UPDATE: Sony Reads Consumerist, Decides To Replace Your PS3

Reader Dustin was upset that Sony responded with form emails no matter what he wrote, now he “has a smile on his face” because Sony contacted him and would like to replace his broken PS3.

Dustin writes:

I’ve got a smile on my face again.

I wrote to you last week with a bad email exchange I had with Sony regarding the hard drive on my Playstation 3. They had replied with form letters, no matter what I wrote to them. I ended up calling Sony and setting up a service call, but they insisted on having proof of purchase to get the machine fixed under warranty. They said if I didn’t include a copy of my receipt, I would have to pay $150 for the service call. Since I got the PS3 as a gift, I couldn’t get a receipt and was upset at having to pay money to fix a machine that was still under warranty.

Now to the good news: I received a call this morning from a number I didn’t recognize, and since I’m at work I let it go to voicemail. Imagine my surprise when I listened to the message and it was a lady from Sony. She said they had found my email exchange and call notes, and instead of having my machine serviced, they are going to switch it out with a new machine (as a one-time courtesy).

She specifically stated that I would not need to include a proof of purchase, and that she would upgrade the exchange in their system to make sure things went smoothly.

I’ll let you know if/when I get the new machine from Sony. In the meantime, they’ve redeemed themselves in my eyes. Someone took the time to track me down in their system and make sure I was happy. Hooray!


Hey, good for you, Dustin!

(Photo: reinn )


Edit Your Comment

  1. mike says:

    Score another point to consumerist for kicking Sony in the shins.

    I’m starting to get really cynical about companies now…

  2. Toof_75_75 says:

    As well you should be!

  3. Buran says:

    How about dropping the “one time courtesy” snobbery? They can find out when the machine was made from its SN, after all.

  4. cwsterling says:

    now make sure you get a receipt incase something happens to it again….

  5. HamlinCornutus says:

    Where does it say that Sony reads Consumerist? Is it possible that they actually read their emails?

  6. LatherRinseRepeat says:

    Is it a new “new” unit? Or a new “refurbished” unit? Maybe Dustin doesn’t care as long as it works. But I’m kinda curious if Sony is gonna go the extra mile here.

  7. watduck says:

    … and to think all Sony needed was exposure to the internet via Consumerist, instead of just taking care of this over the phone in the first place.

  8. WingZero987 says:

    Sony refused to do this for me even though it was only 1 month old AND it was a 40g, so the product hadn’t even been out for a year…

    I sold the busted PS3 instead and bought a Wii. I might even send them a picture of my CC statement for that $2400 Samsung HT5084 that I bought instead of the 46″ XBR4, just like I mailed a pic of all my flights that I’ve purchased ever since American Airlines decided to not compensate me a lousy $25 bus ticket after they made me miss my flight.

  9. sony’s probably gonna send him a PS3 box full of rocks or beans.

    Refurb if he’s really lucky

  10. Techguy1138 says:

    I don’t believe that there are any refurbished ps3 units. I haven’t heard of them yet.

  11. Techguy1138 says:

    Why would you stick someone else with a busted PS3 unit?

    If the unit was less than 1 month only why could you get a receipt? You shouldn’t have needed one but it should have been easy enough to get a manager to see acknowledge that your unit was to new to not be under warranty.

  12. EyeHeartPie says:

    Awesome that Sony stepped up, sucks that it took bad press from the Consumerist to make it happen.

    It should not require the threat of bad press before companies hold to their own policies and actually serve the customers (ala Customer Service) like they are supposed to. Too bad stories like this are becoming more and more common. Some big companies are the worst scammers nowadays: “We refuse to do our jobs…wait, you’re calling the press? OK, we will help you.”

  13. Techguy1138 says:

    This doesn’t actually fix the issue.

    There was a definite problem with the e-mail support system. I’m glad he got his unit but has Sony addressed the poor support problem?

  14. WingZero987 says:

    Actually, if he gets a refurb, it only comes with a 90 day warranty. If he gets a new one, it comes with a 1 year. (BETTER NOT LOSE THAT IMPORTANT RECEIPT!) Getting a new system matters a lot.

    I don’t know why Sony requires a receipt when Nintendo and MS don’t. I assume this will be a much bigger problem coming up. All I see now now, even on pro PS3 msg boards like BluRay, are “My blu ray drive went out. What do I do?” Is this the second coming of the RROD?

  15. WingZero987 says:

    @Techguy1138: It was disclosed broken durrrrrrrrrrrrrr

    Also, the PS3 was a gift from people who, because of cultural reasons, spend cash and they didn’t have the receipt.

    Thanks for assuming I’m a complete idiot though and couldn’t figure out something as rudimentary as “reprint receipt from retailer.”

  16. ViperBorg says:

    @crice: As great as the Consumerist is, it’s pretty effin sad that it comes to that in order to get decent customer service, isn’t it?

  17. BugMeNot2 says:

    “Sony Reads Consumerist, Decides To Replace Your PS3”

    My PS3? I don’t even own a PS3. They probably won’t even do this for any and all PS3 owner, so: misleading headline.

  18. m1k3g says:

    I got so pissed at Sony’s lousy customer service that I took a hammer & smashed the piece of crap MP3 player that kept resetting itself and losing all of my settings every couple of weeks. Then I shipped the pieces back to their ‘service center’ with a note explaining what they could do with it and all of their products. Didn’t gain me anything, but I felt a lot better afterwards.

  19. elislider says:

    Then she said she would need you to send the PS3 to her cousin in Nigeria

  20. Joedel263 says:

    Sony is partnered with SIRAS (siras.com) serial number tracking.. they can very easily prove when/where the unit was purchased just by running the serial.. why do they require a receipt?

  21. diddy0071 says:

    Woohoo! I am having a similar problem with Sony. I got my PS3 as a gift as well, and I don’t have a receipt. Funny thing is, they don’t want to cover it, and it was manufactured in July 2007. So, by that standard, it’s proof enough that it still falls under warranty. All I got from my aunt was a credit card statement, but I don’t want to ask her to go down and try to get a copy of the receipt from the store. Hopefully, I inform them of this story on this website and get my PS3 fixed. I mean, I’m a loyal Ps3 user, what do they want me to do, switch to Xbox or Nintendo?

  22. WingZero987 says:

    @diddy0071: The question is- why are you a loyal user when the company has not been loyal to you? If people remain loyal victims, then the company has no reason to change.

  23. trk182 says:

    Why oh why won’t you fix my stolen ps3 sony? I mean my ps3 that i got as a gift and have no receipt for that I bought of a truck in china town…I mean best buy.

  24. marchhare22 says:

    @trk182: Oh why oh why consumerist do you attempt to help out a customer’s obviously blatant scamming attempts? Such futile work against bazillion dollar corpora… I mean helpless small mom and pop shop business.

  25. Techguy1138 says:

    Well you seem to have more anger than sense so it was a safe assumption.

    Did you post your ps3 story to the consumerist? It sounds very interesting and it is good to know what to do when you don’t have the receipt on new items.

    I’ve usually had CSR’s back the warranty claims based solely on the products newness.

  26. Techguy1138 says:

    @diddy0071: What did the CSR give you as the reason for rejecting your request for repair?

    Given the manufacture date, that they can check, you should be golden.

    Does anyone who works at companies know if there is a semi valid reason for rejecting these claims, stolen units,etc?

  27. axiomatic says:

    So what your saying is that there actually ARE physical “walking and talking” people at Sony support?

    Who would have thought….

  28. TacoDave says:

    @trk182: Not everyone uses stolen goods. I’m one of the only people I know who owns over 700 DVDs and has legally purchased all of them.

    The PS3 was not stolen. My wife gave it to me.

    (I’m Dustin, if you missed it.)

  29. noquarter says:

    @WingZero987: Didn’t you read the headline? Sony is replacing YOUR PS3!!!

    Either that or they’re replacing Dustin’s PS3 and Consumerist is sliding further down the slope of schlock journalism with dumb headlines intended to make the story feel more personal than it is.

    @BugMeNot2: I second that. I really wish Consumerist would stop doing this.

  30. seamer says:

    I get the feeling ‘one time courtesy’ means ‘my boss will probably kick me in the balls, but…’.

    I’m sure that if the new unit turns out to be faulty, it will be still valid for whatever repairs it needs.

  31. WingZero987 says:

    @Techguy1138: It’s flat out Sony’s policy, and only Sony has this policy out of the big 3. I spent 4 hours on the phone with them. A retail representative told me to keep calling until someone would help, but that simply made a supervisor over at Sony Computer Tech Support (HI JASON) tell me I was “harassing them” by simply asking that they honor their warranty.

    I gave up and was sick of consumer reps insinuating that I was a thief or scammer. They’ll probably get my money when the MGS4 pack comes out as much as it pains me to give them even more cash after this treatment, but I’m definitely writing them a letter since I’m obviously upset on this inconsistent treatment of customers.

  32. ConsumerAdvocacy1010 says:

    Keep a copy of that voicemail, in case something does go wrong between when you send your unit in and get the ‘new’ unit back.

  33. diddy0071 says:

    @WingZero987: I’m a loyal customer because I never had a Problem with a Playstation(1), I only had a Problem with a PS2, and they took it back and fixed it free. SO I am a 3peat user.

  34. diddy0071 says:

    @Techguy1138: They said their policy is, No receipt, not in warranty. I just got off the phone with Asher (employee 47489), who blatantly told me that there is no legitimacy to this story, and there is no sony exec. who can confirm this is true. So, I take it a website that is built upon the premises that a company fucks people over, would blatanly LIE and say Sony helps out customers, when that isn’t right?

  35. ShadowFalls says:

    On a second note, be sure to backup your next PS3, so you don’t end up losing your game saves like you did before.

  36. Techguy1138 says:

    I really doubt the consumerist would make up a pro-sony story before they get knowck out the the worst company in the US ranking.

    It more than likely that who ever you spoke to simply didn’t know about the action by the consumerist.

    It makes it more likely that this was truly a one time thing,as the article states.

  37. Techguy1138 says:

    Thats just crazy talk.

    This is the consumerist where people are encourage to NOT just roll over and give a company another chance. Make them give you reason.

    You should try as best you can to document all of your dealing with Sony. Then try and contact them about your treatment. Your goal here is to make a contact in the Sony corporation. Since you sold your PS3 you can not really expect to get anything of tangable value.

    You will need to keep a cool head. You seem like you fly off the handle. That woun’t get you to far.

    What you should get out of this is someone to appologise for your previous issues and be a personal contact for future problems.

    If you get get a real contact or someone to vry for your business screw ’em.

    If you really want a PS3 buy a used version from gamestop. It’ll be cheaper, come with a limited warranty, and Sony won’t see a dime of that sale.

    Don’t just give in.
    As mister t would say “that’s just jibber jabber”

  38. Techguy1138 says:

    if you *CAN’T* get some one to vie for your business screw ’em.

    Don’t screw them if they are helpful.

  39. Knight-Zero says:

    I think customer service is hit and miss with all companies, but I personally have had many products replaced by Sony with no hassle. And the products weren’t faulty if thats what you’re wondering.

  40. WingZero987 says:

    @Techguy1138: Thanks for all your worthless advice that any reasonable, semi-intelligent person would already know of or be doing.

    I bow to you, Captain Obvious of the Consumerist.

  41. mariospants says:

    What if you sent your bloody receipt to the blueray promotions department to get your free DVDs? Does that mean your warranty coverage is fuxord?

  42. Radoman says:

    @mariospants: Hmm… Good point.

    Any lawyers out there wanna comment on the legality of this “company policy”? Seems to be quite a little scam going there. Convince customer to mail off original receipt for Bluray compensation, then balk at warranty repair requests that are made without one.

    It’s, dare I say, Evil Genius.

  43. Techguy1138 says:

    Wow. You’re an ass.

  44. djensen47 says:

    Have there been any updates on this story? Is Sony replacing PS3s without a receipt yet?

    I’m just trying to gauge what to expect when I call.