Facebook Users Hijack Walmart's Dorm Decoration Page

According to Wired, Facebook users have hijacked Walmart’s dorm decoration discussion page, choosing instead to discuss the way Walmart “destroys communities and prevents unionization.” Oh, my!

Walmart doesn’t have, um, the most sterling history when it comes to using the internet for marketing. Perhaps this frustrating inability to get college students to debate dorm accessories and not economics is why Walmart feels so unpopular on the internets. They should know that it’s a losing battle. The cute part is that they just keep trying.

Facebook Users Hijack Wal-Mart’s Roommate Style Page [Wired]

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  1. Mills says:

    I don’t know about everyone else, but I’m heading over to facebook to join the party.

  2. ptkdude says:

    Hmmmm… college students discussing Economics. How quaint! Even the Econ majors need some real world experience before they should discuss

  3. Trai_Dep says:

    Unnamed WalMart exec after being unmasked: “And we were this close to poisoning every pet, devestating every commercial district and crushing the wages of all service employees in the US, if it weren’t for those meddling kids!”

    Kids’ response: “Roowr?!”

  4. zsouthboy says:

    HAHA!

  5. cedarpointfan says:

    Oh yeah, it’s heated!

  6. OKH says:

    Happily, I’ve only been to a Walmart probably three times in my life, the last three weeks ago. I conducted a field expedient experiment and just walked around the store randomly picking up items and noting their country of origin. Not a SINGLE American made item and probably 95% Chinese. Now, there’s plenty of blame to go around for the demise of American manufacturing (politicians of all stripe, unions) but at some point the blame has to be laid at the feet of the American consumer for a) demanding 10 for a dollar packages of underwear and b) not caring where it came from.

    Wow, that was REALLY OT. Sorry

  7. j-o-h-n says:

    There IS a certain deliciousness in watching the WalMart swarm, finding little else to devour in the cares-only-about-price shoals, turning on itself. And then predictably, and pathetically, turning its baleful eyes towards the deeper pocket waters, thinking “Trendyness, yes, trendyness, then I can eat over there — surely I can just buy trendyness from China, right?”

  8. Nemesis_Enforcer says:

    Dude who would ever think that a bunch of College kids would sit around and discuss room decorations? Seriously if it was how to make a beer pong table or a bong maybe…

  9. JMH says:

    I give it a day until Wal-Mart gets that deleted.

  10. Quick Draw says:

    Quick, get off PTKDUDE’s lawn. God forbid college students discuss current events, and please excuse me while I go try to earn my engineering (note the lower-case “e”) degree before I ever pretend to know how to build or engineer anything.

  11. medief says:

    I agree that Walmart is never going to get anything positive from any internet efforts. They need to just throw in the towel on that. But to suggest that Walmart is the only store that carries goods made in China is a bit misleading. I think that if you were to walk into just about any department store you’d find, especially with clothing, that they’re all from overseas. I’m no Walmart apologist, and I think they’ve done some terrible things, but I believe they catch a lot of flack for doing the same things done at Kmart, Target, JCPenney, or any other place. Walmart is the biggest, so they get all the flaming arrows.

  12. [www.youtube.com]

    And I echo Nemesis’ sentiments. Why would you even HAVE a forum on the Wal-Mart website if you didn’t want it to get jacked?

  13. Mills says:

    @medief: Walmart may not be the only company buying things from China, but they are the only retailer large enough to pressure their suppliers into moving to China. Granted, they don’t say move to China and make cheaper things, but when a company’s largest buyer demands yearly price decreases, moving production overseas can be the best way to stay profitable.

  14. WhatsMyNameAgain says:

    race war…

  15. WhatsMyNameAgain says:

    RACE WAAAAR!!!!!!

  16. DjDynasty says:

    I’m racist, if it came from China, I don’t want it. PERIOD! Clothing included.

  17. medief says:

    @mills: Everything you said is true. Ultimately it comes back to us as consumers. We demand the most for the least. It should be said that for many, Walmart’s prices help them cope with the expense of living. To pay the prices required to support totally domestic production would be a hardship for them. This whole thing is a pretty tough nut to crack, and I don’t think there are any easy solutions. I know I don’t have a silver bullet for all this.

  18. etinterrapax says:

    @medief: They’re not the only ones, but they create and control the retailing environment where that’s necessary, and in order to compete, all smaller retailers–i.e. everyone else–is forced to do the same. People seem not to see that retail prices, because of Wal-Mart’s behavior, are artificially low and may undergo correction also, if we aren’t willing to suffer continually declining product quality. Wal-Mart’s practice of continually decreasing prices while increasing profits is economically unsustainable. While I’ll be sorry that consumer prices will outpace people’s (including our) ability to pay them, I don’t think anyone who has been able to take advantage of artificially low prices for the last couple of decades can really complain. Being able to buy this much stuff for so long, even on credit, is completely abnormal. Either we find ways to employ people so that they can earn money for stuff, or we take the consequences.

  19. killavanilla says:

    blech -
    a bunch of uneducated neo-hippie kids protesting a company that responds to consumer demands.
    Wah!
    Wal-Mart didn’t ‘create’ the discount brand model, they perfected it. Stores like KMart, Venture, and others failed where they succeeded.
    Too bad. The system works and it is good.
    Don’t like products from China? That’s cool. I can dig it. You might want to stop buying Nike’s, Reeboks, and Addidas. You might consider stopping the usage of that PC you are on.
    You also might look into selling your car, as most manufacturers source some parts from China.
    Wal-Mart is good at what they do. They do it with pride. And the blame for their business model falls squarely on the shoulders of American consumers who demand low prices for everything. Sure, we WANT that stuff, but if we can find it cheaper, we will happily take it.
    So please stop crying about how evil wal-mart is. The bottom line is they pay a competitive wage for unskilled workers while giving people with limited incomes a place to shop and buy stuff for cheap.
    This idea that prices are ‘artificially’ low is simply silly. They are low. Period. I am constantly mystified by people who rail on Wal-Mart, but give, say, Dell a break for doing the exact same thing.
    Let’s take a look at how Dell does business. When they need, say, hard drives they go to Seagate and their competitors and ask for a bid. The cheapest guy wins and those drives get put in every Dell. The next quarter, when they go to build more PC’s, they turn to the incumbent and tell them to drop their prices or lose the business. Manufacturers that do not comply are pushed out in favor of the next guy, which can and has almost bankrupted companies who rely of forecasting to determine production.
    Yet Dell is the darling of most americans and the leader in the PC market. Still not a peep from anyone.
    If anyone is guilty of destroying lucrative businesses, it’s Dell who has put more resellers and small local manufacturers out of business because they simply couldn’t compete.
    And what about Walgreens and CVS who all but destoyed the local pharmacy? Do you have a local pharmacy that ISN’T a chain? Ever wonder why that is? Competition. The guy who buys the most gets the best prices, which translates into what Mr. and Mrs. American wants – the lowest price.
    But hey, let’s attack Wal-Mart.

  20. YokoOno says:

    Hallelujah, KillaVanilla. I get so.freaking.tired of hearing this shit. Shut up already.

  21. HalOfBorg says:

    @KILLAVANILLA

    Say ‘Amen’ flock!!!!

    Haleluja! Haleluja! Haleluja HalelujaHaleluja Halelujaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!

  22. JeannieGrrl says:

    Yes Walmart may well be tools but for Godsake – if people weren’t prepared to handle it they shouldn’t have submitted their job applications. If you hate the company – don’t ask for a job. If no one went to them for work – they’d go out of business. As for destroying communities? Screw that! If I’m selling a product I’m going to undercut people at times just to get my item out there. Its called business. If you can’t take the heat – get the hell out of the kitchen. Business is about profit and advancement dearies – not a happy hippy free flower party…

  23. Youthier says:

    I graduated from college three years ago. When I was there, it was pretty much either pretentious jackasses who thought their opinions were above anyone else’s (and whom I sure got their asses handed to them by the real world) or Dolce & Gabbana sorority girls and Lacoste fraternity boys.

    Which of these groups was Wal-Mart targeting?

  24. nequam says:

    @YokoOno: You could stop reading it. Next.

  25. harumph says:

    @killavanilla: my problem with wal-mart has nothing to do with made in china goods. it is the fact that they have completely eliminated the human element in their business model. in search of ever higher profits they subject their employees to ever dwindling wages and benefits. they would be plenty solvent if they were to give their employees even a modicum of a decent wage. look at costco, they do just fine and their employees are well taken care of. if you are going to decimate locally owned businesses, at least give your employees a shred of dignity by paying them a living wage. THAT is my problem with wal-mart, not where their cheap crap is produced.

  26. phobs says:

    @killavanilla: The irony is that when I went to college almost everyone got what they needed from Walmart and Sam’s Club.

    However, you seem to be equating morals to legality. Something can be legal yet still morally corrupt. People are quick to point to Wal Mart as an example of the lack of corporate conscience for good reason.

    “If anyone is guilty of destroying lucrative businesses, it’s Dell who has put more resellers and small local manufacturers out of business because they simply couldn’t compete.”

    Simply put, Dell could not even dream of the power Wal Mart has to put companies out of business. Wal Mart doesn’t only win in revenue, it is one of the most profitable companies in the history of the nation. Its not just the Mom & Pop stores that get affected. Many corporations that are household names must keel to Wal Mart’s power. They hold so much sway, that in many industries you have a choice, you either do business with Wal Mart, regardless of cost, or you go out of business right there. Sometimes this means you are only prolonging the inevitable. In business school one of the most infamous examples is that of the Vlassic’s “Gallon of Pickels.” [www.fastcompany.com]

    Just because a company is lean and mean doesn’t mean its morally in the clear. Its obvious that the motivations of a company like Wal-Mart are dollars. Americans are right to be afraid of a company that has Wal Mart’s power over our economy and has shown that they have no other loyallty than to that of the dollar.

  27. killavanilla says:

    @harumph:
    Actually, Wal-Mart pays their staff competitively.
    And no one FORCES anyone to work there, they are employed at will.
    The fact is that the average pay at Wal-Mart is pretty darn good and above minimum wage.
    Don’t like it? Don’t work there. There are loads of jobs out there.
    Wal-Mart’s rep for paying employees low wages is nothing more than the result of a smear campaign.
    Here’s what I was able to find by doing a GIS search that took me all of two seconds:
    “Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. said yesterday that its average hourly wage for full-time store associates rose from $9.68 to $10.11 in 2005, a period in which the world’s largest retailer created more than 125,000 new jobs.

    Wow. That sure sounds like they are taking advantage of people alright….
    I worked one summer as a life guard when I was 19. I did it to hang out at a pool everyday and show off my bulging muscles to the ladies.
    I earned $5.50 an hour at the time.
    Yes, it was over ten years ago.
    Yes, I am puffier now.
    Before we talk about how EVIL walmart is, let’s stop listening to those who are happy to lie to you to advance their own agendas and start looking for the truth.

  28. killavanilla says:

    @phobs:
    With all due respect, I think you are a bit off here.
    Yes, Walmart has power. But they can’t simply destroy a company that doesn’t want to play.
    And your assessment that they have no moral responsibility is way off.
    For instance, in 2005 they created 125,000 jobs.
    Bastards.
    AND they had the nerve to pay them an average salary of over $10 an hour? Sonsobitches….
    “With a focus on education, children and communities, Walmart charity contributes more than $5 a second every day of the year. In recent history cash donations through Wal Mart exceeded a record $170 million dollars. According to the Chronicle of Philanthropy, this makes Wal-Mart the largest giver in the country. Wal Mart holds a deep commitment to education and children. We provided $6 million in support of 5,000 literacy programs in 2004 and referred over 21,000 callers to services through our literacy hotline.”
    What a bunch of jerks!
    Come on, dude. You can admit it. You underestimated their philantropy…
    It’s okay. You were suckered by those who wish to advance their agenda of fear and anger.
    The article you provide is interesting, but totally written in an editorial style.
    And you may have missed the most important sentence in there:
    “in January 2001, Vlasic filed for bankruptcy–although the gallon jar of pickles, everyone agrees, wasn’t a critical factor.”
    Did vlasic HAVE to sell their giant jug of pickles through walmart? Of course not.
    They underestimated their brand equity and made a tactical error.
    Their bad, not walmart.

  29. SaraAB87 says:

    If you understand that walmart is self-service and can use it for what it is then it is fine, however just don’t expect the employees to guide you through picking out your first digital camera or to tell you which video game console is best for your son or daughter. Walmart stores are not ALL bad, every store has china made goods in it, many goods that walmart carries are the same brand-name goods that other stores carry. The only really bad stuff is the store-brand stuff, if you stay away from that you are fine. If you are boycotting one retail store because they have china-made goods in it then you have to boycott them all to be fair because they all have china made goods in them. Consumers have to shop somewhere, so retail stores have to exist, to exist you have to be competitive.

    With that being said if you are making a large purchase in a retail store such as a digital camera or video game console for your family you owe it to the giftee to at least be slightly informed of what your doing, or be prepared to be ripped off or be prepared for major disappointment when the giftee gets their gift. You cannot expect the retail store clerks to know your family and what they like and what your needs are, there is no “best”, you have to decide what is right for you. I say this because I find that many complaints about retail come from consumers who are simply uninformed about the products they are buying and expect a minmum wage clerk to tell them what is the best of everything and to automatically know what they or their family likes even if this is the first time they met.

  30. floofy says:

    I dislike Wal Mart as much as the next person. However, if people are going to bash the wages that Wal Mart employees make, they need to stand up for all minimum wage retail workers. I have worked many retail jobs in my life, and all of them paid crap to deal with crap. Why should Wal Mart pay any more than any other crappy retail job? Costco is only one retailer out of all of them that pays their employees a higher than average wage. They are the minority, not the norm.

  31. jamar0303 says:

    @killavanilla: I currently *live* in China. More than once I see advertisements advertising the fact that the product in question is *not* made in China as a selling point. It’s like the locals don’t even want their own products anymore.

    So for PCs- Panasonic. They advertise the fact that their laptops are all made in Japan.
    For TVs- Sharp. Their AQUOS TV sets are all made in Japan.
    Shoes? Geox (I think I spelled that right). Made in Italy, I think.
    Everything else? Not sure.

    It’s kind of sad, really.

  32. killavanilla says:

    @jamar0303:
    Wow.
    You LIVE there?
    How neat is that? I’ve always wanted to visit China. Maybe one day I will.
    But it doesn’t surprise me that there is a big consumer push towards foreign made stuff.
    And after all the scandals, poisonings, deaths, and illnesses stemming from Chinese made stuff, I can certainly see their point.
    Can you blame them?
    Have fun in China. Be careful!

  33. Imaginary_Friend says:

    @Ben and Meg: any chance we’ll be getting a “Block This User” feature soon?

  34. killavanilla says:

    @Imaginary_Friend:
    Who do you want to block, out of curiosity….