Thursday, January 17, 2008

Why I hope you will join me in boycotting Best Buy

I don't know why I haven't posted this yet.  If you've already heard this story, feel free to skip this.

First, this concerns the boyfriend, whose name (if I'm not mistaken) I have managed to keep out of blog posts for about a year and a half.  For blogging sake, he is now known as Elvis.

For Christmas this year, part of the gift I got Elvis was the game Guitar Hero II for Xbox 360.  Just the game, not the bundle pack with the guitar controller (he already has one from GHIII).  Unfortunately the disc was warped.  In both his xbox and mine, it would vibrate and make a lot of noise when it spun, to the point where the game would start to skip.  Naturally, we took the game back to Best Buy and exchanged it for another disc of the same game.  I could already tell from some other experiences with their Customer Service and this first GHII experience that they weren't very easy or polite people to deal with.

The disc we exchanged for turned out to be warped, too.  So we took it back again. Exchanged it for another disc.  Oh, I guess it's a good idea to mention that each exchange occurred with the same customer service girl, who's pretty rude.  During this third try of getting a disc that worked, we noticed that the girl peculiarly took the plastic wrap off of the new game case and threw it away.  We didn't really think anything of it, so we went home.

Did that disc work?  Of course it didn't.  So we took it back to Best Buy for what I hope is my last time ever going to that store.  We were fed up with GH 2, so Elvis wanted to return it and put the money toward the new Lego Star Wars.  At customer service, the same girl as always looks over our GHII.  She asks us "did you buy this in the bundle pack?"  We say, "no, just the game"  She tells us that there's no barcode on the game we brought back, which should mean it was from the bundle pack.  We reiterate that we didn't buy the bundle but have just exchanged the game itself.  She says she can't do anything without the barcode.  We look perplexed.  She calls the manager over.

The manager's pretty rude in her communication skills too.  She tells us that she can't exchange GH for a different game, but she can grab a new copy of the game, exchange our warped disc into the new box (with a barcode) and send that box with the warped disc back to the warehouse or whatever they do with returned stuff.  Elvis is nice and says that's fine because he did want that game, after all, but we had just been fed up with the poor product quality.  Unfortunately, this put us in another pickle because that meant we still wouldn't have a barcode in case this new disc sucked too.

So the manager leaves and the original girl is completing our transaction, and she cuts open the plastic wrap on the new game and throws it away.  It takes about half a second for my brain to realize what happened.  I turned to Elvis and said, "that's where the barcode is.  They threw it away last time."  He realizes it too.  The girl at customer service clearly hears our observation, and you could see it in her face that she realized what she had been doing.  They were telling us they couldn't complete the transaction the way we wanted because there was no barcode.  There was no barcode because the jerk had unwrapped the game "for us" (which we were never asked if we wanted her to do when she did this before, btw).

Instead of calling the manager back over and explaining that it had been their mistake, the jerk says nothing.  Elvis is pretty nonconfrontational, so he just wants to leave, but I start to get pretty angry.  I tell him we should tell the manager.  So, we go up to the rude manager, and Elvis says (very politely), "Hey, I don't mind having this game since this is the game I originally wanted and all, but I wanted to let you know that the reason the barcode wasn't on our game was because the girl at customer service has been cutting off the plastic wrap and throwing it away with the barcode on it."

Any good manager would have realized it was Best Buy's mistake and taken care of getting us what we wanted.  Did she? Of course not.  She rudely sneers, "oh, um.. yeah, sorry about that" And we left, and I was pissed off.

I haven't yet written a letter or e-mail to corporate, but I intend to.  I'm really never ever going to buy anything from them ever again.

Oh, and for the curious, the new disc is warped too.  And now Elvis can't take it back because he lives in Georgia, and there's no barcode on the package.

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