Apples, rotten kids get offofmylawn!
This isn’t to be an all out hate-rant against Apple. I’m ambivalent on the whole Mac vs. PC vs. Linux debate. But then again, I’m not playing around in the code all day, but even if I was I don’t think I’d embrace the inner three year old high-pitched screech tactic of “mine is better!” crowd if I did.
No, this is a general business complaint, one that is not just shot at Apple, they just happen to be the first store of the season in which I encountered the issue.
The issue? So I went to buy my wife a bluetooth ear piece to replace the one that Cthulhu deemed unworthy for this world. Before I even got in line a nice woman offered to help by getting the hand-held credit card reader, I handed her my credit card and driver’s license. She swiped the one card while glancing at the other. I was getting almost giddy at how fast the process was moving. She looked back at the ID. I smiled. Then she asked me, “what’s your email?” I felt like I was in one of those idiotic Visa commercials where the perfectly moving dance of commerce is halted by someone paying with (dear gods, no!) cash. First response was, “fuck you.” But, of course, I’m to slow to just blurt things out like that and so the second response got through, “why?” She smiles and says, “so we can send you the receipt.” Well, like I pointed out, I’m a bit slow, but not too slow, so instead of saying “no,” I said “okay,” and gave her an old email address that I never check and is filled with spam. She types in the email and then asks me, “zip code?” I’m used to this question from Best Buy, but fuck if it doesn’t piss me off every time. So I give it to her. Then she asks me, “do you want just the email copy of your receipt or do you want a hard copy as well.” I squint at her, realizing now that they didn’t need my email at all for the receipt (like I said, I’m a bit slow).
So, with hard copy receipt in hand, I walk out of the Apple store pissed off to no end, feeling taken advantage of, and I realize that I’m the old man who takes things to seriously now, who gets upset by having my privacy intruded upon by corporate entities. Who, ironically and even hypocritically, lives part of his life on Myspace, this blog, website, Secondlife, and World of Warcraft (what with it’s data-mining program Warden and all).
In the end though, the difference is, if I just want to buy a product in a store, I should be able to drop the card, cash or check, no questions asked. As a consumer, it is my right to demand appropriate service from the people that I am purchasing products from. And though I understand that it is interesting to see that the people from West County generally spend X compared to the people from the east part of the county who spend Y so that you can better your service in general…really, I reserve the right to not give you my money if you ask for more information that I deem necessary.
So now I just have to figure out something from the Apple store that I would want and then go in to see if they’ll sell it to me without my information. Though, of course, it would be respectful if I tested this when there isn’t a holiday line standing behind me waiting on the old man to finish his rant against modern society.