"Public" Intern Pickets Sprint Store For Reader

An intern over at The Stranger (we love The Stranger) has been picketing a Sprint store for a reader who wrote in complaining that he had not received his $30 rebate.

We love this. Why didn’t we think of this? We need more interns!

I stood outside the store and began chanting: “2, 4, 6, 8, Give Sam Goldberg His Rebate”

After about five minutes, a man who looked to be the manager came up to me and told me that I couldn’t hold the sign in front of the store because the sign had Sprint’s name on it. I thanked him and put my sign down. After he left I picked up the sign and continued to chant. Shoppers stared back at me with blank expressions.

A minute or two later another Sprint employee came out of the store and asked me how much money her company owed me. I pointed to my sign and told her Sprint owed my friend Sam $30. She giggled and took a picture of me with her camera phone.

According to Aaron Caplan at the ACLU, I had every right to be on that sidewalk and to carry a sign with Sprint’s name on it. “So long as you’re not preventing people from entering the business,” Caplan says, “you have a constitutional right to be on the sidewalk.” When I called the Seattle Police Department, they backed up the ACLU.

Today I called the Sprint store and asked to speak to the manager. I asked him why he tried to put a stop to my constitutionally protected protest and he told me that he did not wish to comment. I also asked him when Sam Goldberg would receive his rebate and he told Sam to go to the Sprint store where he bought his phone.

As of 11:45 this morning, Sam has still not received his rebate, nor has he been contacted by Sprint. If he does not receive his rebate in a week, I will picket the Sprint store again.

Steven the public intern is great. Sprint, give Sam his damn rebate.

Day 4: Picketing Sprint [The Stranger] (Thanks, James!)


Edit Your Comment

  1. warf0x0r says:


  2. Ickypoopy says:

    Picketing in front of stores doesn’t work very well. When I used to do collections for A movie rental company, there was a mother-daughter combo who were picketing in front of one of the stores with a group of about ten people. Didnt really get them anything (especially since they admitted they were at fault).

    But I still commend the effort!

  3. acambras says:

    That is very cool.

  4. Nytmare says:

    4, 3, 2, 1, Picketing Sprint is lots of fun.

    8, 6, 4, 2, When will Sprint give Sam his due?

    3, 4, 5, 6, We are tired of Sprint’s lame tricks!

  5. sly100100 says:

    I would like to read Sam’s story. Great intern!! I hope Sam gets his refund. Maybe if the intern offered some contact information to the manager the next time he comes out he might be willing to make some effort and deal with the issue.

  6. b612markt says:


  7. B says:

    AT least he’s not the intern for Kramerco.

  8. beyond says:

    What a fun story! Keep it up!

  9. teqsundotcom says:

    go sam!

  10. Cogito Ergo Bibo says:

    Awww. I want my own picketing intern. I’m thinking that having a personal one could come in handy.

  11. Bay State Darren says:

    This is one internship that might not get him all that useful of career experience, just behind one at Kramerica.

  12. Pelagius says:

    So a liberal arts degree is good for something after all.

  13. endless says:

    now what would be funny is if people from this blog went and also picketed other sprint stores asking when will Sam get his moneys.

  14. bnosach says:

    It won’t work. Go picket by the company’s headquarters.

  15. Bourque77 says:

    Sam chose sprint, that was the first mistake.

  16. sleze69 says:

    No Roger, no Re-run, no Rent! No Roger, no Re-run, no Rent!

  17. tdogg241 says:

    Steven isn’t just an internt, he’s a public intern. So far, he’s also weeded a reader’s garden, cleaned a metro bus, and gone ghost hunting.

    You also forgot to mention that he picked up a sandwich and a cookie for Sam, who teaches science at the Pacific Science Center.

    You all wish you had a public intern too, admit it.

  18. Sequential_Combo says:

    I was actually in the exact same area that day, but I didn’t see him. Shame; it would have been fun to meet the guy, I’ve read about him in the Stranger.

  19. dysthymia says:

    @Ickypoopy: I just had the craziest idea. I am sure will backfire at me but, what about hiring homeless and pay them to place the demands in their cardboards? Normal people dislike homeless people. Instead of help them, avoid them. Sad but true.

    So, If they are placed in front of the store I am almost sure nobody will go in and buy anything. Pay them well. And bunch of homeless people in protesting mode for few days can be terrible for business.

    I guess the question is: where is considered aid, and where crosses to labor exploitation.

  20. Trai_Dep says:

    Didn’t Consumerist hire a host of interns lately? Isn’t there a lot of malfeasing retail outlets in NYC? Hmm…

    (sounds of rioting, pitchfork-waving intern mob approaching my flat as I type)

  21. BrianH says:

    Sprint fucked me out of a $50 rebate back in 2001.

    When the time came to renew in 2003, after researching providers, plans and phones, I stuck with Sprint. Ashamed of myself, like a dog going back to sniff its vomit.

    Honestly though, in spite of being screwed out of a rebate 6 years ago, they’ve still been the best (for me) out of a lot that’s shitty to begin with.

    Sorry for the foul language, anytime we’re talking about cable or cell phone companies I develop Tourette’s Syndrome!

    (Note that I’m only talking about plans, phones, pricing and coverage. For my circumstances they fit best. I can’t compare customer service since I’ve never had anyone else. My experience is that their customer service sucks, but I rarely need to use it, thank goodness.)

  22. badjack128 says:

    wow. lucky guy.

    im a fairly new (since may) sprint customer and i haven’t receieved my $100 mail-in rebate.

    after i called the rebate line a few weeks ago got nowhere. (seems as
    if sprint thrives on sh*tty customer service.) they said the rebate is

    how does that happen? i sent everything in immediately after i bought
    the phone and the plan with no avail. that was months ago! ugh…. i
    hate doing the phone circles dealing with incompetent representatives.

  23. agb says:

    @badjack128: if you have everything documented (receipt, copy of the UPCs, copy of rebate form, etc.), give the 800 number another try, and maybe try an EECB. if neither of those work (or work easily), small claims court should be a piece of cake.