No more bullies can touch me (tigermorph) wrote in bad_service,
No more bullies can touch me

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I've been in customer service since I was nine - back in 1974. I know how to make the customer right without losing my shirt, I ... I REJOICE in being able to take a cranky pants cursing ratface of a customer and get that person to laugh with me within a few minutes. Hell - I know how to count change back correctly without the aid of little numbers on a screen.

So.... when I encounter BAD SERVICE ... my head usually blows off. Not always... I mean...

There's bad service when it's just one employee who simply hasn't woken up in LIFE yet....

There's bad service when the server is having a craptastic day....

There's bad service when the server just doesn't care or like the job and wants to go home....

But then.... There is corporate induced top to bottom, bottom to top suck moldy lemons sarcastic disrespectful give us your money and go away bad service....

A Best Buy employee told me on 2/17/05 that purchasing a service contract on my Sony Cybershot camera would include with yearly service a new memory stick for the camera. I bought the camera for $279.99 plus tax, and an extended multiple year "service plan" for $40.00.

The last week of June 2006, I brought my camera in to Best Buy in Loveland for yearly service/cleaning and the questions about the new memory stick were evaded by the Best Buy employee. Additionally, the BB employee could not locate my service contract in the computer - so I gave hime my hardcopy of the agreement.

On 7/1/06, I went to collect my camera, and was told that no just program existed to supply new memory sticks with camera cleaning. I took note that there were fingerprints all over the view screen - something that seemed odd for a newly cleaned camera. It was not wrapped in any special packaging or had any indication that it had been serviced at all - no stickers, to tags, no special packaging. There was no identifying system to even determine that this WAS my camera. Additionally, while the employees scrambled to deal with this issue - I put the battery back in my camera to make sure it had been serviced. In looking through the screen, I noticed a black dot right in the middle of the view screen. As it moved when I moved the camera, it was clearly a camera issue. I took a photo to see if it showed up, and it did.

I called this to the attention of the employee who had given the camera too me, and he took it into the back room. When he returned, I was told that it was a broken pixel.

I had given my camera to Best Buy for a simple cleaning, and they had returned it to me broken.

I was very upset through this entire process, and in return was treated with a total lack of respect by everyone I encountered at the store. When they offered to send it back for further service, my trust in the company was so shattered that there was no way on earth I would ever let them take possession of my camera again. When told my only choice was to have them "repair" it, I told them no - that if that was the case, I wanted my Best Buy Extended Warranty refunded so I could take it some place more reliable. The manager said in a sarcastic tone, "Fine, take it to Circuit City", and refunded my $40.

I took my now broken camera home, and cried from the Best Buy store to my home. My camera is my addiction. my vice, my joy. I take photos every single day of everything from the weather, to my family. It now had a black mark in the center of the view screen that upset me every time I looked at my beloved camera.

At home, I called the Best Buy customer service number (1-888-237-8289) and spoke to "Aaron" who told me that Best Buy would reimburse all costs associated with the repair of my camera, but only at a Sony Licensed Dealer. He promised that even though my service plan had been refunded, it was still showing active, and Best Buy would play for all repairs and shipping costs. He gave me a Case number (28085653) and the number to contact Sony.

I called Sony, and spoke to Leni, who was wonderful and kind and understanding of my problem. She advised me that Sony has only 2 authorized repair centers, and that Best Buy is not one of them.

The cost of basic maintenance; cleaning and bringing my camera up to factory specs would be $181.00. Physical damage would be additional. Leni believed that it was not possible to replace pixels, and the camera would require a replacement view screen. Research showed that the cost to replace a view screen in my camera would be anywhere from $180-$250.00. Including shipping to and from Sony, the repair costs could be in excess of $400. (I paid $279.99 for the camera when it was brand new, over a year ago.)

Leni at Sony immediately saw the discrepancy in the value of my camera and the cost of the repairs, and suggested that I talk to Best Buy about a replacement camera, or applying the estimated repair costs towards the cost of a new camera.

I called back the 1-888 Best Buy number, and spoke to "Sarah" who essentially accused me of trying to make them pay for damage previously done. At no point did she indicate that Best Buy had kept any documentation of the conditions under which they took my camera. She insinuated there was no way to prove how the damage had happened, though I told her repeatedly that the camera was in good repair when I handed it to the employee at the Best Buy store. She basically refused to help me in any way at all - and she was at the "Customer Care" desk of Best Buy. I asked to be transferred to Aaron, and after a long time on hold I was put into voicemail. I requested this be resolved today.

I recieved no return call.

2-3 hours later, I called back, and spoke to a male representative who told me that the store had documentation to prove the cameras condition before they sent it in for service. I was told I had absolutely no choice in the situation but to return to the store where I had been treated without respect, where the manager had been rude and sarcastic, and ask HIM to help me.

I pointed out repeatedly that the cost of the repair would be in excess of the value of a comparable camera replacement, and was told I had no choice whatsoever.

I've been in one area of customer service or another for most of my life, and this is by far the WORST service I have ever received. At this point, I would like an apology from Best Buy for the mistreatment of my camera and my business and my person, in addition to a comparable replacement camera or the estimated cost of the repairs towards the camera of my choosing.

Feel free to share my story far and wide. Only when we hit them in the wallets will they change their attitudes.
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