Shop Lighting opinions

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-MIKE- wrote:

Yeah, but they're screwing us over by selling us this Chinese junk so it's ok...
--
"Our beer goes through thousands of quality Czechs every day."
(From a Shiner Bock billboard I saw in Austin some years ago)
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-MIKE- wrote:

Well, returning a product that fails in an unreasonable period of time (but outside the store's return policy) isn't quite theft. In the case of something the seller knows is likely to die an early death it's more like revenge than theft. Maybe revenge isn't all that admirable either, but neither is selling junk.
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Would that be pre-meditated revenge? It still stinks. Do you even bother to cross your fingers in negation as you sign the PO?
Come to think of it, I don't recall covering ethics in my public school education. As though that might make a whole lot of difference.
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Rationalize it all you want, it's theft.
Your option is to not buy junk. But that involves being an informed consumer... which is what is happening in here... in this thread.
In any case, in my experience, Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot will all take back "a product that fails in an unreasonable period of time (but outside the store's return policy)."
We have the option of being honest about it, or run the risk of having a misdemeanor charge on our record. For most people, however, the misdemeanor never enters into the equation as a deterrent. For most, the simple fact is the price of their integrity much higher than $8.99.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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-MIKE- wrote:

If you recover money taken from you under false pretences, are you a thief?

What if you don't know it's junk? What if it's priced, packaged and promoted as quality goods but is actually junk *and both the mfg. and the seller know so*--what then? We bought an Onkyo home theater system some years back, when it began screwing up we went online and discovered other folks having the same problems, alas we all seemed to discover the situation at the same time. Onkyo's warranty depots were unable to fix the systems so they stalled until the warranties ran out, they went right on selling the same model. At that point it occured to us that the store which put the system on sale might have done so for a reason--bingo, as one of their staff confirmed they knew the system was a dud and they wanted to unload them.
No, we didn't steal something from the store in revenge, but needless to say we'll never buy another Onkyo product. However if there had been a way to return the system, say by smudging the date on the receipt, I'd sure have thought about it.

That assumes it is possible for the consumer to be informed, and that isn't always the case. The first batch of consumers to discover that a product is no good serve as a warning for those who come later, but those first folks still got ripped off.

I just went through this with a big electronics chain over some defective inkjet cartridges. They realized they'd been selling a poorly-made brand of cartridges so they dropped them because of many returns. But now they won't accept any more returns on the grounds that they no longer sell that brand. No, I didn't steal anything there either, but if I could have thought of a way to return the cartridges without them realizing what I was doing I might have done so and not lost any sleep over the "theft."

Very fine speech, when you decide to come down off that horse I think there's still some beer in the fridge.
BTW, I've only done something like this once. I bought a halogen lamp at HD, it seemed to work okay so after awhile I got rid of the box and the receipt, which caused the lamp to immediately die. HD wouldn't take it back without a receipt of course, so I bought another one, put the defective one in the new box and returned it with the new receipt (they gave me another lamp). HD lost nothing, they returned the lamp to the mfg. for credit just as they would have if I'd kept the first box and receipt. So now I have two lamps that work, both of which I paid for. If I stole anything I'd like to know just what that was. These days I keep receipts religiously *and* original packaging which drives my wife crazy, but it's allowed us to return some defective items that otherwise wouldn't have been accepted, live and learn.
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DGDevin wrote:

That's more rationalization. There are means in place to handle things like that. You never heard that two wrongs don't make a right.

Class actions suit. One of those legal means.

Then you would've decided your integrity was for sale for the price of a home theater system.

Covered above.

Then you would've decided your integrity was for sale for the price of some inkjet cartridges.

It's hardly a high horse, and you're embarrassing yourself by saying it is. In how deep a hole must one stand in order that seeing petty theft as wrong, looks like being on a high horse.

>
So have I. And it was just as wrong as when you did it or when anyone else does it.

It's too bad they wouldn't take it back. The HD's here will put it on a gift card if it's something they still sell.
But that's still more rationalizing. If it was after the amount of days stated in their return policy, it was wrong. If it was during the manufacturers warranty, you had another recourse. If you lose the receipt, it's your problem. But you said you learned that.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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-MIKE- wrote:

Mike, have you ever started a class action suit? If not, give it a try and get back to us on how you do with it. You probably won't be quite so much the self-righteous prick after having that experience.
--
--
--John
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J. Clarke wrote:

Only one of many legal and/or ethical recourses we have in civilized society.
Sorry you see the need to resort to name calling. Maybe you missed the part where I said I've done it before and it was wrong. That sort of rules out, by definition, being self-righteous.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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-MIKE- wrote:

So why is it the only one you have mentioned? Perhaps if you gave practical advice instead of telling people who are venting anger that they have "sold their integrity"?

Being a convert does not preclude one from being a self-righteous prick. In fact in any religion the most obnoxiously overzealous are generally the converts.
--
--
--John
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J. Clarke wrote:

Methinks thou doth protest too much.
We can go back and forth with scenario after scenario. Like I told the other guy, two wrongs don't make a right. It's wrong to use fraud to combat fraud.
--

-MIKE-

"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
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-MIKE- wrote:

Protest what?

It's not the message, it's the stridency with which you deliver it and the total imcomprehension of the notion of vengeance vs cost as a motivation.
--
--
--John
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J. Clarke wrote:

I don't want to enter into that particular fray. I just have another feel-good Lee Valley story.
In November, I bought a wireless weather centre. The sensor sits outside and the inside piece tells me how quickly my testicles will enter into my thorax cavity IF i venture outside. In my area, that's not uncommon.
Kinda handy, cause I have grown to appreciate them hanging where they're supposed to be hanging.
This thing worked for a while then decided it didn't want to tell me the outside temps when it was below -20. Now that was a tad inconvenient because it's at about that temperature that the balls go south. (Or in this case - North).
So I called up Lee Valley and mentioned that I was having testicular travelling problems. Spoke to my new best friend, Don. Don verified my address and said "We don't sell that model any more". (Groan) "In fact, we've replaced it with a more expensive one. Give it a week and we'll have that new one (no price increase) on your doorstep with a stamped return envelope. Send us back the bad one."
Receipt? Forget it. Original packaging? Not an issue. Timeout? Who knows with them. I suspect you could return something that you bought in 1973 and still get full value for it.
I'm sure they get scammed by unscrupulous sorts, but this kind of return policy begins to have legs of its own. What it also does is make me into a LV zealot who will tell this kind of story until people turn their backs and walk away.
Tanus
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Tanus wrote:

The mark of a true customer oriented company. I bought a max/min thermometer from them and it functions even after the grandsons examined it. HI HI...
Dave
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I have one too, just this past weekend. I went to Lee Valley's downtown Toronto store. It's up a flight of ten stairs, but there's an elevator there. Went into the store, did my shopping and went to leave only to find that an elevator serviceman had taken it out of service. I use a wheelchair. ???
One of their salesmen Bob, helped me go out the back entrance and struggled valiantly helping me get down the steep ramp at the shipping dock. Being the dirty ice and snow covered driveway it was, he had to drag me and my chair out backwards carefully avoiding all obstacles and all the way around to the lobby at the front of the building.
But, it doesn't end there. One of the items I bought was defective and since I needed a replacement as soon as possible, I went back Saturday, the next day. In case the elevator was still out of service (and it was since I phoned first) I figured I could have a sales person to come downstairs just to exchange the item and I'd on my way.
That salesman was Bob. During the course of the next forty-five minutes, he helped me find an alternative for the defective item I'd originally bought and must have run up and down those stairs over a dozen times.
More than just a friendly group of customer service agents on the phone or by email, the salespeople are of the same calibre, willing to go thoroughly out of their way to help you out. I don't know if Leonard and now Robin select their staff particularly for their customer service qualities, but if they did, then they succeeded admirably.
Kudos to Lee Valley and Bob.
David Moore
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Are you listening Rob Lee?
It is bad enough that you make all these wonderful products. Now you have to go and offer this wonderful service as well.
It makes it almost impossibe to say bad things about you!!
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Upscale wrote:

Been there, done that for one of my stores customers when I was in retail. He wasn't even my customer and didn't buy anything that day.
Dave N
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Once it goes below -20, does it really matter anymore!?!?!
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A couple years ago I bought the Murphy Bed kit from Lee Valley (The 300$ on with the gas pistons.) About six weeks after i bought the kit, i had finally mouted it to the wall when my wife brought me a letter that came in the mail that day. It was from Lee Valley. It contained a letter saying: "We recently released our latest catalogue and have reduced the price of the Murphy Bed kit you bought on so-and- so date. Included is a cheque for the difference in price plus taxes. Thank you for being our customer."
I was flabergasted! They retroactively applied the price reduction and MAILED out a cheque. That is going out of ones way to make a customer happy.
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On Wed, 14 Jan 2009 11:01:11 -0500, J. Clarke cast forth these pearls of wisdom...:

But... they pale in comparison to ex-smokers...
--

-Mike-
snipped-for-privacy@alltel.net
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-MIKE- wrote:

Sure, try to attract landsharks interested in taking the case (unless you're prepared to foot the bill up front), wait for a few years until the company and the lawyers settle out of court, the lawyers get $7.5 million in fees, the claimants get to split a $3.2 million judgement 127,414 ways. My wife and I collected on such a case recently regarding a financial services company that misrepresented fees. In our experience nobody should plan on recovering their actual losses from such a settlement, what you get is what the lawyers agree to *after* their handsome fees are paid. I've earmarked some of the money for a plunge/fixed router kit.

In other words in a dispute between an unscrupulous company and victimized consumers and in which the deck is stacked in favor of the company, you're with the company.

In a situation in which a company pulls a Catch 22 to avoid having to honor their return policy it's interesting that your instinct is to side with the company.

I'm fascinated by how you unerringly see returning defective merchandise as "theft," as if a company that sets up hurdles, pitfalls and dodges to avoid having to accept returns is not part of the equation. In a previous century I was a retail manager for quite a few years, very successfully I might add. I saw just about every sleazy trick a customer can pull including trying to return items everyone knew they had broken through unreasonable abuse, trying to return things they'd purchased at other businesses, trying to return items from which parts had been removed, and so on. Happily I can say we never sold anything we knew was defective and then refused to accept returns because we'd dumped all our stock on unsuspecting customers and thus our usual return policy no longer counted. IMO that's fraud, and suggesting that anyone who doesn't like it should hire a lawyer is in effect saying tough luck, shop somewhere else next time. Hire a lawyer over eighty bucks worth of ink cartridges?

I bought a lamp that was defective, I returned a defective lamp, the company didn't lose a dime because the mfg. replaced it for them. Please point to the "wrong" for me.

It wasn't, it was just long enough for me to wonder why I was keeping the box for a forty-dollar lamp, as soon as the box and receipt were gone the lamp died. I even bought a new halogen bulb thinking that was the problem, but it was the lamp.

HD wants to keep you and me as customers, so they replace defective items (at least ones that fail almost out of the box) and they deal with the mfg., that's smart business. If HD had a big sign at the door reading If It Doesn't Work We Don't Care, Ship It Back to the Mfg., how many of us would shop there?

"Theft" requires loss, pray tell, what did HD lose when I returned the lamp? I bought two lamps, I exchanged one which they got credit for from the mfg., all I did was use the receipt from one lamp for another identical item. The mfg. suffered no loss they didn't agree to with HD, they replaced defective stock for a commercial customer who buys millions of bucks worth of lamps from them, HD's return policy and whether I lost one receipt but had another means nothing to the mfg.
You're going to some lengths to take the corporate side here. Return policies that make the consumer jump through hoops or which simply refuse to accept returns using loopholes are apparently okay with you for some reason. I agree that returning something purchased a year before and out of warranty as if it were new is over the line, I can't see myself doing that. But when a company knowingly sells something defective and then stonewalls on fixing it until the warranty expires, the company is in the wrong. Doesn't justify breaking into a store and stealing a new one, but if somebody can finesse a return in such circumstances despite the company's attempts to prevent it, I for one will hoist a cold one in their honor. You can have a good scowl over that if you like.
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