Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Is GameStop ripping off it's Customers? (2010)


By Alexis Javier-Gomera

Controversy
Power to the Player
           GameStop might seem like the kind of store that all players would love. Has the newest game, pre-order bonuses, is always well informed so it can answer any questions you might have, as all the accessories when it comes to games. Publishing a magazine by the name of Game Informer. Everything that they did was for the customers and the player, proof of their slogan 'Power to the Player'. But does that mean that they care for their customers? Do they really care about them in the first place? While GameStop does have genuine care for their customers and the employees themselves doesn't try to cheat out the customers. There is no denying the fact that there are some "deals" that GameStop has that would be better if they didn't exist at all. Some of the few example would be the trade deal, where you would bring in any number of games and/or console and can trade it for real cash or store credit. With this you can trade in your old games that you either don't want or got bored of it, even those games that you bought by mistake, and get back money from it. It can sound good on paper but that only last until you trade. For one, you get little amount of money back. You could have bought a new console that just came out recently (like the Nintendo Switch) to trade and you get back only 20-30% of the total price that you paid for it. So far nothing has been done about this and in fact seem like GameStop knows what it's doing.
Stakeholders
           Stakeholders are the party that are involved in the transaction. In this case, it would be the customers, which are the gamers or family members of said gamers, and the employees. None of the party are at fault about this. The employees are just doing their job, they have no say on how the deals goes and only says what they were told to say. The customers, however, are obviously not happy in the less bit about almost getting cheated on by the company that they believe tried to satisfy them to the fullest. Or at least that would be the case if the customers noticed how they are getting ripped off. As it stands, they don't know that they are selling their game, console, or accessories at a lower price than what they should rightfully get if their items are in mint condition.
Picture above explains it all
Individualism
           Individualism is the habit or principle of being independent and self-reliant as well as the profit that is made in the process. This was not in favor of the consumers and were instead in favor of GameStop. GameStop gained more money by giving away as little as possible back to the customers. Because they were getting the games and consoles back, they could easily refurbish it and getting it working as good as new. Sell it for a lower, but still high, price for the next person to buy it. Rinse, repeat and the executives of GameStop find themselves making more money than ever. In a way, it can almost be argued that GameStop did the trade deal so that they can get the game back and sell it again without having to buy the same copy too many times, and when a game becomes broken beyond repair then they throw it out and buy a new one to replace it.
Utilitarianism
          Utilitarianism is the doctrine where any action is made to make the majority happy. And it does do that but only when it doesn't come down to any return deals that they make. Selling games and console, telling about the latest release and information, and being nice in general is the right way on doing things, which was what brought satisfaction to the customers. The trading, however, doesn't help the company when it does get noticed by the customers. Customers can easily get angry when it comes to them buying stuff as well as making deals with the employee and it doesn’t go their way. If they don't believe they are getting the best, like any other customers everywhere else, they'll end up complaining and the employee will get exasperated and no one would win.
Kantianism
          Kantianism states that if something is harming someone or something then it is unethical and not rational in the least. This doesn't exactly harm anyone physically. In the end, you do get money back from a game and/or console that you didn't want anymore and wanted to get rid of it. It's mostly the principal of things. Given the game cost a good amount of money but then you soon found out that you didn't like it so you're returning it, only to find that you don't even get half of your money back for it. For games that you had for years is understandable since you had it for a long time and it got old as well, but for a game that you only had for a week or so and had more than enough? That’s the sort of thing that is not rational as the company is ripping people with the deal that sounds good in general when it actuality it can be in a way, robbery.
So sad even the Xbox is crying
Virtue Theory
           Virtue Theory is where if something is functioning the way it should, then it is happy. GameStop was technically being honest about their deals and about the trade function. That doesn't mean that everyone that walked out of the store were happy. GameStop managers gains more by the deal than the customers and that's very unethical. The employees don’t have any say in how much they can give back to the customers as everything is done by the computer. It can't be considered ethical of the employees since they let it happen for who knows how long. So, in all this, it can be considered unethical since the manager doesn't change how the trade system works. The same couldn’t be said about the employees since they don’t like the trade one bit.
Justification Ethics Evaluation
          The actions of both the manager of GameStop and the employees aren't that justified as neither tried to work in a way that can leave the customers satisfied. While this is a small thing compared to everything else that GameStop does for the gamers. You would think that a company that has the slogan 'Power to the player' would do everything they can to give the best of the best for the customers, and that includes the trade system. The fact that this has been going for a long as anyone can remember, there's no way the manager hasn't noticed the unfairness that this was doing. Especially with how the customers has social media to recount their tales about GameStop. The words would have gone to the manager eventually, so the fact that nothing is changing just shows how little he cares.
References
Does GameStop try to rip you off? (n.d.). Retrieved from GameSpot: https://www.gamespot.com/forums/offtopic-discussion-314159273/does-gamestop-try-to-rip-you-off-26792485/
Gaudiosi, J. (2012 , April 16). An Employee Believes GameStop's Used Game Racket Would Be Illegal If Government-Regulated. Retrieved from Forbes: https://www.forbes.com/sites/johngaudiosi/2012/04/16/an-employee-believes-gamestops-used-game-racket-would-be-illegal-if-government-regulated/#51d6a1d64e2c
Mueller, J. (2014, August 6). Gamestop ripping customers off now more than ever. Retrieved from TechnologyTell: http://www.technologytell.com/gaming/133161/gamestop-ripping-customers-now-ever/


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