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The "slovenly" faux-Best Buy employee is pictured in Newegg's latest commercial; a real Best Buy employee is pictured in a separate image. Can you tell which is which?  (Source: M-Live, YouTube)

Best Buy is also upset about Newegg's new "Geek On" Logo, which it says violates its Geek Squad-related trademarks.
Commercial depicts clueless blue-shirted employee struggling to explain products to customers

Is it illegal to show a video of a blue polo-wearing employee in a computer store?  Best Buy's legal staff appear to think so.

I. Best Buy Upset About "Slovenly", "Uninformed" Employee Depiction

They sent a legal threat to City of Industry, California-based online retailer Newegg.com for a new commercial that found its way onto TV and on YouTube, the world's most used video sharing site.  Best Buy writes:
We... recently learned that Newegg is running a commercial on television and YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYk0dQrz3uc&feature=youtu.be" rel="nofollow) depicting a blue-shirted salesperson in a store with a similar layout/color scheme to a Best Buy store, so as to represent a Best Buy employee.  The fake Best Buy employee is depicted as slovenly and uninformed about computer products, in contrast to your employees who are portrayed as "experts."

Your... negative portrayal of our employees violates trademark rights and misleads customers about our services, in violation of federal and state law.  While we welcome fair competition, we cannot tolerate unfair competition that disparages our employess, confuses our customers and damages our valuable trademarks and goodwill associated with those marks.  We take great pride in our employees and the high quality of customer service they offer and find your company's focus on our employees in this advertising campaign particularly offensive.  We expect that you would be equally offended if the tables were turned and a competitor launched an advertising campaign portraying your employees as slovenly and uninformed.
To be fair, the employee pictured doesn't appear particularly "slovenly" -- a trip to your local Best Buy store will reveal he in fact is pretty much the norm -- the store is home to the world's most well-coiffed employees in our experience.

In reality, Best Buy may be getting a little uncomfortable as the ad hits a bit too close to home.  One YouTube commenter (uprated 125 times) remarks:
Sadly, this IS what best buy is.

There's a reason knowledgeable people don't shop at best buy, and poor consumers get ripped off without even knowing it.
Another comments, "oh man this commercial is giving best buy employees? too much credit."

The encounter depicted is in line with our staff's personal interactions with Best Buy sales staff across the country, as well.  For example, when shopping for a laptop in 2008, floor sales staff at two separate local Best Buy stores were unable to properly assess laptop graphics performance and were unaware of current mobile graphics card offerings.  

In both cases it took several employees in the computer department to find one that could compared and contrast offered processors in a technically sound manner.  And in both cases, the employees suggested that the DailyTech staffer "apply for the Geek Squad" as they "seem to know a lot about computers."

Of course, these experiences are limited, but based on feedback on YouTube and Facebook it seems we're not the only ones who have encountered this.

The broader question is whether depicting a company in an unfavorable manner -- without using specific logos or brand names -- is illegal.  In this regard Best Buy's legal chances seem poor, given that Verizon Communications, Inc.'s (VZ) successfully defended in court its right to air far more flagrant commercials attacking AT&T, Inc. (T); and the fact that Deutsche Telekom AG's (DTE) T-Mobile USA and Apple, Inc. (AAPL) have both [1][2] aired similar commercials attacking their competitors' products or brands by name.

II. Logo Abuse?

Best Buy also alleges that Newegg.com is abusing its trademarks pertaining to the Geek Squad -- namely, the use of the colors black and/or orange in relation to the terms "geek" or a power button logo.

Newegg.com has recently started a new services campaign [GIF] dubbed "Geek On", which shows an orange power button as the 'O' in "ON", next to black or white "GEEK" text (depending on the color of the backdrop).  The campaign pitches Newegg.com support and sales, and the company has been distributing promotional T-shirts as a part of the campaign.

Best Buy's lawyers write:
We recently learn that Newegg is using a stylized GEEK ON design in orange-and-black font with the "O" in "ON" depicted as a power button (the "Geek on Logo") with a new marketing campaign for Newegg's consumer electronics retail services.  We understand Newegg is using this design on its website, its Facebook site, and in connection with promotional items for Newegg's services such as t-shirts.  An illustrative use of the Geek On Logo is attached as Exhibit B.

Given Best Buy's long-standing prior use of the GEEK SQUAD mark, Geek Squad Trade Dress, and Tie and Power Button Design, Best Buy is concerned that Newegg's use of the Geek On Logo is likely to create confusion among consumers and to dilute the distinctive quality of the GEEK SQUAD mark in violation of Best Buy's trademark rights.  Best Buy is particularly concerned because the Geek On Logo features the GEEK-component of Best Buy's GEEK SQUAD mark, is depicted in the same orange-and-black color scheme as Best Buy's Geek Squad Trade Dress, features a power button design that is very similar to the Geek Squad Tie and Power Button Design, and is used to promote Newegg's competing consumer electronics retail services.
Whether anyone would actually "confuse" Best Buy and Newegg, is debatable, but Best Buy may have a bit more of a leg to stand on here.  Apple has in the past brought several similar lawsuits claiming violation of its logo [1][2][3].  Similarly, George Lucas has successfully brought several Star Wars related trademark lawsuits against small firms [1][2].

In other words, regardless of whether its fair or not, legal precedent has shown that marginally related logos and text can be grounds for a successful court case by the trademark originator against the late adopter.

III. What's Next?

Newegg.com does not appear to be backing down from either campaign and defiantly posted Best Buy's letter on its Facebook page.

A cease and desist letter is a legal tactic in which one party sends the other a letter formally warning them not to repeat certain actions like stalking.  If they violate the terms, they can face criminal and civil penalties under U.S. law.


Typically, a cease and desist letter is followed by a lawsuit if the addressed party does not comply.  It's now just a waiting game to see if Best Buy backs up its threats with legal muscle.

In the meantime all Best Buy's fuss is generating loads of free publicity for Newegg.com's commercial, which has already gathered 413,000+ views.

Best Buy sent a similar threat last year to a priest who used the slogan "God Squad" and drove a Volkswagen Beetle painted similar to those used by the Geek Squad.  The company does not appear to have followed up on that threat with any substantial legal action, perhaps because of the backlash that stories about the threat caused. 


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wow
By TechIsGr8 on 6/10/2011 1:33:51 PM , Rating: 5
the first two posts here are defending Best Buy. Astounding. Do you not remember the Best Buy CEO a few years back lamenting that educated customers were the "enemy"?




RE: wow
By icemansims on 6/10/2011 1:39:45 PM , Rating: 1
Of course, but that's not particularly surprising on his part. No retailer really likes educated customers.
Credit Card companies frequently refer to "good" customers (people who don't carry balances and never have to pay interest or penalty fees) as "dead beats".
Best Buy isn't really for the technically savvy, anyway. They are usually at least a generation behind the current and frequently only carry the middle of the road components.


RE: wow
By lagomorpha on 6/10/2011 3:07:18 PM , Rating: 5
> Credit Card companies frequently refer to "good" customers (people who don't carry balances and never have to pay interest or penalty fees) as "dead beats".

"debt beats"

And if you're in a Best Buy and can tell the difference between 2 year old middle of the road components and new top of the line components ... wtf are you doing in a Best Buy?


RE: wow
By icemansims on 6/10/2011 4:21:32 PM , Rating: 3
No...dead beats is what I meant, as they do not contribute to the income of the credit card company but are using their services.

http://credit.about.com/od/usingcreditcards/a/dead...

I CAN tell the difference. I rarely buy things from Best Buy because they're selling overpriced, outdated junk.

Most people who shop there DON'T know the difference. My mother is a good example. She's a bit of a technophobe, but recognizes the need for a computer. So, she would be the type to walk in and buy it off the shelf from such a big box computer store and get ripped off if I didn't do the research for her.
A good example would be a video card: an HD6450 vs an HD5970. To a lay person, they're not going to know the difference. In fact, they're more likely to choose the 6450 because it's a higher number, but they just don't know any better. How about the Pentium 4 vs the Athlon 64 back in the day? The Pentium 4 boasted a hell of a clock speed (3.2 GHz), but the Athlon 64 (2.4 GHZ) beat the pants off of it consistently AND was cheaper. A lay person at the time wouldn't have known that if they didn't do their homework.

Ignorance is the source of a lot of income at Best Buy.


RE: wow
By steven975 on 6/13/2011 10:11:20 AM , Rating: 3
Actually, those that reliably pay their balances each and every month are great customers.

They don't have the margin of those that rack up interest and penalties, but a CC company could run a successful business with ONLY those that pay their balances each month and still do quite well.

For example, let's say a person pays on-time, every time, and charges $2K per month. Each and every month, the CC company nets around 2% in transaction fees, or $40. Over the course of a year, that is $480, and at any given time, the maximum investment from the CC company's perspective is $2K or so. Add in that the collections and customer service costs are relatively low (it's the people up against the limit and paying through the nose in fees hogging those resources) along with the almost risk-free profiles of these customers, and you have a formula for good profits.

Many of these customers are also on good Rewards programs, so the "take" for the CC company may be ~1.5% instead, but it's still a good return given the low risks involved.

Counter this with someone with a $10K balance and 30% rate, and the return looks smaller...BUT these types also spend an hour a month with customer service whining, too. They also happen to delay payment, tying up investment, too. These are HIGH RISK customers, but with a lot of them you can make money, just like you can make money with low-risk customers.

Still, there's way more overall in the risky people, but most good CC companies don't ignore the low-risk people, either.


RE: wow
By Just Tom on 6/14/2011 10:27:34 AM , Rating: 2
Um, a rate of return on investment of 1.5% is terrible. And in your scenario it would be even less since you assume there are no costs to the credit card company when it issues and maintains a credit card account. 1.5% is below the normal inflation rate and significantly below the rate one could get investing in Treasury bills.

Credit card companies call people who pay their bills on time and in full every month deadbeats because they lose money on every such customer.


RE: wow
By steven975 on 6/15/2011 11:36:01 AM , Rating: 2
Ummm...that's 1.5% per month, 18% annualized.

$2K invested over the course of a year, at low risk, returning a dependable $360 is a pretty good deal.


RE: wow
By Argon18 on 6/16/2011 5:35:45 PM , Rating: 2
That's not a good deal, that's a great deal. In your example, $2k invested with $360 return per year = double your money every 6 years. That's a very very good investment from the CC's perspective.


RE: wow
By kattanna on 6/10/2011 1:56:08 PM , Rating: 5
whats even funnier is.. that by suing, they have made what would have otherwise been a commercial forgotten about within a week.. front page world news.. which will only make sure even more people now see the add for newegg

thats HOT



RE: wow
By lagomorpha on 6/10/2011 3:08:36 PM , Rating: 3
Gotta love the Streisand effect.


RE: wow
By rburnham on 6/10/2011 3:47:30 PM , Rating: 4
Exactly! I didn't even know Newegg made commercials. I already love their website more than anything else on the internet. Now I just love them a little bit more.


RE: wow
By icemansims on 6/10/11, Rating: 0
RE: wow
By EricMartello on 6/10/2011 5:03:39 PM , Rating: 2
So you're suggesting that if you ran a business and wanted to grow it, you wouldn't advertise?

Proper advertising is an investment because it provides a return on the money put into it. It's safe to say that Newegg's commercial will result in a nice boost to their sales - possibly from disappointed BestBuy shoppers who got smurfed into buying a $150 HDMI cable for their walkman, and the 3-year extended warranty.


RE: wow
By crazyboy1 on 6/10/2011 6:23:52 PM , Rating: 4
I have a friend who actually thinks his $150 hdmi cable is better than my $6 hdmi cable. he insists the picture transmitted is of higher quality. I tried explaining to him the difference between analog and digital but he was just pure ignorant, I guess people that spend that much on something have to believe they did the right thing otherwise they wouldn't bare live with themselves for being stupid


RE: wow
By BZDTemp on 6/10/2011 6:48:06 PM , Rating: 1
The weird thing is that with the way our brains work he may actually see the picture from the expensive cable as being superior. That's why blind tests are being used for testing audio and video products however if paying more makes a person thing something is better one could argue they are getting their moneys worth.

A similar effect can be found with organic food where many people insist unconditional that organic food tastes better even though blind taste tests show it's not that black and white.


RE: wow
By EricMartello on 6/10/11, Rating: -1
RE: wow
By Spuke on 6/11/2011 1:49:17 AM , Rating: 4
quote:
Why pay more than $3-$10 for one?
I've got four, six year old $6 HDMI cables. Good as the first day I bought them and I live in the Mojave where we regularly experience single digit humidity. No dry rot here. And no luck either. I've had others buy these cables and theirs are still excellent also. $150 HDMI cables are simply WAY overpriced and exist only to relive the ignorant of their cash.

Yes, there are some better quality, more expensive HDMI cables out there (that are still not $150..Blue Jeans comes to mind) but unless you need a 100 foot run, it is a waste of money to buy them.


RE: wow
By isayisay on 6/11/2011 12:04:20 PM , Rating: 2
the other thing to keep in mind with cables, is the connectors. Cheap connectors don't connect up to cables well (and thus induce noise) and can break very easily.

I had a cheapo HDMI cable that fell apart and left the connector in the DVR. Annoying.

Overall, I'm fine with the low cost cables. Though some clearly have better build quality than others.


RE: wow
By semiconshawn on 6/12/2011 12:39:07 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Now there is a misleading trend that people think digital connections either work or they don't - that is false. Digital transmissions are less susceptible to the interference that affected analog cables, but if the signal is not strong enough or is otherwise degraded, it would result in you seeing blocky artifacts in the video or pops and crackles in the audio (aka digital jitter).


Yeah if you get one that causes artifacts its bad. Digital connections on your av equipment ARE pretty much go or no go. Stop trying to justifiy being ripped of for $50 bucks. I work with digital coax and fiber connections all day everyday at work. If it its built correctly it will work. If its not take it back.


RE: wow
By EricMartello on 6/12/11, Rating: -1
RE: wow
By Bad-Karma on 6/13/2011 4:15:04 AM , Rating: 3
What's that old saying....something about "a fool and his money...."


RE: wow
By EricMartello on 6/13/11, Rating: -1
RE: wow
By Smilin on 6/13/2011 10:19:49 AM , Rating: 2
A car analogy won't save you.

There is no image difference between a cheap one and an expensive one. I have yet to see an HDMI cable so cheap that it literally breaks when using it so buying an expensive one is a waste of money that could be spent elsewhere.


RE: wow
By EricMartello on 6/13/11, Rating: 0
RE: wow
By Argon18 on 6/16/2011 5:41:29 PM , Rating: 2
Wrong. Even with your kuro, a crap $6 hdmi cable will perform exactly the same as a $100 hdmi cable. hdmi is 100% digital. the video and the audio. all digital. does a $100 usb cable perform better than a $6 USB cable? How about a $100 Ethernet cable. Does it perform better than a $6 Ethernet cable? Of course not. Likewise, a $6 HDMI cable performs exactly the same as a $100 hdmi cable.

If you want to talk about analog cables, that is an entirely different story, and spending a bit more on quality cables with better shielding and construction WILL get you an appreciable gain in audio and video quality over a $6 crap cable.


RE: wow
By Farfignewton on 6/13/2011 10:28:33 AM , Rating: 4
I haven't driven a BMW 7 series and don't even know what they look like off the top of my head, but I'd be willing to bet they accelerate better, go faster, and have a ton more features than a Metro which will win on mpg only.

Oh, and lets not forget the status symbol part. You're probably not planning on washing your hdmi cables in the driveway to show off to your neighbors.


RE: wow
By Bad-Karma on 6/22/2011 2:09:58 PM , Rating: 1
What your missing is how much extra your paying for something that doesn't matter.

A digital signal requires a discreet amount of bandwidth to pass it's data, no-more,no-less. Any less bandwidth and the signal can not pass. If you experience pixelation then you've dropped below the minimum bandwidth threshold. However, a digital signal can't utilize any extra bandwidth (the signal doesn't get any better).

Your talking about buying an olympic class swimming pool so you can give your cat a bath.

Now to address your little rant:

I don't think anyone could ever accuse me of being a "cheapass",far from it. And why would it make me mad that someone could buy a 7 series? I have no use for one. My daily driver is a 2011 F-350 crew 4x4 6.7 LB dually. I also have a customized 03 F-550 that turns almost 800HP for when we want to travel with my 34ft 5th wheel. And my wife enjoys her 07 XJ8R to and from work each morning. Oh and we bought them not only because of the added comfort, but because we can.

So STFU you little snot nosed brat.


RE: wow
By Wiggy Mcshades on 6/13/2011 3:28:31 PM , Rating: 1
With a digital signal to actually be corrupted enough to cause a visual artifact it would have to be running out of spec. Modern serial communication protocols take into account that each bit sent won't always arrive as the correct value. There's a certain number of incorrect transmissions that can happen in a time frame for every protocol that can be properly dealt with. You can't get an artifact or pop unless the number of errors exceeds this amount set by who ever designed the communication protocol. So either the cable isn't made to spec or it is. If the cable is damaged or run in an environment that exceeds its operating specifications then you will probably be in a situation where there is noticeable loss in the quality of what ever media is being transmitted. Other than those two cases, if the cable is made to spec it will act the same as all other cables made to spec.


RE: wow
By The Jedi on 6/10/2011 5:22:13 PM , Rating: 2
I suspect increased prices are already here with them having to deal with all of the extra stuff they stock now that nobody buys. I get that they want to be Amazon, but I don't think that's best.


RE: wow
By Smilin on 6/10/11, Rating: 0
RE: wow
By Alexstarfire on 6/10/2011 2:12:11 PM , Rating: 3
In reality, nothing. However, he's associating the behavior of the CEO with the behavior of the company which is pretty fair given he's the CEO. Suggesting that the company doesn't want the consumers to become educated by going to Newegg given what the CEO stated.

Obviously the way to do the aforementioned is to stop the ad from being run by suing them over it.


RE: wow
By Smilin on 6/10/11, Rating: 0
RE: wow
By Alexstarfire on 6/10/2011 3:55:05 PM , Rating: 2
It both is and isn't. He may not directly be saying anything about Best Buy, but as he represents the company anything he says is going to be associated with it, good or bad. The man running a company should be capable of realizing that.


RE: wow
By Smilin on 6/10/11, Rating: -1
RE: wow
By JKflipflop98 on 6/12/2011 5:46:04 AM , Rating: 1
It has EVERYTHING to do with this. HE RUNS THE COMPANY. Things go the way he wants them to.


RE: wow
By Smilin on 6/13/2011 10:25:42 AM , Rating: 1
As far as I can tell the decision to sue regarding the blue shirts and copied store was a pretty obvious one. I pointed out the commercial to some people yesterday and they didn't realize it wasn't Best Buy.

This is a decision worthy of a mail clerk in the legal dept. The same events would occur regarless of who is CEO so him being a dick has nothing to do with this.

Maybe CAPS will change my mind. Try some of those.


RE: wow
By cjohnson2136 on 6/10/2011 2:15:44 PM , Rating: 2
They know I am the enemy. When my mom went to buy a laptop for a brother she kept calling me asking me all these questions about which stats, which prices sound reasonable, which services to get, and I told her the exact stats, the price to get, and to get none of the services. Sales man tried selling her a equal stat machine for 300 more and 200 in service. Apparently the sales guy kept saying stuff under his breath when she said "Let me call my son and ask him what he thinks?"


RE: wow
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:43:41 PM , Rating: 3
Best Buy is in the business of making money. Unfortunately there is no profit on Computers, TVs, etc. Most of our money is made on accessories, services, and protection plans. Newegg has a LOT fewer employees to pay, and also don't have to cover costs of brick and mortar stores.


RE: wow
By Redwin on 6/10/2011 4:21:51 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Most of our money is made on accessories, services, and protection plans. Newegg has a LOT fewer employees to pay, and also don't have to cover costs of brick and mortar stores.

You know if you replace "services" with "late fees" and then replace "Newegg/Bestbuy" with "Netflix/Blockbuster"...

Just Sayin'


Couldn't have said it better...
By Hakuryu on 6/10/2011 2:15:40 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
There's a reason knowledgeable people don't shop at best buy, and poor consumers get ripped off without even knowing it.


Price for an HDMI cable at NewEgg - $3.99.

Price for an HDMI cable at Best Buy - $29.99 to over $1,000.

Experience at NewEgg - quick search, checkout, fast shipping.

Experience at BB - being told you need $200 HDMI cables instead of the cheap ones that 'probably won't work'. Waiting in the one open line, with at least 10 BB employees in sight shooting the breeze. Then being pressured into buying protection plans.




RE: Couldn't have said it better...
By dcollins on 6/10/2011 3:27:00 PM , Rating: 5
And believe it or not, HDMI cables are even cheaper on Monoprice.com: 6' for $3.39. If you've never shopped at Monoprice, check it out immediately.

You can literally buy a 22 gauge, professional level 50' HDMI cable for less than Best Buy charges for a normal 26 gauge 6 footer. I know that the gauge only matters for long cables or high-wear installations; I'm just making a point about pricing.


RE: Couldn't have said it better...
By kmmatney on 6/10/2011 6:36:14 PM , Rating: 3
You got downrated for some reason, but I've bought a ton of cables from monoprice, and they've all worked great. I've been using one of the $3.39 HDMI cables for several years now on one of my TVs.


By Solandri on 6/11/2011 1:54:41 AM , Rating: 3
Best thing about Monoprice is that they'll ship USPS if possible. So if you buy a $0.59 adapter, it won't cost you $2.99 in shipping. If it's small enough, they'll drop it in a padded first class envelope for $0.88 shipping.

Their forte really is the unusual adapters and more exotic cables though. Stuff you'll have a hard time finding at Newegg or even Amazon. Need a molex to 4xSATA power adapter? Monoprice has it.


RE: Couldn't have said it better...
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:32:50 PM , Rating: 3
Again, pricing in store isn't something we control. Believe me, I find it just as outrageous as you do, especially when you see what WE get them for.

You have to remember, Best Buy is in the business of making money. Accesories are extremely high margin, expecially things like cables (obviously). The managers are pressured, and they yell at us lowly hourly workers to sell things, and if we don't, we get written up. Protection plans are a great idea for most people (for example, my last laptop my cat spilled a glass of water on it, I brought it in... A week later I get a call to come get a new one. I got an even better one than the original, for absolutely nothing. And it had nothing to do with my being an employee.

Same thing with my phone. Went on vacation, I'm driving through Cleveland, and my HTC inspire locks up, and won't boot past the HTC screen. Bring it to store near my grandparents house, they Rapid Exchange it, new phone (refurbished phone, but that's the same as from the MFR) in 3 days. Versus spend $500 on a brand new phone.


RE: Couldn't have said it better...
By rburnham on 6/10/2011 3:49:13 PM , Rating: 5
And that is one of the many reasons I got out of retail. Trying to upsell customers on things they did not want really bugged me.


By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:51:42 PM , Rating: 2
Believe me, if I had any other potential jobs right now I would be taking them.


RE: Couldn't have said it better...
By Smilin on 6/10/2011 4:09:50 PM , Rating: 5
All stores do this. Grocery stores mark up the crap out of high sugar cereals yet sometimes sell sugar itself at a loss because it's one of those prices consumers have a rough idea about (gives the illusion that the store has low prices across the board).

BB may sell big screen TVs at a very low price because it knows consumers are looking at the fliers for competing stores. They then do markups on tiny things to make the profit.

They screw up because they take it too far..

1) High price.
2) Price so high it's insulting.
3) Price so high the consumer may actually know it's insulting
4) Price so high that there is no way the consumer could NOT know they are being insulted. BB knows they know and you know that BB knows you know. Net result: This price is interpreted not as high but as a "fuck you!" with a condescending smile.

Really, BB should go take the price stickers off all their cables and accessories and just put little "fuck you" stickers instead. It would actually be less insulting to the consumer because at least BB is then being honest.


By ThisSpaceForRent on 6/11/2011 9:46:59 AM , Rating: 2
Butt plugs would be a better choice actually. Loosens you up for what's about to happen at the checkout...


as a tech
By kleinma on 6/10/2011 1:45:02 PM , Rating: 4
As a consumer tech, I am constantly fixing up issues that Geek Squad made worse on customer computers. They charge an insane amount of money to do half assed work and when they can't fix a problem right away, they just tell the customer the machine needs to be reformatted. Then the customer leaves with a factory reset computer (that can be done with a few button clicks) and 300-400 gone from their wallet. Or they pull the "well you shouldn't fix this computer, but we have all these new ones for you to buy".

Total scam, but hey, it makes me look good since I charge realistic pricing and actually do a good job...




RE: as a tech
By JasonMick (blog) on 6/10/2011 2:18:28 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
As a consumer tech, I am constantly fixing up issues that Geek Squad made worse on customer computers. They charge an insane amount of money to do half assed work and when they can't fix a problem right away, they just tell the customer the machine needs to be reformatted. Then the customer leaves with a factory reset computer (that can be done with a few button clicks) and 300-400 gone from their wallet. Or they pull the "well you shouldn't fix this computer, but we have all these new ones for you to buy".

Total scam, but hey, it makes me look good since I charge realistic pricing and actually do a good job...

A while back I received a laptop from BB as a gift and purchased one of their warranties as laptop hardware repairs can be tricky to impossible and the manufacturer's warranty was pretty limited at the time.

At the time BB's policy was to "lemon out" laptops with 5+ hardware replacements. This worked out nicely for me as the system had several components failures over a year and a half (it was a kind of notoriously bad older P4 HP design).

But the dark side of BB was encountered on my replacement machine, which had the motherboard go bad. Initially Geek Squad misdiagnosed it as an HDD failure. Rather than give me the supposedly damaged drive, they shipped it off. I contacted them several times trying to make sure I got my HDD back, but in the end they announced to me that they drilled holes in it, as per their company policy.

Later I found out that the HDD likely had no issues... the motherboard was going bad and caused the "new" HDD to experience similar problems.

After that experience I learned never to do support business with BB, no matter how attractive the warranty/replacement policy seems.


RE: as a tech
By icanhascpu on 6/10/11, Rating: 0
RE: as a tech
By AssBall on 6/11/2011 3:26:18 PM , Rating: 2
They drill holes in the hard drives they think are bad so that any data on it is virtually unreadable. That's my guess.

If someone wanted to steal your porn they would have to install new voice coils, motors and use some crazy FBI crap to retrieve the data after it had holes drilled through it. I'm pretty sure you can't "go ape sh_t" on them for trying to protect your security/privacy.


RE: as a tech
By Bad-Karma on 6/13/2011 4:08:23 AM , Rating: 2
I guess you wouldn't like our method at all then....Once pulled, many of our drives have to be put through what is called a level 6 disintegrator. Its basically a giant hopper that feeds the drives into several sets of rotating Titanium/beryllium & high carbon alloy hammers. Each set gets progressively smaller but faster. What comes out the other end of the machine looks like, and is about the size of, glitter.

We've had people turn in a drive and then come back a couple of days later and ask if its too late to recover a file. Sure no-problem......


RE: as a tech
By FITCamaro on 6/13/2011 5:05:25 PM , Rating: 2
Hand them a bag of the "glitter", a beer, and wish them the best of luck.


RE: as a tech
By AerieC on 6/13/2011 1:19:11 PM , Rating: 2
Your story reminds me of one of mine.

One of my girlfriend's friends was having issues with a laptop from best buy. She knew that I was going to school for software engineering so she asked me if I could help her out. She explained what was happening over the phone and from what she told me it sounded like her hard drive was failing. Since the laptop was still under warranty she took it in to geek squad to get it fixed, and she mentioned to the clerk that I had told her it was probably the hard drive. The clerk noted what she said and said they'd take a look.

A week or so later, they told her to come back in. They had replaced the motherboard and put the same HDD back in the machine. They also told her that she had "viruses and stuff", and told her she should install some antivirus software. Needless to say, when she got home and tried to boot up her computer, she was having the exact same issues.

She brought her laptop back in and ended up talking to the person she originally talked to who noted that the HDD was likely the issue. They found it weird that the techs would replace the motherboard under those circumstances, so they went to check the original work order to see why they ignored the HDD comment.

It hadn't been touched.

So they ended up replacing the HDD and everything was peachy (imagine that).

Cost of replacing the motherboard: $1000
Cost of replacing the HDD: $100


RE: as a tech
By maverick85wd on 6/19/2011 12:36:31 AM , Rating: 2
you actually gave them your computer without taking out the hard drive first?!


RE: as a tech
By Targon on 6/12/2011 5:16:31 AM , Rating: 2
While I agree with you on most of your post, there really is a time when a customer should NOT bother to spend the money fixing their old computer. The basic logic:

Computer costs $500 when new, and in four years, you get a machine that has almost double the performance(except hard drive) for that same $500. This means that even if your old machine were NEW, the value would be only $250, and that isn't even taking smaller(and slower) hard drive and less system memory into account. So, add four years, and that machine now has WHAT for a value? Now, how much money would it cost in terms of parts and labor to the customer? If you assume a MINIMUM of $50/hour(and Best Buy charges more than double that), you really do get into the realm of "is it really worth it to fix the problem vs. getting a new machine and doing a data transfer?" situation.

Of course, those of us who CAN fix our own problems will see only the cost of parts replacement since we don't have to pay for our own labor, but to your average consumer, a new machine may very well be worth it. Take the "hard drive is about to fail" situation. Yes, you or I can just get a new drive and clone the old one before it is too late, again, no labor cost for US. How much do you charge for new hard drive plus the labor on cloning the hard drive plus installation? If the cost to the consumer would be over $200 total and the machine is 4+ years old, it may be cheaper to fix the old machine, but is it REALLY worth it to the consumer in the long run?


Factual representations are protected?
By nafhan on 6/10/2011 1:53:15 PM , Rating: 3
So, if Newegg can show that this IS what BB employees are like, they're in the clear, right? :) I'm pretty sure I've seen that exact situation in the commercial play out more than once (not quite so blatantly, though).

My personal favorite BB stories:
--Overheard a BB employee (doing a fairly good job) trying to explain the difference between a RJ11 phone cable and an RJ45 ethernet cable in order to help the the customer understand why he couldn't just plug his Xbox straight into the phone line.
--BB employee tried to sell me a crappy GPU with a huge frame buffer. He shut up and got a confused look on his face as soon as I mentioned memory bandwidth.




By erple2 on 6/10/2011 3:11:40 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
BB employee tried to sell me a crappy GPU with a huge frame buffer


When that happens, I make a reference to "Smart". The reference is usually wasted on them, however, which saddens me. Shel, you're a genius.


RE: Factual representations are protected?
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:35:20 PM , Rating: 3
Once again, as a Best Buy PC employee, I can definitely empathize with this. I've lost count of the number of times I've corrected my coworkers for this very thing.

I had to explain that even though it had a huge amount of Video Memory, it still only had 80 Stream Processors... Versus the 5770 which has 1GB (GDDR5, vs the DDR2 on the 4350), but 320SP.


By nafhan on 6/10/2011 4:14:16 PM , Rating: 2
My apologies if I made it sound like I thought all BB employees are morons... Some of them are, for sure, but not all.


RE: Factual representations are protected?
By Gondor on 6/11/2011 12:02:13 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
I had to explain that even though it had a huge amount of Video Memory, it still only had 80 Stream Processors... Versus the 5770 which has 1GB (GDDR5, vs the DDR2 on the 4350), but 320SP.


5770 has 800 (eight hundred) SPs.

I believe you just made a case in point for the author of this article.


By rudolphna on 6/12/2011 6:32:06 PM , Rating: 2
Wow, for some reason I was thinking of the 4670 I had before- I have two 5770s in Crossfire, you'd think I would remember. Brainfart for sure on that one.


By Rike on 6/10/2011 5:26:03 PM , Rating: 2
You really can't be successfully sued if you are telling the truth. This is a principal that goes WAY back.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Peter_Zenger

The Zenger case involves different type of parties (publisher/public official), but I think the basic principals are the same. The trick is that Newegg may have to demonstrate their representations are factual.


By Bad-Karma on 6/13/2011 3:50:12 AM , Rating: 3
I can relate to that all too well. I try to avoid shopping there at all cost but sometimes I just can't pass up a good deal, no matter how painful it is. About a year back I picked up a great deal on an open box 400 disc Sony DVD changer at BB. I was pressed for time and (unwisely) decided to grab an optical cables for it and one for a CD changer I already had.

The moment I stopped at the cable shelves a kid popped up as if on cue. He proceeded to lecture me on how Monster's optical cable had "superior" build quality and better " shielding" to protect it from both signal loss and EMI from other cables!

So I attempted to inform him about the difference between electromagnet vs. Photonic theories and why they won't interfere with each other. About a minute into the discourse this kid has a blank look on his face. But as soon as I gave up on him and stopped talking, he launched right back into his "Monster-is-better-because-" spiel.

When he saw that I didn't believe anything coming out of his mouth he got another worker, I think his immediate supervisor, who started in with the exact same BS sales pitch.

My mind just pictured them sitting at a big long table and arguing about putting electrolytes on plants......

Now whenever they walk up to me and ask, "can I help you?" I just reply, "Probably not" and walk on.


How ironic
By Beenthere on 6/10/2011 1:43:38 PM , Rating: 1
With all of the times Bad Buy has been sued by state AGs for consumer fraud, you'd think they'd learn a thing or two about law, but no they just go looking for ways to lose more money and make a fool of themselves.




RE: How ironic
By MozeeToby on 6/10/2011 1:53:09 PM , Rating: 2
Look at it objectively, their complaint about the commercial seems to at least have legitimacy in my mind. The article itself points out that you can't tell the difference between a real Best Buy employee and the Newegg commercial Best Buy stand in. Assuming BB has a trademark on their uniforms and store colors. I'm not saying that they are correct, just that Trademarks exist so that one vendor can't use another vendor's branding to confuse customers; watching the video I can see how many customers could be under the impression, especially at the start, that the commercial is for BB.

The T-shirt thing though, that's just crazy. BB doesn't have a trademark on the on/off symbol, or at least they shouldn't. And that's the only thing they have in common.

I hate BB as much as anyone, I never shop there and tell everyone I know not to shop there. If I had more free time I would go a troll the cable section with my smartphone out and show every single person that comes looking for cables just how much they're getting ripped off. That doesn't mean that their case is merit-less.


RE: How ironic
By Alexstarfire on 6/10/2011 2:06:31 PM , Rating: 2
I originally thought it was a BB commercial because of the clothes, but you're supposed to think that. BB has the BB logo on their official uniforms. I checked Google images just to make sure as well. The tag on the guy's shirt in the commercial is the same place the BB logo would be. Pretty sure just having the same solid color and style of shirt isn't illegal anywhere. They have no leg to stand on in that regard.

Now, for the whole Geek Squad logo issue.... IDK. I haven't seen any of the stuff from NewEgg they are talking about. That one seems far more plausible for them to sue over based on what I read.


RE: How ironic
By MozeeToby on 6/10/2011 2:15:00 PM , Rating: 2
Remember that in order to keep your trademarks you have to defend them. If BB has a trademark on the uniform and store colors, they can't let a commercial using that branding to sell a competitor's products air without taking them to court. It's then up to the courts to decide if the commercial is misleading to customers (I suspect that they will agree with you that it isn't, given how negatively it portrays BB).

My real point is this: compared to other things BB has done, particularly compared to the lies they tell their customers to get up sells, defending their trademarks is pretty low on my list of reasons to hate them.


RE: How ironic
By Mitch101 on 6/10/2011 3:14:09 PM , Rating: 4
Burger King mentions the Big Mac in their commercial and Wendy's compare their fry's to McDonalds.

I say Game On if NewEgg wants to call out Best Buy.


RE: How ironic
By Beenthere on 6/10/2011 2:15:14 PM , Rating: 1
If you can't tell the difference between a Bad Buy rep and someone else in a blue shirt then there is no offense. I don't think of every person I see in a blue shirt in a store as a Bad Buy employee. I think Bad Buy's allegations are a real stretch. If I saw the TV ad it would not mean anything to me other than the person had no technical clue, which is pretty typical IME.


Another frivolous lawsuit
By bntran02 on 6/10/2011 2:24:11 PM , Rating: 3
If you are shopping at newegg.com then chances are you are not shopping at best buy. They tailor to two different groups of people. The informed (newegg) and the uninformed (best buy).




RE: Another frivolous lawsuit
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:55:03 PM , Rating: 2
Correct. Regardless of what most of you say, the majority of people leave Best Buy happy, because they got decent customer service, they got their questions answered (Because remember, for most people saying "This laptop will be much faster if you are doing anything like making videos than this one" is all they need to know. Many customers just get confused when you even mention clock speeds or cores. They just want to know if it will surf porn websites or allow them to pay the bills, and a place to go if it breaks.

That is the audience best buy caters to. As an employee myself, I buy most of my components and stuff from the 'egg as well.


RE: Another frivolous lawsuit
By Duwelon on 6/10/2011 4:50:21 PM , Rating: 2
I hate best buy for most stuff other than keyboard / mice if i'm in a big hurry to get one. But, you make a great point. Non-techies get served fairly well by Best Buy.

Someday I'd like to open a store just for high end and/or high quality parts at near-etail prices but I know i'd have to try to keep most of best buy's customer base out to keep my sanity.


RE: Another frivolous lawsuit
By steven975 on 6/13/2011 11:01:17 AM , Rating: 2
You can open one, but the challenge will be KEEPING it open.


Sadly true
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:25:52 PM , Rating: 3
As a Best Buy computer sales employee myself, I have to concede the point that most salespeople know little more about computers than the customers they are trying to help. I'm one of the few that actually knows a significant amount. I'm our resident hardware expert. Have any questions on processors, graphics card, RAM, etc? I'm the only one in the store who can actually explain the differences WELL.

For example, one of my fellow co workers a few months ago was explaining to a customer that the 4350 with 2GB of VRAM (Why? why is there 2GB of VRAM on such a shitty card? PointlesS) was better than the 5870 with 1GB. I told him off later for that.

The problem is there simply aren't that many people out there with high levels of computer knowledge, and of those, the ones that are willing to put up with the BS of working retail in a big corporation that doesn't give a shit about you as an employee are few and far between. Most are good salespeople, but have little knowledge. Though I will say, we are one of the better stores by far. We have our resident hardware expert (again, myself), our resident Linux Expert (colin) our resident mac expert (tyler), resident mainframe expert (Diane, worked for GE for 45 years as a mainframe tech, not that mainframes are really relevant these days), and a few others.

But by and large, they are just normal people who took a few e-learnings and are thrown on the floor. The managers generally know less about the product than even the customer that walks in the door, and all they think about is percentages for certain things.

One way or the other, you have to aknowledge that 95% of people that go into best buy leave happy. Happy with the service they received, and happy with the product we helped them purchase. Obviously Best buy isn't a store for hardcore or even moderately knowledgeable techs. It is place for joe blow who calls USB ports "UBS" ports, and thinks Windows 2000 is hot stuff. These are the same people that don't realize every computer comes with Wireless, and minimum, a DVD burner.

By the way, when you walk in the store next time, cut the guys a bit of slack. We are paid anywhere from $9-$10/hr to deal with customers who generally don't know a CPU from a Harddrive, and often are disagreeable. Anyone who's ever worked retail can empathize with that).

Honestly most of us hate Best Buy as much as you do, but it's a job, and we do it to the best of our abilities. And for prices... Well, I'm obviously not allowed to tell people that that 25' HDMI cable that costs $130 online is $25. Hell, I get it for less than that, but I can't say exactly how much. But that isn't something we control in the store, complain to corporate about that, not the college student who is simply trying to pay for his bills.




RE: Sadly true
By Ramstark on 6/10/2011 6:52:15 PM , Rating: 2
I'll have to say that reading this comment, suddenly, I feel obligued to buy some of those "200 bucks HDMI cables" You know, giving people a job and trying to "technologize" the rest of the world as well as putting its 2 grains of sand for the good name of "Geeks" (Thank you Big Bang Theory for so many girlfriends willing to try a "nerd/now cool geek") So, online stores are cheap, convenient and accurate, but are run by 2 or 3 guys like us, who know better and know how to rip off the Govt. with taxes (cof-cofAmazoncof-cof). So, hell, next time my non-techie clueless friend asks me on the phone "Should I buy the one year tech service?" I will answer "Yes, you definitely do that" xD


RE: Sadly true
By inperfectdarkness on 6/13/2011 2:49:20 AM , Rating: 2
in fairness, it's not limited to BB.

i was an employee during the nardelli era at home depot. knowledge & experience of store staff took a nosedive. before he came along, managers were allowed significant leeway in paying employees. afterwards, it was all micromanaged--and not just in pay-rates.

needless to say, the retirees (former electricians, plumbers, carpenters, etc) who worked there for fun, a hobby, or some extra spending $$$ pretty much walked. with them--went all the expertise and DIY knowledge that made home depot so great in the first place.

how much more CEO fail do we have to endure before companies start waking up and realizing that steady-state sales is more important than profit margins?


best buy
By AssBall on 6/10/2011 1:36:44 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Best Buy's lawyers write:


We haven't sued the crap out of anyone in a while so this seemed like a good opportunity to try and leech some money off of one of the competitors who are kicking our sorry ass.

/fixed.




Best Buy Geek Squad
By lgoodnight on 6/10/2011 7:31:28 PM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't take a nymber 2 pencil there to get it sharpened, they would screw it up....




RE: Best Buy Geek Squad
By chagrinnin on 6/10/2011 9:58:14 PM , Rating: 3
Did you mean a nymber 2 "pyoncil"? :P


Hey Best Buy...
By The Raven on 6/10/2011 1:43:09 PM , Rating: 4
...why are you complaining about Newegg making fun of Walmart employees? ;-P




Best Buy?
By The Jedi on 6/10/2011 5:33:01 PM , Rating: 2
They never mentioned Best Buy by name, so I think this would get thrown out of court.

T-Mobile seems to have trademarked their magenta color, but I don't see how Best Buy can claim the color blue all to themselves.

It's called competition. Case dismissed.




RE: Best Buy?
By Smilin on 6/13/2011 12:18:43 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't work that way. If you provide enough information to identify your competitor it's the same thing as naming them.

I showed this commercial to the lady giving me a haircut yesterday and afterwards I asked her who it was. She said bestbuy but then I pointed out that it wasn't actually bestbuy..just blue shirts and a similar store layout.

The Geek logo will get thrown out but Bestbuy will either win or have enough leverage to settle the rest.


Only from Best Buy
By jardows on 6/11/2011 1:20:46 PM , Rating: 4
I work for Motorola technical support for cable and DSL modem products. I can't tell you the number of times a customer has called in and they purchased a DSL modem for their cable service, or a Cable modem for DSL service. Almost every time - the customes says that the person at Best Buy told them that this is what they needed. I have never had a customer report any other store giving them that mis-information. I have also had many customers calling in with plain modems that have no wireless capabilities - and they tell us that the person at Best Buy told them that the product did have wireless capabilities. I place the blame for that lack of basic product knowledge on upper management for not training their sales people to have a basic understanding of the basic function of their products. That is the least that should be expected, and Best Buy is not even doing that. The company deserves the ridicule from this advertisement.




Yes I can
By Mitch101 on 6/10/2011 3:06:48 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
The "slovenly" faux-Best Buy employee is pictured in Newegg's latest commercial; a real Best Buy employee is pictured in a separate image. Can you tell which is which? (Source: M-Live, YouTube)

Yes the idiot on the left is trying to sell me a Monster HDMI cable for $144.00 and is offering to sync my 3D glasses at an extra cost.




Best Buy Response letter
By icemansims on 6/10/2011 3:11:27 PM , Rating: 3
By GatoRat on 6/10/2011 6:16:38 PM , Rating: 3
I'm not a fan of Best Buy, but have to admit that I've gotten some really good deals from them in the past several months.

At Christmas, we bought my daughter a Dell laptop (she paid half) that was $150 cheaper than a very slightly more powerful later model from Dell itself. The great part is the slightly slower CPU means it gets incredible battery life.

Last week, I bought a TV, BluRay player and a TV stand from Best Buy. I'd done my own research, but played dumb and got excellent, no BS, top-notch service from most of the Best Buy employees. With one exception, they were friendly and not pushy at all. I got everything on sale at prices below New Egg. Best of all, I didn't like the Panasonic BluRay player and exchanged it for a SONY without any hassles, restocking fees or postage.

Yes, their cables are expensive, but so are cables at most stores. Even New Egg has crappy prices on cables. Amazon finally has some decent prices, though they're all through places like Cables To Go.

My only complaint; a Geek Squad guy stuck himself in the middle of the sales transaction and tried pushing cables and other high margin crap on me, to the point where he was even grabbing stuff and piling it on my purchases! I think he was even irritating the sales associate who was helping me, though she politely ignored him.




best scam
By Shadowmaster625 on 6/13/2011 11:31:57 AM , Rating: 3
Best Buy should just sue everyone who uses the symbol for a power button.




Best Buy =
By Cheesew1z69 on 6/10/2011 1:33:16 PM , Rating: 2
Fail




Commercial seems pretty accurate
By borismkv on 6/10/2011 2:16:20 PM , Rating: 2
I mean, that's exactly what I get every time I ask someone at the big box electronics stores a question. People freakin loved me during my 3 months of Walmart Electronics Department work because I actually answered their questions. I just couldn't stand working for Hellmart any longer than that.

But I guess it's now okay to sue for having truth in advertising, which is new, so there's that.




Hey...
By fuser197 on 6/10/2011 3:10:48 PM , Rating: 2
I didn't know one of the Weasely brothers worked at BestBuy...




I was confused....
By kusala on 6/10/2011 4:55:50 PM , Rating: 2
I thought they were going to court because newegg portrayed there employees to a tee... Not because of the geek word or colors.

I had to read the article more thoroughly after seeing the commercial first.




Factual
By vcolon on 6/11/2011 12:26:37 AM , Rating: 2
So true about Best Buy. If they decide to sue, I'll willingly go and testify for the defense, namely Newegg.




The only questions I would ask...
By Rankor on 6/11/2011 5:42:25 AM , Rating: 2
would be:

'Do you have this item in stock?' if I can't find the item.
'Can you check the price of this item?' if the price is not posted.

Any other questions asked to me?

'No; thank you for asking.'

This is usually if I can't wait for Amazon/Newegg delivery or I can't drive to the nearest Fry's.

When Circuit City, PC Club, and CompUSA were still in business, same response to questions of help.

Fry's Electronics assistance? Same thing...




Advert is mostly true
By navair2 on 6/11/2011 10:35:46 AM , Rating: 2
It has been my experience that this ad could apply to any number of "electronics warehouses" including Circuit City, Silo and Best Buy. Of those, I believe Best buy is the only one to survive the upturn in Internet sales as a "brick and mortar" establishment here in the U.S.

Like anyone, I'm sure they're doing their "best" (heheh) but they could do MUCH better training their employees with regard to informed salesmanship.
As for their "geek squad", in my experience as a PC enthusiast they actually are on par or slightly better than the average "do-it-yourself'er", mostly well-informed and enthusiastic about their profession IMO.

It's this portrayal of the floor assistant that cracks me up because it's nearly dead-on with it's accuracy...:)
Granted, Best Buy has an uphill road if it wants to compete with the likes of Newegg.com because of overhead (which I'm sure Newegg doesn't have even half of), but that's retail for you.

I think Best Buy is just playing the common "chess game" in its bid to remain competitive, by trying to squash negative portrayals of its business model.




Thank you Best Buy!
By KendoTek on 6/11/2011 6:01:17 PM , Rating: 2
This is awesome. If Best Buy had not made a big deal out of this, I never would have seen the Geek On tee shirt. I went to order one, but since its out of stock, I now await the auto-notification. (I can't help but to wonder if this stink that Best Buy is raising has something to do with it?)

P.S. A thanks goes to their Geek Squad, too. Considering how expensive they are, I have no guilt in raising my service fee from a twelve-pack to a twelve-pack and Capone's Pizza. Newegg is not the only one benefiting from Best Buy's situation!




By belawrence on 6/11/2011 10:49:57 PM , Rating: 2
If I absolutely need a part right now and can't wait for shipping from Newegg, TigerDirect, etc, I'm fortunate enough to live near both a Fry's Electronics and a MicroCenter.




parody....?
By usrname on 6/13/2011 8:42:36 AM , Rating: 2
I would think that the commercial would be considered a parody...Also I'm not any kind of expert but can a uniform color scheme be trademarked? If it can I would think that you could just simply change the shade slightly...Anyway.
Now I don't think Bestbuy has a case and I'm not a fan of BB but they are obligated to defend their trademarks as aggressively as possible or else they could lose them.(From what I've heard/read.)
As far as the "Geek On" claim I think Newegg maybe cutting it close with the power button symbol but I assume this sort of stuff is run by a legal team prior to release?
And they gave it the go ahead....so...




blue shirts?
By Screwballl on 6/13/2011 12:13:10 PM , Rating: 2
My local BB occasionally has employees in red, yellow and green shirts, so does Newegg have to have the "employees" in the commercial go shirtless in order to completely avoid lawsuits? Other stores have Red shirts (Staples), white or green shirts (Office Max) and so on...

This is a last ditch effort attempting to protect people from the truth about BB and its barely out of high school know-nothing employees really getting out to the general public.

Our local store is down to one "repair" tech because they did such a horrible job "repairing" (aka breaking/crashing) people's computers, forcing them to either format losing everything or forcing them into buying a new one through them because their PC is "unrepairable".

My neighbor just needed a new stick of memory to replace a bad one, but BB said their 2 year old PC was not able to be fixed.




BB can die already
By edge929 on 6/13/2011 2:56:27 PM , Rating: 2
If it wasn't for the uniformed masses, Best Buy wouldn't exist. There is no comparison between Newegg and Best Buy in regards to pricing and customer service, Newegg wins easily. You pay the "ignorance tax" at BB and if Geek Squad members were so knowledgeable, they'd be working for a real company earning much more than $9 an hour.




My experience at Best Buy today
By jasa1063 on 6/16/2011 10:12:15 PM , Rating: 2
I've been a computer tech for over 25 years and I hate shopping at Best Buy, but today I had to go there with a customer because there was no place closer. I had to purchase a cheap wireless router for the client's office. The salesman did not know which end is up. I told him I only needed a router that would support the 802.11G standard. He tried to tell me the wireless N150 router I wanted to purchase for $30 would not work. Instead he said I needed a dual band router. I told him dual band is only for 802.11N for either 2.4Ghz or 5Ghz. I showed him on the box that router I wanted supported 802.11G. He tried to say the G stood for Ghz. What an moron! I told him he was completely wrong and just let me purchase the $30 router. He said he had extensive experience with wireless and I should purchase the more expensive dual band router. I finally told him he was an idiot and to get lost. The video from Newegg is dead on. I hate to say that Best Buy headquarters is only about 2 miles from where I live. What an embarrassment. Best Buy used to be a decent place to shop about 10 or more years ago, but now they are just another large corporation out to get every last cent they can!




lol
By wizxoo on 6/11/2011 12:11:12 AM , Rating: 1
In come the bottom feeding, blood sucking attorneys lol.

online-privacy.no.tc




Having worked at Best Buy
By FITCamaro on 6/13/11, Rating: 0
Question
By KeithP on 6/10/11, Rating: -1
RE: Question
By ClownPuncher on 6/10/2011 1:34:51 PM , Rating: 5
As far as I know, Dailytech does not.

But...

quote:
EDITORIAL


RE: Question
By MeesterNid on 6/10/2011 1:41:17 PM , Rating: 1
...and here's one of the BestBuy lawyers! Welcome, KeithP!


RE: Question
By TakeASeto on 6/10/2011 1:42:29 PM , Rating: 1
No one really cares. We all know what best buy and newegg are about already. This isn't like a review of a brand new product.


RE: Question
By JasonMick (blog) on 6/10/2011 1:47:44 PM , Rating: 5
quote:
Doesn't DailyTech/Anandtech have a business relationship with Newegg? If so, shouldn't that relationship be disclosed in the article?

DailyTech has no ownership stake in Best Buy/Newegg or vice versa. I hold no shares of Best Buy or private shares of Newegg. If either were the case I would have mentioned it.

Both Best Buy and Newegg advertise on DT, as they do on most technology news sites. That's the only "relationship" of any sort, so to speak.

I did find in humorous how your question falls into the framework of a logical fallacy.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy_of_many_quest...

To demonstrate, let me turn it back on you:
"Don't you have a business relationship with Best Buy? If so, shouldn't that relationship be disclosed in your comment?"


By ClownPuncher on 6/10/2011 1:33:09 PM , Rating: 4
Uh, they sell the equipment but can't be asked to know what it is? That seems a bit silly.

When I was 17, I worked at a CompUSA; we were expected to know exactly what we were selling. Management provided training, the repair dept was always there to answer questions, and you didn't really get hired if you didn't know anything about technology.

NewEgg made a funny commercial, and anyone who has been into a Best Buy can relate to it.


By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:28:05 PM , Rating: 2
Best buy employees are trained in the broadest sense you can imagine. Training on what processor is better for example, is to many, an excercise in common sense (i5 is higher number than i3 for example). It frustrates us who DO know what we are talking about just as much as it frustrates the rest of you.


By icemansims on 6/10/2011 1:35:35 PM , Rating: 2
That's true. However, you don't do it for a living. I don't work in sales, but I know our product line inside and out, what is purported to do what, relative strengths and weaknesses (side effects in our case), etc.

I don't see having a requirement that your sales force be well trained to answer fairly reasonable questions, which may be general technical questions, but not necessarily something so specific as "How many FPS could I expect when playing CoD on this machine".


By The Raven on 6/10/2011 1:39:58 PM , Rating: 1
It doesn't matter what Best Buy employees can do or not.
Newegg's point is that they have a butt load of reviews/advice from "geeks" with experience specific to particular products that even someone like Steve Jobs wouldn't be able to compete with.


By JasonMick (blog) on 6/10/2011 1:57:47 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
You asked the employee to help you compare computer components "in a technically sound manner." That's pretty hard. I would write down the CPU and GPU (the two most important components in my opinion) and direct the customer to sites like Tomshardware or Anandtech in order to compare their performance, because that's what I do when I shop for myself. I'm unsure what the Best Buy employees actually do when asked.

At the time Best Buy had somewhere around 15-20 laptop models on the store floor. Several employees couldn't even point out which ones had discrete GPUs.

I could easily do this by looking @ the spec sheets/control panel. If I were working there and it was my job to sell computers I would memorize that kind of information to assist informed customers...

Likewise, the employees had no clue about the difference between mobile ATI v. NVIDIA GPUs...

Further, some of the employees couldn't even offer general comparisons between processor families from Intel (e.g. Merom v. Penryn).

Again, plenty of our readers (or Anandtech's readers) I'm sure could have offered such comparisons, albeit most of them are better paid than BB store floor employees...

The point is just that most BB store salepeople in my and some of my DT colleagues' experience are hardly qualified technical experts, and should not be represented as such.

This is relatively unsurprising given their pay grade, but I find it disingenuous for BB to attack others on the basis of its sales staff's overall "high" technical merits.


By MrTeal on 6/10/2011 2:09:52 PM , Rating: 3
Exactly. No one is really asking BB employees to be computer experts, I wouldn't go in expecting them to be able to set me up a web server, just like I wouldn't expect someone at an appliance store to give me a great cookie recipe. I would expect those home store employees to be able to explain the difference between a couple different Kitchen Aid or Cuisinart models though.

If Best Buy wants to claim that they have well trained, knowledgeable salespeople customers should expect that they at least know the important features of the products and what that implies. The customer doesn't need to know that a desktop has an i3-2100; unless they're blind they can read that on the card in front of it. If you can't explain why that is different, better or worse than a comparable Intel or AMD, you're a glorified stock boy.


By Mudhen6 on 6/11/2011 3:56:18 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Likewise, the employees had no clue about the difference between mobile ATI v. NVIDIA GPUs...


This is disproportionately difficult without actually going over various benchmarks specific to discrete mobile graphics (which are usually significantly different from their desktop versions).

Both ATI and NVIDIA use their own designations/naming schemes (which is often misleading), and with all the re-branding (Nvidia) and differing performance (application bias towards either Nvidia or ATI) it takes a lot of reading for most people to keep abreast on this stuff.

quote:
Further, some of the employees couldn't even offer general comparisons between processor families from Intel (e.g. Merom v. Penryn).


That's not exactly easy too. Intel's naming scheme isn't intuitive - e.g. without looking it up, it's impossible to know that Merom was succeeded by Penryn. Both are interchangeable, IIRC. Penryn processors exist as both T-xxxx and P-xxxx processors, and Merom processors are also designated under the T-xxxx system...and you can upgrade from a Merom T-xxxx to a Penryn T-xxxx.

Anyway, the point is that it's much easier to speak in terms of clock speeds, FSB speeds, fab process and the actual designation (P/T-xxxx) when comparing the C2D mobile processors because it's more intuitive and therefore people are more likely to be familiar with them.

I'm not defending Best Buy, but straight up asking workers the difference between Merom and Penryn processors is a question a large chunk of DT readers would not be able to answer correctly, I think.

Hell, if people who work at BestBuy even know that these codenames are associated with C2D processors, I'd already be impressed.


Worst Buy
By Paulywogstew on 6/10/11, Rating: -1
RE: Worst Buy
By rudolphna on 6/10/2011 3:37:14 PM , Rating: 4
Is throwing the cable on the ground and being rude to the employee really the best way to handle this? It's not his fault, because we all know (regardless of knowledge level) that cables are WAYYYY overpriced in store. Being a douchebag to the kid isn't going to help anything.


RE: Worst Buy
By Smilin on 6/10/2011 4:14:34 PM , Rating: 2
Yeah, ping the manager to see if there is anything he can do about it (doubtful) then walk out. No need to be rude to someone that you would otherwise be nice to just because they happen to have their nametag on that day.


RE: Worst Buy
By TheMan876 on 6/10/2011 6:38:03 PM , Rating: 3
SATA CABLE TO THE GROUND! (Like a Boss)


RE: Worst Buy
By chagrinnin on 6/10/2011 10:17:00 PM , Rating: 4
General Larry Pratt said it best:

SATA on the ground,
SATA on the ground,
Lookin' like a fool with your SATA on the ground!

With the gold in your mouth,
Hat turned sideways,
SATA hit the ground,
Call yourself a cool cat,
Lookin' like a fool,
Walkin' downtown with your SATA on the ground!

Get it up, hey!
Get your SATA off the ground,
Lookin' like a fool,
Walkin' talkin' with your SATA on the ground.

Get it up, hey!
Get your SATA off the ground,
Lookin' like a fool with your SATA on the ground!


RE: Worst Buy
By michael67 on 6/11/2011 2:54:46 AM , Rating: 2
Hey thats the way things just work, i did the same thing when i was building PC @home.

My friend how managed a big computer store/import in the days got me a good deal, that I could buy parts for distribution prices.
And then I used there normal price-list for my customers, I made tons of money in those days.

But guise ware a made most my money, I can tell you it was not on CPUs and so on.

No I made my money on the cases, PSU, cables, and all other small parts.
I soled a power splitter for $5, ware I paid my self 20cents or so.

I made about 15~20% profit selling PC that way, not bad if you sell about 5 to 10 a week, and you build one in about 30 min, I made more money selling PCs then in my regular job as a pipefitter on refineries.

Dont blame BB we/I/you would do the same if you could get away with it. (at least most of us)


"What would I do? I'd shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." -- Michael Dell, after being asked what to do with Apple Computer in 1997














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