Booze, Baseball, and another "B"

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Update to "Bait and Switch"....

For a belated update to my previous post regarding shopping with Circuit City, I remembered that I didn't follow up with what happened in my dealings with Circuit City regarding my purchase of Call of Duty 4 for the Xbox 360.

The day after I called and spoke to CC's call center (I hesitate to call it a "customer service number") they called me and told me that they had decided not to ship me the free Call of Duty 3 I was supposed to have received, the game that not 24 hours earlier they had told me they mistakenly did not ship to me and would send right away.

When pressed, the person told me that he had no intention of shipping me the CoD3 game or doing anything else to fix their error, and suggested that I return the game. Later that day I did return the game to the local Circuit City store. I was extremely disappointed about the whole affair. I was mad that CC screwed with me and that their horrible (outsourced) customer service center told me to take a hike regarding their own screwup. Additionally, I was disappointed that I wasn't able to play the game. I had thought about re-buying it at over at Best Buy, who I haven't had problems with, but by the time CC had told me they had no intention of honoring their own promotion or word, I had already missed the discounts that BB had been offering. So in the end, no game, just angry with CC.

This week CC has the regular edition of CoD4 on the front page of their ad for $20 off. A tempting price to be sure, but this time I won't be so easily tricked. I've already seen discussions online of how CC pulled the game off their website and took offline the ability to check in-store stock levels during the evening on Saturday. I've also read that some stores have taken the games off the shelves and put them in the back of the store. While I can't say for sure that CC is being intentionally nefarious in these situations, I can say that it wouldn't surprise me if they are.

I won't be doing business with Circuit City anytime soon, which might not mean a whole lot to them, but it does mean that I'll be taking hundreds of dollars (maybe even thousands, if I decide to get a new TV) of business to their competitors, Best Buy and Amazon.com, during this holiday season. A holiday season many economists have been predicting slow retail sales and an overall poor outlook for. Sometimes a little customer service can go a long way.

Happy Holidays to you, Circuity City. Hopefully losing my businees won't further impact your -66% YTD stock price.

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