GameStop Responds to "GTA V Midnight Release Video" Controversy

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GameStop Responds to "GTA V Midnight Release Video" Controversy

GameStop is investigating an incident between a customer and a store manager during the Grand Theft Auto V midnight release that was recorded and posted on YouTube.

Odds are that you've already seen the "Nerd Rage - GTA V Midnight Release" video that's been making the rounds on YouTube over the past couple of days, and if you haven't, voila - you're welcome. The abridged version is that a customer was apparently angry that the store manager insisted on seeing photo identification before letting him pick up his Grand Theft Auto V preorder, but it all seemed to sort itself out until she apparently tossed a comment at him as he was leaving, saying (presumably not seriously) that she was going to share his personal information with the general public. That led him to return to the store and demand her information so he could file a complaint.

It's hardly the worst retail "incident" to ever occur but it was still an ugly breakdown between customer and employee, and GameStop has now taken to Facebook to say that it's looking into the incident. "Regarding the GTA V Midnight Release Video: We are aware of this incident and are currently investigating the situation. We regret that this happened, as we strive to ensure all customers receive a great experience when visiting our stores," the company wrote. "We would like to extend an apology to the affected customer as well as any other customer that was offended by this event."

The promise of an investigation would seem to suggest that reports that the manager has already been fired are premature, and the customers on the scene appear to be firmly on her side - although perhaps mainly because the disgruntled individual was holding up the line. Internet commenters seem more inclined to take the customer's side, however, and it's hard to argue that the manager wasn't out of line, particularly near the end when she essentially celebrated with another customer.

Which side of the line you come down on probably depends largely on how many years you've spent in retail (and how many jerks you had to put up with) but the truth is that while everybody involved behaved badly, it's the manager who's responsible for keeping a lid on things - and who will, and should, shoulder the responsibility for failing to do so. We've reached out to GameStop for further comment and will update if and when we receive a reply.

Source: Facebook

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He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Honestly I don't think GameStop should ever bother with investigating this. Yes, it wasn't very professional of her, but it's hardly like it's such a big deal. He was clearly overreacting a little. However I guess given the circumstances it's understandable. People working on these midnight launches are stressed, some of those who go there to buy games are stressed, some are in a bad mood because of the time and the crowd. Really, there's a reason I prefer digital distribution.

She issues a threat, even sarcastically, to give away his personal info. That's the kind of thing people have raised awareness groups about. She was unprofessional, I think some of the crowd on her side didn't get the whole conversation and just sided with her because she worked there and he may have been seen as a lone a-hole, but then like Andy speculated, it could have been because they just wanted to get their game.

She was very unprofessional and very disrespectful. Being a big business doesn't give it's employees the right to shit on their customers, and her little parting shot was uncalled for.

Andy Chalk:
while everybody involved behaved badly, it's the manager who's responsible for keeping a lid on things - and who will, and should, shoulder the responsibility for failing to do so.

This is exactly right.

Trust me, in the heat of the moment when customers are yelling and being generally ridiculous, it's sometimes hard to keep your head. I don't think she handled it well, but I've been in that position and I don't think it would be a fireable offense. Not everyone can have idiots yell at them for 10 minutes and stay completely cool.

Dragonbums:
He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Now i firmly agree with this. It is not hard to pull out your ID and show it to someone... HOWEVER the moment she made that threat, joking or not, she had crossed the line. I have no sympathy towards the customer, there is no reason to get upset over something so trivial, but she should not have said a single thing. If she gets fired for it, I'm in complete support of that decision.

You can't place all the blame on the customer, he may have started a scene, but he WAS leaving, but she had ot make a comment, honestly, shes to blame for that part.

While I do agreed that is unprofessional of her (I work in retail which I do value customer satifaction alot even when the customer is a jerk) but how can you NOT have a valid ID on you if you were going to buy a age required proof product?

It's sad that employee will probably be fired over his tantrum. Hope that game is worth messing up someones life. :P

Anthony Wells:

Dragonbums:
He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Now i firmly agree with this. It is not hard to pull out your ID and show it to someone... HOWEVER the moment she made that threat, joking or not, she had crossed the line. I have no sympathy towards the customer, there is no reason to get upset over something so trivial, but she should not have said a single thing. If she gets fired for it, I'm in complete support of that decision.

You can't place all the blame on the customer, he may have started a scene, but he WAS leaving, but she had ot make a comment, honestly, shes to blame for that part.

True.
I do wish however, the Facebook and to extension the Escapist posted the full uncut version. You can tell it was cropped for a short attention span audience.
Notice how many of the other customers were throwing insults his way.
It's clear that the was causing a lot big of a ruckus than the video lets on.

At the end of the day, I don't want her fired at all. This supposedly went on for a full 10 minutes. At that point, I would've called security and he could be led out the door. However this is Gamestop. Security doesn't exist there.

She came Tired, flippant, and unprofessional. He came off rude, irrational, and demanding.
She was hamming for the camera made a bad joke. He had to make a big deal. This shouldn't be a public issue. And I hope no one loses their job over it.

Ukomba:
It's sad that employee will probably be fired over his tantrum. Hope that game is worth messing up someones life. :P

I would hope GameStop is smart enough to chalk this one up to frustration, but regardless of his annoyance, she should not have said what she said. Asking him to leave, explaining they have policy, that is one thing. "How about I give everyone you annoyed your email address..." Yeah that is not something I would want, would you?

Icehearted:
She issues a threat, even sarcastically, to give away his personal info. That's the kind of thing people have raised awareness groups about. She was unprofessional, I think some of the crowd on her side didn't get the whole conversation and just sided with her because she worked there and he may have been seen as a lone a-hole, but then like Andy speculated, it could have been because they just wanted to get their game.
.

This is also the kind of thing that bogs down our justice system. Save the courts for people who actually do something worth the time. If you pay attention to the video, someone said "Hey, you have his business card" so her statement was in response to that comment. She led along with a joke that was initiated by someone else..

This is a non-story.

In my personal opinion, he was a very rude customer. However, when she offered (joking or not) to give away his info that the store is supposed to hold in confidence to any random customer(s), she crossed a line. According to the US Information Privacy laws: "Information collected about an individual cannot be disclosed to other organizations or individuals unless authorized by law or by consent of the individual." This includes mailing addresses, phone numbers, and email addresses.

In short, she broke the law, whether in jest or seriousness. I have no pity.

Anthony Wells:

Dragonbums:
He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Now i firmly agree with this. It is not hard to pull out your ID and show it to someone... HOWEVER the moment she made that threat, joking or not, she had crossed the line. I have no sympathy towards the customer, there is no reason to get upset over something so trivial, but she should not have said a single thing. If she gets fired for it, I'm in complete support of that decision.

You can't place all the blame on the customer, he may have started a scene, but he WAS leaving, but she had ot make a comment, honestly, shes to blame for that part.

Exactly. As much as it sucks, as the employee, you have to keep a calm head and put up with it when people aren't cooperative. Don't get me wrong, you don't have to put up with outright abuse, but he never seemed abusive. Annoying yes, but not the worst customer in the world. I've dealt with custoemrs like this too. You don't know how much of a hassle it can be to card teenagers over game rentals, they give you a lot of lip that you just want to reach over the counter and smack them for and yes they held up HUGE lines. But that still doesn't put her in the right.

I worked in a Movie Gallery for 2 years, we had access to a LOT of information, a person's full name, address, email, and birthdate and therefore age. With that information I could have ordered a LOT of credit cards. So I can guarantee you that if *I* made a comment that I was going to share this information, I would have lost my job faster than a kid losing his lunch at a Chuckie Cheese's. It was in our contract that they had the right to fire us if we shared ANY information about a customer. Threatening to do that is not right, even if it is just an email, and then acting as if you've done nothing wrong afterwards is kind of bitchy.

Dragonbums:

Anthony Wells:

Dragonbums:
He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Now i firmly agree with this. It is not hard to pull out your ID and show it to someone... HOWEVER the moment she made that threat, joking or not, she had crossed the line. I have no sympathy towards the customer, there is no reason to get upset over something so trivial, but she should not have said a single thing. If she gets fired for it, I'm in complete support of that decision.

You can't place all the blame on the customer, he may have started a scene, but he WAS leaving, but she had ot make a comment, honestly, shes to blame for that part.

True.
I do wish however, the Facebook and to extension the Escapist posted the full uncut version. You can tell it was cropped for a short attention span audience.
Notice how many of the other customers were throwing insults his way.
It's clear that the was causing a lot big of a ruckus than the video lets on.

At the end of the day, I don't want her fired at all. This supposedly went on for a full 10 minutes. At that point, I would've called security and he could be led out the door. However this is Gamestop. Security doesn't exist there.

Again I agree had security been there, this would have ended much differently. Also I don't want her fired I did say that if Gamestop chooses to fire her then I will support their decision (basically meaning I'm not gonna suddenly stop shopping there and telling my friend to not shop there, etc. in a boycott, no I'm gonna stop shopping there because I can get everything cheaper on amazon.), but thats not necessarily what I want to happen.

Andy Chalk:
"We would like to extend an apology to the affected customer as well as any other customer that was offended by this event."

No. Fuck that. The guy was being a dick to YOUR employee Gamestop. Don't apologise to him.

Gah. In all my years of retail work I never felt support by management, who were too eager to lick customers bums, even when they were twats.

Thats the nost redundant thing I watched today (okay, thats a lie, but its close).
Two people, both acting like idiots. Someone call the police, cause this is definetly worth a shitstorm or two!

Blunderboy:

Andy Chalk:
"We would like to extend an apology to the affected customer as well as any other customer that was offended by this event."

No. Fuck that. The guy was being a dick to YOUR employee Gamestop. Don't apologise to him.

Gah. In all my years of retail work I never felt support by management, who were too eager to lick customers bums, even when they were twats.

I'm currently taking a management class in College, Honestly, while the customer WAS wrong, the Employee violated many many things when she threatened him, joking or not, she was wrong to do so, and thus management needed to apologize, even if they personally felt she was in the right.

Edit: its when the customer is wrong, and the employee does nothing wrong at all, where management needs to stand behind the employee.

He was a prick but I have no sympathy for her. If you work in retail or hospitality you either put on a smile and act friendly or call security. Under no circumstances do you ever threaten to give out personal information. It's like anyone working a job they don't plan on turning into a career just flat-out refuses to be professional when things get tough. If you're getting paid to do a thing then do it right.

Since i've been on both sides of this situation before (though not at a gamestop) I will say, yes, the lady should be punished because even if light hearted you shouldnt say would you likes omeone's personal information (even if it is a business card that is given out to people and thus could likely be easily obtained anyway). I mean, just cause people where dicks to me while i tried to serve them popcorn or rang items and they decide im the person to vent doesnt mean Im just going to hold up their debit card and say who wants to copy it.

The customer is wrong as well, because they should know store policy when picking up their items and raelly, what store honestly accepts a business card as identification without some other form of photo ID? do you know how easy that would be to steal identity (and property) if they did. How many business cards you can pick up just anywhere?

Its just an instance of severity and the woman's actions have far more severe consequences. The man doesnt need an apology since nothing was given out (or at least there's no evidence of it being given out) and he was uncooperative and making the process longer, but its just more of a PR thing.

Anthony Wells:

Dragonbums:
He literally could of just shown his ID and get it over with.
A arguably 10 minute incident could of been reduced to 5 seconds.

The length people will go to to cause a ruckus is ridiculous.

On the off hand though, she didn't have to say that specifically. But still. All could've been avoided with a quick check of an ID.

Now i firmly agree with this. It is not hard to pull out your ID and show it to someone... HOWEVER the moment she made that threat, joking or not, she had crossed the line. I have no sympathy towards the customer, there is no reason to get upset over something so trivial, but she should not have said a single thing. If she gets fired for it, I'm in complete support of that decision.

You can't place all the blame on the customer, he may have started a scene, but he WAS leaving, but she had ot make a comment, honestly, shes to blame for that part.

This. So much of this.

Sure, the guy was being an ass at first. I don't see why it is that hard to give an ID for an 18+ game. I have seen people around 15-16 that look much older than they are. However, threatening to share personal information is not an okay thing. Even if it is an offhand comment, it is incredibly unprofessional and quite frankly childish.

Also, was I the only one who wanted to slap the guy holding the camera in the back of the head when he started going, "Go play a game and steal stuff bro. Go steal car and kill people bro."? Ugh.

Yet another example of how most of humanity's problems stem from a lacking ability to communicate with eachother. Guy feels the need to posture and retain some sort of an alpha status, the woman feels the need to play to a captive audience that she has clearly garnered. It's all just one big ass ego contest and they both come out looking pathetic. No winners here.

Sad thing is, the whole thing could have been avoided with a bit of empathy and level headed communication (on both sides).

Yeah, it looks to me like blue shirt was being a complete asshat.

Maybe the manager's joke wasn't professional, but his response was utterly rude not only to her but to everyone else waiting in line while he took up more of an employee's time to have a tantrum during a high volume, high-pressure sale event.

Gamestop should support their staff, who have to keep their cool while working odd hours under high stress during such release events, not self-centered pricks who go nuclear at the first sign that someone doesn't agree the world revolves around them.

infinity_turtles:
He was a prick but I have no sympathy for her. If you work in retail or hospitality you either put on a smile and act friendly or call security. Under no circumstances do you ever threaten to give out personal information. It's like anyone working a job they don't plan on turning into a career just flat-out refuses to be professional when things get tough. If you're getting paid to do a thing then do it right.

I get the impression you've never actually worked in retail? Especially at a high stress time like christmas or a midnight release.
Sometimes there's an arsehole who pushes you way beyond the 'grin and bear it' threshold.

Anthony Wells:

Blunderboy:

Andy Chalk:
"We would like to extend an apology to the affected customer as well as any other customer that was offended by this event."

No. Fuck that. The guy was being a dick to YOUR employee Gamestop. Don't apologise to him.

Gah. In all my years of retail work I never felt support by management, who were too eager to lick customers bums, even when they were twats.

I'm currently taking a management class in College, Honestly, while the customer WAS wrong, the Employee violated many many things when she threatened him, joking or not, she was wrong to do so, and thus management needed to apologize, even if they personally felt she was in the right.

Edit: its when the customer is wrong, and the employee does nothing wrong at all, where management needs to stand behind the employee.

If she'd actually gone through with it maybe. But I still say they could have said "She was clearly joking, and you were being a tosser. Do one." In fancy management speak obviously.

Everyone looks bad here. The customer was being a bit of a prick when all he needed to do was show his ID. The manager made a stupid remark that she really didn't need to make.

If I were in the manager's shoes I'd have told the guy holding up the line to move aside and find his ID whilst other customers get served. Plus have whoever was at the door to tell anyone coming in to have their ID ready to avoid more trouble. She doesn't deserve to lose her job over this, but she could have certainly handled it better.

And the customer should learn to not be a prat to people who are just trying to do their job, especially when they could have stayed in bed and made you wait until normal business hours to buy a videogame. Plus he didn't even knock anything over in a rage, now he's lost his opportunity!

With the Fox News Network attempting to track and monitor every person who buys and plays Grand Theft Auto V, that customer had every reason to be concerned about the security of his personal information.

Miscommunication!

I'd say both are in the "wrong". She was a bitch when she mocked him as he left, and he was a jackass before that. Coming back to defend himself was the right thing to do. Don't let people step on you.

Blunderboy:
snip

I agree, no I agree in a perfect world that she should suffer no consequences since she put up with that crap, but its not a perfect world, there are rules and you need to follow them. She did not, thus she is at fault. Also I believe she IS a manager, which makes this situation oh so much worse then if she was just a cashier. Managers are expected to remain professional at ALL times, no. matter. what. I may have never actually worked in retail, but I know the pain, I see it in my grandmother, I read it in stories, and so on. I see it, but as an employee, you are responsible for remaining professional despite all the crap you get. Just making the threat in and of itself is going too far, no matter the crap you get, now let me reiterate, I agree she shouldn't be punished, Gamestop shouldn't have needed to apologize, and the guy should have been left an embarrassed wreck. But thats not how the world works unfortunately.

What controversy, just idiots being idiots...
What did you expect when you act like an ass for people to be real nice to you? No they will respond in kind, so do yourself a favor (when consideration for others seems foreign) and just not be an ass.

Anthony Wells:

Blunderboy:
snip

I agree, no I agree in a perfect world that she should suffer no consequences since she put up with that crap, but its not a perfect world, there are rules and you need to follow them. She did not, thus she is at fault. Also I believe she IS a manager, which makes this situation oh so much worse then if she was just a cashier. Managers are expected to remain professional at ALL times, no. matter. what. I may have never actually worked in retail, but I know the pain, I see it in my grandmother, I read it in stories, and so on. I see it, but as an employee, you are responsible for remaining professional despite all the crap you get. Just making the threat in and of itself is going too far, no matter the crap you get, now let me reiterate, I agree she shouldn't be punished, Gamestop shouldn't have needed to apologize, and the guy should have been left an embarrassed wreck. But thats not how the world works unfortunately.

I know what you mean, but honestly, spend one holiday season working in retail. It'll change your outlook.
I've said for years everyone should work at least one full year in retail/services. There'd be less asshats. :p

Both where idiots, I am on neither side. The manager should face whatever disciplinary procedures Gamestop have, whether its a verbal or formal written warning or termination if she has been disciplined before. Knee jerk sacking her because the video is on the internet isn't right.

The customer should get his implied right of public entry for Gamestop stores revoked, i.e. banned for his shameful behaviour not apologised to. Chances are he is prone to boiling up like that if a simple thing like asking for ID to confirm his pre-order set him off, he could easily go off again in another store and cause another incident.

Was the customer a dick? Yes, this situation was completely avoidable if he just flashed his ID. But in a retail position you can't rise to that, you have to take it with a smile on your face.

I have had people yelling obscenities at my face as their food was messed up(when it wasn't)and just stand there with a smile and try to dissolve the situation. One guy even shouting at the top of his lounge in our crowded dining room "How the hell do I leave this damn building!" We have literally one door that you both enter and exit from which is hard to miss(I mean you just walked in it...)

But she should not have done that at all. She fucked up and I can see her getting fired or suspended for this. If nothing else written up.

From the moment the manger said "You are so very welcome" and onward, that was her not doing her job properly. She should have kept her sarcastic comments to herself and gotten on with serving the waiting customers. Then this would have been just one unremarkable incident among an infinite number of dickhead customer incidents.

douchebag gets blasted on the web for being a douche?

seems like that'll knock him down a peg or two.

As a manager, she needs to grit through things, but on a midnight release while you're pissing off other customers, i cheer her on as a customer, but as a fellow former customer service worker, i know it's a big no no.

theApoc:

Ukomba:
It's sad that employee will probably be fired over his tantrum. Hope that game is worth messing up someones life. :P

I would hope GameStop is smart enough to chalk this one up to frustration, but regardless of his annoyance, she should not have said what she said. Asking him to leave, explaining they have policy, that is one thing. "How about I give everyone you annoyed your email address..." Yeah that is not something I would want, would you?

No, not that I honestly believe anything would come of it if she were to give it out. I just can't imagine throwing a tantrum like that in the first place, nor would I have given that threat any kind of credence.

If the address had been in the youtube video, that would be a whole different issue. Those store patrons wouldn't have cared or remembered, the internet is full of idiots who will gleefully harass people over less.

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