Sunday, July 08, 2007

How 'blu' can you make me feel?

The worst thing that Wal-Mart ever did to encourage stupidity among the movie-buying public - (besides stocking "Pan's Labyrinth") - was to start selling those freakishly expensive Blu-Ray DVDs.

Yes. Now, you get the privilege of paying $30 for craptastic Hollywood blockbuster and get to watch it on a screen several orders of magnitude smaller than what you should have gone to see it on in a cinema. But this isn't a Blu-Ray DVD post.

This is a stupid customer post.

Wal-Mart does not sell Blu-Ray DVD players in stores. At least, I've never seen one. I could only find ONE Blu-Ray DVD player available at the walmart.com Web site - and it costs $698.00.

So tell me Cthulhu, why do Wal-Mart be selling the Blu-Ray discs? Why do stupid customers be buying the discs? >> Which come in blue packaging and sit under a four foot sign that says - DO NOT PURCHASE UNLESS YOU HAVE A BLU-RAY DVD PLAYER! Why are Wal-Mart customers stupid enough to pay $30 for a "Pirates of the Caribbean 2" DVD when RIGHT NEXT TO the Blu-Ray display the two-packs of REGULAR DVDs are selling for $16.87?

Someone please answer me - have you managed to make it through the last two years and literally not heard ONE SINGLE WORD about blu-ray technology and how it WON'T PLAY on regular DVD players?

So yes, Mr. Scruffy Yuppie - wearing some ugly green plaid shorts and an Abercrombie shirt - I'm going to have to get approval to BREAK A FEDERAL LAW to return the blu-ray DVD you brought back. No. Your DVD is not "defective." You are.

And no. Don't look at me cranky when I ask you "Well, why did you open it?" You're the one who paid $30 for a DVD you can't even play. And the one who apparently doesn't watch the news at all.

17 comments:

Paul said...

"So tell me Cthulhu, why do Wal-Mart be selling the Blu-Ray discs? Why do stupid customers be buying the discs?"

Walmart sells PS3s, which play Blu-ray and are $599 (probably $499 soon). They also come with 5 free Blu-ray movies via mail-in as a promotion right now. I suspect you'll be seeing customers trying to return those discs in about 6 weeks claiming they lost their receipt!

jg said...

fifteen minutes after he left the store, scotty yardley came across a homeless bloke by the name of leonard rubens. this man was panhandling for money, and a cranky mr. yardley tossed him a blu-ray dvd, saying, "i can get about as much out of this as you." unbeknownst to mr. yardley, leonard rubens had earlier ingested 6 grams of cubensis, and was now seeing not a cranky man throwing a dvd, but rather a vicious kal penn brandishing a tire iron. mr. rubens quickly tazered mr. yardley in the genitals, dropping the man to his knees, and causing him to double over and uncontrollably shit into his ugly green plaid shorts. a police report would later indicate that just prior to being tazered, the homeless mr. rubens had yelled, "did doogie houser just steal my fucking car," a line that would go down in history along the likes of "kenneth, what is the frequency." also, mr. yardley was made sterile by the incident.

Anonymous said...

Next thing you'll tell me is that VHS tapes won't play on my Betamax player.

Anonymous said...

It's "Tazed", not "tazered".

If you're gonna write stupid shyte, at least wank it correctly. Don't bugger all on it, now.

Jest

x____AComfortableLiar said...

this is true!
i had some woman call today she bought a DvD but it was actually a play. but "no where on the disk does it say play" can she return it? I say no. CSM says no. I dont know what a manager said but im sure it was Yes! working at wal-mart makes you hate the world.

About the Blue-Ray disks. i had a man return it (it doesnt play) then brings me a Red version of a blue ray disk ( i forgot what its called...) and im like do you HAVE this DvD player? and hes like i dont know..., we're like well if you did you probabl would have paid a hella-lot for it so i send one of the other nerdy boys back there to help him find a REGULAR DvD.... Stupid people...

jg said...

Why spoil the mood, Anonymous? Get those commas inside those quotes, uncapitalize T, and don't use expressions incorrectly.

Jest

I wrote a fitting backstory for Mr. Scruffy Yuppie because I found bbcamerican's post to be very entertaining. The post is what comments are here for, not critiquing an innocuous story.

I'm glad that I stumbled across this site. It makes me smile and must help bbcamerican avoid (or merely delay) popping a(nother) blood vessel!

FARfetched said...

Paul beat me to it, although I completely missed the angle about "returning" free movies.

That might mollify a few customers: "Do you have a PS3 at home? You can play this movie on it. It has a Blu-Ray DVD player built in."

Anonymous said...

A "red version of a blu-ray" is an HD-DVD. Once again, it is different from both DVD's and Blu-ray discs. In order for a person to play an HD-DVD, they have to purchase an HD-DVD player. They do make Blu-ray/HD-DVD players, but they are mad expensive, like over $1,000. The person who bought Pirates probably thought the one in the "Blue" package was a limited edition one or something. Some people are just that stupid.

grundes said...

Why people buy DVDs at all? I don't see how one can watch "Pirates..." -- and most other movies, for that matter -- more than once.

Jon Emerson said...

Stupidity is rampant. I went to 7-Eleven the other day and they had diapers, pacifiers, and baby powder for sale -- BUT NO BABIES!

To top it all off, there was contraception for sale, too! How are you ever supposed to use the baby products if you're a dedicated 7-Eleven customer?

Aleksandr said...

I keep hearing this 'Federal Law' crap about accepting returns on (usually defective) media. Best Buy, in particular, loves to spout that line.

But nobody's ever been able to cite the law. Can you?

Jessica said...

Aleksandr,
I cannot give you the actual statute in question, I'm afraid; but it is illegal to return opened games and movies and the like. I'm sorry I can't give you the direct infallible proof you're asking for (No sarcasm. Promise), but it's actually part of the copyright law. The policy is in place to prevent people from buying movies and games, copying them, and then returning them to essentially get it for free.

Granted, most people who pull this stunt usually rent the movies, but even then they're still paying at least a few dollars.

The law does not actually prevent retailers from returning defective merchandise... if you can prove it's defective. In other words, if three different employees (or however many you have to go through) can't see that scratch that you swear is right under the surface, you're stuck, which I am well aware is very frustrating.

Now... unscrupulous employees who throw the law at you when you have a disc with an unmissable gouge mark right across the middle, are another story entirely, and you're best bet there is to keep going higher up the chain of command until you get someone who'll actually look at the damn thing to see the scratch. But, do so politely, of course. ;-)

Hope I helped,

The Not-Psycho-Bitch Jess

Jessica said...

Oh Jesus... it's four thirty in the morning, and yes I'm a self-criticizing grammar whore... seeing as how I'm a future journalist (two more years to go!).

you're best bet there

The line should be your best bet. Possessive 'your,' not the contracted 'you are.'

Sorry for grammar slapping myself,
The Not-Psycho-Bitch Jess

Anonymous said...

"...I'm going to have to get approval to BREAK A FEDERAL LAW to return the blu-ray DVD..."

Right, I've heard this, but no one has ever been able to point me to where this "law" exists. Even a Wal-Mart manager eventually admitted to me that it wasn't so much a law as "an agreement we have with software companies."

So if anyone can actually reference this law, I'd appreciate it.

Riskable said...

The truth is that there is no federal law that says it is illegal to take back *anything* but there are laws that guarantee your rights regarding such ordeals. Here's some examples:

The Uniform Commercial Code (federal): Guarantees the right of the consumer to return defective products. Court cases that have come up in the past have pretty much settled on the idea that the store that sold the product has to take it back--no matter what it is and even if it works perfectly fine. The reason for this is because it is pretty rare that a store employee would be recognized in court as an expert witness =). This pretty much always works in the consumer's favor because if it is "obviously broken" the store won't question taking it back. If it isn't "obviously broken" the consumer is the one who holds all the cards.

The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act: If a product costs more than $25 and comes with a written warranty (blu-ray discs usually have one inside in incredibly small text) you are protected from ridiculous terms (i.e. you may only return this product in person to our factory in far, far, away after you've donated some blood to our vampire and given up your first born). Also awards attorney fees if you win a lawsuit against the company that made the product.

States usually have their own similar laws but I can only speak for Florida which has some really crappy laws (especially regarding the right of resale).

The important thing to remember is that it doesn't matter if a product is copyable. Computer stores back in the 80s tried denying returns but it didn't end up in their favor. So what we have now is lots of store policies where they say, "we don't take back DVDs, CDs, software, etc... Unless the customer threatens to sue." It can save a small amount of money but it probably isn't good for business in the long run.

-Riskable
http://riskable.com
"Compatibility resistance is not and never has been a feature."

Aleksandr said...

@Jess

That doesn't help, actually. It's the same oral tradition I hear in retail all the time, but without a citation, it's nothing more than urban legend, with a bit of buck passing rolled in. ("It's not *our* policy, it's the law.")

w.r.t your second comment, as an aspiring journalist, I'd be *far* more concerned about sourcing facts than a grammatical error.

droewyn said...

Grundes:

Because when you're in a household of three adults, it is generally cheaper to buy a DVD than it is for everyone to go to the movies. Hell, we can usually buy two movies for what one theater visit would cost.