Barnes & Noble tries to fix the HP TouchPad PR disaster with a $20 gift card

If you were one among tens of thousands that placed an order on B&N website in the hope of buying a $99 HP TouchPad, the chance is high that your order was canceled but only after a rather long delay. For some, the hope of receiving their TouchPad from B&N stopped them to order everywhere else. As a result, everybody rushed to complain on various forums and created the worst PR nightmare B&N probably had to date. It is not only the fact that their ordering system allows so many orders after the stock is depleted ¬†(the HP’s own website went through the same pain) but B&N’ delay in canceling the orders as well.

Not surprisingly, B&N tries to make nice with its customers and issued a $20 gift card for everybody affected. Is it enough? What is your opinion?

Dear …,

This past weekend, experienced a technical inventory error for the HP TouchPad combined with an unprecedented customer demand for its newly discounted price. Unfortunately, this generated more customer orders than we had inventory, resulting in our cancelling some customer orders, including yours, as we notified you earlier this week. If there was a pending authorization against your debit or credit card for the order, we have worked to quickly reverse that no later than today. You will not be charged for this order.

I want to take this opportunity to offer our sincere apology to you as a valued customer of We care deeply about serving our customers, and in an expression of our commitment to you please accept the $20 Barnes & Noble eGift Card below for any inconvenience this may have caused.

The card can be used for any merchandise available at or in any of our bookstores.

We look forward to serving you again in the future.

John Foley

  • Anonymous

    I did not get a gift certificate from B&N for cancellation of my confirmed order for the Touchpad. I just talked to a customer service agent at the B&N 1-800 number and she said that they only give out $20 gift certificates to members, as she understands it. She gave me an email to contact.