Attention GameStop: Hiring Fanboys Is Costing You Money
Okay, here's the deal- does anyone on this planet know of a GameStop that isn't almost entirely populated by one form of fanboy or another? And these days, why exactly is the Xbox 360 fanboy the company mascot? GameStop corporate execs, I got bad news for ya: this is costing you money.
See, when you hire fanboys, they will lie to the consumer. Their petty, adolescent, superiority-complex-riddled minds will cost you sales. In the past few months, we have received multiple e-mails from concerned readers - and GameStop customers - who have run into almost unbelievable problems at various store locations. In one instance, someone said an employee told him that "all PS3 games were inferior to Xbox 360 games" and he "should never buy a PS3 because it'll be dead next year anyway." In another instance, someone said PS3 games might "disappear entirely" by the end of the year, so he should fully pre-order LittleBigPlanet at that moment...just in case they only get like two copies, or something. I actually had to call the store to speak to the manager, and while not a jerk, his knowledge of the PS3 and its products was downright appalling. He said he would always advise a customer to buy an Xbox 360 game over a PS3 game. Then he said his store sells "almost five times as many 360 games." ...gee, I wonder why.
GameStop, you may not realize it, but you're in the unique position of being forced to deal with fanboys who will actually cost your stores cold hard cash. I have seen employees actually convince a customer not to buy something (for some asinine reason), try to convince that same customer something else was better, and end up selling nothing. The number of complaints we've already seen in just plain silly, and I've noticed the same trend myself around here. What's most disconcerting is not that these kids are rabid fanboys, but they very simply know extremely little about games and the industry in general. These are not the people you want to talk to if you're looking for help and advice, and that is not the way to run a business. I remember working for EB back in my college days (between '98 and '01), and we had a kick-ass staff. We broke all sorts of sales records in the region, and all we really did was let people buy what they want to buy. If they wanted advice, we gave it as best we could (we all have opinions), but we'd honestly want to know what the customer was looking for before issuing any suggestions.
The main difference? We cared about what the customer wanted...not what we wanted or liked. This is a ridiculous teenage trend that has to stop; we know you can't keep the fanboy crap out of forums, but for the love of God, keep it out of the public eye! You are lying to people, GameStop employees. I am relatively certain the head honchos don't want you doing this, just because you can't get your head out of your ass, which coincidentally has a 360 lodged up it as well. Yes, if someone asked me, "should I get the 360 or PS3 version of The Orange Box," I'll say the 360 version every time. But I will not make up crap about the PS3 version of GTAIV being vastly inferior due to "bugs and glitches!" Lies. We are all very sick of it, and if you GameStop bigwigs care at all, you will realize that there are a lot of annoyed customers out there, and it stems directly from fanboyism and ignorance on the part of your employees. From all of us here at PSXE, and on behalf of all those who have been completely misled - and even upset - by GameStoppers:
Make some kind of change. Now. Not only does it make your business look bad, but it's costing you profit; we promise you that.
9/14/2008 Ben Dutka