Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Dear PC World

For the game yesterday I felt I needed a print-out of the adventure, rather than trying to run it from the tablet. (In retrospect... yep, this was the right call.) And so on Saturday afternoon I set it printing, which it duly did.

Very, very slowly.

Anyway, about half past midnight, the printer came to a halt having used up not only all four of the fitted ink cartridges but also the entire content of the replacement blue cartridge we had in stock. Which meant that we couldn't finish the print job that night. (We actually also needed more paper, but that was less of an issue.)

So on Sunday morning I went out to PC World bright and early. And, luckily, they still stock the required cartridges. (It's now a very old printer, so that's becoming less certain each time.) Huzzah!

This is necessary context for my two-part rant.

Firstly, I'm disgusted to find that PC World now have their ink cartridges fastened to the shelf with security tags - I wasn't able to select the item I wanted, take it to the till, and proceed to pay; instead I had to find an assistant, get them to get the item for me, and then take that to the till to pay.

The big problem with that is what it says about PC World's assessment of their customers. Apparently, their baseline assumption is that we'll steal those cartridges if they're not locked down. Well, frankly, I don't like being treated like a thief. Find another way.

But, if we get right down to it, I can understand that measure. I guess they probably have been seeing a lot of ink getting stolen, and so have take counter-measures. Disgusting as it is, there's probably reason behind it.

Secondly, though, what is totally unacceptable is that there weren't any assistants available on the shop floor. I had to go to the till to find someone, in order to take them across to the ink cartridge I wanted, for them to then go get the required tool, in order to free up the ink cartridge, so that I can take it to the till and thus pay. All of which took about ten minutes for a process that should have taken seconds.

That's a joke, and a bad one at that. If you absolutely must lock down your stock so customers can't get it, then you absolutely must have staff on hand to get it for them. And those staff absolutely must have the required tool on hand to unlock those security tags.

(Though, also, there's a related rant: dear PDF vendors... printer-friendly PDFs, damnit!)

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