OfficeMax Calls You A Thief For Trying To Recycle

OfficeMax called Chris a thief for recycling empty printer cartridges. OfficeMax’s MaxPerks program gives customers $3 for each empty cartridge they recycle, with a limit of 5 cartridges per customer per day. Chris runs a computer repair business that leaves him flush with empty cartridges. According to one cashier, this makes Chris a thief.

The cashier first claimed that there was a limit of 5 cartridges per week, and then threatened to send Chris’ picture to other stores. Finally, he confronted Chris, saying “I don’t know where you’re getting these, if you’re stealing them… but it needs to cut down.”

Chris writes:

I’ve finally had my first really angering customer service issue. But a little bit of background:

I run a computer repair business. Obviously, I’m constantly buying/selling computer supplies and equipment, and one of the things I get from customers and my vendors are empty ink cartridges. From my vendor they arrive assorted, so I take the ones I need for the models my customers have, and recycle the rest. I also get quite a few when customers upgrade printers. I recycle the empties at Staples, OfficeMax and Office Depot, since I don’t do enough in volume to recycle directly with the ink companies. Each store gives you $3 per cartridge to spend at the store. It’s a bit long to explain where I get them; and cashiers are puzzled when I tell them I run a computer repair business (since I’m only 20 and look young) so I usually say I get them from friends and it’s done. Funny sidenote: once a cashier at Staples read my jacket that says my company name and said “So I guess you’re going to give this money back to your employer, right?” Yep, I sure am.

At Staples, it’s awesome. I’m actually on a friend basis with one of the cashiers, and when they gave out coupons for recycling cartridges, I would use them online all the time. For the reason of them having a robust online store with great prices and rebates, I spent close to $3700 after coupons with them in 2006. This year I’m almost at $1000, so I’m not a once-in-a-while customer. Staples recently changed to put the credit from recycling on your Staples Rewards card, but I don’t plan on ramping down my spending given the great service I always receive.

At OfficeMax, it’s a different story. They’ve never given out coupons, and their prices aren’t that great in store or online. However, instead of recycling 3 ink cartridges for a total of $9 in credit, they allow you to recycle up to 5 cartridges for $15 in credit. This puts their prices back at being decent. Unfortunately, they don’t have great prices in store/online, so I only buy in store with cartridges. I follow the rules, limit of 5/day/person. I have brought my girlfriend or a friend sometimes as well.

There’s a single cashier/manager/something there that has a problem with me. To be honest, I don’t even see him that much, but he feels like I’m taking the money out of his wallet when I use the cartridges for credit. It first started with him telling another cashier in a way to get me to overhear that there’s a new limit of 5/week. BS. Then he outright lied to my father and I by saying that the coupon system was down, forcing me to drive to another store to get memory cards for my dad’s camera.

Today was a new low. While checking out, he walked up to the checkstand and here’s the conversation that ensued (he’s Cashier, but not the one ringing me out, she’s very nice):

Cashier: Excuse me if you don’t mine[sic] me asking where did you get the cartridges?
Me: I get them from friends.
Cashier: That’s impossible, you have too many of them. You come in with these and you come in with your girlfriend or a friend.
Me: (getting angry) OK, well, I’ll go to the [redacted] store from now on.
Cashier: Well, I have you on camera, I’m gonna send your pictures to the other stores so they know to look out for you.
Me: At Staples, they have a box from HP – aren’t you getting money for these?
Cashier: Yes well it needs to cut down.
Me: Let me ask you, am I taking the money from your wallet? Am I reaching in to your wallet and taking money out?
Cashier: No, but I’m in charge of it and it needs to cut down, I don’t know where you’re getting these, if you’re stealing them or-
Me: No, I’m not stealing them.
Cashier: but it needs to cut down.
Me: OK.

Why would he be sending my picture around unless I’ve done something wrong?

I’m getting sick and tired of being treated like a common criminal because I use coupons. I play by their rules and still they don’t like it. If they don’t want to take coupons they should remove the program.

Thanks,
Chris

OfficeMax needs to realize that recycling is good, not bad. Try having a calm conversation with the cashier’s manager, and explain your business and that you appreciate having an outlet to help you recycle. If that doesn’t help, call corporate and ask the people running the MaxPerks program why their employees hate the environment.

(Photo: Getty)

Comments

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  1. diablodevil2 says:

    That picture makes me laugh, heh.

    More on topic; I feel for Chris, although it might have helped to just be forward in letting them know about the buisness before hand.

    Although, some people are just self-righteous jerks, so who knows if it’d help ~_~;

  2. Trai_Dep says:

    Nice of OfficeMax to declare War on the Environment. What, did all the polar bear cubs drown, so they had to make toner cartridges the next target of opportunity?

  3. Trai_Dep says:

    It’s unrequited love. If the poster simply batted his eyes at him and passed his cell number (bonus: throaty whisper, “Call me, vest boy… show me your ‘manager special!’”) none of this would have happened.
    For the OP’s sake, I hope the manager’s a hawtie.

  4. forgottenpassword says:

    Hmmmm…. my workplace had LOADS & LOADS of empty printer cartridges…… Looks like its time for me to take advantage!!!!!

    HOT DAMN!

    I dont see any problem with what this guy is doing. I think people/employees just dont want/like anyone else getting a good deal.

    Every time I go to walmart & use a bunch of coupons (last time I had about 15 one dollar off coupons)…. I always get some cashier that takes one look at me & my coupon & decides I must be up to no good & scrutinizes the coupons like a secret service agent looking at counterfiet money! ANd they always have to check with someone in charge before they can allow me to use them. I HATE IT!

  5. benh57 says:

    Why not just tell them the truth?

    “I got them from a friend” sounds pretty suspicious.

  6. forgottenpassword says:

    Hey I checked out the “maxperks” on office depot’s website & you can only join if you are a business owner or a teacher….. bummer!

  7. CAK says:

    I would certainly be annoyed as well.

    However, if you’re going to use the term “sic” in an effort to make the cashier appear stupid (particularly given that this was a spoken statement, rather than something that he wrote down), please make sure that the rest of your post is free of grammatical errors. He outright lied to “my father and ME,” not “my father and I.”

    Sorry, that’s a pet peeve of mine.

  8. hills says:

    He hasn’t done anything wrong, but what’s so hard about saying, “I run a computer repair business” instead of saying he gets them from friends and family when questioned. Not only is it a more believable answer, it’s the truth:)….?

  9. ConsumptionJunkie says:

    @forgottenpassword: I’m glad that I’m not the only one who has problems using coupons.

    The last time I was at Whole Foods, I used 20 e-coupons that I printed out. They always hassle me and ask “Are these copies?” I tell them no, they were printed, but they always call the supervisor or manager over.

  10. matto says:

    Why is he protecting the identity of this loser?

  11. glycolized says:

    So, did she not accept them or what? This story is not told very well. Just tell them where you get them, rather than being dodgy. Staples, OM, and OD all have commercial accounts and I’m sure they’ve seen a lot of cartridges before.

  12. sweetnjoe says:

    “It’s a bit long to explain where I get them”

    …. HOW is is a ‘bit long to explain’ if all you have to say is “I run a computer repair business, and I get these from customers”…

    This whole story just seems fishy to me, since you couldn’t even tell the truth to begin with.

  13. Phexerian says:

    The cashier needs to be careful of sending someone’s picture out like that and possibly accusing them of stealing. Staples could end up in a defamation of character action. Best to not go directly to that, but I would contact corporate first after getting this employees name and store number.

    What you should have told the employee is that it is none of her business where you get the cartridges, ask her if she wants you as a customer because staples makes a lot of money off of you or ask if she would rather you go to their competition. If the latter, then report her to corporate.

    These people have no common sense at all. I guess that is why they will make minimum wage the rest of their life.

  14. jeffjohnvol says:

    The managers at OM are a-holes. I was buying a 24″ widscreen soyo that was on sale online but they ran out of stock on-line, and had to get picked up in stores. Well, they removed the monitor from their navigation but the link I had still worked ans showed the lower price. They refused saying that they don’t honor 3rd party links (I linked in from SlickDeals cuz I forgot the exact link).

    I called the corporate office and they said that the monitor was actually in their weekly ad. They called the store for me and told them to hold a monitor. The next day I found out that they did NOT hold one. Corporate was nice, the store are a-holes. I got one, but it wasn’t being held for me.

  15. glycolized says:

    The managers at OM are a-holes. I was buying a 24″ widscreen soyo that was on sale…

    Nice sweeping generalization unrelated to the post. FWIW – I bought the same 24″ Soyo, and when it inexplicably died 36 days after I bought it, the local manager here let me swap it for one he had on the shelf, rather than have to deal with the manufacturer (which is what I would have to do, per their terms of sale I had 30 days).

    I guess I’ll make a generalization that managers are awesome and make me a happy customer.

  16. maztec says:

    Y’know, you blew it with your attitude. You should have told him the truth up front. Your lie is what got you into this.

    “I run a computer repair shop and get a lot of old printer cartridges.” Is NOT that hard of an explanation.

  17. akede2001 says:

    It sounds to me like the OP is being dishonest anyway. He’s been lying about where he gets them from, from the very beginning. Instead of being professional and explaining that he gets them from a computer repair business that he runs, he says he “gets them for a friend”.

    The whole “I get them from friends” screams liar. My guess is that the manager would not have had a problem with the frequency if it was explained that these originated from a legitimate source. Grow up and be a real business owner. Real owners don’t go around lying for simple things.

    I think that in combination with the frequency and the obvious lie about where they were coming from, the manager wasn’t completely out of line here. Calling the police to let them know that they suspect you’re coming in with stolen goods might have been the best course of action for them.

  18. Nenne says:

    @hillsrovey: I agree, I don’t see what was so hard about that.

    I too don’t understand why cashiers are such Nazis about coupons. As someone who is merely trying to use coupons to save money and not rip off stores, I don’t see why I should be treated like a criminal.

  19. fredmertz says:

    What’s really incredible about this is that it is to OfficeMax’ benefit to take as many of these as possible. They spend about $5 per cartridge to buy empties in bulk to make their remanufactured ink, so every one they “buy” for $3 worth of store credit saves them $2.

  20. humphrmi says:

    Hmmm, while I agree that the person could have just said “I run a computer business…”

    “Stealing used cartridges”??? Seriously, Office Max? Like, you think people go surreptitiously into the night, scouring corporate offices and homes for printer cartridges? ‘Cause at $3 a pop, I’m sure the drug users are all over this.

    C’mon Office Max, don’t be pricks, and don’t insult our intelligence with your lame excuses.

  21. HaloZero says:

    I have to admit, a person coming in with empty catridges and coming in everyday to turn in 5. and saying he gets them from “friends”. Highly suspcious, he should have just explained that he runs/works at a computer repair store.

  22. Televiper says:

    It seems to me the OP was treated suspiciously because he was acting suspiciously. It sounds like he says “my friends” because he is mistaking the simply act of making conversation for badgering.

  23. Televiper says:

    @humphrmi: Or he could of been skimming them from a cartridge recycling place that he worked at. It seems the manager was just saying stop bringing so many in, it’s suspicious.

  24. humphrmi says:

    @Televiper: Whatever. It’s a lot of work for $15 a day. And not even cash, he’s spending it in the stores. Not a very attractive theft vector.

  25. Fidel on the Roof says:

    If this guy gets his cartridges by taking advantage of customers’ ignorance of the program, then he deserves what he got.

    If he gets the cartridges because no one wants them knowing that they are worth something, then that’s ok.

  26. ivanthemute says:

    Aparently the guy who’s over ‘the box’ doesn’t know the cost-benifit of the recycling program (to put aside the happy trees and bunnies crap.) My room-mate is an assistant manager for OfficeMax, and he’d kill to have someone who would bring in extra cartridges like that. Aparently they make between $4 and $20 per recycled cart, depending on if it’s an ink or toner cartridge, and what brand/make/model etc.

  27. spinachdip says:

    @Phexerian: “These people have no common sense at all. I guess that is why they will make minimum wage the rest of their life.”

    The problem is much deeper, really. Even if they fire the grumpy cashier, when you pay minimum wage, you get minimum wage effort and minimum wage attitude.

    There’s a pervasive culture, especially in retail, that treats customers as the enemy, and to defend the bottom line at all costs. And within that culture, even though this guy is doing something that benefits the company (i.e., saving money on cartridges, repeat business through store credits), they’re trained to instinctively think, “OMG, he’s going to make us give out free money, we have to stop!”

    I recently read a looong, but informative blog post that looks at how Netflix and Apple are a minority because “They intend to make money because of my desires, not despite them”:
    [equityprivate.typepad.com]

  28. edosan says:

    If the poster didn’t start the whole scenario out by lying about how he got the cartridges (“Oh, I got them from…a friend. That’s it, a friend.”) I’d be a little more sympathetic.

  29. spinachdip says:

    @HaloZero: @Televiper: Whether it’s “suspicious” or not, who gives a shit? As others have mentioned, even though they’re giving out store credit, they’re still turning a profit on each cartridge.

    Not only that, a guy who brings in “too many” cartridges is a guy who has a lot of office product needs – why wouldn’t you want to give him reason to keep coming back?

  30. akede2001 says:

    @humphrmi: Unless you’re frequently stopping by the store anyway. The guy runs a computer repair business.. so he’s going to need parts. Recycle used cartridges, buy parts with them, charge the customer for the full cost of the item plus a little extra.

    Who wants to bet that he’s not a registered business, and isn’t paying taxes on the income? It’s not enough to live off of, so my guess is that it’s more of a hobby than a job.

  31. IvanD says:

    OK, I have no idea why people are slinging mud around. These are the facts:

    1) Man comes in VERY often with printer cartridges and turns them in for a legitimately advertised coupon and does not circumvent the rules, except occasionally has a friend or girlfriend help out… while this is not in the ‘spirit’ of things… it is clearly NOT against the rules because this is ‘per customer’.

    2)Manager has no business asking ‘where he got them’. That’s like me taking a bunch of cars to get tinted and the shop manager asking, “Hey, why do you have so many cars?” Or turning it cell phones at the recycling box at Best Buy and having them one day ask, “Hey, where do you get these cell phones?” It’s simply none of their business… it’s also none of their business how you got there, how you make money, where you live, etc. etc.

    3) Accused of being a thief and is possibly denied benefit.

    If you people don’t get why this is wrong, and why his snide “I get them from friends” is totally appropriate, then you should think long and hard about how you would feel if you were interrogated under similar situations as I mentioned above.

  32. akede2001 says:

    @spinachdip: I don’t think the company wants to turn a profit by accepting stolen cartridges. Companies can get in trouble for receiving stolen goods just as an individual can.

    Not only that, but the OP’s reasoning for why he had so many was an obvious lie. With that, any logical person would then have to question where they were really coming from, and whether or not it was legal.

    @edosan: I agree. But I also believe that if he was honest from the start, then he wouldn’t be having any problem at all. It’s understandable that you’d come across so many cartridges when running a business. But getting that many “from friends”? Yeah, right. He probably pissed the manager off from the start because he recognized it was a lie from the start.

  33. u1itn0w2day says:

    Unless they have an ABUSE or “not intended of for commercial purposes” clause or disclaimer I don’t think they should be challenging the returns.

    And if there aren’t any disclaimers why is this guy telling them they’re from his friends?.

  34. mgy says:

    Why in the world does it matter where he’s getting them? If they’re accusing him of stealing, then refuse to accept the cartridges. If not, stop giving him shit.

  35. spinachdip says:

    @akede2001: Well, I doubt OM has anything to worry about until people start reporting stolen empty ink cartridges to the police.

    Anyway, it’s not anyone’s business where he gets the cartridges, so why ask in the first place? “From friends” is a perfectly appropriate response to politely end a nosy line of questioning.

  36. spinachdip says:

    @edosan: Sympathy has fuck all to do with it – the point of the story is that this is a business that’s acting against its own interests.

    They’re pissing off an obviously high-volume customer, and they’re turning down cheap supply of empty cartridge.

  37. akede2001 says:

    @mgy: It matters because there was a partnership that could be set up for business to drop these off in bulk. He did not want to go that route. Instead he brought them in as an individual, and began to bring in an abnormally high amount for an individual. Then when casually asked about where they were coming from, he lied and added even more suspicion.

    It looks to me like they did accuse him of stealing them, after trying to see if he had a good reason why he was bringing so many in. If he explained he was a small business owner and that’s where they were coming from, he likely would have had no problems. Instead, he decided to be unprofessional and lied.

    OfficeMax could get in trouble if they are accepting stolen goods and paying him for them. They were not being unreasonable in asking where all of these were coming from. It could also be very possible he was stealing these from a day job or something.

    Think about it this way, too: If you ask all of your friends to give you their empty cartridges. Are you going to be bringing in a full batch every other day? All of my friends are huge computer buffs– but I wouldn’t get more than one cartridge every other week.

    FTA: “It’s a bit long to explain where I get them; and cashiers are puzzled when I tell them I run a computer repair business (since I’m only 20 and look young) so I usually say I get them from friends and it’s done.”

    That also sounds like a lie. “I run a computer repair business”– right, you get a puzzled look because cashiers at an OfficeMax don’t understand this? Please.

    OP admits lying in this article multiple times.. how can we really even trust what all is being said in it? He’s unprofessional and a liar. I wouldn’t want to bring my computer to someone like this for repairs.

  38. bohemian says:

    We had the same thing happen with Office Max a few years ago. A family member was doing computer repair and contract equipment liquidation projects. He ended up with tons of empty cartridges from repair customers and these liquidation jobs. People just wanted them gone. Were talking the small ink jet cartridges.

    He would toss them in a box and when we ran out of office paper I would take a few in to Office max and turn them in for reams of paper. They used to do the deal where you got a ream of paper for every cartridge you turned it. First the manager told me I could only do one cartridge at a time, not three at a time as I usually did to make the trip worthwhile. Then she started to question me coming in there to get paper with cartridges about once a month. That was when I decided that Staples was just less hassle and quit going to Office Max. I liked Staples so much I don’t buy anything at Office Max any more. Why? Because they were petty asshats about the cartridge program.

  39. VikingP77 says:

    Ummm why is it any of the cashiers business where you get them from? Are they a FBI interrogator or something? More importantly why do they care? Process the transaction and move on buddy!

  40. forgottenpassword says:

    yup! there must be a rash of empty ink cartridge theft going on! Must be the ringleader of the notorious “empty ink cartridge gang” who sneak into people’s homes & offices swiping those empty ink cartridges!

    Cracked the case Officemax employee!

    Well done!

  41. humphrmi says:

    @akede2001: I’m not sure what the problem is here. What, so he’s stealing cartridges to buy parts for his business? At $15 a day? Seriously? Or is it that he’s “buy[ing] parts with them, charge the customer for the full cost of the item plus a little extra.”? The latter is called mark-up, hate to say it but all profitable businesses have that.

  42. bravo369 says:

    is this yet another case of a store having an ad or deal and then denying it because someone is taking full effect with it? don’t have the deal then if you don’t want people to use it. I would probably just bring corporate’s number and if he denies you then call up right at the register. i agree with the poster too…i think it’s funny when managers or employees act as if you are taking money out of their pockets when you use coupons, pricematch, or take advantage of an advertised deal.

  43. akede2001 says:

    @humphrmi: I know what a mark up is. My point is that if he’s going to these office supply places as a daily course of business, then that’s not “out of his way”.

    The way I’d see things going down with this dishonest repair business, is “Oh, your ink cartridges were low. We replaced those for you, and we also replaced(/upgraded) your video card.” That enables him to save some money, mark up the cartridge, and the video card. If he was heading up for some supplies and/or hardware anyway, why not get some extra money for his efforts?

    If he is in fact handling that many cartridges just in the course of a small repair business (but has time to drive around to several stores to recycle them for credit), I have to wonder what he’s telling his customers.

  44. ByeBye says:

    It doesn’t matter where the hell he got the cartridges from, whether it be a “friend” or his own company, that really isn’t OfficeMax’s business (nor does their policy say anything about denying the cartridges simply on where someone got them from) – quite frankly it seems like there are too many “blame the consumer” types who want to post their deranged sense of idealism here.

  45. ShariC says:

    @benh57:
    I thought the same thing about the whole “I got them from a friend” reason sounding like a lie. Well, it is a lie and the manager probably can read that in Chris’s face which makes Chris appear even more suspicious. People never realize how transparent lies are as they feel they lie well when they really don’t.

    I’m a bit torn about this as I think Chris’s lying has created a problem that may not otherwise exist. People are supposed to report or do something about potential criminal behavior and they don’t want to reward suspected thieves by giving them credit regularly. If Chris were stealing them and the police showed up and asked the manager, “why weren’t you suspicious of this regular returning of cartridges?”, the manager wouldn’t have a good answer.

    Chris should have either told the manager it was none of his business or explained that he’s in the computer repair business and this results in a lot of empty cartridges.

    In these situations, it’s important to keep in mind that the customer can make things worse or better by choosing to respond in a certain way to the behavior of others. That doesn’t make the manager’s behavior “right”, but it makes it more understandable. Also, Chris’s responses from lying about where he got the cartridges to responding with ‘am I stealing money from your wallet’ made it far worse when the goal would seem to be to make it better. Is the goal to be “right” or to get what you want? In the end, Chris exacerbated the problem rather than acted to fix it though his responses can be “justified” though I would think that’s not really what is important.

    That being said, I think that what OfficeMax did was wrong as you can’t change the policy because someone takes advantage of it too often for your tastes if they are adhering to the written rules.

  46. metaled says:

    What is with you guys?

    It is none of the manager’s business where he gets them! I can understand the OP getting tired of explaining it over and over. If I got that question, I would sarcastically tell them “I found them” or “I stole them”. The OP did the same when he said “friends”. The policy of recycling them does not say “must show valid ID and proof of ownership” to recieve the credit. Everyone here would do the same thing if they were questioned daily (kinda like asking for a reciept when your hands are full!) You’de get sick of explaining yourself.
    If the manager thinks something suspicious is going on, then he needs to check with the local PD and see if there are any thefts going on, maybe even report his suspicions. BUT, to harass someone for using their program is wrong. This employee is overstepping his bounds, BIG TIME!

    I totally agree with the above poster, let corporate know what is going on with this manager and that he threatened to slander you and your business!
    How about posting the info on the store location/number and the manager’s name? I’m sure some people would like to call up and ask about the return/store policy direct from this person.

  47. As someone who looks really young, I totally get the guy’s frustration. I get carded to see R-rated movies, to buy things with a credit card (“where’s your mom, sweetie?”) and am frequently asked whether I am old enough to have a cup of coffee (no, I just ordered that quad-Americano for kicks). At the same time, he really needs to own it and act like a professional. In my experience, acting maturely and respectfully wins most people over, even those who originally wanted to offer me a cookie and send me to bed. I hate the “blame the victim” game, but being a liar is never a good idea! Stand up for yourselves, young-looking professionals, and you will be rewarded.

  48. Televiper says:

    @TheManator: No, some of us are adding perspective to the situation. Sorry to inconvenience you with the fact that things aren’t cut and dry. I thought the purpose of the comment section was to discuss the situation and come up with better solutions and understandings. Sitting here saying “OMG Office Max is so unquestionably evil” will accomplish the opposite.

    Some of us are just saying it’s a little reasonable for the manager to be suspicious, since by the OP’s own admission he was acting suspiciously. Ideally the manger shouldn’t care… but then again we aren’t supposed to be so idea are we?

  49. Haess says:

    I work for OfficeMax.. Have for years.. This is the first time Ive heard of someone saying that the 5 cartridge limit was per week..

    We can do 5 per transaction, simply because thats the way the coupon scan sheet works. Any more than that and it comes up saying “Coupon Limit Exceeded”

    There is no ID requirement whatsoever.. The biggest requirement we have to it is if its an employee returning the cartridges, but then you just need a manager to sign off on it (Just to make sure the person isnt swiping them from the recycling boxes.)

    Aside from employees, noone has been looked at funny for returning cartridges… We have people coming in with BAGS of cartridges, but we can only take 5 at a time.. Sure, we bend the rules sometime, have them go put their bag in the car, then come back in.

    I wish the OP had posted the store number and such.. Id get in contact with them myself, or at the very least, provide the OP with the district and territory managers email addresses and such..

    Worst comes to worst, send an email off to samduncan@officemax.com …. That will get a response from someone for sure… Especially regarding the threats about circulating your picture…

  50. Tank says:

    Or maybe call corporate and see if you can work out a volume deal on recycling. maybe you could drop them all once a month and save yourself the crap.

    yeah, i’d try that.

  51. Haess says:

    “Then he outright lied to my father and I by saying that the coupon system was down…”

    The only way our coupon system goes down is if the entire POS system goes down..

    “Cashier: No, but I’m in charge of it and it needs to cut down”

    In charge of it? Uh.. Its nothing that someone is in charge of… what the hell…

  52. Black Bellamy says:

    The jerk is not a manager, he’s a cashier, for the several people above.

    Second, for the OP, get the jerk cashier’s name off his nametag, go to the manager, and say I’m a businessman who runs a computer-related business and who used your cartidge-credit program. “Joe” has a very bad attitude and has accused me of being a thief in public. Tell the manager that your business would suffer from such baseless accusations, and you would have no choice but to bring a civil action for defamation unless this behavior ceases immediately. Say thank, do not wait for answer, walk out. Next time see if attitude has been adjusted.

  53. spinachdip says:

    @Televiper: But again, why ask the stupid pointless question in the first place? If you see someone young and dressed in, oh, urban attire driving an expensive car, do you go up to him and say, “Excuse me, how did you finance that car?” Well, you shouldn’t, because it’s none of your fucking business.

    I think the victim blamers here are getting caught up by the fact that OMG HE LIED!!! I see the “Friends” fib not so much an outright lie, but as a conversation ender. You tell a telemarketer “Sorry, I’m busy” even when you’re not. You have a friend call you during a blind date as an escape option. Girls will pretend a male friend is a boyfriend to stop other guys from hitting on them. It’s a harmless device to politely avoid complicated, unnecessary interactions.

  54. 5h17h34d says:

    @CAK: Go away grammar nazi.

  55. bot001220 says:

    @IvanD:

    To all you people downplaying the severity of “empty cartridge theft”… it very much DOES matter where those empty cartridges come from.

    Think about this: Imagine that the manager for this OM accepts all the empty carts for a month, or whatever the pickup cycle period is. At the end of the month, he (or another employee) takes (steals) the garbage bag full of carts and cashes them in at another OM location. Maybe someone at THAT location does the same…

    Regardless of how petty they may seem, these empty carts DO actually have a cash value. It’s like recycling plants that won’t take copper if it’s stolen. The same principles apply.

  56. bradanomics says:

    It shouldn’t matter where he got them. What business is it of the Cartridge Nazi where he got them? I would have just answered “None of your business”

  57. Televiper says:

    @spinachdip:
    You’re having a hard time with this I will make it simple for you.

    The OP was lying which made the people at Office Max suspicious. Office Max was wrong about how they handled the situation. But, the OP lying, and OP’s admitted behaviour contributed to the situation. I’m not saying it was his fault. I’m saying that there may have been no problems if he showed a little bit of professionalism. (yah, duh there should of been no problems) YES, professionalism means putting up with cashiers trying to politely make conversation by asking annoying questions.

    I believe there are good consumers and bad consumers. Good consumers don’t aggravate a situation just because they have some ultimate right to good customer service.

  58. spinachdip says:

    @Televiper: Professionalism? Really? I’ll remember to tuck my shirt in the next time I go to an Office Depot.

  59. akede2001 says:

    @Black Bellamy: And when he’s explaining that he’s a businessman, he can also mention that he’s the kind of person who lies to avoid situations which might inconvenience him.

  60. kepler11 says:

    Does anyone have good tips on what *to do* with empty laser printer cartridges?

  61. ratnerstar says:

    @kepler11: Leave them lying around and hope someone steals them?

  62. Oh My God. Why are you people so freaking mean. The guy is following a prescribed policy and getting shit for it. Why don’t you donkeys start your own blog called BLAME THE VICTUM (sic) What a bunch of bleeding cows!

  63. humphrmi says:

    @ratnerstar: +1 Funny

  64. ginnylavender says:

    It doesn’t matter where he got them. They make an offer, he takes them up on it. It’s just not their business where they came from. Besides, anybody can say anything–what are they going to do, investigate?

  65. ZekeSulastin says:

    @SpeedyGonzalas: It’s an understandable counter to the usual “COMPANY IS ALWAYS WRONG IN EVERY CASE” brigade. Balance is necessary!

  66. Hawk07 says:

    Luckily he didn’t pull the “I make more money in one day than you do in a week” card otherwise the repair guy would have been tarred and feathered here.

  67. @benh57: “

    Why not just tell them the truth?

    “I got them from a friend” sounds pretty suspicious. “

    You have to read the actual article

    “It’s a bit long to explain where I get them; and cashiers are puzzled when I tell them I run a computer repair business (since I’m only 20 and look young) so I usually say I get them from friends and it’s done.”

  68. 5h17h34d says:

    It’s none of the cashier’s or company’s business where he got the empty cartridges. I swear our society has degenerated into a bunch of f’ing tattletales.

  69. spinachdip says:

    @ZekeSulastin: I’m kinda tired of the myth of balance in commentary for the sake of balance as a virtue. I see enough of that shit in political punditry, so no thanks.

    Corporations (or its underpaid and undertrained agents) aren’t always wrong, but they often are, because economy of scale says might is right. That’s the very reason this blog even exists. And in this case, it takes a certain level of myopia and/or stupidity and/or thirst for pointless point-making to take OfficeMax’s side.

  70. Dobernala says:

    Stealing empty printer cartridges? That is a new one. Did they think he snuk into houses at night and stole them out of people’s printers? LOL.

  71. legotech says:

    hmmm…wonder what they’d do if I got 40 of my friends at work to each take in five of the expired inkjet carts we found in a back storage room in all at once.

    Work told me to get rid of em…..

  72. dazzlezak says:

    office max “pays” you for them, sends them to a refubisher/reecycler refills them slaps them in an office max box and then charges me $30-$45 for a “generic” cartrige.

    Turning a nice profit in the meantime.

    This guy is actually hurting his company’s profits.

    Next, He’ll run for public office.

  73. scoosdad says:

    If this is such a good deal for OfficeMax as some commenters have claimed, then why do they even have a limit on how many the same person can bring in at once? If they were truly profiting as it’s implied, their corporate attitude should be, “bring as many in as you can carry!”

    Aside from that, I’d be willing to bet that the OP is using the ‘girlfriend bringing in twice his daily limit’ trick more often than he lets on in the story. Probably more like every single time, and if he explains himself to OfficeMax as a small business owner but is seen with the same woman who comes in at the same time as him also bringing them in, they might put two and two together and cut off his privileges altogether. But again, if they’re making money off his returns, then why are they hassling him in the first place?

  74. narcolepticdoc says:

    How’s this for an answer to “Where do you get so many?”

    I print. A LOT.

  75. dweebster says:

    Original poster is probably a major player in the infamous “empty ink cartridge” theft ring. They break into businesses during after dark and test out the printer cartridges – if they’re low they steal ‘em and bring them to Office Max and buy $15 worth of paper or rubber bands.

    FBI and Homeland Security are on the OP’s tail now thanks to a hot tip by the observant Office Max cashier. Something tells me breaking this stolen empty ink cartridge cabal will make hot front page news – sayanara Osama, you’ve been replaced as “Enemy #1″ by the ink cartridge bandit and his girlfriend.

  76. redkamel says:

    actually I hear that how they got Al Capone, stealing ink cartridges.

  77. NinjaMarion says:

    @Black Bellamy: It was stated that this particular person is “cashier / manager / whatever”, so they’re obviously a little higher up than a typical cashier.

    Also, for everyone stating it’s the poster’s fault for lying, you’re all failing to realize that it was stated this is an ongoing problem with this employee. This person made sure to passively complain about it by telling another employee that only 5 cartridges per week can be exchanged while making sure the poster could hear (when the limit is supposedly 5 per day) and then lying about being unable to give him the coupons for the cartridge credit. If all the OP has said is true, then the “manager / cashier / whatever” was already being a dick about the situation long before even asking where the cartridges were coming from.

  78. ByeBye says:

    @Televiper: @The Marionette: These types of comments, from my perspective, are just statements trying to sensationalize this whole situation. It is as simple as OfficeMax had no reason to ask, nor would that reason affect the exchange. I’ve read their stores policy, and there is no restriction aside from the daily limitation. I’ve read the article and the cashier is IN THE WRONG. I blame the victim blamers. That’s what.

    @Dobernala: @scoosdad: @5h17h34d: @Hawk07: @ginnylavender: @ratnerstar: @SpeedyGonzalas: @akede2001: EXACTLY!

  79. farker says:

    I would consider the OP saying “I get them from friends” is a white lie. If he is bringing in 5 a day (OfficeMax’s seemingly self-imposed limit), what reason do they have to question a customer for following the rules?

    As someone with retail experience, I know that customers are often on a need-to-know basis about lots of things. So why should a customer have to divulge information to some minimum-wage OfficeMax monkey?

    What a crock. Let the guy drop off his stupid carts, and he can say whatever the hell he wants to about where they’re from for all I care.

  80. mac-phisto says:

    @scoosdad:

    But again, if they’re making money off his returns, then why are they hassling him in the first place?

    -b/c recycling cartridges probably requires mr. employee of the month to actually do something besides sit on his thumbs.
    -b/c officemax does a poor job disseminating the purpose of the “cartridge coupon campaign”
    -b/c this guy has very little power in the real world, so when he actually gets to exhibit some, it gives him a raging hard-on.

    could be one, could be all – your choice.

  81. At everyone who says it’s fine to lie, since it’s none of the store’s business, I feel that’s a wonky statement. If he felt his business was none of the store’s business (and he doesn’t state that in the OP, he merely states that the whole young guy/business issue is complicated), then he should just say “none of your business” when asked why he is returning so many cartridges. Lying is not a viable option simply because he doesn’t want to tell. It makes him look sketchy and in my experience, sketchy people get worse service, not better service.

  82. LUV2CattleCall says:

    I like my cartridge recycling system best:

    1)Buy new HP Cartridges in cardboard cartons from Wal-Mart

    2)Use a Santoku knife to carefully cut through the glue on one of the flaps

    3) Tape some pennies to the old cartridge – or, to save even more money, use those free “Priority Mail” stickers as tape

    4) Reseal with brush-on super glue

    5) Return to Wal-Mart – just say you bought the wrong type for your printer.

    I’d feel bad…except for the fact that HP started putting sludge in their cartridges that clogs up the heads when the ink is low, so you can’t really get refills anymore… Plus my new OfficeJet tanks only hold 5ml, vs 21ml on the old one.

  83. Astos says:

    I wonder if that cashier/manager/something is even aware of the damage he is doing to the image of OfficeMax.

    If his manager knew, he’d be on the unemployment line quick smart.

    Astos Green lasers rulz

  84. Jesus christ on a pogo stick…Just fucking say “I run a business and I get alot of empty cartridges back”. If the manager gives you shit, hand him/her a business card. Normally I would say it’s none of their damn business however there are some situations that are better left with a straight forward explaination.

  85. Fitwit says:

    Immediately, or after the fact, demand this guy’s name, his manager’s name, and his manager’s manager’s name, and write all those parties a paper letter of complaint. I’ll bet you get positive action. If not vacate O.Max for good. As Staples, says, ‘EASY’ !

  86. Dobernala says:

    @generalhousewifery: I refer back to my earlier post. Exactly what kind of racket is involved in thieving empty ink cartridges?

  87. jenesuspasblair says:

    You have to understand the biggest shrink category in all office supplies is ink. SO its probably just a warry manager. But on the other hand omx gets a credit for the catridges they recieve as does all of the other places. AND in fact its a pretty profitable. SO in that apsect they are being pretty ridiculous. Not only are they getting the profit of you spending money there but they also get monet from cartridges you bring in.

  88. jenesuspasblair says:

    @scoosdad: The limit is to deter ink theft. Because its easy to steel 30 cartridged and come in and get $90. They limit it also because a normal consumer does not have that many on a regular basis. Ive seen the profit an dloss statement it s a profitable business by around 30%

  89. jpx72x says:

    @Dobernala: I don’t know what kind of racket it is, but I’m positive that OM has a policy that cashiers are to look out for suspicious returns. While this isn’t exactly a return, someone making minimum wage could easily confuse the two (nexus = customer giving them a product in exchange for store credit). And, I’m positive that this looked suspicious (“15 more today?” “Oh, yea, um. . . my friends give them to me. That’s right, my friends. . . They print a lot.”)

    I refer back to lots of other posts in this thread. Exactly why shouldn’t the cashier have been suspicious? Even if there isn’t a general OM policy to act like this, doesn’t the cashier have a general civic duty to prevent OM from being a fence? Are you sure that given his suspicions of criminal wrongdoing that the cashier wouldn’t be criminally liable if it turned out that they were stolen?

    /Take away point: we have no clue what was going through the cashier’s head, and we only have a one-sided account of his actions. The evil you are indicting him of is highly dependent on his intentions and what he thought he knew. Let’s hold back on judgment until we can get more information on what actually went down.
    //OMG I”M BLAMING THE CONSUMER!1!!!

  90. I’m impressed you found an OfficeMax that honors that. Everyone I brought my old ink cartridges to had an excuse as to why they wouldn’t give me the $3.

  91. bohemian says:

    Step 1. Refill empty cartridges at home. Step 2. Sell them in front of Office Max for half of what Office Max sells refills for.

  92. mike says:

    heheh… It totally sounds like Steve Colbert:

    “Sir, why do you hate America? Is it the freedom?”

  93. bonzombiekitty says:

    I can’t believe that people think it’s absolutely none of the store’s business where he gets the cartridges from.

    It’s illegal to deal in stolen merchandise. If the store has a reasonable suspicion that a customer is trading in stolen merchandise, then the store could get in trouble. When a guy keeps returning an abnormally large amount of printer cartridges, that raises some suspicions, and raises big red flags by saying “from some friends”. By that point, yeah it’s not unreasonable to think the cartridges may not have been legally acquired.

  94. bonzombiekitty says:

    @Dobernala: Might not be much of a racket. Even if it’s just some guy stealing stuff to get a discount on other supplies, it’s still theft. Might not be lucrative, but thieves don’t always engage in lucrative practices.

  95. Dobernala says:

    @bonzombiekitty: Well, I’m so happy that OfficeMax is taking a hard stand against empty ink cartridge thefts.

  96. Dobernala says:

    @bonzombiekitty: Yeah man, empty ink cartridge thefts are really the big crime wave these days. I heard Congress is passing a law to require fingerprinting and DNA scans for anyone returning them to cut down on theft!

  97. Dobernala says:

    @jpx72x: Well, at what point should OfficeMax consider something suspicious? If I were a thief breaking into hundreds of homes just to get at the ink cartridges (just to point out the absurdity of your argument by showing what it would take to make this scheme profitable to a thief), I’d probably concoct a plausible story myself.

    Thief: “Uhh yeah, I run a computer repair business m’am”

    Cashier: “I don’t believe you! You must be a thief! Only a thief would say that!”

  98. bonzombiekitty says:

    @Dobernala: Doesn’t matter how big of a crime it is. It’s still a crime.

  99. metaled says:

    @bonzombiekitty: It’s illegal to deal in stolen merchandise.

    I doubt they have a pawn broker’s license (pawn shop). and since there is no deposit/consumer refund left on the cartridges (as in cans or bottles), they are in effect acting as a pawn shop. Buying something of value and selling it for more… which is required to purchase anything of value.
    I still state it is NONE of their business. If they want to start questioning people where they get their empty cartridges, then they need to operate under the law and start recording the sellers information and reporting the amounts and identities to the local PD (as a legal pawn broker would!)
    If they wanted to start buying scrap gold, silver, copper (or guitars or bluejeans)…recycle them to make a profit, they would need a pawn broker’s license! So who’s the bigger criminal? The guy who tells a white lie or this business operating without proper permits and procedures?
    Yeah, this is going to the extreme but so are everyone of you idiots that are accusing the guy for acting suspicious. Now you are going to need to show 2 forms of ID and fill out ton’s of paperwork, have that paperwork run through the local PD to keep those damned cartridges out of the landfills! OfficeMax, take the damn cartridges and keep your damned mouth shut!
    Think I will set up a booth at the swapmeet and pay $1.50 *CASH* for cartridges (no questions asked), turn them into OfficeMax, sell my credits on the street, fly under the IRS radar…sounds like a sweet racket!!! IDIOTS!

  100. newfenoix says:

    @TheManator: That’s the whole point. It doesn’t matter where the hell he got the cartridges. This is an example of an employee getting pissed off for having to do 5 seconds of work.

  101. newfenoix says:

    @bonzombiekitty: It isn’t. We are not talking about dozens of empty cartridges at one time. People with your attitude is one of the reasons that we have so many stupid laws now.

  102. chrisjames says:

    @metaled: They’re not making loans on the ink cartridges–not a pawn shop. And it’s probably vague as to whether this counts as buying them up, since they’re trading them for store credit (or are they giving cash too?).

  103. marchhare22 says:

    @bonzombiekitty: It may be a crime but that does not mean you should eyeball every person who comes in doing EXACTLY what the service offers. Then accuse them of stealing. If they don’t want customers to be able to turn in more than five per day then change the service. simple.

    Speculation is not an appropriate substantiation for accusation.

  104. Nighthawke says:

    The next time, be prepared Mr. Businessman. Jerk clerk gives you a asshat time over those toner cartridges you bring in, flip out that DBA form you filled out with the county and ask him “now, shall we discuss matters of business or is this going to be a personal issue?” You hear a sucking sound, relax, everything will be fine from there on out. If not, be nice and ask for his super and prepare to watch him get straightened out.

  105. moosetoga says:

    The “I get them from friends” thing is an obvious lie. If you lie to people, you make them suspicious no matter what you’re doing. Moral of the story: Stop lying to people and you won’t have problems like this one.

  106. EricaKane says:

    If he truly wants to recycle, he could just drop them off and not ask for the coupons.

  107. smalleyd01 says:

    For one eveybody needs to stop screaming about how this guy is a liar because he has no obligation to tell the manager where he got them from, that’s no part of the deal. Given this, there are two options he has: tell them it is none of their damn business, which makes you sound like an asshole, or just give them some random reason so if nothing else you’re not just tellng them to piss off. Finally, the prospect of someone stealing printer cartridges to return them for store credit is a highly implausable situation gven the risk to reward ratio, so it really sjouke have never been considerred in the first place.

  108. vladthepaler says:

    Sounds more like OfficeMax calls you a thief for lying, which is a bit more understandable.

  109. vdragonmpc says:

    Good Lord… We drop a pile off from time to time also. The girl asks where I got so many and I just laugh and say “they fell off a truck”.

    ***Its none of their business where they came from all they are supposed to do is process the transaction***

    Too many time I have had to deal with asshats that give me the eye when returning something. Guess what either it didnt work or I didnt need the product. End of story. Usually they already know about the issue and just take it back. (toysrus is famous for the ‘unfinished toys’

  110. Jean-Baptiste Emanuel Zorg says:

    @vladthepaler: Sounds more like OfficeMax calls you a thief for lying, which is a bit more understandable.

    You have an odd notion of “understandable”. Calling someone a thief for lying is like calling someone a rapist for cursing. The only reason to call someone a thief is for STEALING.

    Given the simple fact that it’s none of the cashiers business where he gets the cartridges, the OP clearly needs a simple, polite, conversation-ending answer.

    The actual explanation is not simple, and often causes confusion. “It’s none of your business” is rude, and makes you sound like a prick, even though it’s true in this case. So the OP uses an innocuous white lie to end the conversation. Good for him. The fact that this makes a cashier “suspicious” is just tough shit. Unless there is real, articulable evidence that the customer is trying to rip you off, or is doing something illegal, process the transaction and STFU.

    And lying to a cashier is really only evidence of one thing – that the customer is too polite to say “It’s none of your fucking business where I get them.”

  111. Negative says:

    I’ve never understood the “Lie-when-it’s-easier-to-tell-the-truth” mentality.

  112. mountaindew says:

    Who cares about where he got his ‘EMPTY’ ink cartridges?

  113. jpx72x says:

    @Dobernala:
    Thief breaking into 1000′s of homes to steal ink cartridges = absurd.
    Employee pilfering the old cartridge bin at work = plausible.

    People won’t take you seriously if your style of debate consists solely of pointing to the most absurd possible interpretation of the argument you’re going against and then ignoring all plausible interpretations.

  114. christoj879 says:

    Hey all, I’m the OP in this story. I like all the comments :-)

    For those that want to know, I don’t have the store number (I don’t have a receipt nearby), but it’s the OM in Fairless Hills, PA

    130 Commerce Blvd., Unit #3
    Fairless Hills
    PA 19030
    Phone: 215-949-8740

    I didn’t get the guy’s name because he doesn’t wear a nametag (maybe part of LP?) but he’s some sort of Asian/Indian and has amblyopia (a lazy eye).

    I really hope the FBI doesn’t catch on to my cartridge stealing ring, and yes it was wrong to tell even a white lie, but as I wrote in the OP it’s a hassle explaining everything and even then they don’t believe me (cashiers at other office stores).

    Keep the comments coming though, I like seeing how people feel (positive and negative). :-)

  115. humphrmi says:

    @jpx72x: An employee pilfering used cartridges at work is between the employer and employee, not Office Max cartridge nazi.

    What we’re talking about here is garbage. Hobos go through dumpsters for tin cans to recycle and nobody bats an eye, but this guy is obviously a criminal for recycling toner cartridges. Absurd!

  116. Breach says:

    At 30 bucks a pop for new cartridges how the F*^$ are we stealing from them?

  117. glycolized says:

    Who says that cashier manager cannot ask you where you got them? You people talk like it’s written in the Constitution, or that the store must make this offer to you by law. Screw you all. I’m sure that every forth or fifth dork they see walking in the door between 17 and 22 years old is “running his own business” (cleaning spyware off his mom’s friends machines). I’ve met at least 50 dudes like this in the past 8 years (working for an actual computer/networking company). I have a hard time in believing that he gets “puzzled” looks from people, unless he is 20 years old, and looks 10. I guarantee they’ve seen a 20 y.o. computer repair person before.

    I’m sure that after a few days seeing this guy, the store staff wanted to get some assurance that this little jackoff (or one of his buddies) doesn’t work across the street at Staples or whatever, and is skimming off cartridges from their recycle pile. No, it’s not the crime of the century, but just because this isn’t an armored car heist doesn’t mean it should be allowed. Right??

    I don’t necessarily endorse the actions of the store personnel in this instance, but I’m taking the theft accusation and sending pictures threat (as well as most of the story) with a grain of salt, given that the customer doesn’t seem very mature. If you are a “businessman”, then act like one.

  118. drjayphd says:

    @EricaKane: Uhm, what? He should forfeit legitimate rewards if he “truly wants to”… do what he’s trying to do?

  119. ArlenArcas says:

    @LUV2CattleCall:
    Comment on OfficeMax Calls You A Thief For Trying To Recycle >
    >
    > I like my cartridge recycling system best:
    > 1)Buy new HP Cartridges in cardboard cartons from Wal-Mart
    > 2)Use a Santoku knife to carefully cut through the glue on one of the
    > flaps
    > 3) Tape some pennies to the old cartridge – or, to save even more
    > money, use those free “Priority Mail” stickers as tape
    > 4) Reseal with brush-on super glue
    > 5) Return to Wal-Mart – just say you bought the wrong type for your
    > printer.
    > I’d feel bad…except for the fact that HP started putting sludge in
    > their cartridges that clogs up the heads when the ink is low, so you
    > can’t really get refills anymore… Plus my new OfficeJet tanks only
    > hold 5ml, vs 21ml on the old one.
    >
    And you wonder why cashiers question returns/coupons. This is taking
    money out of their pockets. It’s plain and simple theft.

  120. ArlenArcas says:

    @ConsumptionJunkie:
    Comment on OfficeMax Calls You A Thief For Trying To Recycle Work in retail and you will learn why stores hate coupons. Especially
    when the same coupon is used over and over. They are generally intended
    for a one time use. Ours are serialized, but we still have people
    printing them off over and over. Coupons are no longer classified as a
    marketing expense against corporate, but rather an expense against the
    stores, resulting in lower profits for the store. Fifty cents or a
    dollar may not seem like a lot, but when it’s done over and over, it
    adds up over the course of a year.

    > The last time I was at Whole Foods, I used 20 e-coupons that I printed
    > out. They always hassle me and ask “Are these copies?” I tell them no,
    > they were printed, but they always call the supervisor or manager over.

  121. dumpsterdiver says:

    The whole thing of paying you to recycle ink cartridges is a hoax anyway. I find masses of cartidges that Staples buys in their dumpsters. They only do it to lure you into their store to buy more overpriced catridges. If you really want to support recycling buy cartridges from a refilling company and turn in your old cartidges to them to refill, not bury in a landfill. Quit paying about a million dollars a barrel for soy ink.

  122. gomakemeasandwich says:

    This guy was a cashier right? So who gives a shit?

  123. gomakemeasandwich says:

    @glycolized:

    I kind of agree with your post, yet you seem like a massive douche.

  124. Lithium542 says:

    I don’t understand why you wouldn’t just whip out a business card and say “I run my own business.”

    Yes, it’s not necessary, and I think the guy was being a jerk, but if it saves you the hassle, who cares?

    Isn’t that what cards are for anyway?

  125. trk182 says:

    Exactly, who cares where he gets them?
    I would have just said “Yes I FUCKING STEAL THEM! Now give me my credit.” There is nothing in the OM cardtridge recycle policy that demands to know where they come from.

  126. Anonymous says:

    In regards to recycling toners. You’re making a big deal out of it. You just need to speak with a manager and he can work around your request. I work there. I know.

    Also: you really don’t need to be a business owner or teacher to apply for a max perks. Just go to a store. They really don’t require it.

    Another thing. The fact that you are getting $3 per cartridge is a benefit of recycling. You should be happy that you are getting anything for recycling toner cartridges for the real benefit is knowing you are not contributing to the earths waste.

    It shouldn’t be a means of income. It it meant as a perk. But I believe some people… you try and give them a hand and they want to take your whole arm.

    RECYCLE to RECYCLE people!!!!!

  127. Anonymous says:

    I am a current and long-time associate of OfficeMax. On behalf of my company, I would like to apologize for how Chris has been treated in his local store. This is not behavior condoned or encouraged by our organization. The store associate was out of line for even questioning this customer. Maybe Chris should have been up front about the source of the cartridges, but he is under no obligation to do so since he is following and using the program as we intended. Chris, please accept this apology, and I hope you will continue to do business with OfficeMax. I also hope you will report your unsatisfactory experience with this store associate to our corporate office so the behavior can be corrected. Thanks for sharing your story.

  128. Anonymous says:

    To those of you that use the recycling rewards system the way that the program was intended THANK YOU. The program was created to drive customers into stores and to offer recycling services to help the environment and give the customer a little incentive to choosing our companies. what the big problem is that there are groups of people going around in car loads of 4 and 5 people and act as if they dont even know eachother and walk in at different times and each one of them has different card numbers. they think we are stupid and dont realize that these stores have windows and we see them all getting out of the same car at different times. um… reason to suspect fraud.. dont you think? then they come and abuse the program and go to multiple stores in one day with different cards registered to different addresses. by the end of the month these people are walking into stores trying to purchase laptops, cameras, and other high ticket items and pay with 6 and 7 different gift cards. but if you think about it.. is it really a sale? you just paid with money that was given to you by our company then you are using that money to purchase a large ticket items… so in an essence wouldnt that mean you are abusing the program to get something for free. yeah so its not my money.. its the company’s money right. well if you are purchasing items with giftcards that you “earned” then you are only spending the same money that we gave.. that means the sale never took place.. we just balanced out… so who is going to pay for payroll.. why are my hours getting cut… why are stores closing… so it may be petty to you because you only tried to recycle 3 cartridges but you times 12 million people across the nation are doing the same and highly abusing the program daily… that takes millions from revenue which results in us not hitting sales goals. so please stop trying to sound all innocent because you know why you had your girlfriend and another friend go in with you. you can say what you want but we all know you can buy a big box of empty ink cartriges online for $100 and turn that in to a quick $300 or more in a 1 month period. so when you plan on spending money to help the economy then let me know.. but for now it looks likeyou are still the cause. so uh… talk to me when your ready to grow up a little… 20 year old business owner.
    Sincerely
    office supply employee