An Optimistic Outlook

squirrel.jpgI was shocked when I woke up this morning and checked my email. After the long day I had yesterday monitoring the server for traffic, I thought today was going to be a breeze. It was anything but that.

As soon as I sat down I knew something was up because I had 75 comment emails, which means traffic to my site never subsided overnight. In addition to traffic from The Consumerist, I soon realized that there had been an increase in traffic from sites like Digg, Gizmodo, and Boing Boing.

When I realized the server was having a very difficult time keeping up, I started taking action to alleviate as much load on the server as I could. If my sites were the only ones on the server I wouldn’t have worried about rushing, but since I host several customers on the same server, I thought I better get my butt in gear.

After some serious thought on the matter, I reposted the three entries receiving so much traffic over on Another Dead Armadillo, my free WordPress.com hosted site that I never use. I have it for access to a WordPress API key so I can run Akismet anti-spam and WordPress stats on all of my blogs. Once I got the entries reposted I edited my .htaccess file (I know, this is greek to a lot of you) to direct most of the heavy traffic to the alternate site.

With the backup in place, the server had time to cool down today, while making sure that everyone who clicked through to see the posts could see them. When I wrapped up things last night I was under the presumption that thanks to Nathan, a satisfactory resolution was on the horizon.

My presumption was correct, because today around 1:30pm I received an email from Jill, a Senior Executive Resolution Specialist from Best Buy. She had been made aware of the incident, and wanted to work to find a fair resolution.

I sent a reply to her right away and told her that I was under the presumption that Nathan was already working on the resolution. In my reply I also conveyed to her that I was handling the situation for my mother-in-law, at her request.

When she responded to my reply, I was stunned. She informed me that Nathan had every intention of making things right for my mother-in-law, but Nathan would be unable to accommodate some of my requests. Like I said, I was stunned. But I wasn’t surprised. This wasn’t the first time during this fiasco that someone along the way told me something that wasn’t entirely true.

In my next response I informed Jill that we were a little perplexed about the reason why Nathan would not be able to accommodate our requests. They were very simple requests, and I was told there would be no problem. This was obviously another “miscommunication”.

I told her that we simply want a letter of apology from the store, for the manner in which my mother-in-law was treated, and a statement attesting to the fact that someone repackaged a used item and sold it as if it were new. That’s it, well, other than exchanging the camera. I told her that we would like to know that measures were being taken to prevent this sort of thing from happening to anyone else in the future.

While it would be simple to get a replacement camera and simply walk away turning a blind eye to what happened, the simple way is not always the right way. I am constantly amazed how the story keeps changing from employees at the store, how “miscommunications” keep happening, and yet no one from Best Buy store #519 in Douglasville, Georgia has been held accountable for anything that has happened thus far.

I closed the email with the following quote,

We don’t want this to drag on any longer than it has to, but we won’t feel like the matter can be resolved until we know appropriate action has been taken to prevent this from happening again.

Jill’s response was quick, short, and to the point.

I appreciate this reply and think that we can work out an amicable solution. I will be in touch with you tomorrow.

So that’s where we are this evening, and I must say I am quite optimistic that the entire issue will be resolved tomorrow. This is the first time I have had serious, formal contact from anyone at the corporate level (well, if you don’t count Community Jason, who responded in the comments yesterday). In fact, it was Jason who forwarded the issue on to Jill, so I guess he does deserve the credit.

Tonight, I am going to grab a snack, sit in front of my television and forget about Best Buy, cameras, and controversy. I will post an update tomorrow as soon as I know anything.

Have a great night.

[Note (03/06/2009 23:38)]: This matter has been resolved with Best Buy. Read my post titled, Above And Beyond, for the details.

5 thoughts on “An Optimistic Outlook

  1. Note: I use to work for Geek Squad.
    First I totally agree with you on how poorly this was handled.
    The photos of the geek squad employee, could they have been from when your mother was trying to return the camera and they were testing camera functionality? It was standard practice in the store I was in to test electronics for functionality before allowing a customer to return a item, in the case of a camera-taking pictures. I would always then delete the pictures I took.

    Now devil’s advocate-they could be pictures from when the other person that is pictured returned the camera. If that was the case the camera SHOULD have been marked open boxed before being resold.

    Good Luck with Best Buy. I enjoyed working there, but I am not a customer of them b/c of what I saw while working there.

  2. Katherine, what is it about the original article you don’t understand? The file timestamps and the EXIF records in the pictures do not lie unless someone plays with the camera internal clock. The GeekDouche appeared obviously unaware of this.

    Furthermore, the filename numbering indicates this camera has taken 100s of pictures before it was purchased as ‘new’. When you buy a ‘new’ camera, the camera file naming typically numbers the pictures and starts at “1” (IMG0001.JPG, or DSC0001.JPG). Again, the GeekDouche could’ve used a menu reset function to have the camera start numbering from 1 again, but obviously they didnt.

  3. Maybe you should request that BB re-reads any messages before sending them to you. That way “miscommunication” could be avoided.

  4. Thanks for posting your story of horrors up! I’ve had a couple bad experiences, and sadly since the death of CC, it looks like BB is going to be “it” around here..I appreciate the efforts you have undertaken to get your issue resolved! It has given me/us some good pointers… Looking forward to seeing what your resolution is..

    J

  5. It was like I was reading a great suspense novel!! What I want to know is: What did they do to all of those people that called your mother-in-law a liar and said that there was nothing they could do and just gave you and your family a hard time. Most of all, I want to know what happened with Nathaniel who posed as “the store manager” and the Geek Squad guy who appeared in those two photos? Are these people still employed by Best Buy? This makes me very leery of making any serious purchases at Best Buy outside of videos and such. If this is an example of how their customer relations tactics are for the general public, I vote we start a boycott.

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