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Wrong Item Sent
You should always immediately open and inspect any items you have delivered to you, to ensure that they are in fact what you ordered. (I discuss this in more detail here.) If you do not do this within a reasonable period of time it can make resolving problems more difficult.
The inspection of items received is most important when you order complex components that come in many different variations, such as CPUs, hard disk drives, and motherboards. Sometimes vendors will accidentally mix up two similar models (it can be hard to tell apart different versions of some processors for example). In rare cases, an unscrupulous vendor will intentionally send you an inferior version of a model you ordered in the hope that you won't notice or that you won't be bothered to address the discrepancy.
If the vendor has sent you a totally different item from what you ordered--for example, you tried to buy a keyboard and they sent you a CD-RW drive--then clearly someone just screwed up your order. As such, the company bears the blame for the mistake and should accept that gracefully. Most companies will of course offer to replace the mistaken product for the correct one, but some seem to expect you to pay the price for the problem they created! A typical default stance by a big company in a case like this is to ask you to send back the item and then when they get it back, they will send you the correct product. How nice--for them. Well, if you have two weeks to waste waiting for the item and don't mind paying shipping for someone else's mistake I suppose this is OK. Amazingly, companies get away with this most of the time, largely because most consumers will accept it!
Well, I don't consider it acceptable. The vendor should immediately ship the correct item as you send back the incorrect one, and they should cover shipping both ways. This is easily done by having the vendor send you a pre-paid shipping return label. Furthermore, if their error has caused you problems due to needing an item quickly, ask them to send the replacement by air courier. Don't be unreasonable, but don't let yourself be pushed around either. You may need to ask for a manager to get fair treatment, because the customer service representatives are paid to follow "the book".
Next: The Perpetual Backorder