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Posts: 1
Registered: ‎09-23-2021

Discrimination and it’s long term effects

To whom it may or may not concern. I am writing about an experience I had in Chicago a few years back. I bought a dvd at a Best Buy in a close suburb of Chicago. The dvd was shrink wrapped but I didn’t notice till I got home because it had a sleeve. I am a dvd collector and the shrink wrapping causes wrinkles so me being picky I had to exchange it for a perfect one. So I go to a Best Buy in Chicago, one that I happened to never have visited before, to exchange the dvd. I get to the customer service desk and tell her I would like to return the dvd. The young lady gets very nervous, to this day I have no idea why. She’s literally trembling while assisting me. Eventually she works up the courage to say I can’t take this dvd. I asked why? She said I don’t know what you did with it. I asked what do you mean you don’t know what I did with it? I bought it and I’m returning it. She stated I’m sorry I can’t take it. I stated I don’t understand why and your not giving me a reason, can I speak to a manager? She said absolutely. She goes in the back taking the dvd with her and takes a minute to explain the situation to the manager. The manager comes out of the back with the employee and a look of defiance on her face and with attitude asks how can I help you? I stated I bought a dvd at another location and I am simply here to return it and your employee is refusing to help me with no explanation. She said sir we don’t know what you did with this dvd. I said she said the same thing but I’m not understanding what are you accusing me of? She said I’m not accusing you of anything I just can’t take a dvd that’s been opened before. I said I never opened that dvd it’s clearly sealed. She said we don’t sell dvds like this sir. I said this is ridiculous I need to speak to your boss whoever that is. She said well your in luck he happens to be here today. She goes in the back and a man comes out furious and super rude. He said what’s the problem sir with a very aggressive tone. I said I’m sure you’ve been made aware of the situation. I bought this dvd I’m not happy with the condition I just want my money back. He looks at the computer and states it looks like you have a lot of returns on your account. I said what does that have to do with anything I’m a picky shopper and I exchange a lot of items. Look at how many purchases I have! He said sir we don’t sell dvds that are shrink wrapped like this. I said I bet I can prove you wrong. Let’s go to your dvd section right now and I bet I find some. He said let’s go. We walk to the dvd section and as we’re walking I’m trying to explain to him that what they’re doing is wrong but he is defiant and dismissive. We get to the dvds and he says show me. I said pick an aisle. He looked at me like he wanted to choke me, then pointed to a row. I walked right up to the row and and immediately found 4 shrink wrapped dvds, plucked them out, turned around and handed them to him. I asked do you want me to keep going? He blew his top. He said come on man let’s go, very loud and aggressively. I followed him back to customer service. He grabs the dvd I was returning, opened it up and says I have to make sure the disc is in here. I said are you serious? I didn’t do anything to that dvd. By this point there is a crowd, I’m embarrassed, emotional and frustrated. He sees that the disc is in the case and tells the employee go ahead and give him the refund. I said thank you, finally. He turns to walk away, stops, turns and looked at me and said your banned from this store don’t come back. My jaw hit the floor. I cried as soon as I stepped outside. I got my refund and I left that Chicago Best Buy and I have never returned. Not because I was banned, but because I felt discriminated against. So much so that all these years later I find myself here posting about it. It is indelible in my mind and pervasive at times. I have spent countless amounts of time and money combating the memory of this event in therapy. Best Buy should know that the way customers are treated can lead to years of mental anguish and there should be some kind of process to report and rectify these situations. The affect of this incident left me with such anxiety that it is hard for me to shop in person ever since. Now I go out of my way to buy items from stores other than Best Buy even though Best Buy used to be my favorite store. I now only buy exclusives or if there is no alternative. I definitely will never attempt to return another item in person again.
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Registered: ‎09-29-2008

Re: Discrimination and it’s long term effects

Welcome to our community, Stillinpain.


It has happen to me only on rare occasions, but like you, I too have encountered the kind of behavior you've described. There wasn't a call for it in my life at the time any more than there was for yours and it left its mark to be sure.


Certainly it is our strongest desire to have every visitor to our stores to be treated with the respect and care they deserve. The kind of callousness and misplaced aggression in your encounter with the store employees is not in line with how we want our leaders to work for and address our customers. I am wholly at a loss to offer any explanation for why your visit to the store went the way it did, but I would like to offer our apology, belated though it might be.


You mentioned that this incident was quite some time ago and has lingered since. Has something happened with Best Buy recently that brought this back to mind and compelled you to share this experience with us?


It is a shame indeed that it has influenced your choice of Best Buy as a shopping destination. It is my hope that you will one day give us a new opportunity to provide the superior experience to which we aspire.


In any event, please know we are grateful you've taken the time to let us know about this.

John|Social Media Specialist | Best Buy® Corporate
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