Monday, May 21, 2018

Clearly, you do business with Intuit (Quickbooks, TurboTax, etc.) at your own risk


Intuit - owners of Quickbooks, TurboTax and other widely used financial software products, as well as a provider of financial services such as credit card payment processing - has just dumped one of its customers firmly in the dwang, for politically correct - not legal - reasons.

A couple of months ago Gunsite decided to make a change to a new credit card processor, QuickBooks. It seemed to be a wise business choice at the time and may have been, had Intuit not chosen to go the way they did.

. . .

Then, a week ago – May 11th, 2018 – Gunsite got another phone call from QuickBooks. This time it didn’t go as well. The software company informed Gunsite that they were immediately ceasing all business with them. Why? Because they sell and promote firearms.

At first blush this was frustrating news, but Gunsite figured it could be handled. Then the other shoe dropped: in addition to cutting business ties with Gunsite, QuickBooks/Intuit refused to release the money from credit card charges currently in process from sales that had already made.

This amounts to tens of thousands of dollars from not only purchases made in the Gunsite Pro Shop – including hats, shirts, bumper stickers, and coffee mugs – but also money that had been paid for classes taken on gun safety and marksmanship.

Yes, you read that right. Tens of thousands of dollars in sales of products and classes, paid for in good faith, that Intuit has refused to release. Instead, Intuit stated they would refund those monies to the credit card holders. That means revenue for everything from pens to five-day level 250 pistol courses had just became door prizes, provided free to people who had the benefit of the training and took home products, all courtesy of the Intuit’s largesse.

Ken Campbell is matter-of-fact about the issue: “It is their right in the republic to choose not to do business with us. In fact, I do not want to do business with them or any company that does not support the Second Amendment. The issue is their refusal to release our funds to us.”

There's more at the link.

This is beyond stupid.  As far as I can see, it may verge on the criminal.  At least three lawyers of my acquaintance have observed that withholding funds for ideological rather than legal reasons may well be actionable - and if so, I hope Gunsite takes such action.

My own accountant had just (last month) recommended Quickbooks to me as good accounting software.  Needless to say, under the circumstances, I'll be using something else - there are plenty of competing products out there.  I shall also never again use TurboTax or any other Intuit product.  If they show such contempt for law-abiding businesses and citizens, they clearly hold me in contempt as well - so why should I give them my hard-earned dollars?

I strongly recommend to every reader of this blog that they should not do business with Intuit at all.  The company's decisions in the Gunsite case appear to be driven by political correctness, rather than the law;  and if that's the case once, it probably will be again in future.  Therefore, I intend to let them stew in their own ideological juice, and I suggest that we should all do likewise.  That may be the only language they'll understand.  I also recommend that you contact the company and tell them why you're doing so.  I already have.

EDITED TO ADD:  If you'd like to look at a couple of excellent alternatives to Quickbooks, see my article here.




Peter

8 comments:

Steve Sky said...

Unfortunately, I can't stop using TurboTax since I stopped using it a few years ago, after their copy protection scheme ended up locking computers, but your point about calling will be taken. I don't think they will realize the customers who don't buy, but a lot of calls saying they won't buy and here's why, might get their attention.

Ray said...

We are in the crazy times.

Intuit is blaming it on their banking partners...

GOP Congress would be smart to do something about not discriminating against fire arm businesses. Put people on the record...

Jim said...

I don't use them, and now I never will. I hope Gunsite is awarded all monies owed as well as damages and lawyer fees. This is a case where a suit is appropriate.

Eck! said...

Unless your business is complicated or just plain big there are two tools that have no problems of gun shaming.

One is a paper leger. They still exist operating cost is a few dollars for a new one and the users time.

The other is a spreadsheet AKA Excel or the fre LibreOffice Calc
on your computer.

Both work well and have the added advantage of seeing how the numbers work in real time. Occasionally when you actually do the arithmetic you realize what things cost and what profit is.

Also it can easily make for both good record retention (the paper one is really good!) and can make audits more fun as in you have paper files?


Eck!

SiGraybeard said...

Time to give Intuit the Dick's treatment. Cut 'em off.

Sendarius said...

I also am unable to boycott Intuit, having started my personal campaign years ago.

Their crime? Refusing to honor the upgrade offer on a copy of their software legally purchased from their own web-site because, "It is often pirated."

I figured that the whole company ethos was an issue when even a copy of their own receipt was not enough to prove to them that I had bought the software, and was entitled to the upgrade pricing.

Paul said...

I've not used quick books for several years and as to taxes, I like H&R Block and their audit guarantee.

Aesop said...

Again, that's constructive fraud, of the criminal variety, being willful and deliberate, with intent to deprive the owner of the funds of their assets held in trust.

That's usually the point where federal folks come flying in on broomsticks like Dementors chasing an escapee from Azkaban prison.
Somehow, the media is always tipped off too. Funny, huh?

Intuit has unquestionably robbed Gunsite of over $150K.
If the internet is involved, that makes it an interstate transaction, and a federal investigation by the FBI is virtually mandatory.
Treasury, banking, et al shortly after that, if not same day/same time.

then 100 guys show up, and leave with all your corporate officers and computers, and you don't have a business while they investigate. Which could take years. And all your corporate assets are frozen worldwide in about a minute.

As Intuit has already committed the crime, the next stop is federal court, followed by federal prison.

AFAIK, there is no "Oopsie!" exception to interstate criminal banking fraud, not even on conscientious grounds.

Intuit was free to stop payments going forward, after good-faith notification to all parties, but robbing Gunsite of $150K retroactively should be good for 10-20 years of hard time, and for the CEO/CFO, not Ronald or Sue in Accounting who clicked the mouse that day.
If Intuit has offices in Arizona, they'll also be subject to AZ state law as well.

Intuit has just shot themselves in the foot, while their foot was in their mouth.

That's going to leave a mark.

I hope Gunsite has called the criminal authorities about this, starting with the local sheriff, and the Phoenix FBI HQ.
It's a lot less funny when someone with a gun and badge asks you to explain the missing $150K you thought you could redistribute to the peasants, because you're a corporate Robin Hood, and it usually ends up with you trading the feathered cap for an orange jumpsuit.

If I traded on Wall St., I'd be shorting Intuit about now.