For several years now, we’ve followed the proliferation of tinier and tinier Walmarts across the American retailscape. From the supermarket-sized Walmart Hometown stores to the gas station and convenience store called Walmart To Go, the retailer has experimented with store formats that are not enormous. Now the Tiny Walmart Menace has spread to Mexico, where its mini-grocery chain called Bodega Aurrera Express hopes to use low prices to draw customers. [More]
Walmart can’t donate directly to their own “pro-business” political action committee, they can’t make employees donate to it, and they can’t pay employees for donating to it. Those things would all be against the law, and would draw the ire of the Federal Election Commission. But the company is legally allowed to create incentives for employees to donate to their PAC by creating matching charitable contributions. The problem? The only charity in play is one that gives to Walmart employees. According to a complaint lodged with the FEC today, that means Walmart is still basically paying off employees to make political contributions, and should be stopped. [More]
Make sure you read this in a spooky voice in your head: Wal-Mart is dooooomed! At least, the business model it relied on to reach such astronomical growth is now probably putting a choke hold on the company’s ability to grow and compete. [More]
America, please welcome the world’s smallest Walmart. It opened last week on the University of Arkansas campus in Fayetteville. Of course, the concept of “small” is relative when it comes to Walmarts: the new store is about 3,500 square feet of retail space, and replaces the former campus health center pharmacy. [More]
While Walmart sells everything from gasoline to groceries, and they have a pretty sizable online presence, they haven’t gotten into the lucrative business of on-demand/streaming video. But that could all change with news that the box store leviathan is about to purchase streaming video service Vudu. [More]
A few weeks ago, Kaleb wrote to us with a tale of television woe. The Polaroid TV he purchased at Walmart on Black Friday 2008 simply died, and Polaroid wouldn’t perform warranty service without his receipt. All was lost, until a Walmart manager went above and beyond to save Kaleb from his defective television.
Lloyd wanted a GPS to guide him on his vacation, so to make sure he’d have it in time, and the best deal he could find was online at Walmart. Verifying that the item was in stock, he headed to his nearby store, hoping to pick it up and be on his way.
Chris spotted this
Blue Redbox at a Wal-Mart. Poor, confused box.
Earlier this month, Walmart avoided criminal charges in the trampling death of a worker at a Long Island store last November by setting up a $400,000 victims’ compensation fund and giving $1.5 million to local non-profits and social service programs. But that settlement didn’t stop an ongoing investigation by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Now, the government agency has announced the results of its probe, declaring that workers were put at risk “due to the store’s failure to implement reasonable and effective crowd management principles.” The company will be fined the maximum penalty allowed: $7,000. Walmart has 15 days to appeal or pay up.
Wal-Mart will not face criminal charges in the death of temporary holiday worker Jdimytai Damour at its Valley Stream, NY store. Damour was posted at the front of the store when the out-of-control early morning crowd broke the door down, and he was trampled to death.
Wal-Mart’s management is watching their customers during the recession. What have they learned? More shoppers now make lists, instead of buying on impulse. Sales of frozen vegetables are up; sales of Angus beef are down. And mysteriously, $5 white toilet seats are a hot item near Denver.
A lot of readers sent us the story of a Florida teen who received the awesome birthday gift of some rocks and crumpled up Chinese newspapers inside a Nintendo DS box. After some fuss and the discovery that another customer had already returned the same box of rocks, Wal-Mart made the situation right. Reader Ryan found himself in a similar situation, but without the happy ending (yet!): a Texas Best Buy sold him a paving stone instead of a Macbook Pro.
that product you wanted? It was only one dollar. Back in the past. When you didn’t buy it. Are you ashamed? Do you harbor rage against it? Does it keep you up at night? Don’t let it get in your heads, Consumerists, or you’re letting the Wal-Mart win! Fight back, Consumers! Fight back against their mind games, and their awkward notion of sales, in one fell swoop; shop elsewhere. Thanks, Bryan!
What began as a troubling rumor has evolved into a troubling fact. Walmart will soon be launching its own version of the Geek Squad as pilot program in 15 stores in the Dallas area. The new “Solution Stations” will supposedly help customers with such tasks as flat panel TV installation and computer repair and will be managed with Dell Inc. Details, inside…
Jessie Scott, an 18-year-old from Draper, Utah has been in a coma since the end of April because of a critical error which occurred at a Walmart pharmacy. His doctor prescribed Jessie 5mg of Oxycodone Hydrochoride in a liquid solution to help him with the severe pain of his strep throat, however, what he received from the pharmacy was a concentrated solution which was supposed to have been diluted before being dispensed to Jessie. Exactly how much medication did Jessie consume?
Last Friday, we told you about Ashlee from Paonia, Colorado who took her Saturn to a Walmart Auto Service Center in the city of Delta for an oil change. Because they botched the job, the oil leaked out which resulted in extensive engine damage to the tune of $5,875. Since then, she spoke to a representative from Walmart’s insurance company who said that they won’t pay for the repairs, because when Ashlee discovered the damage, she took her car to a non-Walmart mechanic, and in doing so has “tampered with evidence.” Not to be trifled with, Ashlee is gathering evidence and witnesses and hiring a lawyer. Ashlee’s, letter inside…
Having just arrived in Paonia, Colorado for the summer, reader Ashlee thought she should get her oil changed. Not yet familiar with the area, she went with a name she recognized–Walmart. The oil change seemed to go fine so Ashlee and her friend decided to embark on a trip to Denver. Thirty minutes into the road trip, she heard a strange noise coming from the engine. She pulled over and intuitively checked the dipstick which revealed zero oil. Ashlee then looked underneath her car and saw oil covering much of the undercarriage. Eventually, she got the car to town where a mechanic discovered that the oil cap had been put on improperly, allowing the oil to escape. Later, she received an estimate from GMC of $5,875 to replace the engine. Ashlee’s letter, inside…