Best Buy Forbids You From Buying Assassin's Creed, Insists You're Buying It For A Minor

Matt writes:

Yesterday I went through the horror of taking my 15 year old brother to the Best Buy in Orland Park, IL on LaGrange Ave. I had close to $100 in Best Buy Gift Certificates given to me for Christmas. My brother and I were en route to dinner and we decided to swing by the aforementioned Best Buy to pick up a video game, Assassin’s Creed, and XBOX Live Gold. We entered the store. I browsed the camera aisle looking for a cable to possibly purchase for our flat screen then headed to the video game section. I picked up the said items and headed to check out where hell will shortly ensue.

I stepped up to the red haired, slightly obese cashier and she immediately gave me a look of disgrace as if I did something wrong. I replied with a “hi” to make the tension less awkward. She immediately asked me for my ID. I’ve never been carded for a video game before so I politely handed it to her while asking my brother for my gift cards I gave him while I was busy shuffling through my car just 20 minutes earlier.

She then left the the register booth with my ID and video game and went to her manager. The Best Buy cashier then came back and shouted that I’m purchasing a video game for a minor in front of everyone in line behind me and her fellow cashiers. She even had the nerve to ask, “Is that even your brother with you?!” Hell yes he is! I was embarrassed! It’s like she was condemning me for purchasing alcohol for a minor. [ed. Assassin's Creed is rated "M" for Mature, meaning it's considered not suitable for kids under 17. It's a game where you play an assassin during the Third Crusades and you take out various historical figures.]

I quickly responded back that I am 21 year old and that the video game and peripheral are for me. She shook her head with a menacing grim and said that she saw me take gift cards from my brother and that what I am doing is illegal. Enough of this obese 17 year olds shenanigans! I demanded a manager. Unfortunately the manager was probably about 18 years old as well.

In front of the store again he told me that I am illegally purchasing a video game for a minor. I responded back that they are my gift cards! I want to make a purchase. That’s when he picked up Xbox Live GOLD. I then asked if I couldn’t buy that either. He then took a few minutes to scrutinize the box looking for an online peripherals rating. He never found it and said to me, he’s not sure, I might not be able to do that either (Xbox Live was also rated E for everyone mind you). I continued to repeat that these are my gift cards, I’m 21 and I want to make my purchase. The cashier and manager continued to condemn me in front of all that I’m illegally purchasing the game for a minor.

I brought up two ultimatums. “So I have to go drive miles outside Orland Park, IL to another Best Buy to purchase the video game then?” The manager shrugged and said, “I guess so.”

I also brought up the option then that if I left the store with my brother, came back in by myself and made the purchase, would that be legal then? The manager replied, “Technically, yes, that will be OK.”

I then told them to hold on to the Xbox Live Gold since it was the last one left. I left the store with my brother, told him to go to the car. I then walked back into the store. The manager earlier told me that I can’t use the old video game I originally had in hand because it was deemed under “penalty.” I then had to walk all the way to the back of the cavernous store, pick up the video game then walk back to the line I was originally in. I stood in line for another 10 minutes waiting. I finally got back up to the obese red head cashier where she smirked and looked at me and said, “Yeah, we can’t sell you that video game.” What?! “Those gift cards are illegal.”

How the hell does she know someone didn’t just give me the gift cards on the street or if I had more of my “OWN” gift cards from the car. They just told me that I was able to purchase the video game once I walked my brother out.

I told them that they made a fool out of me before everyone in the store. She continued to be as politely as I can put it a “bitch” to me. I purchased Xbox Live Gold and said to the hell with the game. After making the transaction I told her I didn’t need a plastic bag since all I’m carrying out is a small little hand held cardboard box. Who needs a plastic bag for that? She then told me that under company policy if I wanted to exit the store I needed a plastic bag. Absurd! For me to exit the store I need to kill the planet now? I never see people with bags over DVD players that are twice the size as the flimsy Xbox Live cardboard box.

Anyway I left the store, we ate dinner and on the way home we stopped at the Best Buy in Mokena, IL. I purchased the same exact video game, Assassin’s Creed with my brother right beside me. I was never carded, I was never interrogated, I was never questioned. I had a wonderful experience there but I had to go through a three hour ordeal of going to the Best Buy in Orland Park, eating dinner than spending another 20 minutes at a Best Buy miles away all for a video game.

Three things Best Buy, first drop the mandatory plastic bag policy. Second, you need to revamp your treatment of customers and not threaten them of their illegal actions in front of all. Three, can I get reimbursed for some gas money for driving miles and miles out of my way since I was banned from buying a video game at your store in Orland Park, IL?

Cheers,

Matt D.

That is one crazy story, Matt. Now, if you had a copy of The Consumerist.com Consumer Action Manual (an as-yet unwritten pocket-sized book in the style of those “How To Escape From Anything” Books), you would turn to page 42, under “Dealing with in-store employee’s wacky interpretations of store policy” (just a working section title). There you would see that when little Mr. and Mrs. Blueshirt have decided they are the petty dictators of the cash register universe, you calm yourself down and call their corporate headquarters or customer service line and let them know what is going on. Oftentimes, this results in a call to the store from official company people with a few more firing brain cells who can straighten the whole matter out. Perhaps then corporate would have informed this store that video game ratings are just voluntary recommendations, it’s not “illegal” in any sense of the word to sell them to a minor, and especially not to an older sibling who just happens to have a minor with them. We offer this advice based on testimony from readers for whom it has worked, as well as former employees of various retail establishments.

Comments

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  1. semanticantics says:

    How does one get a 65″ DLP TV out in a plastic bag? I’d love to see that.

    Why did you get back into the same persons line? Also, upon being denied the game in the first place, you should’ve gone to the games section and started taking all games out of the display and moving them about the store.

  2. Youthier says:

    You were definately wronged here but seriously… must you bring the cashier’s weight into it? That petty detail makes me think you didn’t handle the situation the best way you could have either.

  3. Bestbuy employment screening questions:

    1) Are you legally able to work in the United States? (If Yes, Continue)
    2) Are you a douche? (If Yes, Continue)

  4. Ian S. says:

    I thought if you were over 21 you could be counted as being able to act as a guardian for a younger person and could do things like purchase rated R movie tickets for them, if you were watching it with them. Now I haven’t been under 17 or worked retail for a while, so things might have changed, but that was how it used to work.

    It’s possible that with all the nannying going on that’s changed, or video games are different because unlike a rated R movie you won’t be there to guardianize the younger person, and they might even play it by themselves. What horror!

  5. UpsetPanda says:

    @semanticantics: Juvenile revenge, I love it!

  6. shan6 says:

    Is the Consumer Action Manual a real book that you are making? If so, sweet.

  7. I once got fired from a job because someone said they saw me give alcohol to a minor. After the “investigation”, during which neither myself, or my friend whom I was accused of giving alcohol to, were asked out side of the story, I got fired. Went back in with my Union rep, and we had them on record as saying that the clerk “Knew I was buying alcohol for a minor”. I fired back that under ABC regulations, she was to either deny the sale, or alert the police, otherwise, she was in violation of the law. Needless to say, after a little hush money, I was back to work very quickly. This is why people need more brain cells.

  8. IndyJaws says:

    And for the Best Buy lackeys…it’s not ILLEGAL for a minor to buy a ‘M’ game (I know that wasn’t the case here), the same way it isn’t ILLEGAL for a minor to go to or buy an R-rated movie. It is a voluntary rating system in both cases; there are no laws against it.

  9. Also, in checking out the ratings at [www.esrb.org] , M just means it “may” be suitable for 17 and up. AO is the rating for adults only.

  10. OminousG says:

    Isn’t video game ratings a voluntary thing?
    Exactly what law did these idiots think he was breaking?

  11. The Stork says:

    “In front of the store again he told me that I am illegally purchasing a video game for a minor.”

    Illinois’ law was struck down as unconstitutional several years ago, so BBY is full of fail here. It’s corporate policy but not “illegal,” and of course it’s neither when you’ve got an ID showing you’re 18 no matter how young your companion is. Idiots.

  12. silkylove says:

    Well then, I see that I won’t be shopping at Best Buy anymore. Target’s better anyway.

  13. mantari says:

    I find your story to be shocking. Contributing to the delinquency of a minor is a very serious issue, and a crime where you live. I have contacted your local law enforcement agency, and I have given them your information, along with your admission, and contact information for the stores in question.

    I hope they nail you to a tree, you sicko!

  14. PropCulture says:

    Odd, I just picked up something at that exact store this weekend and walked out without a plastic bag.

  15. deVious says:

    Reason #1,000,001 not to shop at Best Buy.

  16. samurailynn says:

    That’s pretty crazy. Especially considering how I’ve found cashiers at grocery stores handle sales of alcohol. I have a foreign exchange student living in my household, and technically, I am her legal guardian. She’s 18 and I’m 26. When I’ve tried to buy wine with her in the store with me, she usually gets asked for ID, but once I explain that I am her legal guardian and that the alcohol is for me (which is true, I’ve never bought alcohol for her) they just accept my ID and on with the purchase! It seems like a store could be a tad more lax with video games than with alcohol.

  17. Buran says:

    Uh, how is the cashier’s physical condition related to this? You’re a judgmental asshole (so is best buy, but still, you’re no angel).

    I think they did this to him because they saw the gift cards and realized best buy had him no matter what.

  18. Pigmann says:

    @HeyHermano:

    I have to agree, some of the writing here makes me wonder how Matt actually dealt with the store staff and if he didn’t bring some of this upon himself.

    It pays to stay cool.

  19. How the hell is a gift card illegal? If it’s got value on it, then it’s been rung through a register. Wtf does the store care who it was actually given to?

  20. Buran says:

    @HeyHermano: No shit. The OP complains about THEIR being juvenile?

  21. drizzleray says:

    I often go to Best Buy and refuse the plastic bag for my purchase, often a video game, DVD, or other small item. I have never been refused. It’s a shame when renegade cashiers don’t have any common sense.

  22. stopNgoBeau says:

    As far as I know, Best Buy doesn’t have a bag policy. I almost never get bags. She was just being a douche, as pointed out in ANGRYSICILIAN’s employment application.

    As for the ratings, are those legally binding, or just a suggestion that most stores decide to follow? Even for rated R movies, I don’t think its “illegal” to view them if you are an unaccompanied minor, I just think its not suggested, and therefore most theaters have it as policy. Can anyone enlighten us?

  23. semanticantics says:

    @JD

    Not juvenile, anti-corporate espionage. They have to pay their poorly trained and informed lackeys to replace them. It is not “illegal” to buy someone else a game, even if that were the case. How else will these people / companies learn than by the bottom line? No $60 sale for the game, $50 out of pocket to do created work.

  24. BTownDesignGuy says:

    I don’t know if Best Buy is the real villain here. I think the real villain is the state legislature. I mean, I personally can’t decide if state laws making it illegal to sell M-rated games to minors are really a big deal or not. After reading this, I’m starting to think that maybe, just maybe, they really are a big deal.

  25. MercuryPDX says:

    I’d leave out “slightly obese” and similar comments when sending this to BB Corporate; professionalism is a more sympathetic read.

    Color me amazed that somewhere actually ENFORCES the [M for mature] rating. Despite BB being a member of the ESRB Retail Council (incidentally, a group you should report this to), they ignored the sales guideline:

    Enforce store policies not to sell or rent M (Mature) rated computer and video games to customers under the age of 17 without permission from a parent or guardian;

    You’re over 17, they had no reason to hassle you.

  26. deathscent says:

    you have full rights to purchase any product so long as it is deemed to fit for the one purchasing to use. i have walked into various sex shops, and was eyed the entire time. i have bought lingerie for my girlfriend several times, i have bought AO games, and i’m only 18 years old. so long as you can claim that the item you are purchasing is for yourself, or is indirectly for yourself, then you are entitled full rights to purchase a product. a store may only with hold the item if it is clear that it is for a minor. if the customer, IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FOR, claims it is for their person alone, the cashier is to allow the transaction. also, remember that you can claim that you are the legal guardian and allow the minor to make full use of the game. the ratings are only suggested ratings, not ratings a store MUST abide by. next time, have the assistance of police, they do help. my brother’s a cop, so i know they help in good times (PS. if you live in toronto, he’s the a-hole pulling you over for no apparant reason. he has actually caught people drunk quite a few times this way).

  27. fordpickup says:

    It isn’t illegal to sell a game rated M to a minor. The ESRB “enforces the rules” and as far as I can tell, has no penalties for retailers selling M and AO games to minors.

  28. UpsetPanda says:

    @Ian S.: See, for movies if you are under 17 you must be accompanied by a parent or guardian…this implies that they bought your ticket. I’m guessing the video game watchdogs didn’t think too far ahead on this when they put the kibosh on selling video games to minors. I personally don’t think minors should buy M-rated video games, but that’s more about the fact that I don’t think KIDS (this law is really targeting the 13 and under crowd) should have that kind of spending power.

  29. MercuryPDX says:

    @mantari: That’s telling ‘em Howard! ;)

  30. lightaugust says:

    And they were all fat! Which obviously makes them worse at customer service! And Best Buy still got my money after I spent another hour and who knows how much in gas! Cause I showed those fatsos!

  31. Bauer22 says:

    Well see the problem here is that video games are not “games” and 14 year old should only play “games”. Thank you Best Buy logic!

    I still dont see what was they were thinking when they did all this! I know he wasn’t buying it for his brother but most stores will just go “You know this game is rated M for Mature” and you go on your way.

    So 16 year olds are able to drive which kills thousands a year but cant buy a game that rated M?

  32. warf0x0r says:

    @IndyJaws: Seconded. The ESRB only puts those ratings on there to help the public determine what games they could buy for themselves and others. There are no laws, despite what Jack Thompson and Hillary Clinton would like, that require someone to be a certain age.

    It’s sad from not only a consumer experience, but that store basically tried to walk revenue simply because the cashier didn’t understand the laws or her manager made a stupid in store rule that cannot be enforced.

    You should call the games publisher and complain (or the ESRB). That would probably get the point to BBY when the sales rep for Ubisofts publisher wants to know why cashiers wont let patrons buy their products.

  33. Jaysyn was banned for: http://consumerist.com/5032912/the-subprime-meltdown-will-be-nothing-compared-to-the-prime-meltdown#c7042646 says:

    @mantari:

    You suck at being sarcastic.

  34. MercuryPDX says:

    @fordpickup: Enforcement is completely voluntary:

    Although it does not have the legal authority to implement or enforce retailer sales policies with respect to computer and video games, the ESRB works closely with retailers and game centers to: a) provide in-store signage which explains the rating system; b) support their store policies pertaining to the sale or rental of Mature-rated games to minors; and c) help educate and train store associates and employees with regard to the rating system.

  35. veraikon says:

    @semanticantics: There’s always the possibility that she had the only open register. Unlikely but possible.

  36. @lightaugust: I found the traveling all round sorta funny too… but what else can you do with gift cards for BB? You can’t get a refund. I suppose you could buy online.

  37. noquarter says:

    @samurailynn: In my younger days, I went through the alcohol purchasing lines lots of times with people who were over 21. The only question the cashiers ever cared about the answer to was “Who will be carrying this alcohol out of the store?” If the answer was “This 21-year-old guy right here”, then they didn’t gave a damn how old I was, whose wallet the cash came out of, or who drove the car when we left.

  38. smitty1123 says:

    This and having worked retail are what have driven me to do most of my shopping online…

  39. EmeraldDragon says:

    Wow. People can say what they want about GameStop, but I have never had a problem when I shop there. Best Buy on the other hand is always a nightmare.

  40. Cartman86 says:

    Yeah it’s always been that if your parent allows you to play an M rated game or watch a R rated movie then there is nothing anyone can do about it. It’s not Best Buys job to stop you from doing that. If my mom is in the store with me and purchases Call of Duty 4 with me then its all good (I’m 21 by the way).

  41. B says:

    I kinda think Best Buy was in the right here. They should be carding for M rated games, and that should include everybody in your “party.”

  42. noquarter says:

    @Buran: Maybe he included a description of her because he doesn’t know her name. I don’t see anybody here claiming that he’s anti-redhead.

  43. KoW says:

    Wow, the OP sounds like an asshole.

    You had a minor with you.

    Who you aren’t the guardian of.

    Who handed you a gift card in front of the employee.

    While you tried to purchase an M-rated game.

    From an employee who could be fired for selling a minor an M-rated game.

    And you’re offended? To me, having worked at both Best Buy and Blockbuster, that’s a shady ass deal right there, and if I had been that employee, I also would have been suspicious. If I had been that *manager*, however, I probably would have let you have the product.

    I’m not even going to get into the outrageous ageism displayed in this post. (As if a 17 year old, or and 18 year old, by default, don’t know what they’re doing because you’re all of, *gasp* 21! Your age and wisdom truly devastates theirs. Good job.)

  44. PapaBear434 says:

    I’m all for age control on games. Kids shouldn’t be playing violent games without their parents approval. However, if I choose to buy a game for my kid, you should have nothing to say. You aren’t in the business of raising my child.

  45. warf0x0r says:

    Seriously try emailing this guy/gal if you want to stir something:

    Jaime Borasi
    Director, Ubisoft Public Relations
    Corporate Communications
    jaime.borasi@ubisoft.com

    Jocelyn Portacio
    Senior Corporate Communications Specialist
    Jocelyn.portacio@ubisoft.com 625 Third Street
    San Francisco – CA 94107
    Tel: +1 (415) 547 4000
    Fax: +1

    Complain to them that you couldn’t purchase the game in the company of your brother at a Best Buy.

  46. KurtSubvert says:

    This guy is an idiot for not just walking out of the store. Orland park isn’t exactly ‘remote’, there are several best buys within ten minutes of driving. It’s shitty, but I would have told them to piss off the second they started giving me crap.

  47. fordpickup says:

    @mercurypdx: Paper tigers are fun!

  48. fuchikoma says:

    Not saying you SHOULD, but wouldn’t you be legally entitled to sue her for libel after jumping to the conclusing and loudly announcing that you were going to do something illegal without any proof?

    Anyway, I’m glad we still have Future Shop up in Canada – Worst Buy bought them and they’re roughly the same store, but even now the service at FS is way better and they don’t try the tons of stupid crap you hear about like the customer blackball list or recent “toys & games means games aren’t toys” fiasco.

  49. jayntampa says:

    There is no Best Buy policy regarding plastic bags … she made that up to make your life hell. Seriously.

    You have the receipt, so you know the teller. Call and write the home office. I had a very, very similar case happen to me. I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. Within 2 weeks, I had a VP call me, apologize, and send me a $25 gift card. The assistant manager I dealt with was never seen again …

  50. Hanke says:

    I…would have broken something in the store. And gone to jail. But I’d have been happy for 5 minutes.

  51. greeble says:

    Look the nice lady was just trying to save you some money. Assassin’s creed is crap, I would have gladly sold you mine if you hadn’t gone to another store to buy it. (And I don’t care if your younger brother is with you.)

  52. LowerHouseMember says:

    Back when I worked at Target I witnessed one of the floor managers telling some lady with her kid the same thing – that she could not legally buy an M rated game if it would be for a minor to play. After she walked off (I was not about to interrupt him) I explained to him that he was wrong and it was in fact not illegal. He was really embarassed, caught up with the woman, apoligized profusely and gave her the game for free.

  53. GothamGal says:

    For those who say that he should have remained cool, I find that extremely hard when dealing with imbeciles. You are clearly in the right, but you cannot change the minds of uninformed idiots.

    As far as the bringing someone’s weight into the discussion, I think that it paints a picture of what he was dealing with here. Here’s someone who can’t keep Twinkies out of their mouths and they are passing judgment on you?

  54. brent_w says:

    All you gotta do is ask for their name so you know who to talk about
    when you come back to see the ‘real manager’ and watch that little boy
    wonder manager change his tune in a heartbeat.

    All you have to know is which strings to pull, as soon as they
    realize you are going to get their ass reprimanded or fired they will
    get helpful real fast.

  55. Coder4Life says:

    Ok if this really happened just like the story reads. Both of those people should be fired and never allowed to work in retail again…

    I can see this happening, sometimes people are just jerks.

    I remember this sort of thing happening to me but it was b/ of alcohol at sams club in ames, ia. My 2 roomates and I went there purchased about $200 groceries and about $30 alcohol. My roomates g/f was there who was 20 and not 21. So we were not able to purchase alcohol from there for the rest of the day. I asked the lady, if she came in w/ her family and her 50 year old dad wanted to buy alcohol could he? she’s like no, not if she’s w/ him.

    I said hell with it and told her she can keep the $200 groceries I am going to shop some where else. She was not happy that she had to clean that mess up w/ a line of 5 behind us..

  56. Buran says:

    @noquarter: That’s why you read nametags, give a register number if the registers are numbered, or use other descriptors that AREN’T INSULTING.

  57. mac-phisto says:

    when confronted with situations like this, i just play dumb. it’s rewarding, entertaining & it just plain works.

  58. Coder4Life says:

    @KurtSubvert: I would of took my business some where else and not best buy.. Teh giftcards, sell them online for $90. someone will buy them.

  59. Buran says:

    @Coder4Life: When I was a kid I went shopping with mom all the time (used to love riding on the bottom of the cart!). She bought booze pretty frequently (wine, beer, cooking sherry) and was never hassled about my being with her. Crazy, huh?

  60. Norellicus: Screen name function is broken :( says:

    And this is why I tend to avoid brick and mortar stores in general. My patience runs out quite quickly with incompetent staff and inconsistent policies.

    I would have taken the XBL pack out of the bag and tossed the bag on the ground right in front of her, haha.

  61. brent_w says:

    @brent_w:

    And if the “real manager” is on their side you just do a call to corp.

  62. Coder4Life says:

    @Buran: The guys mad, ofcourse he’s going to give that description of her. You would too.

  63. warf0x0r says:

    @jayntampa: I’ve heard that stores are making those policies by themselves to avoid Shrink aka theft. Makes it easier for LP to identify someone walking out with something that might get past them as a regular purchase. It’s not policy but if they had to justify it 1000 of those bags are gonna cost less than a CD so congrats on corporate greed.

  64. GregC1968 says:

    Another reason to never shop at that place

  65. JohnOB1 says:

    @IndyJaws: Good call Indy… people misconstrue a voluntary system of policy as “illegal,” there is no law, and no cop is going to arrest you for buying a videogame. Alcohol? Yes. Cigarettes? Yes. A bloody video-game or boobie laden film? Not in this country.

  66. simplehuman says:

    If this young man were to go into a supermarket and buy 100 dollars worth of booze cigarettes the store would happily sell it to him with his little brother standing next to him.

    But a video game, woah nelly.

    I understand stores enforcing their policies of only selling M+ games to the gamers 17 and up, but that’s a far cry from it being “illegal” to buy the game. Worse yet, BB and other stores refusal to post clear guidelines regarding these purchases leads to idiotic encounters like this. The cashier and manager likely had their jobs threatened for allowing video game straw purchases (in some dreadful BB training video no doubt) and are carrying out the bad programming.

    And yeah, making fun of her weight makes you sound like a douche, be the more mature one and you always win.

  67. Jim says:

    @PropCulture: @stopNgoBeau: @jayntampa: All true. I walked out of BB last night with 6 DVD’s (bought on gift cards/rewards vouchers) and politely declined the bag without incident. It was actually the most pleasant BB experience I ever had.

  68. Mr. Gunn says:

    The best idea of all is to sell the BB GCs on Ebay or whereever and spend your money in a store that doesn’t suck.

  69. bertfallen says:

    A tip to anyone that could end up in this position.
    Challange the staff. Not to the death or anything. If they say its illegal, ask them to call the police or sercurity. When they come along dont overreact just chat with them about it. Sooner or later the store will be fined for wasting police time and you get your game and probably a shitton of vouchers. :)

  70. Alpha_Omega says:

    @thekow:

    Just to let you know, it’s NOT illegal or even wrong to buy a game for a minor. I can walk into a store and buy GTA 3 for a 7-year-old, and tell the cashier, and I can’t be penalized (though I would look like an idiot). As long as someone with proper age requirements gives permission, as the person in this story did, there is no reason why he should have been denied. In fact, the cashier should have lost their job for that. This is why when a minor walks into Gamestop and wants to buy an M game, the cashier doesn’t say “No, now get the hell out of the store”, but instead he says “I need a legal guardian or person over 17′s permission before I CAN sell you this game.”

  71. Buran says:

    @Coder4Life: No I wouldn’t.

  72. boxartguy says:

    ads

  73. MercuryPDX says:

    @fordpickup: Seriously.

    Goes without saying, but their “Guideline” is my “Selling/renting point”.

  74. benjimandodd says:

    i love how people are condemning you for calling her fat. i believe it very important to the story. she was a fat douche. better sounding than just douche.

    i would have asked to talk to somebody older than 16(note the exaggeration to irritate the cashier) and then when nothing could have been done and i did the same thing this person did i would have taken the bag, took the game out, and dropped the bag on the floor as i walked out. then i would have went on with my business.

    best buy sucks. period.

  75. Coder4Life says:

    @Buran: Off topic, but this seemed to be only a problem at the Ames, IA Sams Club. Never at any others. I even asked at other sams clubs and htey said they had no such policy.

    They must be punks there.. haha.

  76. boxartguy says:

    I work at best buy with the geek squad i also worked at the register/ cashier… anyways that’s really too bad that the manager was so young… i think it was probably just a supervisor you were talking to… manager of the store usually are a lot of older hehe. so… our training at the store i work at is usually to provide some like awesome customer service.. that has always been the motto ever since interview. However maybe our best buy store has better management since it’s ranked at the top in it’s district of other best buy stores… anyways that is a pretty sad story you described. especially when it’s such an easy thing to solve is the sad part. Sounded like that lady din’t like you much ; ) hahaha

  77. zakky venom says:

    sounds alot like the gamestop in my town.
    you should have cause a ruckuss right back and called them out for accusing you of something that wasnt actually illegal.

    i have the itching assumption that maybe you dragged the conflict out to make it a longer story to send in to kotaku. lol

  78. legacyed says:

    I’m glad Ben pointed out that there was nothing illegal about what you were doing, even if you were doing what they were accusing you of doing. I wish Mike had known that, then he could have told the dumbass cashier to go ahead and call the cops.

    Strangely enough, I’m pretty sure most stores’ policy is not to sell M-rated games to minors, and not to interfere if they suspect that someone older is buying the game for a minor. I’d like to see that cashier pull the same stunt with a parent buying an M-rated game for their kid. I’m sure she’d find herself unemployed pretty damn quick.

  79. Trai_Dep says:

    Well, don’t go and buy sexy lingerie for your fifteen-year-old brother. Because that would really make them blow a gasket.

  80. kingme says:

    If i was him, I would complain right away to Best Buy Head Office. talk to the President of Best Buy itself.

    That happened to me and my bro before. years ago, I was 16 and my brother was 21, and he wanted to buy Grand Theft Auto III for PC which was M for Mature, anyways, I have the Gift Cards, they wont sell it to us, so he asked the store manager for the Best Buy Main Office, we were transferred so many times, anyway 1.5 hours later, my brother talked to the President of Best Buy, understood what happened, and said sorry for the waste of time, they said it wont happen again, and the best part, we got the Game for FREE!!!

  81. @thekow: You are wrong. There is no law in any US State making buying M-rated video games to kids under 17. The different retailers, however, enforce their own VOLUNTARY policies adopted from ESRB’s recommended policies that won’t allow their sales clerks to sell those games to minors.

    Those same voluntary policy specifically allows adults, guardian or not, to buy the same game to a minor.

    However, since in this case the adult was buying the game for himself, I really fail to see what your point is. Could you try maybe explaining it once more, this time adjusting it to fit the reality of video game ratings regulations?

    If I was in the same situation I’d raise my voice significantly and ask the clerk: “How long have you been working at BestBuy or retail in general, because you have absolutely no clue whatsoever about BestBuy store policies or customer service for that matter.” Then very loudly demand to speak to a manager, and educate them both on ESRB ratings and how they apply in a retail environment.

  82. North of 49 says:

    Time for me to write Bestbuy.ca in order to tell them about an incident that happened to my friend who ended up with a bruise.

  83. wessev says:

    If you read The Consumerist enough to know to send them a complaint about Best Buy, then you should be informed enough by now to not shop there in the first place.

    Exactly how many horror stories does it take before we all learn you just don’t give these places your business and you’ll avoid their overzealous minimum-wage goon squads?

  84. dodonnell says:

    @GothamGal: And, of course, as someone with insider knowledge of why the red-headed cashier was overweight, you’re fully-qualified to make a snide comment about why she is that way.

  85. The_Truth says:

    I like the idea of using the Consumerist pocket manual for just such an occasion, but you know what would be great.

    A link on the front page to a static list of all the executive and customer phone numbers.

    That way if I was ever in that situation I wouldn’t need to spend 20mins on my phone trawling through the site trying to find BB’s executive number.

    But as this is at the bottom of the post pile i doupt it will happen. Im sad now :-(

  86. Szin says:

    Personally, I’m surprised you found the game in the ALWAYS organized Game section that I usually find in Best Buy.

  87. The Count of Monte Fisto says:

    I love how the whole point of the post (and most of the comments) is that Best Buy is this horrible place than no one should ever enter … and then in the penultimate paragraph he says he had a “wonderful experience” at a different Best Buy? Is it possible – wild guess! – that maybe just the few people he dealt with at the first place are at fault, and not Best Buy as a whole?

  88. BloodStainedVendetta says:

    Huh? An adult is allowed to buy an M-rated game for a minor. They just need the permission of an adult. This is the most ridiculous story I’ve heard and that fat red head needs to get out of her trailer more often.

  89. DCPlayaPride says:

    O.K. That is freaking insane. That whole store must have been filled with imbeciles. First of all, IT IS LEGAL FOR AN ADULT TO BUY A GAME FOR A MINOR. MINORS CANNOT BUY GAMES.

    Second of all, I would not have budged. I would not have moved from that spot in line, and I would have waited until they called the cops. I would tell the cop my story until he bursts out in laughter, and forces Best Buy to sell you the game. Never give idiots the last laugh.

    Thirdly, why the hell would they not let you buy the game after you left your brother in the car. That boggles my mind. I would definitely write a formal complaint(probably will be shredded)but it’s worth it. That cashier and manager must be fired. Its just absolute stupidity, and ignorence.

  90. KarmaChameleon says:

    @kingme: The one and only time I’ve ever been carded was at the Gamestop at Herald Square in NY several years ago, when carding for games first became in vogue. I only shop there when they have those BOGO free deals on used games. I got Skies of Arcadia for GC and Castlevania: Lament of Innocence, for which I got carded. The funny part of the story is Castlevania, the M rated game, was the free one. The cashier and I had a good laugh about that (I was 22 at the time, I think).

    Anyway, this guy sounds like as big a douche as the BB employees. Bringing the cashier’s age and weight into it (because he knows so much at the wizened age of 21)? Lose. Getting back into the same line? Fail. Doing business with the store after all that, even with gift cards? Epic fail.

    I’d have walked out after the initial brouhaha, sold the cards on eBay or Craigslist, and spent the cash at a place that doesn’t blow goats.

  91. Thanatos- says:

    Don’t you just love Best Buy! *sarcasm*
    This is ridiculous i wouldve defended my point that i was not infact doing anything illegal and besides i was buying the game for myself and walked out. Its thinks like this that stop me from shopping at BB and Gamestop and why i tell everyone i know to avoid them also.

  92. twesterm says:

    What are you people stupid?

    Best Buy had every right to do what the did and there really isn’t much you can do about that. Pretty close to alcohol, you cannot buy an M rated game when accompanied by a minor unless you are their legal guardian. That’s just how it is.

    The cashier probably did overreact a little by yelling it out but she’s just doing her job. Good for her.

  93. Nick says:

    I live in the UK and work for our biggest supermarket chain Tesco. Part of my job is overseeing members of checkout staff with alcohol or gaming sale issues regarding age certificates. All of our ratings are legally binding and in line with corporate policy.

    I totally agree that in this case someone has falsely assumed that you were buying for a minor, and it is a contentious issue no doubt. The staff at the store were clearly dealing very badly with you and should have explained their store policy with more care and not in front of other customers, that was unprofessional.

    The fact is that you have to understand from a shop workers point of view that it would have looked like your brother was handing you payment for a game…. if you had the gift cards on your person and not involved your younger brother in the purcahse they may not have stopped you from your purchase, but you must see how from their perspective it looked suspicious even if you were completely innocent.

    If you faced the prospect of being fired for selling anything M rated or in out case “18 or over” rated you would certainly be cautious also. I think that the cashier was rude and obnoxious and handled the situation very badly, and the manager also seemed to handle it very badly.

    In hindsight you should have asked to take it to store manager level and gotten them to explain their policy to you calmly and rationally. This didnt happen, and fair enough you got angry.

    But this is the way its getting, not just in the US but in the UK too. People are paranoid of being sued, fired, or blown to pieces by a suicide bomber. It’s crap but its the way of the world right now, going all 1984 on us.

    I’m not saying that its right, in fact i only EVER ID people who behave suspiciously or nervously and a re clearly buying for a minor, or have been seen taking money from a minor to buy M rated material or alcohol. What happened in that shop was crap, but you either buy games alone and accept that this is how it is, or you buy your games online…. or become an activist and try get this world changed!

    Good luck in your future, and for god sake get Bush out before his finger slips….

  94. AD8BC says:

    Please.

    Stop bitching about the plastic bags.

    If you get a plastic bag, graciously say “thank you” and bring it back the next time to use, if you really feel that it will make a difference.

  95. Murdermonkey says:

    Everyone misses that they are a “gift” card and the little brother could have been giving said gift.
    Thats some serious iron clad logic right there.

  96. Sailorcancer says:

    Both Best Buys did something wrong.

    Being card IS REQUIRED by law. Also they had no proff besides your brother had the cards in his pocket that it wasn’t yours. This is why I keep the original case the card comes in, as it has my name. Give them ID were good to go.

    Also I’m sorry, but who would give there card to someone else? I wouldn’t even give my card to my own Dad. That’s why we have pocket or a wallet.

  97. DrGirlfriend says:

    The person who calls other people stupid is always right. Because they wouldn’t call other people stupid and be wrong, now would they?

  98. Szin says:

    @twesterm: So, the other Best Buy, which sold him the game without ANY complications was in the wrong? Really? Man, it’s a good thing a parent with a 4 year old toddler didn’t buy Assassin’s Creed as well, or that cashier might have called the police.

  99. North of 49 says:

    gah. Bestbuy.ca’s complaint form only allows for 450 characters. How are you supposed to let them know what happened with so few?

  100. twesterm says:

    @Szin:
    Technically, yes they were in the wrong for selling it to him if the person buying it had their 15 year old brother with them. Of course it’s up to the discression of the cashier, but once again, good for them for doing their job.

    As for your idiotic toddler comment, read my original comment again.

  101. Tracy Ham and Eggs says:

    Sounds like they used the word “illegal” wrongly, like most of you do. In reality the OP has no right to purchase the item, the company can choose not to sell it to him if they have a policy saying so. Sounds like this is a kid himself who was looking for a fight once they declined the purchase. Name calling is never called for, and those of you who think the cashiers size somehow impact how she is as a human being need to learn some respect for others.

  102. Akin says:

    LaGrange? Don’t you mean Rt. 45? Or perhaps you mean “Mannheim”. =P
    (lol for roads having multiple confusing names)

    Anyways, I don’t go to Best Buy sense they harass people by asking them for ID cards when buying games, myself included. I don’t get carded for buying alcohol.

  103. Murdermonkey says:

    @twesterm:
    Youve probably already been blasted for this but.
    THERE IS NO LAW nor a chainwide policy about acompanying minors. Now you may return to watching fox news and giving G.W. a reach-a-round.
    That is all.

  104. Szin says:

    @twesterm: As oppose to the “What are you people stupid?” comment that was just so mature, right?

  105. mgyqmb says:

    Those gift cards are only good on toys. Video games are not toys.

  106. bertfallen says:

    @twesterm: Thas absurd. Since when should people be restricted form something just because they may have someone with them thats younger then them?

    Best Buy was in the wrong. Not this dude.

  107. Cell9song says:

    To those crying about his weight comment, the bitch embarrassed him in front of a store full of people questioning his honesty when there were absolutely no reason for her to do so. The weight comment concerns you more?

    god, what a bunch of politically correct, whining infants this generation is fostering.

  108. bohemian says:

    Instead of ranting about the weight of the crabby control freak checker, take a picture of her with your camera phone so you can make her famous put getting her picture on Consumerist. Not sure if they would actually post it or not, unsure of any real legal issues with that.

    I think if anyone gave me any BB gift cards they would either be used online or sold and use the money anywhere else.

    Ad for the sack nazis, there is a simple cure. Accept the mandatory sack. Take three steps away from the counter. Pull your merchandise and receipt out of said bag, keeping the receipt with the merchandise. Toss bag over your shoulder as you continue walking towards the exit. Let the sack nazis figure out what to do with it.
    Leave the store. Sending a civil email to the store manager later asking them to rethink their sack policy might be an idea.

  109. snoop-blog says:

    @Tracy Ham and Eggs: you kill me! how’s the weather up their? you know, on your high horse?

  110. gingerCE says:

    I think this was ridiculous considering the buyer was 21 but something like this happened to me. Way back in high school I worked at a video store and occasionally we carried NC-17 movies. A man in his 30s came into the store with a 10 year old and picked out a NC-17 movie. I rented to the man (who paid) and didn’t think much of it until my manager got a call from the mother of the ten year old upset because she caught her son (with the man in his 30s who was her boyfriend) watching the NC-17 movie. She claimed I rented to the kid–guess the man in his 30s was trying to claim I rented to the kid alone behind his back–please–I’m not an imbecile. My manager believed me though–and later the woman (who came to the store) had calmed down and said that the boyfriend should not have picked such a graphic movie–in the end it was fine, but an irate parent could’ve cost me my job so I kinda understand why the best buy clerk was acting up. However I think she could’ve just asked to be sure and then made the purchase.

  111. friscom99 says:

    wow

  112. Keepin It Hamsta says:

    Just for the record, I skimmed over the legislation from Illinois which made game sales to minors illegal. From what I understand, it’s illegal for them to sell the game directly to a minor. Even if you were buying it for him, this would not make it an “illegal” purchase. It’s legal as long as an adult is purchasing it. Where I live, it’s policy pretty much everywhere to not sell M games to minors, but it’s not illegal. They were stretching the legality a bit too far in this case in my opinion.

  113. Ethereal006 says:

    @semanticantics: Well this is a total load of bull if I have ever heard it. When I go shopping for anything age restricted I make it a point to avoid any such conflicts with store people by making sure that there is no reason for a conflict to arise. This is not something I enjoy doing but as far as I can tell store clerks are idiots. Things need to change

  114. boblc123 says:

    Where I live, a minor CANNOT go into a rated R movie without being signed in by a parent or guardian. And I used to work for Circuit City, and it was made very very clear to us that we were not to EVER sell a M rated game to anyone under 17. I googled the law and it is in fact illegal to sell M rated games to minors in the State of West Virginia. So it may very well be illegal in IL as well.

  115. rainking187 says:

    @B: Yeah….no.

    @AngrySicilian: Heh, nice.

    @PropCulture: But did you pay?

    Maybe someone can explain this to me as I’m a bit confused. THE ESRB ratings have no legal power, right? So how the hell did the ESRB become so powerful? AO games don’t get made because they know no stores would carry them, and stores force their employees to card for videogames. The first store to step up and tell the ESRB to suck it gets my business for life. Although I will say that I’ve purchased games for years, and I didn’t start to get carded until after I turned 18, so make of it what you will. This was a pretty ridiculous situation though. The only bad experience I can think of that I’ve had at Best Buy was when I preordered Guitar Hero III to get the free strap thing and the employee basically refused to believe that I got it for preordering and wouldn’t give it to me until another employee set them straight.

  116. snoop-blog says:

    man i’m so fired up right now *coffee* i WISH that was me trying to buy that game. THEY WOULD HAVE HELL TO PAY!!!!!!

  117. Cell9song says:

    My own opinion is that the fat, red-headed, genetically inferior slob was overcompensating for her lack of control in regards to her eating. Fat, red and stupid is no way to go through life.

    plus, being a chick …..well, you know how that goes…..right guys?

  118. spryte says:

    @semanticantics: “Why did you get back into the same persons line?”

    At the BB near me and the only other one I’ve been to, there’s one main line and you go to whichever register opens up first when you’re at the front of the line.

    Anyway, just another example of a store being silly and a customer wasting time arguing. I would’ve argued a bit too, and then would have just said screw it and gone somewhere else. Not worth the time, IMO.

  119. Akin says:

    @BTownDesignGuy:
    Said law was struck down long ago. Besides, Best Buy is the only store where I’ve been carded for buying a M rated game… outlandish.

  120. Szin says:

    @gingerCE: The 10 year old wasn’t named Butters, was he?

    From my own experience in the video renting arts, I can see where you’re coming from. Man, the interesting phone calls or conversations you get from people are mind boggling, and often quite hilarious.

  121. GothamGal says:

    @dodonnell:

    You’re absolutely right. I apologize. It definitely could have been Ding Dongs or Ho Hos. I have no idea why she was overweight. It could have been any number of over-eating/lack of exercise issues.

  122. youbastid says:

    @simplehuman: Depends on the state. Here in California, that would be A-OK. But in Massachusetts, everyone involved would have to be 21, and they wouldn’t sell to him.

  123. Khabi says:

    @Sailorcancer:
    No, its not required by law to show an ID for purchasing video games. At the very best its a store policy. The VIDEO GAME ratings are completely voluntary, you can choose not to have a game rated by the ESRB same goes for movies as well. However refusing having the ESRB rate your game means that the console manufatures will refuse to allow you to publish the game for their system (same goes if your game rates as AO). There is absolutely NO LAW that says you have to be rated or even have to be a certain age to buy a game (again, same with movies).

    If you believe that there is such a law, provide proof :)

  124. Kohath says:

    The complaints always sound suspiciously similar. The tone is always the same. It’s like reading the old Penthouse Forum letters.

    If these are real, why do all of you people make yourselves victims of retail stores? Is it to get something for free? I don’t get it.

    Don’t be a victim of retail stores. The transactions at retail stores are two-way transactions. You’re not subservient to these stores, nor are they subservient to you. You are equals.

    Oh, and your time spent driving is not interesting to anyone. Please stop whining about it.

  125. omyard says:

    As a semi-recently former BBY employee I can say the plastic bags are not store policy. One of the last things I did with the company was watch a company produced video saying to try and not use bags because it saves the company money and is good for the environment.

  126. destinrl says:

    Hey, I just wanted to let you know that I actually took a few minutes and called the Best Buy number
    1-800-BEST-BUY
    and talked to someone about this situation. It’s pretty rare that I read a story that makes me angry, but this one managed to do so. Hopefully you’ll be contacted soon, or they’ll at least get rid of the employee(s) in question. This whole situation is ridiculous.

  127. Szin says:

    I’ve never heard of such a policy either. All I was ever asked to do was show my receipt on the way out.

  128. The Stork says:

    @boblc123: As already posted, it is *not* illegal in Illinois. The law was struck down as unconstitutional.

  129. Cell9song says:

    @omyard:

    Why would he even argue over it? I would simply walk out with it in hand. What are they going to do….call the cops?

  130. darkclawsofchaos says:

    here are some fun facts, at Target this week, the game is $38 for both platforms, also, I believe Jack Thompson, anti’videogame activist, shops at that Best Buy there, he sent his son to buy M rated games and is constantly condemning that Best Buy in Orlando Park for it, one would think after enough harrassment, only things like this will ensue

  131. LowerHouseMember says:

    @Szin: Those bastards!!!

  132. warf0x0r says:

    @DCPlayaPride: Actually at that point the manager of a store can just say they patron is trespassing and they refuse to serve him and the police will escort you from the property without you purchase. Plenty of examples of this at http://www.bestbuysux.org

  133. BugMeNot2 says:

    this has never happened to me ever.

    my Best Buy store would let me walk out of the store with out a plastic bag.

    you just got a bitch, and her wannabe store manager boyfriend.

  134. hn333 says:

    Burn the store down !

  135. ShtickYoMaMa says:

    You should have just come out to the one in La Grange, IL they aren’t as bad. They are actually pretty decent people.

  136. iamlost26 says:

    I tried buying a 6-pack at a CVS with my girlfriend once. I was 21, she was 20. I got the the register (I had other items, mind you), and was quickly carded. After showing the woman my ID, she said, “Where’s hers?”. I replied that she wasn’t 21, and she wasn’t going to be drinking any. She said it was “store policy” not to sell it to me. I said okay, let them take it away, and bought the rest of my items.

    Thinking back on it, I could have gone crazy on that lady. I could have asked if my gf left, would she let me buy it. Or if I walked back in by myself, could I buy it? Along with, if a mom came in with a 5 yr old, would she be allowed to buy it?

    Also, I want to hear this “Store Policy” she spoke of.

    Anyway, I ended up going to Vons. They’ve never carded my gf for any purchases I’ve made with her.

  137. bostonmike says:

    From an economic point of view, Best Buy’s actions are perfectly sensible and completely sleazy. Best Buy wants money. So if you want to give them money, they have an incentive to take your money. But with gift cards, Best Buy already has your money. They gain nothing by giving you something for your gift card. It’s better for them to refuse to take your gift card, because then they can sell the item to someone else for money.

  138. Silverhammer35 says:

    Now here is the thing you must understand, it is company policy for employees to card for M rated games. If you do not have a ID then you can’t buy the game that is that there is nothing that can be done. I work at Best Buy in Washington State and it is actually the law to have ID if planning to buy a M rated game, there are no exceptions, even if you are 40 yrs. and you don’t have your ID you can’t buy the game. But I do agree with most of your argument about not being able to purchase the game that is bullshit those guys did not know what the hell they were talking about. Second the bag thing, that is definately not nessessary, I hate it when people need to have a bag for something that they obviously do not need one for.

  139. mugs79 says:

    After working for a gamestop for a time, I can tell you that it REALLY IS THAT BIG OF A DEAL if you sell an M rated game to someone under 17. The penalties for doing so started at getting fired, and went as high as pretty massive legal fees. We were even told that if a parent were buying a game for their child, it HAD to be the parent that physically handed us the money and NOT the child.

    The best buy that sold it to him was very much in the wrong. Would you be surprised if a liquor store hadn’t sold him a case of beer with his 15 year old brother in tow? The penalties are very nearly as severe for video games.

  140. HOP says:

    BEST BUY SUCKETH

  141. Evil_Snow_Man says:

    On one visit to a local grocery store with my mother when I was younger I pushed the grocery cart around for her, as I have done everytime we went into the grocery store (same store) over the course of 7 years we lived in that neighborhood. In every grocery store I would always push her cart. Well anyways, on this particular visit she picked out a 6 pack of beer for cooking brats (beer brat…. mmmmm). So when we got to the register I started moving all of the items from the shopping cart onto the conveyer belt. The cashier than refused to let my mother purchase the beer because a minor touched it… So here a fully grown 48 year old adult could not purchase a 6 pack of beer because her 16 year old son had moved it from the grocery cart to the counter for her.

  142. StevieD says:

    Since I am just about old enough to be the OP’s Grandfather, my perspective is quite different than others.

    I still get carded for buying R rated movies.

    Oh nice, makes me feel good.

    BTW, if the clerk doesn’t card me, the clerk is up the proverbial creek….. Can’t say “you look old enough” as that is an insulting question and could be considered discrimatory. Can’t say “I don’t card anybody” because that will get the clerk fired.

    Today I don’t mind getting carded. Back in the 70′s when I was buying a specific adult educational material with bunny ears I absolutely hated being carded.

  143. chenry says:

    That is beyond ridiculous, I can’t believe how Best Buy treats their customers. I’m not even sure why I keep going there, but I’ve never had a problem. As for that mandatory plastic bag thing, that’s a crock. I don’t think I’ve taken a bag from Best Buy in years.

  144. Dr Mario says:

    Honestly, I work at Best Buy (in slightly upstate New York). I NEVER heard of a “bag policy”. Some people are just morons. Like any retail store it is all about the people working there. You unfortunately went to a store with a bunch of idiots.

  145. louiedog says:

    I was at Wal-Mart once with 3 friends. Unfortunately it was the only place at midnight we could easily get beer. Two of us were making purchases and we split up into two lines because only a couple of registers were open and there were a lot of customers for midnight. We were talking back and forth between the lines and the cashier could see that we were together. When it came time to get carded (we were all 22-23 at the time) we handed them over. Then, unbelievably, cashier from line 1 demanded to see IDs from my friends in line 2, and cashier from line 2 demanded to see the IDs from the two of us in line 1. So the four of us had had to show ID in two different lines, even though only two of us were in each line and had already been carded.

    Of course this was for alcohol, which is actually illegal to sell to minors. Video games are not, I would not go to a store that did this. If they’re so inept they can’t properly handle a sale, what happens if you need to return something defective?

  146. 0starter0 says:

    @Buran: Yes, giving an accurate description of people is judging, so please refer to everyone as person #1,2,3,4,5…

  147. Dr Mario says:

    Oops.. Didn’t mean to sumbit.

    Anyway, my other point is this; They were absolutely right about IDing you. I used to work for Gamestop and I knew a bunch of people that got fired because secret shoppers were not IDed. I mean like store managers being fired on the spot for not IDing someone. As far as rejecting your ID because of suspicion is where it gets a little iffy on their part. They had no right, IMO, to say that wasn’t your brother.

  148. altgod says:

    That was way too timid man. You should have just threatened legal action and asked for their names. That would have shut them up in a heartbeat.

  149. KarmaChameleon says:

    @Sailorcancer: In the state of IL? Because, AFAIK, there aren’t any states that mandate carding for M-rated games, though I could be wrong. It’s a voluntary rating system with voluntary enforcement.

    Corporate policy != the law, something a lot of people (and stores) seem to not get.

  150. jwissick says:

    Some one gave you Best Buy gift cards? Why do they hate you so much?

  151. Rapter09 says:

    I’m sorry guys but i’m really disgusted with a few of you. In fact, i’m rather surprised that anyone of the dispostition to read Consumerist would want Best Buy deciding what YOU as a consumer can and cannot buy, regardless of who is with you.
    What if a gaming mother goes shopping with her kids for her self and picks up a game?

    Best Buy and the government have ABSOLUTELY NO RIGHT WHATSOEVER to tell me what I can and can’t buy for myself, my kids, my family, my friends and I take extreme offense to any company who thinks they can be my mom, or to any person who think its the government and corporations job to babysit you and raise your kids for you.

    If your kid buys a violent game you don’t want them to play take it away from them. Interact with your children. RAISE YOUR OWN KIDS, and if you can’t bear the burden of the responsibility that it requires to father and nurture children… well, I don’t know what to end that with.

    In my eyes this is an absolutely unacceptable business practice, and this clerk would have gotten a polite piece of my mind, because minor or not i’m walking out of the store with the item I want to buy or you will never see my business again.

  152. Khabi says:

    @Silverhammer35:
    I’m assuming you’re talking about that 2003 law, it was struck down a long time ago: [arstechnica.com]

  153. dvsman says:

    When in doubt – write down employee ID names and numbers and tell them you are going straight to corporate with that info and see what their “minimum wage monkey asses” do after that.

    I’ll give credit for good service when it’s due but 99.9% of the time I buy at BB and most other establishments I find and take care of my purchases myself with the exception of checkout. Hell if they had self-checkout I would do that too.

    Hell if I’m going to take crap from some kid who’s still putting clearasil on his face at night :-P

  154. bluecashier says:

    I’ve heard that Best Buy cashiers are psychic and can read your intentions without your even thinking about them. Anyhow, when I have a retail issue, I email a complaint to every consumer agency I can get an email address for, all the way up to the US Atty General. It works..

  155. DCPlayaPride says:

    Ok. No matter what they should have sold the guy the game after his brother went into the car. I mean that is just not selling him the game. That’s just stupid. No excuse.

  156. gingerCE says:

    @Rapter09: Look, I rented an NC-17 movie to a man who had a ten year old kid with him (he was the mother’s boyfriend- but I didn’t know that). The mother was the one upset that I had done this because as she pointed out, he wasn’t the boy’s father, but her boyfriend and did not have the authority to allow her son to see a NC-17 movie.

    I’m not saying the clerk should’ve acted the way she did. But what would it have hurt for to just ask to be sure that the purchase was for him and not his brother. I believe that should’ve been it. But let’s say he was buying it for his brother–should it matter? No. Can the boys mother get on the phone and scream at the manager–heck yes. It happens. Part of the problem stems from parents who do blame the store and clerks for things that get into their kids hands.

    It is responsible for the store to just ask to be sure the item was for the purchaser and not his brother. After the purchaser replied yes, that’s where it should’ve ended.

  157. BugMeNot2 says:

    First Things First!

    It’s a free country so a store can do what ever it wants to who ever it wants at any time. Ya if your black and well they don’t like the way you look they can say hey get the fuck out and you can’t do a single thing. Ya pretty stupid but who cares.

    It would be better if the basterds at BEST BUY weren’t monopolizing things like game stores and reviews. Cause you could just go to another store and buy it somewhere else but of the last Franchising world 15 years. If you don’t have a brand name you don’t exist for long so mom and pop shops are done and you have to drive an hour out of your way to get what ever you want because some douche bag thought they were holding up the law. Hell that bitch probably let tons of kids who would sleep with her buy games underage. But no she just felt she should do something noble so she could go to bed at night and think she did the right thing.

    Being publicaly humiliated I would go to court for Slander. They were slandering your identity to everyone in the store about who you were. You have to stop these companies from hiring retarded representatives puting in the store then making an ass out of your company and making a lawsuit. 1 Little girl in Best Buy just ruined oh I don’t know 300 customers. They will never go there agian because of this incident. I would rather fly to china and buy it off the black market then deal with best buy any day.

    I would refuse to buy at this store I would urge a boycott completely nobody should have this much control of games we enjoy. I would definatly like to pull the last piece in the console gaming market to see it tumble so we can get some new freaking games and new ideas out there. Wii of course would survive it’s already inovative :P

    Remember they can be like I want to see you ID and ask is this for your little brother. ANd if you say NO they have to accept that as the truth or they can be complete Pricks which they were. Hope you all enjoy your corprate run asshole businesses.

  158. loggy24 says:

    There’s a few things that don’t make any sense. All of the store’s employees must have been INCREDIBLY stupid. Best Buy’s policy is actually to offer the plastic bag every time, not automatically give it out. This saves a lot of money.

    A minor purchasing an M rated game is also far from illegal. It’s against company policy, sure, but illegal, no. This is a cause that many gamers fight for, to ensure that the act of a minor purchasing an M rated game never becomes illegal.

  159. Buran says:

    @GothamGal: Are you her doctor? No? STFU.

  160. Android8675 says:

    As Geek Squad guy, I am quite ashamed at the moment. I’m sorry you couldn’t take your business elsewhere, gift cards kind of lock you into that retailer, but fortunatly you were able to drive to another store and get proper service.

    I find it funny that they thought making a purchase was somehow illegal. In theory your brother could purchase the game, and “legally” there’s not a damn thing we can do about it if it comes to that. I can’t loose it in front of rude employees, I get too embarassed, I would of fled the scene and come back at another time. If you’re one who likes to make a scene, see if the employee will grab you physically and cry “Assault!”, fall down on the floor and go into a siezure or something. AlkaSeltzer helps here.

    (No I don’t condone doing it, but it would be funny)

    Wow.

  161. Buran says:

    @Coder4Life: The place was probably run by idiot frat boys from ISU. (yeah, I spent some time in Ames once).

  162. warf0x0r says:

    Ah so I finally found this, I remember seeing it before. Best Buy basically says that without your parent with you, so I guess a brother doesn’t work. They wont sell you an M rated game.

    Here’s a video of their President saying that:

    [images.bestbuy.com]

    So just go to target or gamestop.

  163. rdldr1 says:

    You should have done the right thing by switching the Assassins Creed disk with one from another game box.

  164. laurao16 says:

    I had a similar thing happen to me when shopping at a BevMo. I ran into a friend at the store (she is 22, I’m 23) and we got in line at the register next to each other. The cashier asked if we were together, and my friend said we were not. Then the woman accused my friend of buying me alcohol illegally. I am older than my friend! And we had driven to the store and entered it separately. She reluctantly sold my friend alcohol after I showed her my ID, but my friend was pissed that I needed to be of age for her to purchase anything. (We were both club members there too.) Stores need to realize these policies are offensive, and they need to stop treating their customers like criminals.

  165. OMG!Nirian says:

    LOL that is kind of ironic considering about 6 months ago i purchased my xbox360 with TWO rate M games at BestBuy and i am only 15 they asked if my parent was there and he (my grandpa who isn’t even my legal guardian) wasn’t he was out in the car but the clerk said and i quote “fuck it here you go” i snickered and purchased the games and console and went home a happy customer.

  166. Buran says:

    @GothamGal: Or a lot of other medical problems. you do realize that there are medicines that have weight gain as a side effect?

    But no, you’re judgmental enough to assume that there’s only one root cause of having weight problems. I know people who have weight problems through no fault of their own, and their lives are hard enough without judgmental fuckheads like you coming along and judging them about something that is not their fault. So fuck you and your high horse you rode in on.

    (Yes, people like you who are bigoted judgmental jerks piss me off. Why is it still OK to make fun of people who don’t look model-skinny?)

  167. Buran says:

    @benjimandodd: Uh, we’re making fun of him for being a bigoted judgmental asshole because he’s a bigoted judgmental asshole. Neither you or any of the other people supporting this ridiculous BS have satisfactorily explained how the appearance of the cashier factored into this story at all.

  168. ohayou_kun says:

    dude i would have pulled a hissy fit. Yell and demand to see the boss, and write a long and angry letter. Or leave the stor ranting and raving, leave no innocent unscathed.

  169. Justcrim says:

    The author of this story is 100% correct. I work at the front of the Best Buy store (Yellow Shirt), and I see shit like this happen all the time. Seriously, Best Buy puts some of the stupidest people in charge…

    Anyway, we had someone not want to take a TV because a small blemish in the box. Not too big of a deal IMO, but she wasnt having it. Well, the lead and manager she talked to said she would be charged for us to order her a fresh box in which there is no guarantee of it coming cleanly to the store. She was fine waiting, but not interested in the extra charge. She left the store, and in less then 10 minutes I receive a call asking for the MOD to confirm the story.

    But this store is messed up, and needs to be reported. There is no law in selling minors M rated video games, so nothing there was illegal. Also, it should be fairly obvious if they are brothers. But even if they werent, how do you prove parents buying games for their minor children with no ID?

    But either way. There is a better way to beat this. If he would have ditched his bro in the car, then came back in. He should have went to another cashier. In our store u can buy that game anywhere. Computers, TVs, Customer Service, or even the media employees can ring you up.

    And the whole bag policy I think is just a shrink tactic. Something which is also BS. You can refuse a bag. This store must think if they have a bag, the person isnt stealing. A bad tactic because it just puts trust in people with bags and gives thiefs the opportunity of stuffing stuff in the bag and being waved through the doors.

    Honestly, I hope this guy reports this store. This is something HR needs to look into.

  170. s0m3guy says:

    Your story saddens me. I work for target, as the department manager of the electronics department no less. I have told every single one of my employees that the enforcement of ESRB ratings is left to their own discretion. I have explained my feelings about this to my upper management and they have agreed (logically I argued that we do not enforce the sale of R-rated movies and Parental Advisory CD’s it would hold that the enforcement of M-rated games was the same).

    Dont get me wrong, I understand why the ratings system is in place, but I have seen far too many parents take it far more seriously that it really is; i.e. refusing to purchase a T-rated racing game for an 11 year old because they are not teenagers. I wouldnt sell GTA to a 7 year old, but I have no problem selling Halo to a teenager. And Assassins Creed is hardly the most gore-laden game I’ve ever played and it wouldnt even warrant me carding somebody for.

    There is as of yet no law strictly forbidding the sale of M-rated games to minors and remains solely as a store policy. Stores are not nearly as strict about this policy as some of you might think, and nobody at my store has ever come near being threatened with their job for allowing a minor to purchase an M-rated game. I think this story is absolutely ridiculous, though Im not going to say that the employees responsible should be fired – I just think they need a refresher course on what the difference is between a ludicrous store policy and an actual law.

    And im sure some of you actually believe that the ESRB enforcement is a good thing and is “protecting our children” and whatnot, but it serves no purpose. This is because the type of children that are going to grow up to be degenerates are raised by the type of parent that doesnt care what games they play. The parent is the sole judge of what is appropriate for their children, not Best Buy, not Target, not Gamestop, not the ESRB.

  171. mine4321 says:

    Why are you buying ANYTHING from that store? I would have told them “fine, I’ll never visit this store again.” And, then follow through with your threat. It’s that simple. If you stop shopping there, THEY LOSE!

    I haven’t bought anything at a Best Buy in YEARS because of their deceptive business practices. The best way to hurt a business is in their pocketbook.

  172. mgyqmb says:

    @Rapter09: The beginning of your post got me a little heated.

    Yes, in fact, Best Buy can tell you what you can and cannot purchase in their store. They can arbitrarily go through every person in line, and take one item away from them. Of course, they would lose all of their business, but they still are ABLE to do so.

    You came through in the end though. You’re exactly right. You give them a piece of your mind, and you walk out, giving someone who treats you better your hard earned cash.

    Unfortunately in this case, gift cards were involved, which complicates every purchase.

  173. Booji-Boy says:

    It’s a good thing you warned us by throwing in that little bit about her hair color and weight. Thanks to you, we can all live better lives by avoiding those who look different from the rest of us, because obviously it makes all the difference in the world.

  174. Demonbird says:

    That was terrible. Best buy is one of the worst electronics chain stores out there. While I was out in Colorado last summer I went to buy an M rated game at the local Best Buy. I live in California and my only form of ID was my California Driver’s license. When I got to the register I had two items, Gears of War and 300 on DVD. The cashier asked for my ID so I handed her my license. At that point I’m not expecting any shit because I’m 18 years old. I was wrong. she hands me back my license and says she can’t accept it as a valid form of ID because it is not a valid form of ID. I’m kind of confused as to why a government issue ID is invalid when she tells me that an out of state Driver’s license is unverifiable and is unacceptable. I asked for the manager and he told me the same thing. At that point I was really just about laughing at them. The manager called over a security guard to ensure I returned the items where I found them Then to leave the store. I figured I found them right where I put them on the damn counter and just gave him the finger and walked out. I have not and will not set foot in a Best Buy again.

  175. Infil says:

    I’m of the impression that the OP mentioned the cashier’s weight so that, should you ever be in that store, you can identify the cashier and not deal with her (“red-headed” isn’t enough of a qualifier, perhaps). He wasn’t mentioning it so you could stereotype her in some way before the story began.

    You guys need to stop being so fast to jump to conclusions.

    And stories like this make me sick. Another reason to never shop at Best Buy.

  176. Witera33it says:

    I am all for carding those who wish to purchase M rated games. As a person who plays many video games and played M rated games online, I want no children playing these games UNLESS the parent has the wherewithall to supervise. Carding for the game plants the idea of supervision in the minds of parents. Whether or not it’s an actual law is just semantics. The POLICY helps keep the controversy of children playing mature vidoe games in check. Enforcing the policy might actually educate parents and keep children from driving me crazy online.

  177. mammalpants says:

    it sounds like that best buy is making some moral decisions that will eventually get them in trouble. you should go take a picture of yourself outside of an abortion clinic smoking cigarettes with your little brother and the assassins creed box!

  178. AllergicDonkey says:

    This happened to me at Wal-mart…but with a DVD that was rated R.

    I had my two little brothers with my who were 8 and 12.

    I asked the woman at the register, ‘do you honestly think I’m buying this movie for THEM?”(It was a gruesome horror movie.)

    Well I gave up and just left the store.

  179. Trixie says:

    Hmm, I would complain to the district manager and report BOTH the conduct of the red haired employee AND her manager. I wouldn’t take that kind of treatment since you’re clearly of age, and they’re clearly discrimating against you. How dare they assume that the game was for your brother just because he was in the vicinity of you, an adult.

  180. newspapersaredead says:

    Maybe the clerk found it a little hard to believe that a 21 year old would be actually be buying a video game for himself. I mean, 21? Still playing video games? No women to date in the Chicago area these days?

  181. yg17 says:

    @Witera33it: You’re assuming that the parents will monitor the child once they buy the game.

    I worked at Target and we had a policy like that, but we never enforced it unless someone looked extremely young. In my 4 years there, I never carded anyone. If they look old enough, I gave it to them.

    I remember when I took my brother to see Team America (rated R) I was over 17 and he wasn’t, and the cashier at the theater refused to sell us tickets. So I walked over to the self-service ticket kiosk, bought 2 tickets, and we went right in and had no trouble. That kind of crap annoys me….if you’re going to have a policy, either enforce it fully, or better yet, don’t enforce it at all.

    Some stores can be really anal about carding people and they have their priorities in the wrong place. I’ve been 21 since March, and I think since then, I’ve been carded more for things like cough/cold medicine, R movies and M games than I have for alcohol. And I know I’ve bought alcohol a hell of a lot more often.

  182. Kotaku says hi.

    Goddamn this stupid shit never happens here in Australia, although it might have something to do with our gov’ts history of trying to be a nanny state and not having a R (your equivalent of M17+) rating for games. Maybe I ought to petition the new guys for that… but unlikely, given how they’re trying to censor the internet. Yes, the internet. This ain’t gonna go down well.

  183. @newspapersaredead: Let’s hope you’re being sarcastic. You know that the kids who grew up playing video games haven’t stopped and never will.

  184. AllergicDonkey says:

    @Kohath:

    I guess you’ve never had issues at retail stores?

    Clerks can be assholes. Just like normal people can be assholes.

    There is no reason she had to be a bitch. Same goes for the manager.

  185. 3BD says:

    This is a product of the hype and hysteria around games like Mass Effect. Everyone is looking at M rated games like the plague now, so expect more of this crap.

  186. Tragically Hipster was That Girl Hates You says:

    I dunno what I would do in your situation.. I think though that I would of had a mini melt down in some corner then go back to the manager and make sure that I speak to the store manager, not just a department manager. Then tell them that I can buy my sister (who is 16 and I’m 23) a rated R ticket legally and so why can I not buy this. Hell I’d even show them her Permit.

    Oh course my luck would be that they would think it was a fake or that I’m not 23… I’m usually lucky if someone thinks I’m 18.

  187. bravo369 says:

    I was in gamestop with my 13 year old brother and saw the employee refuse to sell a game to a kid because of his age. This was years ago when the ratings first came out. i was appalled. I turned to my bro and said that if he ever wants a game and they refuse to sell it to him, come get me. i think the ratings system is stupid…all for video games. the world is going crazy.

  188. FBH (seems to be banned for that). says:

    Wal-mart once carded a friend and I, both in our early twenties at the time, for Batman (1989) on DVD. My friend didn’t have his ID on him, so it took more than a bit of haggling to buy the damned thing.

    However, not once did I lose my cool and not once did I write a small essay on the ineptitude of the employees that day. In other words: if being fat is indicative of how the cashier approached the situation, I’m sure this article is reflective of the great amount of elegance that the writer exhibited in the situation as well. If handled calmly, politely and with persistence, he could’ve probably have bought Caligula for that kid.

  189. Oldivery says:

    I just called that Best Buy to let them know they where boycotted by my entire family, about 20 people which frequently shopped at this store.

    Some people just like drama and wasting other peoples time. Or how you put being a “bitch” :P

  190. XStylus says:

    There is no mandatory bag policy, nor do I have any clue what the heck “deemed under penalty” means, so they were probably just fucking with you.

    What you encountered was some brat who thought they were doing their good deed for the day, and the “manager” you spoke with was making you jump unnecessary hoops probably because he felt you were an asshole. My boss does it with customers who he feels need to be toned down a peg all the time.

    Your mileage will vary depending on what Best Buy stores you go to, but none of the crap you encountered was a result of any sort of policy.

  191. Tragically Hipster was That Girl Hates You says:

    @bravo369: Ummm… Ok I guess its ok for all ages to see an R or something higher movie.

  192. Demonbird says:

    @3bd:
    No, this is the product of early games like Mortal Kombat, then the games that took it to an extreme like GTA. Mass Effect didn’t really do anything. Ripping out spines and killing cops and hookers did.

  193. AllergicDonkey says:

    @futurebiblehero:

    So he should have kissed their asses?

    They were messing with him…it has happened to me dozens of times.

    Granted…sometimes I didn’t lose my cool.

    But I didn’t ‘haggle’ with them. That’s what they want.

    There are other stores. So they can KISS MY ASS.

  194. bravo369 says:

    @That Girl Hates You: I’m not talking about all ages but cmon…13-16 year old can’t buy a video game? that’s pretty stupid in my book. Same with movies. I saw many R movies before I was technically old enough. Funny how they made me pay Adult price for the movie too yet want to tell me what i can and can’t see like a child. I think any kid with good parents will not be affected by seeing a few curse words and a little blood in video games and movies. I saw all that and i turned out fine.

  195. BobHope says:

    As an employee of Best Buy, I think its okay for me to tell you two things:

    1. There isn’t a mandatory bag policy.
    2. The employees at that store are idiots. Call their district manager and complain about the crappy service, harassment, and embarrassment they put you through as you attempted to purchase your items.

  196. AllergicDonkey says:

    @That Girl Hates You:

    I think it doesn’t bother all kids.

    I’m 19…saw tons of R rated movies when I’m little.

    I’m now a undergraduate at college…not killing anyone, nothing thinking of killing anyone, not raping, stealing, or any other horrible crimes.

    I think it’ll only bother those who have mental illness…

  197. AllergicDonkey says:

    @AllergicDonkey:

    sorry…when I WAS little.

  198. dekushrub150 says:

    Suddenly Gamestop’s “annoying” policy of carding (which Best Buy also has the same policy) seems alot less annoying. As long as you are 17 you can buy the game and it is illegal for them to deny you a sale. I think it would be department of consumer affairs who handles things like this. I work at Gamestop and my manager always tells parents it is against the law for him to sell an M rated game to a minor. It is not. It is against company policy. I am completely for keeping certain games away from kids but when you essentially “ban” them by making it law that is wrong. Essentially most politician are just going after games. When you go to the movies it is not illegal for a minor to see an R-rated movie. It is just against theater policies. If politicians want to go after games then make it fair and go after movies and music too. And how about books too. Oh wait, politicians have no problems with books. It’s because of all the lobbyists from Hollywood that only games are being targeted. So in conclusion I would lodge a complaint. Just don’t bring the cashier’s size into the story. Best Buy will just ignore you.

  199. rjhiggins says:

    @twesterm: You’re calling out everyone else for being stupid, and then you go making up laws that don’t exist. It’s NOT like alcohol — there simply is no law concerning video games.

    Now, if it were a Best Buy policy she should have said that. But she said it was “illegal.” She was wrong, just as you are.

    A suggestion: Refrain from calling people stupid — even when you’re right, but particularly when you’re wrong.

  200. FBH (seems to be banned for that). says:

    @AllergicDonkey: Diplomacy is getting what you want because you have manipulated your way out of the conflict. If you’re smarter than the person you’re dealing with, as the writer claims, then this shouldn’t be a problem. That’s the thing about kissing ass. You don’t do it because you’re lower, you do it because you’re better than embarrassing yourself over something so trivial.

    I’m sure no one else in line felt his indignation, nor cared, they just wanted to buy their overpriced cables and bad movies and get the hell out of there. Of course when retold on the internet, this stuff is high drama.

  201. fixer41 says:

    wow that was the craziest retail stories i have ever heard. I think you kept your temper very well given the situation. I think if i was in that situation i would be very very angry and consult legal advice, as they clearly called you a criminal infront of a crowd of people clearly causing you distress. However it was probably best that you didnt i take things a bit to far most times :). Thankfully there are no best buys in Ireland,but there is enough poor customer service in many stores to give that certain best buy employee a run for her money

  202. AllergicDonkey says:

    @futurebiblehero:

    Sorry. But Diplomacy should be used in more needed situations.

    Why bother with it?

    Go to another store.

    I’m not going to waste my time “manipulating” a douche at a store.

    nothing is picture perfect. Sometimes people make up their minds not to budge and will continue to be a stubborn ass.

    Thretening with “calling corporate” doesn’t always do it either. Yes, you could actually make an issue out of it and make endless amount of phone calls…but againe. The point? To make yourself feel “smarter”?

    Call them an asshole, walk out, go to the next chained best buy.

  203. Alan Thomas says:

    FWIW, there have been a lot of mystery-shopper gigs to try to get minor purchases of “M” games at BB and other locations. This store’s management was probably tipped off. This would also explain the question of “is that really your brother,” since the mystery gigs specifically state that the minor used in the ploys need not be related to you.

  204. AllergicDonkey says:

    @Alan Thomas:

    Do mystery shoppers go to hell and back in order to get the cashier in trouble?

    If so…that’s even worse.

  205. digitalgimpus says:

    This is a situation where you should say outloud you will buy it online at [insert favorite online retailer here], for less… and walk out.

    This consumer was clearly in the wrong. Why would you continue to purchase when someone was being an idiot like this? Just walk away from the register and go elsewhere. You’ll save money, and ensure they don’t get the sale.

    Now they got rewarded with a sale for this stupidity. From managements perspective this employee should be “employee of the week”.

  206. ph15h says:

    I would personally come back and slap that cashier then ask that the manager be removed…. Annoying. Is that how things are in Illinois?

  207. AllergicDonkey says:

    @digitalgimpus:

    Yea. that is what I would have done as well. Though kinda sucks the next best buy is hours away.

    This is why, I believe, online shopping is increasing(this year alone saw a large increase).

  208. OneBadApple says:

    I had a similar situation happen to my boyfriend and I at the Best Buy in Atlanta. We went in to pick up Resistance Fall of Man for PS3 and we BOTH were immediately carded before the sales lady even scanned the item. Here’s the catch, my boyfriend is 26 and I am 24! Ridiculous!

  209. FBH (seems to be banned for that). says:

    @AllergicDonkey: “Call them an asshole, walk out…”.

    Yeah, that works too. Either way, being deeply affected by the ordeal and writing a tome about it on the internet is not making the best of the situation. It just shows that you’re as much of an asshole as the people you were dealing with.

  210. AllergicDonkey says:

    @futurebiblehero:

    Yea I guess so…I think I’d just tell my close friends…though even If I wanted to write about it online(which I wouldn’t…unless it was far worse than this..say they tackled me or arrested me…heh)

  211. banmojo says:

    Seriously, dude, stop f$#@ing shopping at BB, it sucks, they suck, and if you shop there, YOU suck.

  212. VanFinale says:

    That is ridiculous wow this world really is going to hell.

  213. forgottenpassword says:

    I think they just didnt want to accept the gift cards… so they made up a bullshit excuse to deny his purchase. WOuldnt suprise me if this was standard practice.

    I have about $300 in BB gift cards saved up that I am planning on using when I save up a bit more. (note: I got them basically free though a promotion) And I am wondering if I am going to have a problem using them all on one purchase.

    I really am tired of employees who dont know policy & decide to make it up on the spot… “those gift cards are illegal” sounds like absolute bullshit to me! I would have had someone else buy the game with the gift cards , then walk in & accept the video game right in front of the asshole cashier. Then flipped her the bird, smiled & walked out.

    Dont you just love little tin-pot dictator employees.

  214. jbarnosky says:

    When I worked at GameStop, I always operated with the phrase “I’m sorry, but I can’t sell you a Mature rated game,” when the customer was obviously under 17. I asked for IDs, and I had more than one irate mother/grandmother come into the store to chew me out. I simply said, “Ma’am, the reason I denied the sale was because the game he/she wants to buy is rated Mature, which is recommended for gamers 17 and older.” I then grabbed the specific game, if they didn’t bring it to the register, and flipped it over for them. “This game itself contains strong language, strong violence, blood and gore, and drug use. Obviously, I wouldn’t want my little brother playing that. Now, if you would like to buy it for him/her, then I will gladly sell it to you. I will not sell the game straight to him/her, though.”

    You know, after that little talk (which almost always referred to GTA), parents thought twice about letting their kids play it. Grandmas said “You know what, we’ll wait for your mother to say whether you can have this or not.”

    And the best part? I don’t even have a little brother. :)

  215. erica.blog says:

    @fuchikoma: slander is the spoken version, libel is printed :)

    Any clerk who loudly accuses me of something illegal is welcome to call the police while I wait in line. Oh, you didn’t want to actually arrest me? No, I don’t mind, go ahead, call the police, I’ll wait. I’ve got time to make you look like an idiot for wasting their time.

  216. Kloud says:

    @Buran: Chill the fuck out.

  217. Toprem says:

    I would have seriously just walked out with the XBox live thing and the game without paying after having to put up with all that bullshit.

  218. Hand_O_Death says:

    you also might want to keep in mind that you have a gift card. Also considered a voucher equlivalent of currency for that store. So basicall you (or whomever gave you the cards, does not matter) already purchased whatever you are buying and they have already taken the money and are now refusing to give you the property that you chose to take home with sed already paid money. That is called a Larceny. Might sound like a stretch, but it is not. They took your (or who evers) money and are refusing to give you what you want in exchange.

  219. SOhp101 says:

    JUST SAY NO TO BEST BUY!

  220. Toprem says:

    @LowerHouseMember: That’s awesome that he gave it to her for free.

  221. commanderPricklyPear says:

    I can see a lot of this stuff happening. Most of those guys treat the job like it’s high school. They don’t care about customer service. They care about protecting each other in their clique and what they’re going to do later on. And I’m definitely talking about that specific store, although there are other Best Buys just like it. With that store, I’ve known friends who’ve worked there and would jump me to the front of the line whenever I came to buy stuff. They used to hide hot items for themselves so customers couldn’t find them and so they could buy them after their shift.

  222. Blutodtx68 says:

    I used to live less than 3 miles from that best buy and they would always give me a hassle for anything I purchased with and “M” rating on it, I once entered the store with my younger siblings in a similar situation I wanted to check out a copy of GTA III, during the great GTA 3 Scandals and a manager, who happened to be my cashier, instantly told me that I couldn’t purchase the game because I walked in with my younger siblings. Thats when I walked out and went 4 blocks away to circuit city to purchase the exact same thing.

  223. RaepGoblin says:

    I don’t know how i would be able to keep from punching said 18 year old manager in the face. But the first thing I thought to do was call corporate. But knowing my luck they’d be closed.

  224. This has to be one of the most ridiculous stories I’ve read in a long time…

  225. Frostberg says:

    You definently made the cashier sound like a jerk. In any case, there is no plastic bag policy and I hope that employee finds another job if she is as bad as it seems. I like how your other store experience was much better. It is a shame that one employee (a cashier) can ruin the reputation of a whole company

  226. Unknownheadfeelings says:

    Ok, here’s the easiest thing you can do to make your voice heard by Best Buy, even without going to the corporate office. You know the survey at the bottom of the receipt? The one the cashiers are SUPPOSED to tell every customer about? Take the one you bought X-box Live on (from the pain in the ass cashier), go online, and take the survey. One of the last things they ask you is if you have any additional comments, and you can tell your side of the story. The overall score you give the store is tracked, as well as your comments are dumped into a database that every store employee can access. In addition, I believe that someone in charge of customer satisfaction from the district reads these, and directs the store management to address the problem. That’s gonna be your quickest and easiest jumping off point. From there, you can always call 1-888-BestBuy or use Consumerist’s vast knowledge of corporate contact information. Go for all the soft spots and take every step if you really wanna cover your bases.

    As for the game ratings, it’s not illegal to sell them, but people are stupid. I’ve had 5-8 year old kids telling me they love GTA. All I can do is check id if they try to buy it themselves, and warn parents if they are buying it for their kids. I’ve actually showed people the rating system and explained game content to them, and I don’t even work in that department. All I know is that it should never be my responsiblity to protect someone else’s kid. If they don’t watch him and he gets it from someone else, you watch him play the games, and take them if you think he’s too young. As I’ve always said “If you don’t like it, turn it off.”

  227. stevekw says:

    You guys never remember the Best Buy creed…..never ever never ever ever never buy a dam thing from Best Buy. Problem solved/

  228. GertHough says:

    They had no grounds for their display of utterly bad customer service. All it should take is a call to the head office customer relations department to have sorted it out.

    I hate incompetence from companies when it comes to a lack of personnel training and a proper display of a consumer help desk number at a prominent place at their cash registers or at least in the window of their shop.

  229. leerock10 says:

    that’s odd the gamestops in my city let me buy Metal gear solid games (most of them are rated M ) without any problems….guess what ….im only 13!

  230. cranium says:

    that’s my best buy he’s talking about. i’m friends with one of the top dogs there. he’ll get a kick out of this, i think.. i hope.. regardless, im gonna keep an eye out for the redhaired chasier and tell her of her newfound fame

  231. lurch82 says:

    I work the store in question here. First of all I would like say that since i do work for Best Buy that does not mean that I am a Best Buy sympathizer haha. I personally can not stand the place.

    I am perplexed tho. I do not recall any cashier working at our store with that particular description. I do however, want to say that Matt did accurately describe the “manager” The guy who he described is only a Supervisor. I know him, I’ve worked with him for almost a year now. He’s a good kid who was only doing his job. Yes, he could have been more tactful..same with the cashier. Although I do have doubts that the cashier “shouted hat I’m purchasing a video game for a minor in front of everyone in line behind me and her fellow cashiers”. Thats not something I have EVER seen there, and I work as Loss Prevention (and Warehouse), so I have the lovely task of standing up in the front of the store. Although I have seen our cashiers do worse haha. Anyway…it IS against policy to sell certain games to minors…when I got to our other store in Crestwood, I get carded and Im an employee. Why this cashier probably did what she did is because she saw your brother hand you the gift cards. I believe you when you say that they were your cards, but if you went to a store to buy booze and your underage friend decided to pay up on his debt to you while you were in line the cashier would most likely refuse to sell to you. She ran over to tell her supervisor and he was probably making his decision on what she told him. I don’t know, I wasn’t there so i can only assume. I’m not trying to make excuses or defend anyone…im just trying to play a little devils advocate =p

    I can fully understand people’s frustration with Best Buy. I work there. I see it everyday. The one thing I can tell you tho, is that there are a lot of ignorant shoppers out there…if you do decide to buy something from Best Buy such as a computer, camera, tv, appliances…anything major, ask as many questions as you can. There are restocking fees and a whole bunch of mumbo jumbo that people don’t realize. Most of our sales associates are young kids just trying to earn a buck and they get sucked into all the corporate rah-rah bullshit. Ask questions! Sometimes the associates don’t give you all the details that you should know because they are trying to hit their numbers. Its all numbers with that place! Sorry for the long rant. All that I ask is that if you have a bad experience at our store don’t label EVERY employee as being retarded. Some of us do have the IQ of a normal functioning person….some, not all =p.

  232. ungood says:

    1) Why in the world did you still give them business? You should’ve asked for a refund of your gift card – in some states, retailers are required by law to acquiesce, but in my experience it isn’t too hard to procure regardless – especially after you call corporate and explain what went on.

    2) If you don’t want the bag, politely remove your purchase from the bag and walk out the store. What are they going to do, detain you? Grounds for a false arrest suit right there. Same thing goes for receipt checkers. Why should you accept being treated as a criminal?

  233. BBboy says:

    Is it illegal to sell or rent M (Mature) or AO (Adults Only) rated games to children under 17 and 18 years of age respectively?

    ESRB supports retailers’ voluntary policies regarding the sale or rental of M (Mature) and AO (Adults Only) computer and video games in the United States and Canada. More information on federal, state and local regulations in the U.S. is available through the websites of the Entertainment Merchants Association (EMA) and Entertainment Software Association (ESA). But it is not illegal

  234. stranger says:

    The *real* sad thing about this story?

    He actually patronized Best Buy three times after being treated like shit on his first visit.

    Guess he showed them, huh?

  235. Purple Dave says:

    @semanticantics:
    Staple the bag to the box.

    @Ian S.:
    Er, sorta. MPAA ratings are also purely voluntary, as are the Parental Advisory labels on music. Technically, there’s no law involved that prohibits a minor from buying his/her own ticket/CD/game. Just store policy, in which case a half-senile old man in a pink bunny suit could be deemed to suffice as “legal guardian” for all purposes related to buying these things. Now, once you get to stuff like cigarettes and booze, where there _are_ laws involved…not so much.

  236. BrianHonaker says:

    Best Buy is a crap company with inconsistency throughout. Even the employees have problems with the store. I worked at Geek Squad City in Kentucky. Everyone there knew that if you had a problem at one store, just go to the other. There is no consistency in management. Best Buy employees take themselves way too seriously. This is because the company fosters a culture of elitism. They actually reward employees for being assholes to customers. They train the blue-shirts to be dicks. Anyone who has seen 40 year old virgin or the show Chuck, knows that this image of Best Buy has been burned into our culture.

  237. Myotheralt says:

    @stopNgoBeau: R rating means no unaccompanied minors, NC-17 (i have no idea what that stands for) means no minors period.

  238. Myotheralt says:

    @ad8bc: Or, you could say thank you and hand them the bag after you accepted it with your merchandice in it.

  239. martyz says:

    What boggles my mind is that people who read this blog ALSO still shop at Best Buy — it just doesn’t make sense to me. Message to everyone: Stop going to Best Buy. Your life will be better — trust me.

    If you get gift cards for Best Buy, sell them on eBay or swap them on CardAvenue dot com.

  240. Project Thanatos says:

    lol @ Nanny State

  241. pastabatman says:

    @twesterm:

    Stupid?

    1. Store policy or not, how, exactly would one PROVE they are a legal guardian? Huh? yes? I’m bringing proof of identity to frickin best buy as if I’m flying out of the country?

    2. Store policy or not, the store, the manager, and the cashier are not the police. they THINK they can be detectives and guardians of the good, but no. the true power they have is to refuse sale because that are retarded. that’s it.

    3. If i say it’s for me it’s for me. I guess they can choose to ‘not believe me’ but that’s foolish and ends up on consumerist, digg, etc. eventually apologies will be sent out from Best Buy. You’ll see. Why?:

    4. She is a cashier, not the interpreter of what is and isn’t. She get’s ID, she sells the game. She’s not Sherlock fucking Holmes. If an ADULT wants to buy something, has ID, says it’s for him, that should be the end of it. If the store policy says otherwise, that’s just dumb. I guess they can do that, but as above, say hello to digg, and consumerist and then corporate writing letters out.

    Although this is all very minor in the grand scheme of life, stores dictating what they think is “law” is, IMO, very very bad and borders on dangerous.

    We should not accept, and should at every turn protest here and elsewhere, private entities -such as Best Buy – from POLICING. They are not officers of the law. They are not judges. We are, generally speaking, accepting the faux and self proclaimed authority of private companies WAY too much.

    I swear I’m not a lunatic protesting anarchist. I’m just normal but find that private companies are taking way too much liberties BECAUSE we let them do it and then claim: “well, they have the right blah blah.. their store.. blah blah”… yeah I hear you but they would stop on a dime if lots of people refused to accept their horseshit.

  242. Saphyre1960 says:

    You need to call corporate. Give them the first class bitch fest ad you will get more than gas money back.
    Case in point, I recently ordered a Christmas gift for my MIL online at a pretty popular candle store.
    When she didn’t get the gift, I called them and they said due to a technical difficulty, they were not able to send her Christmas candles until February! I asked WTF she would want with Christmas scented candles in Feb?
    I got the run around and then I called corporate. It took 5 calls to get to the assistant to the CEO and he told me how sorry he was and it was a technical glitch, yes, but I should have gotten better treatment from the customer service people. No crap, huh!?
    He hated to lose me as a customer and blah, blah, blah.
    Not only did I get my money back 2 days later, I got a $50 gift card sent by priority mail!
    I know it is normal to just lie down and say, “Well, these things happen, what can I do about it.” there is a point where you must speak up for yourself and say I want justice! I did nothing wrong!!!!!
    One thing I would want is the customer service people to learn what the term CUSTOMER SERVICE means.
    Hey, send me the info on your purchase, receipt numbers and stuff, I would love to take on Best Buy!
    This is the company that won’t let you take back a DVD that is faulty for your money back, they give you store credit cause you opened it! How was I to KNOW it was faulty if I didn’t open it?!
    Yes, that little matter got reported to corporate, I got my $60 back and got to keep my in store credit too! It took me a long time to walk back in that store to buy anything.
    I wish you luck fellow consumer!
    And yes, the plastic bags have got to go! Recycled paper bags are much better OR cloth shopping bags. I take mine every where.

  243. Dibbler says:

    @semanticantics: Somebody already did that at my store. I can never find anything and we have probably the smallest Best Buy in the country.

  244. aka Cat says:

    The millisecond I read that your underage brother was holding the gift cards, I knew exactly what had happened. It probably did look exactly like you were buying the game for your little brother.

    Obviously, they figure you were lying. That’s bad customer service.

    AND REMEMBER KIDDIES, IF YOU WANT YOUR OLDER RELATIVE/FRIEND TO BUY THAT ‘MATURE’ GAME FOR YOU, MAKE SURE THEY’RE HOLDING THE GIFT CARD/MONEY WHEN YOU WALK IN THE STORE!

  245. masterr says:

    There are no laws and no goverment regulations on the sale of video games to minors. Just like the MPAA and their rating system the ESRB is nothing more than self regulation, a guideline, and has no legal power.

    You should sue these morons into the ground for slander for saying what you were doing was “illegal” in front of other customers.

  246. frankieman70 says:

    Best Buy dude just went to far and wanted to seem cool with his boss and show that he can spot illegal activity and you were just at the wrong registry at the wrong time, Best Buy guy is very much a douche.

  247. KingDavid73 says:

    Same thing happened to me at a walmart back when I was 16. I think I was buying Unreal Championship back when it was new. I wanted to shoot people online, but the old lady at the checkout wouldn’t sell it to me since I was underage. So my dad tried to buy it for me, but they wouldn’t sell it to him either… so my mom took the game to another isle and bought it. I did get carded at best buy when I bought Assassins creed, and my little sister was there, but they didn’t care.

  248. Blake Ruff says:

    The first thing you should’ve done was punch her in the face. Second, punch the manager in the face. Third, tell them to listen and listen real good. Last, you tell them that they will sell you the game and you will call their corporate offices or some higher office of sorts.

  249. C4WDeX says:

    Interesting how everything that they said was “illegal” or “against company policy” really isn’t.

  250. jatman6 says:

    WOW. I used to work at that best buy up until August of ’07, and hated every minute of it. Im pretty sure i know cashier you’re talking about, too, which makes it even funnier. I worked in the repair departmen, which has decent people in it, but almost everybody else was a jackass and really pissed me off. That place sucks, and it’s funny to see other people condemning it online. I’m glad i left…
    I never remember a ‘plastic bag policy,’ either…

  251. Lydiechan says:

    Argh! That’s the only word for it. How can anyone shop at Best Buy and maintain any shred of self-respect? Granted, this guy had a few gift cards (probably purchased by well-meaning middle-aged relatives who remember when Best Buy first opened and they actually had comparable prices and somewhat decent service–but those days are gone!). But short of free merchandise, anyone who takes a moment to speak with any of the employees, almost none of whom have graduated high school, will quickly discover that they’re full of it.

    One of many of my little stories: I called the store nearest me checking the cost of a particular item (so what if I have fond memories of watching Babylon 5 in high school?) and was very politely told that, yes, they price match. That’s all. Just ‘yes, we match competitor’s prices.’ So I did a little more shopping around online and found no fewer than three stores in a one-mile radius that all were selling what I wanted for $10-20 LESS than Best Buy. They just didn’t have them in stock. (I called each to check.)

    I went to Best Buy and was told I had to have a printed ad stating the price. I asked if it could be an internet price, and they said yes. Because I don’t have a printer, I asked if they could get on one of their many, many computers in evidence at the service center and look it up. No. Apparently the “brand new” policy states they can neither look at competitor’s websites OR CALL the competitor for a price check.

    This is not rocket science people. And it’s worth it to me to order it from Target for $20 less and, even with shipping, save myself $15. (We won’t even talk about in-store pick-up.) If only the rest of the world could figure this out…

  252. TheBoxNinja says:

    man i woulda told the lady fuck you and sued them for slander. Which im pretty sure is possible because they made an open spectacle about how you were doing an illegal act (and therefore soiling your good name) even though really you wernt.

    Best Buy people are supposed to be nice, and I’ve walked out of best buys without a bag for a game (or bigger or smaller things) before.

  253. BugMeNot2 says:

    The girls weight definitely plays into the story. You know why? Big people go on power trips sometimes because they are insecure about themselves. Don’t blame me, it’s the truth. Both the cashier and manager need slapped.

  254. cdf12345 says:

    [gamma.serverbox.net]

    When Illinois’s gov Blagovich signed that law making it illegal to sell M rated games, we knew it was wrong, and unconstitutional. It’s basically censorship. Unless the material is considered “obscene” and really very very few things meet this standard, it’s completely legal to purchase.

    A store has the right of refusal but it’s not illegal. The Illinois law was overturned, and the state had to pay the legal fees of several million dollars to a retailers group who challenged the law.

    I wrote an editorial that run alongside a piece by our Governor in a local paper. I’m so sick of everything being done “for the children” to the exclusion of an adult’s freedom.

    Here is the editorial I wrote:

    As for the issue, I recently wrote a letter to my local paper after a letter to the editor was printed supporting the proposed law.

    My letter is the following:

    After reading the letter by The Illinois Family Institute�s David Smith praising Governor Blagojevich�s proposed legislation to prohibit the distribution, sale, rental and availability of mature video games to children younger than 18, I was disturbed and quite honestly frightened by the reasoning used to support such a law.

    First, I should state that The Illinois Family Institute�s intentions are noble and quite understandable, however, the slippery slope that this legislation would create should have most citizens concerned.

    Most people will agree that media have become more sexual, violent, and profane over time. This could be said for television, movies, music and of course video games. Even the evening news is filled with descriptions of violence. There is no problem with the need to protect children from such potentially harmful media, but this is not the way to do it.

    Are video games violent? Yes, some are, others are wonderful at teaching or providing non-violent entertainment. Are movies violent? Many are, but others are wonderful at telling stories, providing humor, or teaching about history. Is some music explicit? Yes, but there is also a wealth of music that avoids profanity and is just as easy to dance to.

    Movies are rated by the Motion Picture Association of America. Television is rated based on guidelines established by the Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board. Music that may be offensive carries a parental warning sticker, usually placed by the recording label. The Electronic Software Ratings Board was created a decade ago to rate video games with age-based ratings:”E” for everyone, “C” for early childhood, “T” for teens, “M” for mature, “A” for adults only, and “RP” for rating pending. The ratings are displayed on the game box, as well as the content descriptors, to help consumers and parents make appropriate choices.

    Between July 1996 and December 2003 over 5600 movies were rated by the MPAA. 67% of all the movies rated during this time period were classified as �R� (Restricted), meaning typically not suitable for children under 17 years of age, because they contained graphic violence, sexual situations and strong language.

    By contrast, in 2003 only 10% of video games were given a rating of �M� (Mature), these games have content that typically are only suitable for persons ages 17 and older.

    The average price of a video game in 2003 was $30.70; the average price of a DVD movie is $14.72. A movie ticket in 2003 was $6.03.

    An argument can be made that there is a greater need to regulate movies. There are a higher proportion of violent movies and they are cheaper to view or own. That should logically make them easier for children to obtain right?

    However, there are no laws in Illinois penalizing those who allow a child to view a rated R movie, or listen to �explicit� music, or watch television rated �Mature�. There is no reason video games need such legislation now. If a law restricting access to video games based on content is passed, what will the Governor target next? Movies, books, newspapers?

    I have no problem with restricting access to violent material to children, but it’s the parent’s job. Most retailers are already carding children and not selling violent games to them, and I expect no less. Creating legislation to take the decision of when a child is mature enough for certain things and giving that decision to the state legislature is wrong. Deciding maturity based on predetermined ages does a disservice to everyone. I know fourteen year olds who act more mature than some forty year olds I’ve met.

    Parents are, and should always be the ones that control what their children watch, listen to and play. What appears like a decent law at first glance becomes dangerously chilling when given a closer look. As a citizen of Illinois I believe there are many other issues facing our state that Governor Blagojevich and our elected representatives should be spending their time on and resources on. Leave the parenting to the parents.

    Chris Falco

  255. cdf12345 says:

    The Illinois law banning sale of mature games to minors was overturned as unconstitutional, and the state had to pay millions in legal fees to the retailers group that challenged the law.

    As for the issue, I wrote an editoral for my local paper after a letter to the editor was printed supporting the proposed law.

    My letter is the following:

    After reading the letter by The Illinois Family Institute�s David Smith praising Governor Blagojevich�s proposed legislation to prohibit the distribution, sale, rental and availability of mature video games to children younger than 18, I was disturbed and quite honestly frightened by the reasoning used to support such a law.

    First, I should state that The Illinois Family Institute�s intentions are noble and quite understandable, however, the slippery slope that this legislation would create should have most citizens concerned.

    Most people will agree that media have become more sexual, violent, and profane over time. This could be said for television, movies, music and of course video games. Even the evening news is filled with descriptions of violence. There is no problem with the need to protect children from such potentially harmful media, but this is not the way to do it.

    Are video games violent? Yes, some are, others are wonderful at teaching or providing non-violent entertainment. Are movies violent? Many are, but others are wonderful at telling stories, providing humor, or teaching about history. Is some music explicit? Yes, but there is also a wealth of music that avoids profanity and is just as easy to dance to.

    Movies are rated by the Motion Picture Association of America. Television is rated based on guidelines established by the Parental Guidelines Monitoring Board. Music that may be offensive carries a parental warning sticker, usually placed by the recording label. The Electronic Software Ratings Board was created a decade ago to rate video games with age-based ratings:”E” for everyone, “C” for early childhood, “T” for teens, “M” for mature, “A” for adults only, and “RP” for rating pending. The ratings are displayed on the game box, as well as the content descriptors, to help consumers and parents make appropriate choices.

    Between July 1996 and December 2003 over 5600 movies were rated by the MPAA. 67% of all the movies rated during this time period were classified as �R� (Restricted), meaning typically not suitable for children under 17 years of age, because they contained graphic violence, sexual situations and strong language.

    By contrast, in 2003 only 10% of video games were given a rating of �M� (Mature), these games have content that typically are only suitable for persons ages 17 and older.

    The average price of a video game in 2003 was $30.70; the average price of a DVD movie is $14.72. A movie ticket in 2003 was $6.03.

    An argument can be made that there is a greater need to regulate movies. There are a higher proportion of violent movies and they are cheaper to view or own. That should logically make them easier for children to obtain right?

    However, there are no laws in Illinois penalizing those who allow a child to view a rated R movie, or listen to �explicit� music, or watch television rated �Mature�. There is no reason video games need such legislation now. If a law restricting access to video games based on content is passed, what will the Governor target next? Movies, books, newspapers?

    I have no problem with restricting access to violent material to children, but it’s the parent’s job. Most retailers are already carding children and not selling violent games to them, and I expect no less. Creating legislation to take the decision of when a child is mature enough for certain things and giving that decision to the state legislature is wrong. Deciding maturity based on predetermined ages does a disservice to everyone. I know fourteen year olds who act more mature than some forty year olds I’ve met.

    Parents are, and should always be the ones that control what their children watch, listen to and play. What appears like a decent law at first glance becomes dangerously chilling when given a closer look. As a citizen of Illinois I believe there are many other issues facing our state that Governor Blagojevich and our elected representatives should be spending their time on and resources on. Leave the parenting to the parents.

    Chris Falco

  256. sycodude says:

    good sotry Matt, but I don’t think her obesity has anthing to do with it , does it?

  257. sycodude says:

    *story

  258. neomerge says:

    Wow I would have been extremely pissed. You should definitely get in contact with someone higher up at Best Buy and explain your ordeal.

  259. andy966 says:

    Well they should have called the police and had him arrested if he was truly doing something illegal right?

  260. ekdikeo says:

    In the state that submitter is in, is it actually illegal to purchase an M rated game for a minor?

    Hardly likely.

  261. blkhrt1 says:

    @stopNgoBeau: President Clinton pushed for aggressive ID-checks for rated-R movies and rated-M games. There was never any LAW stating you had to be 17+ to watch/play said movie/game. (Link: [www.cnn.com])

    All this came from the Columbine shootings in 1999, where people say the shooters liked to play games like Doom, which made them go on their shooting spree. In fact, this is what started the whole “violent games make violent teens” ordeal.

    So, in relation to this story, Matt shouldn’t have been so vindictive about the cashier’s weight, as that has NOTHING to do with the issue. That just seems like a little retribution on his part. I know for a fact that if you look young, and are in the presence of young peers, you will either be carded or denied the sale.

    Same goes with alcohol. If a group of peers walk up to a register with a case of beer, all of them looking 18-21, every single person is going to be carded. What the cashier should have done was ask both people for an ID, then use the act of discretion to refuse the sale.

    A lot of wrong here on both the cashier and customer’s part.

  262. ihateauditions says:

    Best Buy’s employees are creating new, arbitrarily restrictive rules and imposing them on a whim.

    The laws do not say ‘you may not buy video games if you are travelling with somebody who is younger than the specific age’.

    There is no reason to shop at Best Buy. None.

  263. ihateauditions says:

    If a group of peers walk up to a register with a case of beer, all of them looking 18-21, every single person is going to be carded

    I’ve bought beer while my little brother was with me. Hell, I’ve bought ammunition, a pistol, a shotgun and cigarettes while he was with me, too.

    Not once was I stopped, because it was all completely legal.

  264. greyseal says:

    Wow… damned if you do, damned if you don’t.

    We defend content in games by saying that parents need to monitor their kids. We point out that there’s a voluntary ratings system in place to better inform people of what games contain.

    And here we are knocking Best Buy for actually heeding the content label?

    Best Buy is right. End story.

  265. girly says:

    @BugMeNot2: I don’t agree. It might be possible that the scenario you pose is true, but you have no way of knowing that.

    That’s about as lame as saying it’s relevant if the cashier was skinny because she’d probably be crabby from hunger.

    Almost everyone feels insecure about something, but you don’t know if that person is insecure about their weight, and beyond that you don’t know (if they were insecure) if it would affect their performance at work.

    It probably isn’t relevant; it seems that the OP is just trying to paint the employees in the worst light possible. A way to puff up the story?

  266. deadlizard says:

    If I was on the same scenario I’d laugh my butt off.

  267. Tonguetied says:

    Oh I would have been screaming! I would have demanded that the ‘manager’ give me the name and number of his boss and his full legal name. I would have been speaking as loudly as I could so as to alert all the other shoppers about what dillweeds these idiots were.

    My response whenever someone tells me I have to do something stupid like use a bag “because it’s policy” is to explain quite clearly that just because something is their policy doesn’t make it mine.

    However I probably would not have had the confidence to do that when I was 21. It does take a few years to build up to that…

  268. Benstein says:

    I really wish these things would happen to me, it would be endless fun.

  269. Benstein says:

    Another thing, if I had a 15 year old son I would buy him all the M rated games he wanted as it would keep him from shagging chicks like I did at that age.

  270. shadow735 says:

    You still bought the stuff, dude you seriously need to get a back bone. I know your only 21 but if any person ther etreated me that way not only would I put them in theri places I would be on the phone to corporate headquarters, writing a letter and reporting them to BB. Totaly lame man, they treated you like crap, I would have done everything to try to get them fired, no one should be treated that way in a store.

    The only thing you did wrong was go back and buy stuff from that store.
    If I were you I would report this to corporate after you get those two peoples names. At least you will get some kind of letter, maybe a gift card and most thye get booted out of their jobs.
    Sorry I wouldnt put up with that crap.

  271. lovelygirl says:

    I’m awfully surprised that the cashier even cared about the rating. Speaking as a teenager, I probably would just scan the game as fast as I could get to the next customer. Not my problem what the customer plans to do with the game. Also, even if the cashier was worried about losing her job, she really had no reason to be verbally abusing the OP in public like that. He should have been able to buy the game after he left his brother in the car. The two workers were just being dumb, there was nothing wrong with what the OP said. Why should they even care what the heck the OP buys? They should be happy he wants to buy stuff so maybe they can get bonuses for selling the most videogames in the area or something. They’re just on a power-trip is all.

  272. SJActress says:

    I’m so tired of the PC-ness over weight. How is stating a FACT, “She has red hair and is obese”, a bad thing to say? She really DOES have red hair and she really IS fat! The OP didn’t make her fat and never insulted her by calling her fat or making fun of her for being fat. If she’s fat, she’s fat.
    When someone tells me about a situation, it’s nice to hear details, so I can picture it in my head. I thought of the next door neighbor from Small Wonder being the cashier. That woman made tons of money, and she has red hair and she’s FAT. So what? People are fat. Most people in the U.S. actually are FAT.

    Yep. FAT FAT FAT FAT FAT FAT FAT FAT FAT.

    If you think that’s a reflection of his opinion of her, then you’re the asshat, not him. Why would you think he means “stupid” when he says “obese” unless that’s how YOU use the word?

  273. the_wiggle says:

    @Alpha_Omega: rather like what happened when my ex bought GTA for our son.

  274. spamtasticus says:

    Although i’m not a full on greeny treehugging granola cruncher I despise bags. Not just plastic but all bags. I cringe when someone puts a gallong of milk (with a nice handle) into 2 plastic bags. I have a strict policy. If I can carry it to the register with no bag, I can take it to my car with no bag. I have encountered this “must take it out in a bag” in both Best Buy and Comp USA. The girld Insisted… and I mean insisted on giving me the item in a bag even though I told her absolutely not. She then put it in the bag and handed it to me. So I simply grabbed the bag. Removed my DVD and receipt. And left the bag on the counter.

  275. xDimMaK says:

    I can’t believe people are actually supporting how the cashier treated him. Since when is it corporate policy to mistreat your customers because they didn’t leave their little brother locked in the car while they were shopping? They made him walk in and out of the store, then the whole way to the video game section and back, and wait in line all over again just to smirk and say he still can’t buy the game?

    Then you’re going to sit there and support that asshole of a cashier while insulting the OP for just giving a physical description of her to create imagery?

    All this because a 21 year old tried to purchase a video game, which he has every right to do… I’m almost ashamed to be living in this sorry excuse for a ‘free’ country.

    Personally I would have just smirked right back at her, left everything at the counter and said “You can put these back yourself. You could use the exercise.” Then I would have left for a different store entirely, NOT another Best Buy.

    I can kind of understand where a lot of you were coming from on the issue of how it seemed like his little brother was paying from the cashiers point of view, but that doesn’t excuse the way he was treated. Her job is supposed to be customer service. Instead she’s throwing around false accusations and publicly humiliating him over a simple video game purchase just because he took his little brother shopping with him.

  276. xDimMaK says:

    @SJActress: I found that pretty interesting myself. The people who think they’re defending the cashier on the weight issue are the ones that are actually making it a negative comment to begin with. If he had said “the red haired, slender cashier” no one would be on his balls about it. I never knew describing someones physical appearance was more inconsiderate than forcing someone to leave their little brother in a car while they have him walk all throughout the store and still happily deny him the purchase.

  277. xDimMaK says:

    @Lydiechan: That’s always bothered me about Best Buy. Their prices are just outrageous. It’s terrible when you can order anything online and, with shipping and handling, still have it cost less than if you went to the store and got it yourself (even more so when you factor in gas prices). You’d think you should end up having to pay extra for the convenience of not having to make the trip to the store, not the other way around. It’s almost like we’re being encouraged to be lazy.

  278. xDimMaK says:

    @Vecha: Absolutely true. The notion that video games breed killers is completely absurd. I’ve played violent video games every day of my life since I was about 5 years old (and watched plenty of horror films and the likes). I have never been in any serious confrontation, physically or verbally, for as long as I can remember. In fact, most people would recognize me as among the nicest people they ever came across.

    The whole thing is just media hype. It doesn’t matter how much people believe otherwise, a video game won’t turn any mentally sane person into a killer or criminal so long as they’re old enough and have been taught to understand right from wrong. If they do occasionally (as I’m sure they do), it’s because of an underlying mental condition that either wasn’t diagnosed or was taken too lightly, or the result of extremely poor parenting. The video games and their creators shouldn’t be held accountable for either of those, and consumers like this one shouldn’t be treated like this because of the misconception that the video games are to blame.

  279. Nick Jones says:

    I know this is old but seriously… /stabcashier

  280. That employee is made of bitch!

  281. dnicole33 says:

    OP is a douche for talking about the cashiers weight, that has nothing to do with the situation. Yes I work at Best Buy, and no I’m not a fucking cheerleader for the place, trust me I realize there are some issues with the way things work. But, Best Buy can actually be FINED for selling a M rated game to a minor, as well as the employee can be fired for it. Granted my store works a little different, we just care about who’s paying for it just like alcohol sales.

  282. Beery says:

    This is crazy! It’s not illegal to buy Assassin’s Creed or any other Mature-rated game for a child. The ratings are there to inform buyers – to give them an idea of the level of maturity the game is designed for, nothing more. They should certainly not be used by tinpot dictators to police purchases.

    This whole video game witch hunt has gone on long enough!

  283. TheOtherMe says:

    I actually had a very similar issue at a Gamestop. I walked up to the register after giving FEAR and FEAR 2 to my little brother to carry (he was 16 and I was 18 at the time) while I dug out my cash. So we walk up, me carrying my wallet and him carrying the two games I was buying for myself as well as Need For Speed Underground for him, they told me I was unable to buy the two FEAR games since he had been holding it upon arriving at the register. They also said that if I went out and came back in I still wouldn’t be allowed to buy them.

  284. flarn2006 says:

    I think they should sell it even directly to someone who’s obviously under 17. There’s no law against it, and if I owned a game store, I certainly would.