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Old 02-16-2013, 08:31 PM   #181
latepaul
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Yeah, it can be a whole lot more convenient. But that's not service, to me. Or, at least, not the entirety of it. And it was a comment on service that I questioned.
Well we can quibble over definitions of the word 'service' but what it adds up to for me is a reliably better shopping experience than I get at almost all B&M stores.
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Old 02-16-2013, 08:46 PM   #182
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Thank goodness there is an ignore list. I just found that out. Congratulations taustin, you are the first one on it.

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Old 02-16-2013, 08:59 PM   #183
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Thank goodness there is an ignore list. I just found that out. Congratulations taustin, you are the first one on it.

Regards,
Greg
Read the rules for the MobileRead forum. The quoted statement is not allowed.
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Old 02-16-2013, 10:54 PM   #184
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There's nothing wrong with browsing - provided you then buy at that store if you like the product. What's being objected to is using the store to examine the goods, and THEN buying the products elsewhere. That's just... wrong.
No. It isn't. It's free choice market capitalism. Which most CEO's are wildly in favour of until they start to find out that they're becoming the food in the food chain. At which point they start to complain loudly and demand special protective measures. c.f. the concurrent thread on banning municipal broadband to the benefit of cable companies.

Live by the market capitalism sword, die by the market capitalism sword.

Although it is quite amusing to see how many of the "hard headed businessman" types seem to be coming out against the unrestricted operation of the "market". I suppose after the shenanigans of the last few years I shouldn't really be surprised, they're all free market warriors until it's their rice bowl that's being broken.
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Old 02-16-2013, 11:26 PM   #185
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Which most CEO's are wildly in favour of until they start to find out that they're becoming the food in the food chain.
It's hard to be a moral CEO. They are under pressure from the stock market to keep down labor costs, which is partly why I keep on reading news stories about how poorly Amazon treats its warehouse staff.

A local independent bookseller is, on the rare occasion I use one's services, providing labor for me. While it is perfectly legal for me to use his or her labor without compensating he or she for it, it would bring me down to the level of a bottom-line, union-busting, CEO.

I don't think CEO's should be demonized, but I don't want to act like one either.
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Old 02-17-2013, 04:11 AM   #186
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Thank goodness there is an ignore list. I just found that out. Congratulations taustin, you are the first one on it.

Regards,
Greg
It's very, very said that you felt the need to say that publicly. Sad, and pathetic.
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Old 02-17-2013, 06:43 AM   #187
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No. It isn't. It's free choice market capitalism.
It is morally wrong though. The problem with that is that some people don't have any morals and even more so when it comes to making money. As you rightly point out, until they realise it's maybe affecting them too, then they rediscover some morals....
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Old 02-17-2013, 08:31 AM   #188
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It is morally wrong though. The problem with that is that some people don't have any morals and even more so when it comes to making money. As you rightly point out, until they realise it's maybe affecting them too, then they rediscover some morals....
Isn't it just as morally wrong to be bound to purchasing a book from a store that provides poor pricing, poor service, and poor aftermarket support just because it happens to be the first place you walked into.

There are also times when I've walked into a shop looking for information, only to be treated so disrespectfully that I could not buy from that store in good conscience. I have had sales people lie to me outright about a product's capabilities. Buying from them would be against my conscience as well. I have also dealt with salespeople who are so agressive that I've felt threatened. Again, buying from them goes against my conscience. As for the stores that have unknowledgeable sale people, I honestly don't see why I should feel obligated to buy from them.

Going into a store with the intent to garner information and buy somewhere else is a shortsighted in my opinion, but it isn't morally wrong. The ultimate goal of a salesperson is to convince a person to buy from a particular store. If they cannot convince the customer that it is worth buying from your store, they lose the sale because they aren't doing their job.
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Old 02-17-2013, 08:46 AM   #189
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It is morally wrong though. The problem with that is that some people don't have any morals and even more so when it comes to making money. As you rightly point out, until they realise it's maybe affecting them too, then they rediscover some morals....
No it is not an issue of morals at all.
It is an issue of ethics.
Check your definitions.
Laws are what the state demands of a "good" citizen.
Mores are the customs a community expects a good citizen to follow.
Ethics are what each of us believes to define proper personal behavior.
If you have legal standing, you can use the state to force obedience to laws.
If you can raise a mob you can intimidate acquiescence to mores.
But neither the state nor name-calling mobs can compel a person to adopt somebody else's code of ethics.

Unless a community vilifies you for walking out of a store empty-handed, it is not immoral. Unless the state passes a law forcing you to buy, it is not illegal.

All you can do to a person who does not conform to your code of ethics is call them unethical. And since 90% of humanity doesn't believe in ethics--just brute force and intimidation--they'll likely shrug it off.

If you truly believe browsing is wrong, contact your MP to pass a law. Or mount a picket to raise awareness of this issue. If your community shares that belief and sees it as a violation of mores and customs you'll find plenty of support.
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Old 02-17-2013, 09:44 AM   #190
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Well I'm not going to argue over whether it's a question of ethics or morals, but I don't mean that in general terms browsing is wrong.

What is wrong, is taking advantage of the knowledge and expertise of a shop & it's staff with no intention of purchasing the product from them. I appreciate that not many people will care either way, but there is a difference between doing that and just idle browsing or actually going in to perhaps buy something.

If people want to argue that is just free market choice and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it, carry on. In my moral code, you are wrong. But like you say fjtorres, tough sh*t for me then, eh?!
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Old 02-17-2013, 10:43 AM   #191
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What is wrong, is taking advantage of the knowledge and expertise of a shop & it's staff with no intention of purchasing the product from them.
I worked at Borders during its last months. We werren't supposed to use our "knowledge and expertis" in making recommendations. We had a book each week we were supposed to push, and people could get fired for not hand-selling enough of that week's bookl (the only two I liked were The Lost City of Z, which I found fascinating, and The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.)

So, if a guy came in for action/adventure, push Guernesy Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, if that was the book of the week. Some woman comes in asking for urban fantasy, gotta push Lost City. It didn't matter what the customer wanted, gotta push the book of the week (most of which were chick lit).

This kinda soured me on asking the waiter what's good tonight, or the electonic salesman which of two thingies is better.
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Old 02-17-2013, 11:07 AM   #192
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It is no more free market economics--that handy-dandy bugaboo of the age--than it is morality. All it is is standard-issue human ego. Everybody is the main protagonist of the story an everybody else exists for their convenience.
High-minded values always give way to personal convenience; "I want" always wins, one on one, so you need numbers to create mores or guns to create law if you want to sway the masses.
And in retail, if you don't have the masses you don't have a business.
For an example of why charging admission to bookstore is a non-starter just look at the disaster that was Barnes & Noble's holiday sales; they didn't just face reduced sales--times are tough and people buying less books is no shock--but they suffered reduced traffic. People weren't even browsing.
And to add insult to injury, even small booksellers that typically discount less than B&N saw good sales; it wasn't bargain hunting that did them in.
Regardless of the ethics of browsers and moochers and shoplifters some issues are part of the cost of business and making a crusade out of them will only make matters worse by inconveniencing the paying customers.
Before you can sell anybody anything, first you need their attention and you can't get their attention if you drive them away with fees and "taxes". That is not compatible with human nature.
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Old 02-17-2013, 11:27 AM   #193
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I own a jewelry store and and people have always shopped for the best deal. You can spend hours with a customer educating them on loose Diamonds. Showing them what to look for. Explaining the grading system. Showing them different diamonds in different shapes.And then they will go buy from someone who offers them a similar stone for $50.00 less, then making it back and more by over charging for the mounting. This is human nature and I for one do not see it coming to an end any time soon.
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Old 02-17-2013, 11:57 AM   #194
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I own a jewelry store and and people have always shopped for the best deal. You can spend hours with a customer educating them on loose Diamonds. Showing them what to look for. Explaining the grading system. Showing them different diamonds in different shapes.And then they will go buy from someone who offers them a similar stone for $50.00 less, then making it back and more by over charging for the mounting. This is human nature and I for one do not see it coming to an end any time soon.
Apache
I agree, it's not going to change/end any time soon. This happened in every retail job I ever worked before internet shopping came along and after.
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Old 02-17-2013, 12:13 PM   #195
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Well I'm not going to argue over whether it's a question of ethics or morals, but I don't mean that in general terms browsing is wrong.

What is wrong, is taking advantage of the knowledge and expertise of a shop & it's staff with no intention of purchasing the product from them. I appreciate that not many people will care either way, but there is a difference between doing that and just idle browsing or actually going in to perhaps buy something.

If people want to argue that is just free market choice and there is absolutely nothing wrong with it, carry on. In my moral code, you are wrong. But like you say fjtorres, tough sh*t for me then, eh?!
Is it wrong when I go to a bookstore, scan a ISBN with my phone to get Amazon reviews, and then buy from the bookstore? I'm taking advantage of Amazon's infrastructure, the 1000s of man-hours they put into designing the software that runs the site and the server bandwidth, with no intention of buying.

Is that wrong? Or is it only wrong if it harms a business model you have a nostalgic attachment for?

The people in this thread that are saying that it's some combination of wrong, immoral or unethical to browse but not buy are confusing morality with personal preference.

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