthquake-struck house
grandfather's unique holiday gift: a school bus
roofer tricks elderly woman into getting her roof free
Cracker Barrel waitress blessed with $1200 tip
high school student with heart of gold helps children pay for holidy gifts
first class passenger trades his seat with 88-year-old stranger
the art world is officially crazy! an "artist" taped a banana to the wall of a gallery and called it a $120,000 work of art. a "performance artist" ate it. Incidentally, 3 of these "art works" have already been sold, 2 for $120,000 and 1 for $150,000 (I guess the value of bananas are rising.) What idiots would buy it and what will they do when the bananas rot?
Here are some memes about the banana "art"
this is real art! incredible 3d pencil drawings
chinese sites steal art to make tee shirts. artists come up with brilliant method to make them pay artist's revenge
video of creative professor teaching physics
father puts himself into daughter's favorite cartoon
102-year-old man receives kindergarten enrollment letter
tiny mistake sends $254000 to the wrong account
This whole story infuriates me. It took months of validation it took to move my 401K from one account to another. They required my wife's notarized signature. Why would a bank send a quarter of a million dollars to an account without even checking the name? Why would they not simply reverse it when the mistake was discovered? Why would the recipient assume they could keep it?
speeding tickets in Finland are according to the earnings of the offender. some people have paid $100,000
Finland speeding tickets
2-year-old dancer is adorable
really poor construction
What do you want to see in the next issue?
If there's something specific you want to know about, feel free to drop me a note.
Until next time, have a great month!