Tales of Sorrow from the World Whine Web

The promise of the internet is that it will connect us all and give voice to everyone.

A friend sent me a link to bestbuysux.org, which lists complaints about Best Buy.  I was thoroughly amazed at what I read!

Here are some of the most amusing (all bold emphasis is mine):

Date: Wed, 21 Mar 2007 11:41:58 -0700 (PDT)

I bought a JVC TV from Best Buy 1/31/04. I called for service and was told it would cost $600.00 to fix. I only paid $525.00 for it. What happened to companies standing behind their products. [sicNo, I didn’t have the extended warranty. I shouldn’t need it. A tv used to last at least 10 years. It cost me $90.00 to find out my TV is CRAP. They wouldn’t even offer me any compansation [sic], such as money off on a new TV. I won’t go back to Best Buy anymore, and the book is still out on if I buy aJVC [sic] product.

Wow, I guess I missed the giant Push, Pull, or Drag your broken, out of warranty TV to Best Buy for money off on a new TV sale!

Date: Mon, 19 Mar 2007 17:18:39 -0600

[… snip …] A few years back I was working as a tech support rep for MSN Internet Access. Best Buy and MSN had partnered up w/ some cross promotional deal, where the sales people conned customers into signing up for a 3 year contract with MSN dialup, in exchange for a Best Buy gift card. [… snip …] One of my calls was  from a man who had signed up for the contract, knowing nothing about MSN aside from the phone number he was given to set it up. He called up asking me how he could get his new MSN set up, so I started asking him questions about his computer, to find out what version of the software and/or patches we needed to install. Turns out, he didn’t have a computer. The salesman over at BestBuy talked him into signing up for 3 years of MSN IA to get $300 off the cost of a refridgerator [sic] he was buying. When I explained to him that MSN was an Internet service provider, and that the Internet was a global network of computers that must be accessed by a computer, he was furious, and demanded that I cancel his contract. [… snip …]

Let me get this straight, someone signed a contract for a service that they had no idea what it was, and it’s the store’s fault when they find out they don’t need it?

BTW, I’m already tired of adding [sic] everywhere, so I shall discontinue the practice despite the abuse the English language receives through the rest of these tales of woe.

Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2007 12:11:07 -0800

I had an extremely disappointing experience with BestBuy in San Luis Obispo. I wanted to buy a Panasonic plasma TV and noted that CompUSA had one priced about $200 less than BestBuy. I checked the local BestBuy inventory and the model was available.

Best Buy prides themselves on price matching and I thought I would save the shipping cost by buying locally. I drove over to Best Buy and attempted to purchase the model shown as available. The salesman told me that they were out of stock for the model I wanted and the only one remaining was the demo model. I did not want to buy the demo model but also was in a bind since this was going to be my anniversary present to my wife. I reluctantly agreed to the purchase. The salesman then packaged the TV, transported the TV to my SUV, loaded the TV into my SUV and stated emphatically that it had to remain upright otherwise the “gas will react with the glass” and TV won’t work correctly thereafter. I assumed he knew what he was talking about. As soon as I backed out of the parking space, the TV fell over, and the screen broke. Needless to say Best Buy stated that it was my responsibility and my fault.. and added “have a nice day.” They did not offer to do anything to help compensate for the loss. Unfortunately for Best Buy, I am an Attorney and have filed suit. We’ll see who has the last laugh in this case. I look forward to dissecting the Operations Manager before the Court, assuming he has the stones to show up.

One assumes that the Best Buy employee added something like “Make sure you don’t secure the television within your SUV, as we exist to bear responsibility for your own foolishness,” which would make Mr. Attorney’s case pretty cut and dried.

(If he is an attorney, he’d also know that there is a little thing called a subpoena that would remove the optionality (regardless of its basis in the Operations Manager’s possession of minerals, pebbles, rocks, or other geological entities) of a court appearance.)

And possibly Mr. Attorney will look for an anniversary present for his wife before he’s driving home the day of the event, and allow me to suggest that many women prefer jewelry or flowers to electronics for such gifts.

Date: Tue, 6 Mar 2007 19:12:12 -0800

My son -age 11 — washed cars and saved up to purchase a computer game he had been wanting.  I took him to Best Buy and he proudly put down his $21.54 to purchase the game.  When we got home, he got to work downloading five CD-Roms (wow, this was one huge game program) onto our designated computer for kids games.  Then he got to the set up screen and learned that this game required that a credit card be entered and that it would cost him $14.95 per MONTH for the privilege of playing a game he had already PURCHASED.  We discussed it, and he agreed to return it and pick out something else.

The game is called Guild Wars. [… snip …] 

We trekked back to Best Buy and were directed by the “concierge” to the customer service counter.  My wonderful son (sorry, I am very proud of him) explained the problem and the clerk bluntly told: “sorry, no refunds.” Recongnizing the sign of uncontrollable tears being held back, I reluctantly stepped in and explained further:  there is nothing visible on the box to indicate that the game costs an additional $15 per month to play, and the checkout staff also did not alert us to that fact.  Therefore, it is immoral if not illegal for them to refuse us the refund.  For goodness sakes, we are talking about an 11 year old kid who worked and saved up the money.  When she would not budge, I asked for the store manager.  The manager came over and just repeated the same company line:  “No refunds on software.  Period.” I was stunned.  Absolutely and literally speechless.  We have spent thousands of dollars at this store over the year, and we were being dismissed forever as a customer (I have a VERY LONG memory) over $20.  And $20 of hard earned 11-year-old kid money at that!!!  I refused to take the software home.  I left it on the counter in front of the manager, thinking that would surely shake him out of his delusional trance.  Nothing doing. He said nothing.[… snip …]

I don’t remember being reminded that I need to purchase electricity or cable service the last time I bought a television either.  Should I demand a refund on that basis?  Best Buy’s return policy on software–“Opened computer software, movies, music and video games can be exchanged for the identical item but cannot be returned for a refund”–is by no means hidden by the store, nor is it an exception to the rest of the retail industry.  Let’s hope our 11-year-old learned a lesson about knowing what he’s purchasing before plunking down his hard-earned dough; it’s a lesson that is worth far more than $21.54!  (Financial counselor Dave Ramsey calls this “stupid tax,” and I think we’ve all paid more than enough of it in our lives!)

(I’m also a little confused too.  While I’m not any more familiar with Guild Wars than just the name, the price seems to be $29.99 for Guild Wars and $39.99 for Guild Wars: Factions (perhaps there was a $19.99 sale one week?), and both products specifically mention that there are no monthly fees to play online (as determined by me from product descriptions and reviews on Amazon.com)…)

And here’s the winner of my coveted “Want some cheese with that whine?” award:

Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2007 00:10:44 -0500


This letter is to note a practice that I think is at the least unfair, or perhaps “unfriendly”, and not conducive to good customer relations.
I purchased a Sony DVD – VCR Combo recorder 3 years ago, along with a 4 year “service contract”.
The unit began to malfunction about a month ago, and I took it in to get repaired.  I was advised that the unit was unrepairable, and that I should come in to pick out a new one.
As it turns out, the new unit cost $220 less than the original.
The service contract reads “repair or replace, or give a store credit voucher for the original purchase amount – $500!!, at the discretion of Best Buy.”
The store manager REFUSED to give the full value of the unit as a credit voucher – $500 -.
All I received was a replacement unit, valued at about HALF of the original.
They would not even extend the courtesy of a gratis service contract on the new one.
A store employee given the job of processing my exchange advised me that if the manager had given me a credit voucher for the full amount, at his discretion as worded in the service contract, that that amount would have come out of his bonus!!!
This sort of customer – unfriendly “service” stinks.

Thanks for posting this.

Isn’t that a hoot?  The person honest-to-God feels entitled to that $220!  It’s not enough that they picked out a new unit (probably with updated technology and more features), but “all [they] received was a replacement unit, valued at about HALF of the original.”  It really warms my soul to know that every time that person uses their DVD – VCR combo, they’re going to think about how Best Buy screwed them out of the $220 that was theirs by right and all they got was this lousy replacement that does the exact same thing as their previous one…

The tragedy of the internet is that we’ve discovered that we’re really sort of petty and foolish!

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