Friday, May 11, 2007

Racketeering charges against Best Buy and Microsoft still won't die!

Perhaps in honor of the release of the sequel to the popular zombie horror movie 28 Days Later, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco ressurected the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act charges against Microsoft and Best Buy. Racketeering case against Microsoft, Best Buy revived
Microsoft and Best Buy are facing racketeering charges in a case first brought seven years ago that alleged consumers had MSN accounts activated and were charged for them without their knowledge when they purchased new PCs.


In the Microsoft/Best Buy case, plaintiff James Odom complained that during the purchase of a new computer at Best Buy, he was enrolled in a free-trial subscription to Microsoft’s MSN Internet service without his knowledge and then charged for the service once the trial period had expired. He says other customers paying with credit or debit cards also were enrolled in the same fashion.

The claims, if true, may or may not count as racketeering, but they are definetely bad manners. Then again, Best Buy doesn't exactly have a stunning track record of being concerned about their customer's feelings.

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1 comment:

Flatland Pastor said...

So often these days clients are simply viewed by businesses as a necessary aspect of the work that must be "dealt with". The customer is no longer "King". The customer is a "market segment" to be exploited for maximum return.

When a bad reputation and bad behavior isn't enough to end a business, this is the result. So I guess this one maxim regarding the marketplace remains true - You Get What You Pay For.