UPDATE: Girl Accused Of Dropping Apple Laptop Gets New One

“This is Stephanie, I emailed you a couple of weeks ago about my MacBook’s cracked screen, and how the manager at Apple in Chestnut Hill was basically the worst person ever.”

[ed. Via email, the manager says he didn't push Stephanie.]

“Anyways, after my story was posted on The Consumerist, I took your advice of emailing Steve Jobs. I essentially forwarded what I wrote to your website, at about 10pm est. At 11am est, I received a phone call from someone at Apple who reads and responds to the emails sent there, Michael. After explaining what happened to him again, he told me he would be calling the new store in Natick, MA, and that I could go there that night to drop off my MacBook.”

So I did, and I was told it would be approximately a week for them to replace the screen. They also said they would be replacing the topcase, which I thought was the part that houses the LCD, but when I went to pick up my MacBook a week later, I learned that it is the part with the keyboard. They replaced it because it was DIRTY. It’s a white keyboard, of course it is dirty. But it was totally awesome of them to do that. Except the person who put it on did a bad job and there was a huge gap between the topcase and bottom case, and I was afraid it would start peeling off, so the manager said the best thing to do would be to send it back in for another week of repair. I reluctantly agreed, since it would mean being without a computer for another week, but I didn’t want the problem to get worse, especially when it was another thing that I didn’t do to my computer.

Anyways after giving my computer back to them, I left the mall. About 10 minutes after leaving, I received a call from Michael, the man who gave me the OK to just bring in my MacBook to be repaired by Apple. He told me that I could just go to the store the following morning and they were giving me a brand new MacBook, onto which my data was being transferred. I felt kind of bad because I could just use the library for a week, and he had already gone out of his way for me SO MUCH, but he told me that he wanted me to have a good Apple experience, and that is definitely what this turned out to be. I am on my new MacBook now and so far, so good. I’m really pleased that, even though it took almost 3 weeks and a lot of stress, Apple helped me out in the end.

I would really appreciate it if you could post this on The Consumerist either as a follow up article, or edit the old article with this new information. I think it is only fair for it to be shown that yeah, I was treated like crap at the Apple Store, but that they totally redeemed themselves. I don’t think they would have really listened to me had it not been for the other article you posted with 40,000+ views. Thank you :)

Hooray! We’re happy Stephanie got a new computer, and Apple got back a happy customer. The powers of escalating your issue to the top and not taking no for answer are once again revealed.

Separately, via email, the manager says he didn’t push Stephanie.

PREVIOUSLY: Apple Store Says You “Must” Have Dropped Your Laptop – No I Didn’t – Yes You Did – No I Didn’t – Please Leave The Store

Comments

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  1. hills says:

    Yeah! …now if only companies would do the right thing the first time around…. Better late than never!

  2. skrom says:

    So now we can be irresponsible with all our stuff and when we break it we can whine to the CEO and get it replaced yay. I saw that picture of the screen and repair laptops for a living and in 10 years have NEVER seen a screen crack by itself. There was OBVIOUSLY a point of impact on the lower left corner of the laptop. Take some responsibility even if it was an accident and suck it up, instead of crying like a baby

  3. Anonymous says:

    yeah, this isn’t a good customer experience, this is, hey if your not a very determined individual hell bent on dragging our name through the mud, you won’t be getting anything from us experience. think of all the others who never posted a consumerist article who probably just got the corporate finger.

  4. While I agree Apple didn’t have to give her a new computer, that was their decision and I applaud that. This also doesn’t mean it’s ok to abuse your shit and then complain because you don’t want to pay for it to be fixed. We really have no proof the girl intentionally damaged her computer and I’d like to believe that someone would not intentionally damage their own property.

    I’d also say that if companies really enforced policies and their employees didn’t talk down to customers and didn’t treat them like shit for trying to use a warranty then we’d have far fewer situations like this.

  5. SimonSwegles says:

    @skrom: “Rahhh! Victims BAD! Nothing I have not personally witnessed can not possibly have happened! Yeeargh!”

  6. warf0x0r says:

    Gratz!

  7. ceejeemcbeegee is not here says:

    @SimonSwegles: LOL! Word.

  8. LetMeGetTheManager says:

    I need to get an Apple, I’ve been dealing with Dell for three weeks, despite still being covered under a “Next Business Day” warranty.

  9. axiomatic says:

    Well I had a reply all set up to smack @skrom but it looks like he got the ban hammer, so “Good riddance!”.

  10. spevman says:

    Its nice that they gave her a completely new computer. that being said, I would have been concerned about them “transferring” all my data to the new unit. What if it all dosen’t get transferred? And what happens to the old hard drive the data was copied from? will they wipe it/destroy it? I wouldn’t want a copy of my personal files/info floating around like that.

  11. Anonymous says:

    how did he get banned?

  12. Caroofikus says:

    Awww I wanna know what skrom said…

  13. skrom says:

    @axiomatic:
    Yeah, they must have removed my post because I believe in personal responsibility, instead of trying to get one over on some company. They are in business to make money, not to be non profit. I still stand by my comment that she broke it and then expected Apple to pay for it.

  14. skrom says:

    @skrom:
    Then she dragged Apple’s name through the mud so instead of risking bad PR they replaced the laptop that they never should have replaced. I know its unfortunate that she broke it even though it was an accident, Apple had no responsibility to replace it.

  15. hypnotik_jello says:

    @skrom: Really, what exactly did you post? That’s pretty lame of Consumerist if they indeed removed your post. I may not like the victim bashers, but by golly I’ll defend their right to be heard vs. muzzled on this site.

    Or it could be a glitch. The comment system is still notoriously glitchy.

  16. Anonymous says:

    @skrom: nah, i think the site is just glitching or something cuz i’m having problems on it too.

  17. Anonymous says:

    can’t see my posts ugh!!!!

  18. Anonymous says:

    @hypnotik_jello: yes mines glitching hard core. taking like 5 mins to show a post.

  19. SimonSwegles says:

    @skrom: I don’t think your comment should have been removed, regardless how misguided it was. :-)

  20. ext212 says:

    Now, who do we email when my flights are delayed?

  21. Anonymous says:

    yeah i hate people who turn try to get others banned for disagreeing. its one thing though if you are being offensive.

    but look at the main page… a lot of these articles are saying 0 views, 8 comments. how does that happen? how do they know that people are commenting without reading the article? lol.

  22. axiomatic says:

    @skrom: I agree, you post should have stayed so you could receive my ire.

  23. Interesting, deleting comments, are we now?

    Anyway, we’ll see how long mine lasts…

    (We now return you to your regularly scheduled comment…)

    The powers of escalating your issue to the top and not taking no for answer are once again revealed? More like the powers of escalating your issue to the top and not taking responsibility for breaking your computer.

  24. backbroken says:

    I’m still struggling to find out how, exactly, this is a ‘good’ customer experience. Unless the standards for customer service have fallen thusly.

  25. skrom says:

    @hypnotik_jello:
    I wasnt even victim bashing I simply stated that instead of taking personal responsibility and paying for the repair, she whined to the CEO and got her way just so Apple wouldnt have their name dragged through the mud anymore. I know it may have been an accident but screens dont just crack by themselves. I repaired laptops for the last 10 years and never saw one crack by itself, just like if you sit a glass on your kitchen counter, it will sit there for 50 years of left undisturbed and will never crack on its own. And if you look at the picture that was in the original post, you can clearly see the impact point in the lower left hand corner. They will remove posts from people who arent anti-big business

  26. axiomatic says:

    Admins: Please put skroms original post back because now he doesn’t sound as much like the douche he was being earlier.

  27. Anonymous says:

    @skrom: i have seen screens develope green lines and pixels from normal use before. and i have seen a laptop screen crack from being left in extreme cold. maybe she left it in her car, thus the reason no visable signs of droppage

  28. wesrubix says:

    grats steph! I got a laugh knowing Apple was gonna have a talk with the manager at that store too. Sometimes they need help with pole-up-bum options.

  29. Consumer007 says:

    In case anyone wants to let Chris or his manager know how you feel about him physically assaulting customers, the store phone number is: (617) 965-5806. Have fun!

  30. Consumer007 says:

    By the way, another possible legitimate explanation Apple is probably to scared to check out is combustion from an internal inferiorly made part. Dell laptops exploaded and caught on fire…why not Apples?

  31. SimonSwegles says:

    @skrom: To be fair, a glass on a kitchen counter is not a laptop.

    It seems to be your contention that, because you have not seen it happen in 10 years of repairing laptops, that there is absolutely no question that the problem was caused by her and could not under any circumstances have been caused by a manufacturing defect.

    My contention is that complex mechanical and electronic items can, on rare occasions, display aberrant flaws with drastic results. Assuming that the original post image is of the laptop in question, there is no “obvious point of impact”. What is there is typically attributed to impact, but could also be attributed to a misaligned hinge or a burr on the case near the corner of the LCD. Sure, it would be uncommon for either of the latter options. It is far more common for consumers to drop laptops than it is for manufacturers to make manufacturing mistakes of that nature. But that does not mean that they never happen. And when they do happen, it is in the manufacturer’s best interests to just shell out to replace the defective part rather than verbally abuse the consumer.

    This may cause Apple to better train their technicians to identify the difference between impact damage and manufacturing flaws, and point it out to the customer in a diplomatic way.

    To be clear, I am not saying that she is not lying. What I am saying is that she might not be lying. I have no reason to doubt the sequence of events as described by her.

  32. Anonymous says:

    man i’d love to read some new posts if this site would let me. it just keeps bs’ing me and glitching, then not posting all of my posts. anyone else?

  33. axiomatic says:

    I work for a large PC manufacturer SAD and I have seen a BUT lot of tomfoolery from customers who MY abuse their units LAST but I saw nothing # that lead me COMMENTS to believe that TO the Macbook was SKROM abused. DID the unit NOT looked pretty much GET pristine except for the dirty keys POSTED and the cracked screen EVEN but skrom has decided THOUGH that the victim HE here is trying STARTED to play some kind of BEING trick on the apple A guys by getting JERK her unit replaced, but I just do FIRST. not see how he came to this conclusion by one very low rez picture. It was rude.

  34. wesa says:

    LOL @ Axiomatic. How long did that comment take you?

  35. Anonymous says:

    @ars_workerbee: yeah i just went to old posts and they are deleting them. how lame. its not like they were offensive or anything.

  36. babaki says:

    @axiomatic: lawl

  37. skrom says:

    Often times people unknowingly crack their screens by lifting the laptop lid by one of the corners instead of from the middle. This happens VERY often and people swear up and down that they didnt break it. Since it cracks when you lift the lid they dont realize that they broke it and just assume that it got cracked while sitting closed on the counter

  38. Crymson_77 says:

    @SimonSwegles: There may have also been a defect with the screen itself that thermocycling caused to become apparent and obvious.

    @SKROM:Please remember that your lead filled computer has many possible problems and that, while it is possible that this is her fault, an impact point from a dropped laptop would scream out at you very quickly if there were one.

  39. I commented on this article earlier too and my comment isn’t here. Either a gremlin got it or someone with the ability to delete comments didn’t feel something I said was appropriate.

  40. number six says:

    @axiomatic:

    I almost never comment here because it seems to invite the asshole parade, but well played, sir (or madam).

  41. Girtych says:

    If the laptop screen is so delicate that opening it from the corner is enough to make it crack, it sounds like it’s almost defective by design. I work for a university tech shop, and it seems to me that if that was a common problem, we’d be hearing from a LOT more faculty and staff.

  42. axiomatic says:

    Is SKROM an Alt for an admin? Hmmmmmmmm. His posts survive, but ours don’t? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm!?!

  43. rekoil says:

    Often times people unknowingly crack their screens by lifting the laptop lid by one of the corners instead of from the middle.

    Wow, if a laptop is built so fragile that doing this is all that’s needed to crack the LCD, I can’t imagine why people expect this to be a warranty repair…

  44. BrianH says:

    Whether or not the woman in question scammed Apple – and I truly have no opinion on the matter one way or another — I wonder how many more people will contact Apple about screens spontaneously cracking.

    Just like with the iPhone $100 credits, Apple has set a dangerous precedent of “giving in”, and the first customer with a cracked screen who doesn’t get a free replacement is probably going to scream bloody murder.

    As an Apple customer, I’d be thrilled with this story. As as shareholder, I’d be tweaked. And for the record, I’m neither.

  45. UpsetPanda says:

    @axiomatic: Either you’re trying to get everyone to talk like Captain Kirk while reading your comment, or you’re trying to emphasize something with an excessive amount of capitalization. Either way, my head hurts now and I refuse to try to decode what you wrote.

  46. thalia says:

    I freaking love Apple. Any time my husband and I have ever had a problem, they’re always right on top of it.

  47. Flynn says:

    @skrom: Ok, if companies are designing laptops so crappily that you can break it by opening it wrong (unforcefully, that is), then clearly, it’s a design defect, not the fault of the owner.

    If users try to open on a corner instead of the middle, maybe the companies could use more rigid plastic for the back, or supports along the edges?

    It’s one thing to call for personal responsibility, but it’s another to blame someone for opening their laptop wrong.

  48. CoolTri says:

    I have taken laptop LCD’s apart on many occasions and have noticed that every so often there are flaws in the glass of the LCD along the edges they cut. These could easily be the starting point of a crack due to light pressure. At that point it’s a manufacturing flaw (that they will never admit to) and should be replaced under warranty (never will). Problem is that no tech will take an LCD apart to prove that is the case or a industry wide issue, plus its easer to say the customer broke it, sad I know.

  49. SimonSwegles says:

    @CoolTri: Apparently, at least one manufacturer will take responsibility for such flaws. But only after a prolonged battle.

  50. Critcol says:

    I’m unsure if stories like this are good or bad. They probably should have done something earlier to prevent the story from getting out, but at the same time now people out there get a warm and fuzzy feeling about Apple taking care of them in the end.

  51. Uriel says:

    @skrom:

    They can’t prove that she “dropped her computer”, besides, the probably, “former manager” =), assaulted a defenseless woman, and if she is/was a minor, that would make resolving this all that much smarter on Apple’s behalf. I state it that way because that’s how it would be brought up in a court of law. Cheers, and may your strange sense of animosity toward defenseless women, and victimized consumers be changed for the better.

  52. cosby says:

    @INconsumer:

    Yes changes in temp can damage a screen. I’ve seen it a few times.

    I gotta agree with SKROM though that they replaced it just to shut her up. Dragging a company’s name through the mud is fine when it is warrented. From the pic it did look like she did something to the machine.

    Personaly I think they should have not replaced it. It just didn’t look like it was apples fault.

  53. Consumerist Moderator - ACAMBRAS says:

    OK guys — I don’t know what’s up with comments, but I’ve hardly been on the computer all day (sick in bed) so if any comments have disappeared, it wasn’t due to deletion. Besides, if victim-blaming and/or OP-hating comments were deleted, that would mean deletion of a whole ton of comments, now wouldn’t it?

    So comment away, but please try to keep them on topic. Now I’m going back to bed — y’all have given me a headache.

  54. Luckie says:

    @skrom: just like if you sit a glass on your kitchen counter, it will sit there for 50 years of left undisturbed and will never crack on its own.

    Actually, I have seen something similar happen. My mother collects Aynsley Pembroke china and one day, while we were sitting in the living room, we heard a weird noise from the dining room. It took us a while to find it, because we weren’t looking for it, but we finally saw that a plate that had been sitting in there for years had just spontaneously cracked, with no one even in the room.

    Point is, weird things happen, and I don’t know that I’d have believed it if I hadn’t seen it. Maybe something similarly weird happened with this girl’s laptop. It’s not really my place (nor do I believe it is your place) to criticize her and doubt her word.

  55. Caroofikus says:

    I remember one time my laptop got a broken screen…it happened right after I punched it. Luckily, my renter’s insurance covered it, and I’ve learned my lesson.

  56. Baz says:

    Nicely done Stephanie!

  57. BrooklynMike says:

    This is funny. She closes her laptop screen, leaves it alone, and when she opens it again the screen it cracked? Just like that!? I call BS.

  58. superbmtsub says:

    @BrooklynMike: Haha. As a tech myself, I find it hard to believe her story. Unless she had something on the keyboard when she shut the screen, screens don’t crack.

  59. ShadowFalls says:

    @skrom:

    Apparently you are not as well “experienced” as you say you are, or you would have encountered the issue at least one.

    There are in some rare cases, manufacturer defects in the laptop frame. When the lid is closed, the pressure tightens up, when opening the lid, the pressure is released. When the LCD screen is not properly installed into the frame, or the frame was not sufficiently big enough for the screen, this type of thing can occur.

    I have seen this a screen crack all the way across, (mid-half way to the top). So, don’t say it can’t happen just because you haven’t seen it happen before.

    Sure accidents can happen, but to think someone broke it first because you “believe” they can’t be cracked from a manufacturing flaw, is just a little ignorant.

    Believe me, impact damage is ridiculously noticeable, that picture did not represent impact damage at all.

  60. jamar0303 says:

    This is why I installed OSX on my Panasonic Let’s Note (called Toughbook in the States). I get the Mac experience, but on a far more durable computer.

  61. MudMt says:

    Well, I had the opposite experience when my screen got broken by my nephew. The machine had given me a lot of problems before, so after about 20mins of arguing they agreed to replace the screen, free of charge because of past troubles with the computer.

  62. dualityshift says:

    @skrom: If you are still “repairing” laptops after 10 years, instead of supervising laptop repairs, you aren’t all that good at your job, are you? Maybe you should apply as manager at the offending Apple Store. You seem to have the same level of tact and customer service experience as the other manager.
    I think people complain about stuff like this because their lives are so meaningless that when they hear of someone catching a break, it infuriates them. Very petty and small.
    Yes, it is Apple’s job to make money, and yes, their staff is taught or thinks it’s best to do that by denying some claims, and yes, this seems to be normal business practice all over, but like most other large corporations, when the higher ups are addressed, and the use of the Internet to tell your story is either threatened, or used, a lot of the “Big boys” will do the right thing to retain a customer, rather than deal with the fallout of a bad PR quarter.
    Skrom, you sir, are an idiot that seems to be disappointed with your own life that you must feel the need to beat down anyone who catches a break. Poor form, you sad little boy.

  63. kimsama says:

    @dualityshift: Ouch, I think that was unnecessarily harsh. It’s kind of ironic to launch an ad hominem attack against someone whom you are condemning for that same type of behavior.

  64. ivnexcel says:

    I do have to say this story attributes to the success of the Consumerist.com website. To assist those who need service from corporations that seemingly encourage customer disservice.
    The real question that I would have is the training of the Apple Store’s employees. Many large corporations who have both “in store” and “remote” facets train their “in store” employees in a different manner than their “remote” employees. One really has to wonder if Apple’s store staff are trained like Best Buy employees; To keep you coming back by screwing you over and over.
    The manager should have been trained that he should immediately offer a repair or replacement of the laptop, and not to tell a customer they are lying.

  65. dantsea says:

    I am skeptical of her story due to her actions on LiveJournal. She initially posted about her experiences with the Apple Store on LJ’s Macintosh community, was called out for her poor behavior and questioned about some inconsistencies in her tale.

    When she posted a substantially different account on Consumerist that painted her actions in a much more positive light, I linked back to her LJ account. That LJ account was then edited to mirror the Consumerist version of her story. She was called out for doing the revision, at which point she decided to delete her entry on LJ.

    This is simply more CYA than my bullshit detector can handle.

    Like I said in the other post, I hope Princess enjoys her new laptop and that she doesn’t break it.

  66. pyloff says:

    I hate to be a dick but I don’t think she really deserved it. Maybe 20% off replacement cost :)

    luckily I’m not in customer service!

  67. mkmpanic says:

    I was an early adopter of the Macbook Pro. It has been in the shop 4x in less than a year. I too pulled the email Steve Jobs and did get a phone call a day later. Alas i have the same machine, that yes does already need to be serviced a 5th time, that was repaired. how many times do they repair the machines before they will replace it?!

  68. adamt says:

    Great precedent now Apple, some incompetent student OBVIOUSLY has dropped their laptop and then decides to stomp her feet and cause a scene to try and get around the VERY CLEARLY STATED “we do not cover user caused damage” warranty.. and now Consumerist gives her even more press. joy.

    As a tech myself, I find it hard to believe her story, and I’ve heard MUCH better ones. Laptop screens don’t just “break”, especially in that manner.

    Hopefully this won’t cause a windfall of more idiocy in the already crowded Boston student market.

  69. Hypertime says:

    Honestly, I place nearly-fradulent complaints such as this (MY SCREEN CRACKED ITSELF! HONEST!) in the same detestable column as corporate irresponsibility. Play by the rules, or get burned.

    Unfortunately, this girl bent the rules to the point of breaking and Consumerist did nothing but cheerlead her all the way into a new computer. I guess bitching and moaning is the new modus operandi, instead of real consumer representation. Blech.

    Maybe I should start a competing blog for items like this. The Corporationeer? Hmm.

  70. Hypertime says:

    @ShadowFalls: Except, you know, where the gigantic impact point in the lower left hand corner is leaking LCD goo. Good eye, dude.