May 8th, 2011

BREAKING: CIC Comments on TLC’s Extreme Couponing!

The Coupon Information Corporation (CIC) released the following press release titled, CIC Position on Extreme Couponing ,on May 5, 2011:

The Coupon Information Corporation (CIC) expresses our great disappointment with TLC’s current series, Extreme Couponing, and hereby offers our expertise and other assistance to TLC and Sharp Entertainment (which produces the show) to enhance the program with more accurate and realistic information. In addition, we hope they address potentially illegal acts that appear to have been portrayed on the show.

Professionals in the coupon industry believe this show creates unrealistic expectations about how coupons work and promotes the misuse of coupons. For example, the show appears to portray coupons being used in violation of the terms and conditions printed on the coupons, such as using coupons to obtain products other than those specified by the coupon offer, and focuses on consumers who have procured large quantities of coupon inserts from unknown sources, which may raise civil and/or criminal issues.

In real life, individuals attempting to use such large quantities of coupons or attempting to use them in violation of the terms stated on the coupons would most likely have their coupons refused at the register or, depending on the circumstances, be investigated by law enforcement. According to media reports, TLC recently stated,

“While the series documents extreme couponing strategies, we take any concerns about specific tactics seriously and are looking into the situation.” We look forward to hearing what TLC discovers.

The CIC’s and other industry experts’ previous offers of assistance to the producers to make this an educational show were previously turned down. Nevertheless, we stand ready to help in the event the producers or TLC reconsider their path and seek to turn this into a show that accurately reflects appropriate coupon strategies and use, which would result in real benefits for TLC’s viewing audience.


(thanks @Shuriken for the heads up)

Find more in : Extreme Couponing

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • jerajenn May 8, 2011, 8:05 PM

    Good! I agree exactly with what the CIC said. It’s compelling television but it certainly gives misleading information and there are at least two specific circumstances that I can think of where the couponers profiled used illegal tactics. We don’t need to get $500 of groceries for free…we just want to get a few cents off every dollar that we spend in these hard economic times.

  • Anne May 8, 2011, 8:14 PM

    I am happy to see them make a statement on this. Awesome!

  • Kari May 8, 2011, 8:35 PM

    I am happy to see that the CIC knows that the show is unrealistic and that is NOT what most couponers are doing. Maybe now the craze in changing policies will stop and the rest of us can go on saving money for our families.

  • Dee May 8, 2011, 8:40 PM

    TLC said they were investigating it (this was a few weeks ago) yet I have not seen an updated statement from them. It’s a shame… There’s enough shelf clearers out there without people like these using coupons the wrong way and they being on a TV show and promoting it!

  • Nan may May 8, 2011, 9:04 PM

    Good for them. I won’t watch the show because it gives us all a bad name. The majority of couponers go by the rules. eg: I could use a copy machine to make lots of coupons, but won’t because I don’t want to spoil it for everyone. Hope the coupon rules won’t change because a few people take advantage of it.

  • Melissa Davis May 8, 2011, 9:10 PM

    I will admit that I do watch the show because it is very compelling. With that said, I constantly find myself asking if what these people are doing is allowed. I too hope that coupon policies don’t change because of this!

  • Nick May 8, 2011, 9:17 PM

    Coupon policies are changing because consumers are abusing the coupon. Publix is implementing a new corporate policy effective in June eliminating the use of stock piling. I see more and more companies doing this in the near future.

  • alicia May 8, 2011, 10:08 PM

    I am glad to see that statement. I have been seeing a few people and even some that I know that watch and think they can do the same thing but abuse coupons. I have expressed to some that I know that is not how the coupons are suppose to work.

  • Barbara Patterson May 8, 2011, 10:12 PM

    I agree 100% with the CIC, I do feel that this show will eventually adversely affect everyone that is trying to use coupons legitimately and within reason. There is no reason these people should be allowed to do what they do. They are just as bad as the hoarders that TLC showcases. Some stores in my area already do not accept internet home printed coupons due to fraud. It just makes it harder on the “normal” couponers who try to save money, not stockpiling things just because its free. Diapers and cat food for people with no kids or cats. uNREAL

  • Big Momma May 8, 2011, 10:35 PM

    I totally agree with this! I don’t even watch that show bc some people get all that stuff just because they can. Not bc they need or use the items. I mean (for example) who needs 100 bottles of mustard?! Really?! They do not show what couponing is all about. It’s just people hording “stuff” because they get it for free. I love coupons and get a couple of things sometimes for free, but it is because I use it or can give it to someone who can. If they fix the show, I might actually watch it. But maybe this will also put a fix on those the abuse the system.

  • Brianna May 9, 2011, 12:02 AM

    I work at Kroger and sadly we have changed are coupon policy recently to limit 3 of the same coupons because of this show. which stinks bc i love coupons

  • Nicole Bolger May 9, 2011, 10:32 AM

    I don’t agree with TLC’s portrayal of couponing, but I’m disappointed with some of the comments here. I get a lot of things that my family doesn’t “use” (like different brands of deodorant, cat food, hair dyes). I only started using coupons this last February, and all those things that we don’t use we’ve been able to donate to shelters ($350 of dog/cat products to a no-kill, and $1200 worth of cosmetics, personal products, food to a women’s shelter). Just because my family can’t use it, doesn’t mean there aren’t people who can and desperately need them. Monetary donations are down with the economy and the shelters need HELP! If I can score something free because of a coupon why wouldn’t I get it?
    And as for all the hoarding comments, stop stigmatizing hoarders. It is a DISEASE. Have as much compassion as you would for anyone dealing with addiction, mental disorders, or personal limitations. Don’t label people. You don’t know them.

    • michelle May 9, 2011, 2:57 PM

      Nicole I agree with what your saying about donating certain items that you typically don’t use but i do not think what others here are downing are those situations it is more along the lines of people who are simply abusing the coupon system because they can. I do not think any of them suffer from a mental disorder in my opinion I think they only suffer from a certain thing called gluttony. There is a big difference between doing some thing for the right reasons and doing some thing simply because you think your able to get away with it.

    • Holly June 6, 2011, 4:51 PM

      Nicole – I agree with everything you stated. I am purposely stockpiling – and I am doing so to partly take care of my son and myself and save money – and also to donate everything humanely possible to those who are in need.

  • Barbara May 9, 2011, 8:01 PM

    Nicole, I think you are not seeing this realistically. I think it’s great when people get things free and donate them but unfortunately these ppl just went for the big ticket items to show the large $ amount they could get free ie rolaids & overages to pay for other items. I donate items I don’t use but I do not stockpile enough things in my home to live on for 10 years. Some of those items will go bad, I don’t care how well you rotate them, what good does it serve then? No I don’t think this will help us normal couponers at all.

  • Pam May 11, 2011, 11:32 AM

    I love using coupon, but don’t abuse them or the system. One thing to think about is for all of the free items or coupons used, don’t you think the manufacturer and/or stores want to make up for loss of revenues so pass along higher prices to the rest of the public? ~~ I only coupon / buy products that I’ll use. ~~ I love couponpro, but don’t feel like I have to get in on every single free deal. This site is a great tool for helping locate some great deals on items that I want/need.

  • Celestina May 12, 2011, 10:24 PM

    I totally agree that the TLC show is not realistic. This show did encourage me to start couponing but I had to privately sit with myself and ask how far did I want to go with this. I knew I wanted to be serious but I didn’t want to be extreme. I also didnt agree with some of the ways people were obtaining coupons for example digging through dumpsters and things like that. I believe that God wants us to be ethical and moral while keeping our dignaty. So I spoke with my local paper and they agreed to give me a discount and I now have 4 subscriptins. 4 because that is how many people live in my household and I have to feed all of us. This provides for our needs in our family… thats all I need. Please don’t take coupons away.