GameStop: No Solicitation Calls = No Reservation Calls

A tipster just called GameStop and asked to be removed from their solicitation list. As reported earlier, GameStop cross-references their database of customers who’ve reserved games with a database of all the games that customer has purchased. Then, GameStop solicits these customers in an attempt to buy back the games at half price so it can resell them. Our tipster wanted to be removed from the solicitation database, but was told that opting out meant he could not receive calls for games he’d reserved:

I called my local Gamestop, where I know most of the employees by name, and asked what to do. They said they couldn’t help me directly, but to call customer service at (800) 883-8895. I called that number, waited on hold for a few minutes, got a CSR and asked that my name be removed from the solicitation list. I said that I don’t mind the calls telling me my reserved games are in, but that the solicitations needed to stop. He said that the two systems are linked, and that I couldn’t be removed from one without being removed from the other. I said that was acceptable, since I really didn’t want the solicitations. He asked for my phone number, I gave it to him, and he said he’d “put in a request” to have me removed from the system.

I actually like the “Your game is ready” calls. But I’d rather have no calls at all than the solicitations.

This policy is insane. Our tipster says at no time does GameStop inform customers that by accepting a “reminder” call they are opening themselves up to solicitation calls. They also offered the tipster no confirmation that his name had been removed. —MEGHANN MARCO

(Photo: stan)

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  1. mewyn dyner says:

    Honestly, I’ve stopped purchasing from GameStop, EB and the like. The final straw for me was recently when I had a preorder for the GameCube version of Zelda for well over a year, and they sold all of them off before I could come in to pick it up. I asked them why I should preorder through them if I can’t be guaranteed a copy of the game I want upon release. The guy behind the counter just babbled at that point, and I asked for my money back. Haven’t been to one of these stores since.

  2. neobolts says:

    I’ve never had any issue getting reservation calls without getting other calls. I’m wondering if your tipster got incorrect information.

    I’m signed up for the government’s Do Not Call Registry. I get no solicitation calls, while the automated reservation calls continue to come. Maybe the CSR doesn’t have access to tools that distinguish the two.

  3. iameleveneight says:

    Yeah I am DONE with that place. I haven’t bought anything in the store in forever, and I wouldnt preorder from there for the exact reasons mewyn described. If I preorder, I want to be GUARANTEED my copy, not just be informed when they come in and HOPE they still have one in stock.

    I only preorder online and I have had no problems in the several instances I have done so, and I only do it when theres a special offer. Otherwise I just buy from amazon.

  4. Kornkob says:

    I don’t see how that is any different than the multitudes of credit card offers for various services that your credit card company spews. YOu can opt out of being offered OTHER services but I’ve never been able to get Chase, Citi, AMex, Discover or anyother credit card to stop trying to sell me more credit, credit protection or other stupid services.

    It’s the whole ‘existing relationship’ loophole they are taking advantage of.


    This policy isn’t what makes Gamestop crappy (and I say this being someone who benefits from their effort– I work for a game developer) its the multitude of other crappy business practices that makes them a crappy place to buy products.

  5. AlteredBeast (blaming the OP one article at a time.) says:

    I never bother with Gamestop/EB anymore. I used to go to my local Gamestop to buy a game on release day…they are sold out (or only have a “new” copy in the demo machine)…so I just walk across the street to Best Buy (where they always seem to have games in stock on release day).

    The only value of Gamestop/EB is selling old games, and buying used games…which is much smarter to do on eBay.

  6. crayonshinobi says:

    I think the DNC Registry explains that an exception to the Do Not Call registry are “companies with which he or she has an existing business relationship.”

    So technically, it would appear that by having a reservation for a game, you have a “business relationship,” they can telemarket you. It’s terribly unethical though in my opinion.

  7. Falconfire says:

    The final straw for me was recently when I had a preorder for the GameCube version of Zelda for well over a year, and they sold all of them off before I could come in to pick it up.

    That is funny, my fiancee ran into the opposite problem, they continued to hold onto reserved games over 3 days past their 2 days on reserves policy, making it impossible for her to find Zelda until she found a EB who was willing to hold to the company line.

  8. Qhue says:

    These brick-and-mortar stores are the worst aspect of the entire gaming industry. The faster that entertainment companies can get away from their dependence on such retail outlets the better.

  9. djsyndrome says:

    How is this news? GameStop has been doing this since last year – I got one of these calls from them about a month after I picked up Kingdom Hearts II, imploring me to bring it in for some insane amount of credit.

  10. Mit says:

    I work at GameStop (well, next week is my last, quitting that job because it’s horrible) and I don’t recall ever being called by GameStop outside of a call telling me a game is coming out the next day. The only other time I got a call was when the Wii version of Twilight Princess was announced, and they reminded you that if you wanted that version you needed to come in and switch your preorder from the gamecube version to the wii version.

    Maybe you live in California and they only do it there or something? >_>

  11. CalcioFool says:

    I think they actually tried calling both my roommate and I last night. Around 7:45pm-8pm we both received incoming calls from a “Private” number. We didn’t bother picking up and I imagine they would have left a message but I guess you never know. Anybody else notice the call coming in as “Private”?

  12. June says:

    N/A in Canada as far as I know. We call people instead of relying on automated messages (EB Games: we’re high-tech like that). Then again, the US of A has a different policy even if we’re different branches of the ‘same’ company.

  13. Mit says:

    These messages are only when there are special deals from a high profile game you may have picked up. This does not happen constantly. It happened to me with Kingdom Hearts II, as we were offering like, $35 for trade in, which from a business standpoint, is a really good deal for people who do shop there, and a lot of people were thankful of the call, and a lot of people did come in to trade the game in since they were done with it (I work at GameStop… until next week when I quit).

    It’s not like they do it all the time and there are people in the world who blow tons of money by buying games and selling them back to us relatively quickly, mostly because they aren’t smart enough to use eBay or don’t know anyone to buy it off them, and want the money now.


    I would expect to be getting a call if you pick up God of War II though >_>

  14. Scuba Steve says:

    I definitely got a call from them in Georgia for twilight princess. I’m willing to bet it’s more about what you bought than where.

  15. evagation says:

    Just spoke with my husband and he says that he hasn’t gotten solicitation calls lately (since complaining) but he HAS gotten survey calls from them after he bought some games this year. They wanted to know about his “experience” buying the game and how he felt about the stores.

    Apparently he wasn’t too kind in his responses. Good for him (even though he says we’re still going to GameStop for our games, sigh).

  16. zentec says:

    The person who previously held my cell phone number signed-up for those calls. It took five letters to the corporate offices to get them to stop. I don’t think they quite grasped the concept that it was a cell phone, and those numbers do change hands.

    With the attitude of that company, I would never do business with them.

  17. evagation says:

    My husband says that he hasn’t gotten the solicitation calls since complaining (not YET) but he HAS gotten survey calls from GameStop after buying some games earlier this year. The survey wanted to know how he “felt” about his game buying experience at GameStop.

    Apparently he wasn’t very nice. Good for him. So, just think, if you stick it out through the solicitation calls, you might get the survey call! Yay.

  18. h8GWB says:

    Despite the fact that I have a policy of not buying from Gamestop if I have alternatives (and violating that policy more times than I wish to say), I think this is a fair compromise. Granted, it is arrogant and Gamestop is being an asshat to require you to be on both lists, but I don’t think reminder calls are so necessary for those who preorder, since they’re likely to remember the day their game comes out. Small price to pay to stop the solicitations.

  19. h8GWB says:

    Nevermind. After reading and learning that solicitations still come in after requests to be removed, I see that my above comment was irrelevant and sounds idiotic.

    I should start getting used to that.

  20. FlapjacksAreTasty says:

    I’d like to take a hard-line stance against GS/EB, but I did get my Wii pre-ordered through them, and it was a great experience.

    Now, I don’t *ever* buy games through them, or sell them my used ones (thank you ebay!), but if they suit my selfish needs, I’ll use them.

  21. DeeJayQueue says:

    My partner and I were awaiting the release of WiiPlay, and were surprised to see that the release date got pushed up a week, aka, this past Wednesday.

    We looked at the store inventories of all the gamestop/EBGames in the area and lots of stores said “4+”. Good thing we called before braving the snow/ice storm. That 4+ includes the reserve copies, which they wouldn’t sell to us.

    We ended up finding one, the last one, at Target. The electronics associate would not hold it over the phone, but a chance at one is better than none, so we braved the ice-covered highway and managed to pick up the game and Valentine’s day was saved!

    Also, GameStop and EBGames suxorz.

  22. Tizen says:

    Relatedly, the following link contains some crank calls to gamestop, attempting to reserve “Battletoads”. Employees are clueless to the origins of this game and even it’s existence. One employee even guessed that it was for the PS3. Yah, so call now and pre-order your copy of Battletoads for the Playstation 3!

    http://tizen.org/gamestop.php

  23. acceptablerisk says:

    If you opt out and still want to get a call for your reserved games, talk to the manager of your local store. For a long time I just couldn’t get the automated calls for some reason so I asked the guys at the store to call me personally. It was never a problem.

    Of course, that was back when the reserves were all done with slips of reciept paper in a shoebox. So attaching a little note was easy. I’m not sure how it’d work now that it’s all computerized.

  24. juri squared says:

    I work for GameStop – or, rather, I did; today was my last day before maternity leave).

    My manager is PISSED about the Zelda calls, and so is everyone else. Between that, the idiotic policy about trading in “M” rated games, and the other crap they pile on the employees, it’s not too happy a place to be. It’s unfortunate, because my manager really does care about games and his customers.

    He also forwarded the Kotaku entry about Zelda along with the “F*** GameStop” shirts to his district manager, and it’s already made it up two levels above that. All the employees at my store are PRAYING they’ll listen. We don’t like getting dumped on any more than you do.

    Also, keep in mind that, being human, we remember the really good customers… and the really bad ones. Guess who we’ll be more willing go the extra mile to help? This is true of every retailer, so if you treat your store employees nicely, you’ll get a lot of mileage out of it!

  25. Manji Kengo says:

    Makes sense though juri, There is a lot of stuff they need to rethink. Oh well. Also the whole…”m”rated trade thing is a load of horse shit. We should take the m rated games to get them off those kids hands.

  26. saturn says:

    It’s also impossible to get of the gamestop e-mail list. Following the unsubscribe link has not helped. E-mailing them has not helped.