Helpdesk: Lights, camera… but no action on renting DVD from Lovefilm

This week a reader got frustrated with – and so did Helpdesk when we asked the company to respond to the complaint

Q: Having watched the first series of the Swedish political series Borgen, my partner and I are hooked. We are regular users of the DVD mail order service LoveFilm, which at £10 a month is good value rather than buying box sets. I was delighted to see that the second series of Borgen was available for sale on Amazon – but yet for some reason it is not available on Lovefilm. Why is it not available for rent, especially as Amazon now owns LoveFilm?

What is even more annoying is that if you go on the Amazon site, it suggests it is available for rent on Lovefilm but this misleading. Is it a case that Amazon does not rent DVDs available for sale on Lovefilm because it wants to sell more DVDs? If so, this is anti-competitive and a bad deal for Lovefilm customers. I emailed the customer service department, and while I was pleased with the quick response, he advised me to check other DVD rental services to see if it was for rent in the UK – which I didn’t think was very helpful. In a further e-mail, an adviser pledged that “once we have obtained both licence and stock, we will make it available to rent”.

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EA, Edinburgh

A: A spokesman from Lovefilm sent this response… along with an email asking: “ can you confirm it will be printed in full with no editorial amendment?”

“We are pleased to hear our member has enjoyed watching Borgen series one through Lovefilm. Borgen series two is not released to buy or rent in the UK until February, 2013.

“It can be pre-ordered to buy through Amazon, but in the meantime we hope our member continues to enjoy the 70,000-plus TV series and films available to rent through Lovefilm as part of their subscription package, which also includes thousands of titles that can be streamed instantly through Lovefilm Instant direct to internet-connected devices including PC, Xbox 360, PS3, internet-connected Sony and Samsung TVs and iPad.”

• If you have a consumer issue that you would like tackling, contact Claire Smith on 0131 620 8511 or e-mail [email protected]