Never Trust a Company Rep

June 12, 2007

Store: GameStop
Location: Stratford Square Mall – Bloomingdale, IL
Employee Description: Pasty Kid and Nerd Girl
Submitted By: Dan

Shortly after the PSP launched in the US I was walking through a nearby mall with a friend of mine and passed through the GameStop. Shortly after walking into the store I got a spiel “Welcome to GameStop where we have PSPs in stock” as if the employee behind the counter was answering the phone. Since the PSP had only launched a week or so prior I asked how it was selling at this particular location. The employee said “Great, it’s killing that kiddie DS” and I responded very politely “Well, so far in its first week or two in the US.” The employee’s reaction was rather frustrated and said “No everywhere, it’s crushing it in Japan too.”

At that point it was the last straw, I’ve worked for video game magazines (both print and paper) in the past and I still keep up with the industry. I knew exactly how well the DS and PSP were doing in Japan since Famitsu’s sales numbers are extremely easy to locate and are updated weekly. At this point I corrected the employee with the appropriate differences in sales figures based on the most recent numbers I had heard.

The pasty employee (and then the nerd girl employee who came from the back of the store overheard) then said “No, you’re wrong. The Sony rep came in and told me they’re killing Nintendo.” I then said “He’s the Sony rep, he’s probably no better informed than that lady siting on the bench by the mall fountain” at which point he became more irritated. The female employee then came up to me and said “Like we’re going to believe you over the Sony rep.”

I decided to settle this dispute, my friend had a phone with web, though the resolution was low, reception was lousy in the mall (since it’s using a cell phone), I was able to bring up the numbers on the phone to show the GameStop employees I was correct. Their reply “Those numbers could be fake, anyone can make a website.” I then showed them several other sources, they remained quite unconvinced and eventually said “Maybe if I saw it in a magazine I’d believe it.”

Since Famitsu is the source of Japanese sales statistics a week or two later I picked up an issue at an overpriced Japanese bookstore in a Japanese mall nearby. While the magazine is Japanese I was very fortunate in the sense that this particular issue had a visual chart of sales numbers for the PSP and DS up to that point. Just for fun I decided to return to the mall (with a different friend and copy of the magazine in hand) a few days later.

To my luck one of the two employees (the pasty kid) was working. After he finished with some customers I brought up my earlier discussion and showed him the chart, at first he tried to deny what he saw since he couldn’t read it, but when you look at pictures of the two systems and numbers attached directly below it, the truth became inevitable. He then said “It doesn’t matter anyway. The Microsoft rep told me they are coming out with a portable soon, and it will kill the DS.”

4 Responses to “Never Trust a Company Rep”

  1. crabjuice Says:

    Wow. It’s really pathetic, that you got so affected by some store clerk pushing a new product.

    That you got into an argument with a stranger about which game system is doing better in freaking Japan and used a cellphone to prove your dumb point is bad enough. But you were actually frustrated and pissed off enough to go buy an overpriced magazine and drive back to the store a few days later just to rub your “victory” in the face of a guy who, to judge by your story, clearly doesn’t care what you think or say.

    That you became so angry and frustrated over something so insignificant and dumb is incredibly hillarious. I can practically taste the frustration; I love it.

  2. David Says:

    Dude, the site is specifically for people who are upset and angry that retail game store employees are stupid and don’t know what they’re talking about. That he would go the extra mile to prove his point isn’t really that unusual. I know that if I’m riight about something I’m going to go out of my way to prove that I’m right.

    Just because you don’t understand how to have a discussion without making it an argument doesn’t mean that the author was angry or upset. He was making a point that certain people will believe anything they’re told.

  3. dragonmasterdan Says:

    I’m the author of that story. Anyway, it wasn’t really an argument in the heated sense it was more of an “I’m right because I work at a game store and my information comes directly from the Sony rep” kind of thing. Basically it was a “I know more than you” kind of thing.

    What made this story of the many unusual incidents I’ve had occur at game stores over the years was the irony of his final comment.

    I’ve worked at gaming retail in the past though not at as nice of a store (I worked at Funcoland in my teenage years but we mostly sold used product where Gamestop sells a lot more new product and probably has far more frequent visits from company reps) and I more or less know how things operate from a company level.
    A lot of misinformation is spread intentionally or unintentionally by poorly informed people.

    Anyway, it wasn’t an argument or really anger as much as it was I was dead set to prove him wrong. He accepted that his information was incorrect and proceeded to give me more bad information from a company rep. While Microsoft may one day introduce a handheld console, as stated in the original post, this incident occurred around the PSP’s launch in Spring 2005. So I found a great deal of humor in the fact that he was regurgitating bad information from company reps yet again.

  4. tryxy Says:

    You’ll probably all mock me for coming here, as I actually am a Gamestop/EB Games employee. Perhaps being a female will lighten your blows, but that’s something rather silly to think, in my opinon. What tickled my fancy in joining this place that that I work in the EB Games in this very same mall, and it interested me seeing my fellow employees crap out lies to you.

    Even I knew the DS is skyrocketing in sales, and i’m amazed that they would be fairly rude to you about it as well. I suppose I joined this place the rid myself if the ignorance of what we are told in the Gamestop world, and become a better employee to you fellas. 🙂
    I really respect this place, as not all our information given to us is completely solid, but we are forced to repeat it to our customers daily. It really makes me irritable being misinformed, and misinforming our customers…

    I hope you’ll let me stay here, because I really would appreciate gaining information on if what we fork out to you is benefitial or not..

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