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The Last Will and Testament of Circuit City

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the oh-the-huge-manatee dept.

Businesses 600

Harry writes "Sunday is the final day of business for Circuit City, the once-dominant national consumer electronics chain done in by the rise of Best Buy, the crummy economy, and multiple failings of its own. I paid a final visit of respect to my local store, and found that they'd gotten rid of just about all the unopened electronics products, and were therefore selling off stuff like broken computers and the toilet-paper dispenser from the restroom. Whether or not you were ever a fan, it was a sad scene." NPR has a segment on the end of the Circuit City era as well.

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sad? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114371)

"Whether or not you were ever a fan, it was a sad scene"

Newbie.

Stephen King (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114441)

"Whether or not you were ever a fan, it was a sad scene"

Hey, that reminds me of something...

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - electronics retailer Circuit City was found dead in its Stripmall, Illinois home this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't enjoy his work, there's no denying its contributions to mass market electronics. Truly an American icon.

Sorry, netcraft doesn't confirm it! (2, Funny)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114611)

Results for circuitcity.com

Found 12 sites
        Site Site Report First seen Netblock OS
1. www.circuitcity.com Site Report march 1996 adsl endpoints nat conections only linux
2. entertainment.circuitcity.com Site Report june 2004 alliance entertainment corp. f5 big-ip
3. email.circuitcity.com Site Report june 2006 epsilon interactive f5 big-ip
4. investor.circuitcity.com Site Report november 2002 nasdaq stock market windows server 2003
5. circuitcity.com Site Report january 1998 akamai technologies linux
6. weeklyad.circuitcity.com Site Report november 2003 westwood vista shopping center linux
7. newsroom.circuitcity.com Site Report may 2004 nasdaq stock market unknown
8. media.circuitcity.com Site Report august 2008 trueffect, inc. linux
9. ssl.circuitcity.com Site Report august 2004 akamai technologies linux
10. answers.circuitcity.com Site Report january 2009 adsl endpoints nat conections only linux
11. internalforum.circuitcity.com Site Report september 2007 ibm f5 big-ip
12. business.circuitcity.com Site Report december 2004 ibm unknown

I suspect 4, 6, 7, 8, 10 and 12 will be dead soon, and wouldn't you like to be a fly on the wall for 11 :-)

Really? (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114401)

Circuit City cut their own throat in a series of dreadful missteps(culminating in their brilliant "Hey, let's sack all the halfway competent salespeople and attempt to hire them back at downright insulting newb wages" scheme), their demise is well deserved. Even in death, their prices are high and their service lousy. Why is their death sad?

Re:Really? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114455)

I'll second that.

We always called them "Circuit Shitty," and not just because of their service, but also their prices and the quality of stuff they carried.

Re:Really? (5, Insightful)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114473)

Why is their death sad?

For a lot of people the only substantial consumer electronics retailers are best buy and circuit city. After circuit city is officially gone, best buy will have numerous markets without even token competition for consumer electronics (unless you count walmart).

Hence even losing a lousy retailer is still a loss for the consumer. One could potentially expect to see best buy starting to carry even less variety of product, as they won't have much to worry about competing against.

Re:Really? (5, Insightful)

Sponge Bath (413667) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114531)

...best buy will have numerous markets without even token competition

Buy online. Between newegg and Amazon I get everything I need with no hassle and good prices. The only time I have bothered to go to a brick and mortar store like BB in recent memory was for a cable. After seeing how outrageous the price was I went home and ordered that online as well. I'll pay a 100% premium for a last minute local need, but not a 1000% premium.

Re:Really? (4, Informative)

Saint Stephen (19450) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114887)

I like Office Depot things I used to go to BestBuy or Circuit City for that I don't buy on NewEgg. Cables, SD cards, maybe a keyboard, a landline telephone. They have a nice selection.

Re:Really? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27115035)

One drawback I find with buying non-media products from Amazon, as opposed to in a store, is that they put absolutely zero effort into checking the product before it ships. I've ordered very few non-media items from them, but have had two separate occasions where the product was severely damaged in a way that couldn't have happened during shipping - e.g., the shipping box for one item was fine, but the product's box had severe water damage. I've bought many, many more electronics in physical stores and never had to deal with people trying to sell me something with such obvious damage.

That written, I've yet to have problems returning things to Amazon and do still order non-media from them occasionally. I just keep my expectations low that things will work out right the first time.

Re:Really? (1)

Hijacked Public (999535) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114535)

Where are you that you don't have the internet?

And how are you posting to Slashdot?

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114727)

Where are you where you can just walk down to "The Internet" and buy some piece of consumer electronics the same day? And not wait a week for it to be shipped? Or wait maybe a day or two at outlandish next-day shipping rates?

If I have a sizable order (let's say I'm building a new computer or server or whatnot) or time isn't a major issue (upgrades), sure, internet ordering is the way to go. But if I've got something that suddenly goes up in magic smoke, I'm going to want it fixed yesterday, not whenever it gets shipped to my apartment, and certainly not with a ridiculous next-day shipping surcharge. I'm going to go to some sort of brick and mortar store where I can walk out the door with the object in question already in my hands, waiting to be installed.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114809)

I've read this exact same copy pasta post three time now.

Re:Really? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114845)

And you still have that option. You can get that part from Best Buy, or from one of your local computer stores. With less competition, you may pay dearly for that level of service, but that's your choice.

I, for one, am glad to see CC go, and I have no problem with BB ripping people off with ridiculous prices in the absence of competition. If you're too stupid to go online to newegg.com, then you deserve to be ripped off at BB. If whatever you're doing is SOOOO important that you must have a replacement part immediately, then you can pay BB's huge markup, or you can pay for overnight shipping. If you don't want to pay those, then having your computer back up that very day isn't very important to you.

Re:Really? (1)

Smidge207 (1278042) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114547)

After circuit city is officially gone, best buy will have numerous markets without even token competition for consumer electronics (unless you count walmart).

Agreed. Only the strong survive, after all. Soon we will be a nation of Wal*Mart, H&R Block, Enterprise Rent-a-Car, Toyota, Comcast and Best Buy...reminds me of the horrible scene form Idiocracy..."Welcome to CostCO, I love you...Welcome to CostCO, I love you...Welcome to CostCO, I love you...Welcome to CostCO, I love you..."

=Smidge=

Re:Really? (1)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114567)

So let's count Walmart, Cost-Co, and the numerous other places that retail consumer electronics. After all, their share of the electronics market is obviously going to go up, and nobody's ever claimed Walmart wasn't competitive.

Re:Really? (1)

JonBuck (112195) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114585)

We have Fry's Electronics here also. But the Best Buy is three miles away, the Fry's is 16 miles.

I find I buy more and more electronics on Amazon anyway. With Prime, I can get it in a day for four bucks. Ordered a 26" Samsung HDTV that way.

I'm sad to see Circuit City go.

Re:Really? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114827)

I was going to buy my HDTV online until I saw that newegg considers you signing for it accepting of any flaws, including dead pixels.

Online is fine for some things, but things likely to be broken in shipping are a risky gamble.

Re:Really? (1)

Grishnakh (216268) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114875)

That's why, on the very rare occasion that I buy an LCD TV, I buy it from Costco. The price is low, and there's no shipping cost, and I can take it back if there's a problem.

Bought 3 HTTVs (2, Informative)

mikefocke (64233) | more than 5 years ago | (#27115011)

First a Mitsubishi from their one brand store as it was really the only game in town. Next from Sears as they had a decent price and I was there after visiting Best Buy and not deciding. 2 days ago after visiting WalMart where they were out of every one of a size and brand I'd consider, was it Costco and drove home with it. Their selection was medium, price good, condition of box (and product on installation) perfect, sales pressure/help not needed.

Interesting article in Business Week on liquidators and how they operate. Don't expect bargains until the last days when there is darn near nothing anyone wants left. It wasn't Circuit City people selling in those last days, it was the liquidator setting the prices and hiring the existing staff.

Re:Really? (2, Interesting)

cyn1c77 (928549) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114621)

Why is their death sad?

For a lot of people the only substantial consumer electronics retailers are best buy and circuit city. After circuit city is officially gone, best buy will have numerous markets without even token competition for consumer electronics (unless you count walmart). Hence even losing a lousy retailer is still a loss for the consumer. One could potentially expect to see best buy starting to carry even less variety of product, as they won't have much to worry about competing against.

I guess I view it differently than you. The loss of a lousy retailer provides an opening for a better store to compete in the electronics market. It's capitalism at work... out with the old and weak and in with the new.

CC went out of business because they were not able to maintain their relevancy. Now there are free customers and space in town for someone to try out some new business concepts in the electronics market.

Personally, these days it's hard for me not to just order what I want online. And I don't do that because it is cheaper, I do it because it is easier than driving down to the store, parking, wading through all the other shoppers and trying to find the item I want. The retailers never carry the computer monitor or accessory that I want in the store anyway. (No, I don't want integrated speakers on my monitor, thank you.)

Re:Really? (1)

nEoN nOoDlE (27594) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114719)

For a lot of people the only substantial consumer electronics retailers are best buy and circuit city.

This is only the case for the uninformed. Everybody has access to any consumer electronics they want off of the internet. I haven't bought any consumer electronic device from Best Buy or Circuit City in years, and Best Buy's product list is now so generic that you could buy anything they have at Target or WalMart instead. I have a feeling that Best Buy will be in the same boat as Circuit City in a few years, as the sales people are just as uninformed, and the products are just as overpriced.

Re:Really? (1)

easyTree (1042254) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114847)

I have a feeling that Best Buy will be in the same boat as Circuit City in a few years, as the sales people are just as uninformed, and the products are just as overpriced.

What are they gonna do though? Increasingly we (certainly I) expect a salesperson to demonstrate the in-depth product knowledge I could find on the 'technical specifications' tab of some product page on the web.

Given that their wages come out of your pocket, there's an incentive to lower their wages yet this runs counter to the desire to reward knowledgeable staff with decent pay.

Perhaps consumer expectations will drive all bricks-and-mortar stores out of business or to the brink of survival, maintained through subsidy from their internet presence?

Re:Really? (1)

mR.bRiGhTsId3 (1196765) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114743)

I think Office Depot/Max have started to expand into the electronics area. They don't really carry TVs, but they do have computers, printers, cables and other things. Between that and Walmart (a great deal of people probably turn to them first these days), which does have some intriguing selections of high end electronics, I wouldn't say competition is dead, it just doesn't look quite the same.

Re:Really? (5, Insightful)

jlarocco (851450) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114761)

Circuit City only went out of business because most consumers already realized Best Buy, Walmart and the Internet offered better deals. In other words, they weren't even competing when they were in business. If they were offering a decent alternative they'd have been able to get enough customers to stay in business. If anything this just forces Circuit City's few remaining customers to wake up and realize what everybody else already knew: better deals can be had else where.

And I wouldn't worry about Best Buy becoming a monopoly. There's still Walmart, Target, Fry's and Ultimate Electronics. And then there's the Internet with hundreds of websites competing against Best Buy and each other.

Re:Really? (1)

mh1997 (1065630) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114969)

For a lot of people the only substantial consumer electronics retailers are best buy and circuit city.

Then let's just hope this internet thing catches on.

Re:Really? (1)

Luscious868 (679143) | more than 5 years ago | (#27115007)

Best Buy has plenty of online competition even if it's the only physical retailer in an area. I think that will keep them on their toes.

Ya pretty much (5, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114491)

I quickly had written it off my list of places to go when it was in business and hadn't been there in years. When they were shutting down, I figured I'd go and check to see what kind of deals were available. Answer? None that I could find. Most things were no better than retail, I could go to Best Buy and get the same price. Oh sure they were "marked down"... but they'd been marked up first. There were a few things I saw that were lower than you might see in most brick and mortar stores, but not by much and not any lower than you'd find online.

I never understood why they thought that their high prices were sustainable. I mean I understand that retail stores charge more than online. No problem, you are paying for the convenience. However they charged more than other retail stores. Well guess what? I can drive to Best Buy just as easy.

Also you can justify higher prices with better service/experience. Some high end AV shops are like that. The prices are high, even when you consider the gear they sell (which is already very high priced) but the service is top notch. You can spend hours milling around, trying out things. They have knowledgeable people who will answer your questions and such. Thus you are willing to pay more.

Well CC didn't have that, at least not the ones I'd tried. Their sales people didn't know shit and were rather pushy.

Ok so if you aren't going for the service, and aren't going for the price, why go? Well the answer to that question for me and apparently many others was "you don't." Thus they are out of business.

I feel bad for their employees as this is not a good time to be looking for a job at all, and probably doubly bad looking for a retail job, but I do not feel bad for Circuit City. They were a crap business, and that's the whole idea in a capitalist market: You run a crap business, you fail and are replaced by someone better. Best Buy is by no means perfect, but they are better than CC.

Re:Ya pretty much (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114849)

Yeah, they were always the last place I checked when shopping for electronics. I did get my TV there - bought the floor unit of a discontinued model at a very good discount. During the going out of business sale, I did pick up an UPS for $5 less that it was selling for online, and saved a good bit more by not paying shipping, so that was nice. I had to laugh though, overhearing some poor mother explain to her pre-teen daughter that $16.99 is not a good price for a CD even if they claim it is 20% off.

What I like to know is where their managements are (2, Insightful)

Lead Butthead (321013) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114561)

Circuit City cut their own throat in a series of dreadful missteps(culminating in their brilliant "Hey, let's sack all the halfway competent salespeople and attempt to hire them back at downright insulting newb wages" scheme), their demise is well deserved.

What happened to their boneheaded execs that cut their own throat? Took their golden parachutes and went screwing other companies?

Re:What I like to know is where their managements (1)

mR.bRiGhTsId3 (1196765) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114765)

Not necessarily, it never looks good when a company liquidates under your leadership.

Re:Really? (2, Insightful)

boyko.at.netqos (1024767) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114705)

I'll second you on "Prices high."

By the time I checked in, the store was sparse as hell. However, everything - even with the discounts - was about the same price as I could get from Best Buy, down the street. I actually looked up the price of the big stack of HDTVs they were selling - you're trying to sell me a $1400 TV for $1500, claiming that you're doing me a favor by marking it down from $2200?

Good Riddance.

Re: YA RLY (1)

lordofthechia (598872) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114799)

Why is their death sad?

I think many people remember Circuit City from when it's employees were paid on commission (and were competent). I worked for them for 2 years in that time while I saved up for college, and I was amazed at the education and professionalism of the staff there. The sales people (Sales "Counselors" at the time) were encouraged to spend their time ensuring all the equipment was in good operating order, tidy up displays, and study up on new product info. They even had a monthly magazine for "each" department where they would have pretty in depth articles.

Here's the important thing, most sales people knew that the way to make the big bucks in sales was to get your customers to remember you *and* recommend you to friends. This meant wowing them, being polite, and giving them sound advice. Through caring about their customers many of the salespeople of that time were pulling between $25,000 and $50,000 a year. Yes the extended warranties sucked but the salespeople were required to sell a certain percentage of their volume in them.

As far as the service, CC was proactive in pricematching the competition, when the website came up, they matched their on-line pricing, and most importantly, they had one of the best customer data systems I've seen. Though it looked dated, the system CC used allowed any employee to quickly pull up any old receipts for any product you've bought. This meant that returning or exchanging an item without the original receipt was a painfree experience.

Open box items were always marked down aggressively to move them off the floor (which also gave an incentive to visit some stores frequently). This is in stark contrast to other stores which will mark down a product a paltry 5-10%.

I'll miss Circuit City, mainly because of the quality store it was. Though it had changed in recent years, I still got better service from CC stores than I did at their main competitor. I'll miss idly stopping by the stores to check up on open box deals. Lastly I'll miss my Sunday morning routine of digging through the paper for the burgundy colored sales ads.

Re:Really? (1)

Reziac (43301) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114975)

Once upon a time we had a very nice Circuit City here. It was in an older strip mall across the street from the Walmart. The store was comfortable, the selection was good, and the employees knew their business. It was a good place to pick up this and that, even if you weren't looking for a big ticket item.

The store upped and moved 20 miles away to a new mall. Prices went up, the available selection of products went downhill, and all the knowledgeable sales people vanished. And after one very disappointing visit, I went away and never returned.

If my experience is typical... no freakin' wonder they went out of business.

Re:Really? (1)

poena.dare (306891) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114977)

No shit. I try to stay away from the fallacies of social Darwinism, but if there ever was a poster child for business Darwinism it would be Circuit City. A thread downstream here claimed that even the loss of a bad retailer is bad for the consumer. Fuck that, the world's average business IQ will go up a fraction of a point when those assholes are in the ground.

Have a walk down memory lane with the Circuit City Timeline:
http://consumerist.com/5082090/timeline-how-circuit-city-came-undone [consumerist.com]

Re:Really? (4, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#27115013)

Because at one time they were an AWESOME company. They were the first big chain to accept returns for any reason, no questions asked. At the time, it was a big idea, there were newspaper articles trying to figure out how they could afford to do that. Their motto was "Come to circuit city. Where service is state of the art."

Then over time, other companies started accepting returns for any reason as well. The gimmick of "matching your competitor's price" stopped bringing in as much traffic. People in the US aren't actually willing to pay for good service, so the service quality started to decline, and they failed to keep up with their competitors.

But back in the day, they were really innovative (well, as innovative as one can be as a chain retailer).

Great place to work (5, Funny)

Sesticulus (544932) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114425)

I remember in the early nineties when the Circuit City car audio installation department employed all those otherwise out of work recent EE grads. Good times.

Where do EE majors work now? The wife is looking for work.

Re:Great place to work (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114449)

The wife is looking for work.

Is she a good lay?

Just kidding.

Re:Great place to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114541)

I hear she has a weakness for Anonymous Cowards

Re:Great place to work (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114789)

Yeah. She's prom-night tight, too. Or, at least until I started tapping it. She said her husband was hung like a chink.

Re:Great place to work (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114479)

Where do EE majors work now?

India or Micky D's...

Re:Great place to work (1, Funny)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114489)

Where do EE majors work now? The wife is looking for work.

Clearly, you jest. You really expect us to believe you are married and you read slashdot?

Re:Great place to work (2, Funny)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114649)

AND his wife is an engineer?

FRAUD.

Re:Great place to work (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114769)

Wow, tough crowd on Sunday morning.

Re:Great place to work (5, Funny)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114729)

Clearly, you jest. You really expect us to believe you are married and you read slashdot?

Believe it or not, even geeks can get married. Slashdot has been around a while now and the demographic is getting older.

This has resulted in something akin to sublimation [wikipedia.org] ; many Slashdotters have gone straight from not getting laid because they can't get a girl to not getting laid because they're married. ;)

Re:Great place to work (2, Informative)

Renraku (518261) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114653)

When I took my previous car to Circuit City to have some stuff installed (four speakers and a head unit, nothing fancy) they screwed it up, double-charged my debit card, AND charged me for the full rate instead of the special rate.

They could have resolved the problem in an hour. By having someone skilled to go in and fix the wiring/install errors, and by either giving me cash or some kind of proof that the money would be put back into my account. Did they do it? Nope.

The same guy worked on my car again, and didn't see anything wrong. Even though the rear and driver side speakers went in and out as I was driving. Then he charged me for another install. The assistant manager told me that I'd have to take it up with corporate, that they have nothing to do with refunds or billing errors.

Long story short, I got my refunds processed (with some extra, for my trouble I guess), and the setup ended up being fixed by the guy's supervisor. But the general 'fuck the customer' attitude is what got them in this mess to begin with.

Best Buy, however, is about the same as far as customer satisfaction goes. They've always been the highest-priced of the general consumer electronics vendors, narrowly beating Circuit City. The Best Buy employees are paranoid and skittish, because they could be canned at any time when a sub-manager wants to hire his friends so they can sit out back and smoke weed on the clock. They could be canned if enough people say 'no' to their magazine subscriptions, candy sales offers, and/or extra warranty options. I suspect their prices will drift even higher now that they realize they have no major competition, other than from Wal-Mart.

Re:Great place to work (5, Interesting)

IKnwThePiecesFt (693955) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114923)

Okay, so I know I'm sticking my neck out here by admitting this on /., but I work at Best Buy. I can also say that no one in a Best Buy store below a supervisor position has any fear of losing their job any time soon unless their store is SEVERELY under performing. Maybe it's not the whole company, but I'll tell you at my store if a supervisor wants to fire someone and goes to a manager (since a sup can't fire an employee) the first thing the manager will ask is what the sup has enacted to correct the behavioral issue with the employee. We're not graded on magazine subscriptions and haven't been for a year+ and even then it was only cashiers that ever were (not salespeople) and I doubt anyone actually got fired for it. As far as selling the service plans, we have periodic corporate memos going to all employees that care to read them saying that the service plan is not for everyone and that our job is to let the customer know they have the option, not that they have to have it. Sure management would like you to try to sell it and show the value in the plan, but no one CAN get fired for not selling a service plan, let alone actually does.

Say what you will about the customer experience but don't claim the employee experience is something it's not.

Was decent, once upon a time (5, Interesting)

MaineCoon (12585) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114431)

Years ago, when I first moved to California, I had never seen a Circuit City, only Best Buys (and was suitably appalled by BB and business practices, they tried a bait and switch on me once).

I found the Circuit Citys I saw to be clean, maintained, decent prices, friendly employees. But then, a few years ago, I noticed a reversal taking place - the CCs near me had become, for lack of a better word, 'ghetto' - unfriendly employees, broken equipment on display, and lack of product - while the Best Buys had cleaned up and trained their employees. I switched back to BB, occasionally walking into CCs, and finding them just getting worse and worse.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (5, Informative)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114639)

That's because they fired all their employees and offered to rehire them at a lesser wage [signonsandiego.com] . Some Exec somewhere decided that 'knowledgeable' and 'trained' employees were stupid for the kind of job CC did so lets replace them with some HS kid off the street that doesn't know a thing.

The ONLY reason I set foot in a brick and mortar store is to feel in my hand what I'll be buying online. I did it with my Rebel XT before I pulled the trigger on an awesome online deal.

Best Buy and Circuit City have both appalled me as of late with the prices of their cables. $30 for a 6' USB cable? Sometimes if I know I'm going I'll take a MonoPrice print out and stick it up by the cables.

I have to wear headphones when I go in too because of the insane amounts of stupid spewed by the staff. On more than one occasion I've corrected something they were telling some poor soul.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (1)

peragrin (659227) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114829)

i routinely tell people to find what they want in BB or CC, and then go to amazon online and get that exact item number. They are usually shocked by how much they save. When my sister wanted a new HDMI cable for the new blue ray player I convinced her the $60 that BB wanted wasn't worth it. She ordered the exact model from amazon for $20, passing up on other even less expensive versions.

BB though is struggling itself. every time i walk into one it is poorly laid out, with 90% of the customers confined to a quarter of the store. If they can't figure out something simple like how to layout a store to get people to walk around it then they won't get very far when real competition sets in.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114949)

That's because they fired all their employees and offered to rehire them at a lesser wage [signonsandiego.com] . Some Exec somewhere decided that 'knowledgeable' and 'trained' employees were stupid for the kind of job CC did so lets replace them with some HS kid off the street that doesn't know a thing.

I've seen some people attempt to blame CC's decline on this; there was even a news story about it. However Circuit City's decline - at least in stock price - started many months before they pulled this dirty move.

Unfortunately it seems to be a fairly common practice for clueless CEOs and boards (who almost certainly are the real reason for any company's significant decline), when faced with declining profits and stock values, to think "hey, we can solve by firing our "overpaid" current staff and replacing them with low-wage drones!"

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (3, Insightful)

kuzb (724081) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114807)

I found the exact same thing happened to Radio Shack up here in Canada. It used to be the go-to place for all things electronic. As a kid I remember getting all my project kits and much of my early computer equipment there. The staff were slowly replaced. They went from knowledgeable people who knew what a diode was for to people who had problems operating a screwdriver.

Then as the years went on it got more and more ghetto. The electronics were cheap and the store was littered with useless novelty gadgets nobody wanted. The staff got more and more aggressive with pushing their extended warranties. I worked there for a short time as a kid and the EWPs (Extended Warranty Plans) are pushed so hard it is amazing. Customers are hounded for all their personal details and the staff are trained to tell them it is for warranty information - whether an EWP was involved or not. The wage was hourly but you got more if you sold more of their useless trash and EWPs as it went from an hourly wage to commission if you sold enough.

When Radio Shack got bought out and became 'The Source' it got even worse. My once beloved Radio Shack had become the dictionary definition of everything I hate in a store.

One might ask what all this has to do with Circuit City though. In 2004 Radio Shack was bought out by Circuit City from InterTAN. It then became 'The Source by Circuit City'.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (4, Informative)

tomhudson (43916) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114901)

If you hate it now, you're gonna get to hate it even more in the future ... Bell wants to buy 'The Source by Circuit City' [cnn.com] so they can pimp their crappy sympatico and bell mobility brands, screwing their franchisees in the process.

Sounds like a marriage made in heaven. After all, there's no love lost for BCE either.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (1)

kuzb (724081) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114957)

It no longer matters to me since I refuse to set foot in one of those stores again. I would urge anyone else to do the same. They are terrible.

Re:Was decent, once upon a time (3, Insightful)

Brianwa (692565) | more than 5 years ago | (#27115017)

Sometimes when it's 4pm and you need a diode right now and are willing to pay ten bucks to get it, you have no choice but to go to the most well equipped radio shack in the area and shell out.

Dibs! (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114433)

I call dibs on the lady that worked in printers.

they cant even go out of business right (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114463)

here in washington they couldnt even go out of business right!! The prices at 40% off were either the same as best buy or more!!

Re:they cant even go out of business right (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114641)

If they can get people to *think* they're getting 40% off in the frenzy, that's all that matters. Doesn't really matter if people realise that it wasn't that great a deal later on and say "I'm never shopping there again!"

IIRC there was some legal loophole allowing them to claim "40% off" compared to the old prices; something to do with the "40% off" being relative to the prices set by the administrators when they started running the company.

Personally, I found Zavvi [wikipedia.org] 's (ex. Virgin Megastores UK) closing down prices to be nothing special for similar reasons. They had the likes of 20% off (I think rising to 40%), but I noticed that one item they'd been selling for 7 or 8 quid (competitive with Amazon) was at £20 pre-discount. Nothing special... but that was Virgin/Zavvi all over.

The same retailer that- along with HMV- was selling full-price back catalogue CDs for approaching £15 (and even breaking through it at one point) back in the 90s and early 2000s, before they started getting competition from the likes of Fopp (RIP), large supermarkets, Amazon and P2P downloading.

Re:they cant even go out of business right (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114835)

I know for a fact that they raised the prices on the DVDs. They didn't mark the DVDs down, but it was 10% or 20% off the sticker price, which had gone up from the day or two before when I was browsing them.

Overheard (5, Funny)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114469)

and were therefore selling off stuff like broken computers and the toilet-paper dispenser from the restroom

At the checkout:

"You know, I've got a couple of these toilet paper dispensers, and they always seem to jam at the most inopportune times. Could I interest you in purchasing our exclusive 5-year extended warranty protection plan for only $179 more? It would really give you more peace of mind in the bathroom."

Re:Overheard (1)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114569)

yeah god i hate that extended warranty crap they try push on you. when they mention it and i'm spending more than a grand i ask for it as part of the deal or i walk out. clearly offering it means they have no faith in their product lasting, right?

What took so long? (3, Insightful)

grapeape (137008) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114507)

Circuit City was dead to me when they lauched their DIVX plan back in the late 90's between that and their jacked up warranty policy (back then if you returned an item that you had purchased an extended warranty for, they pocketed the warranty fees) I had vowed never to step foot in one again. I managed to steer free from CC until a few months ago when I went by the local one to pick over the corpse during its going out of business sale.

They didn't know who they were competing with (4, Insightful)

mrroot (543673) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114519)

I really think their biggest problem is the whole time they thought they were competing with Best Buy, but they were really competing with Target, Walmart, and online retailers like Newegg, Buy.com, and TigerDirect. Best Buy should try to learn from their demise.

Re:They didn't know who they were competing with (2, Funny)

Smidge207 (1278042) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114591)

Will you be my Facebook friend? [ ] Yes [ ] No [ ] Maybe [X] Fuck no.

Even in death they sucked (4, Insightful)

gelfling (6534) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114525)

Even under liquidation they were selling their stuff for maybe 10% off. I can't tell you how many I watched walking out and telling each other "This is why they're going out of business..."

Re:Even in death they sucked (1)

thomasw_lrd (1203850) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114563)

We were in the market for a new TV, and decided that since Circuit City was going out of business we would check it out. After walking in their and then double checking Target, Target was much cheaper even after taking the 20% discount off of Circuit City's price. Hence, I'm not sorry to see them go.

Re:Even in death they sucked (5, Interesting)

Megatog615 (1019306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114609)

Actually that sort of thing is handled by the liquidation company and in no way is set by the former Circuit City management.

Basically, as in all liquidation sales, they put everything up to MSRP, then take 10%(or whatever the starting discount is) off. Chances are you'd have gotten a better deal the week before liquidation began.

Re:Even in death they sucked (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114711)

I agree. I went in there a couple of weeks ago to see if there was anything worth buying. Even with all the discounts I couldn't find a thing. I was actually in the market for a keyboard - for which I would normally pay $0-$5 - and couldn't find anything under $50. They were selling 500G hard drives for more than it cost me to get a 1T drive months ago.

In general, retail prices suck - but retail stores do offer you the opportunity to try products in person. What we need is some hybrid model, say for example an Amazon store.

In such a store they would have many products on display or people to answer your questions about them, and for books they could have ebook readers and comfy sofas to let you browse most of their selection (most of it is print-on-demand anyway so they could do this), but there would be no need for the warehouse at the back for stock. You try things out there and order either there or at home, and a few days later your item is delivered.

There is of course no guarantee that people would actually buy the product from Amazon rather than anywhere else, but by providing such a service the company would gain goodwill, and they already manage that a similar risk when it comes to their review system. If a company makes it really convenient for you to figure out what you need, and they provide you the option to buy at a reasonable price, most people will buy. Companies like Amazon already provide that to some extent, but you can't try the product unless you find a retail store that carries it. And those are dropping like flies.

Places like circuit city make it easy for you to believe that what they want to sell you is the thing you want, and they give you the option to buy at an unreasonable price. That's a lose lose scenario.

Re:Even in death they sucked (1, Informative)

Blaaguuu (886777) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114739)

Herein lies the problem. People who have never worked retail don't understand how it works. I worked at CircuitCity for a little while, and it was generally enjoyable. I liked my managers and co-workers, and it was nice selling stuff I knew about (computers). We weren't on commission, but I was still occasionally annoyed with the constant little pushes from the managers to sell more 'protection plans' and Firedog services. But that is somewhat understandable, since they are a couple of the few things that they actually make a profit on, since they have to see actually computers pretty much at-price, or even at a loss, to compete with online stores, and even BestBuy/Walmart. Every day I came in, I am all of my fellow sales associates did our best to greet every customer, and help them out. I think our store had excellent customer service... But do you know what drove me to quit working there? The customers. You. There were plenty of customers that came into the store to do some shopping, and sure enough, I and them had a perfectly enjoyable experience. But then there are the customers that come in looking for a hard time, and sure enough, they get a hard time, and so do the sales associates.

On the subject of the liquidation prices... Ofcourse they weren't giving everything away on the first day. They are still in the business of making money up through the last day they will be open. The liquidation prices have nothing to do with the old CircuitCity prices. That 10% is off the MSRP... And most stores sell things like computers and TVs at way below MSRP already, so ofcourse the first days of the liquidation werent going to have the best deals. As long as someone will buy it, they aren't going to lower the price, which is why they progressively raised the % off over the course of the liquidation, to something like 80% off most things on the last day for the store near me. But ofcourse the store was picked clean of anything actually useful by that point. Though I did manage a couple open HDMI cables that had been used on displays for $2 each.

Re:Even in death they sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114935)

I can't tell you how many I watched walking out and telling each other "This is why they're going out of business..."

Why not, are you under a non disclosure agreement or something?

Another perspective on the closure (5, Insightful)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114529)

This is a letter [timesdispatch.com] in the Richmond Times Dispatch today giving a Circuit City workers perspective on the closure and the almost lynch mob attitude of people after bargains once the closure was announced. (Richmond is/was the headquarters of the company). The letter starts off as

"I am writing this message in representation of the employees of Circuit City here in Richmond who are having to deal with inexcusable conditions being brought on by customers with retribution. Walk into any Circuit City store on any given day and you will find a handful of employees and a sea of customers. The fact that people have flocked to our stores en masse on a daily basis, creating Black-Friday style crowds, has been insulting to our employees and our business alike.

Where was this support when we needed it? Liquidation, for us, has brought great havoc on a series of levels. I've been working for the company for almost two years, and I have never seen anything worse than I have seen over the past month. Customers have gotten enraged over the fact that our discounts aren't good enough for them."

While I only shopped there if I wanted something *now*, I did go in once the closures were announced and you could see people loading up on stuff just because it was some % off. I never saw anything that I couldn't get a similar deal online at the time (and also came with warranty) so I couldn't understand the why people descended on the store en masse. The only explanation I can think of is a feeding frenzy brought on by greed. So from that perspective I can understand where the letters author was coming from

Re:Another perspective on the closure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114577)

I think it's partly because they didn't really have any advertising until their going-out-of-busines sales.

Re:Another perspective on the closure (1)

Megatog615 (1019306) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114631)

I worked for store #3628 in Maryland and this is exactly how it was.

Re:Another perspective on the closure (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114709)

Where was this support when we needed it?

That's called a delusion. There is no "support". These customers are vultures. They're there to pick up the remains, not to help anybody. Why would people be enraged about unsatisfactory discounts? The store is going out of business, warranties will be nonexistent, some of the hardware is not in the original packaging or any packaging, some of the hardware is even damaged, yet even with the discounts CC asked more than other stores charged for new hardware in mint condition, with warranty. Why would people be enraged about that?

Sure, nobody should take it out on a lowly employee who's about to be unemployed, but on the other hand no lowly employee should feel responsible. When it's over, indifference can help keep the situation calm. It's just business.

What do they expect? (5, Informative)

voss (52565) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114905)

1) customers do not owe businesses "support", If a business treats their customers with courtesy, good service, and respect for their intelligence they will earn customer loyalty even in bad times.

2) Customers tend to get outraged when they hear about 40% off sales and then go in and see that the 40% off item was marked higher than it had been the week before the sale started. Its not a matter of "didnt get the discount they wanted" its a matter of being suckered into a store and having their time wasted.

3) Their customers didnt kill their store, their bosses did. They shouldnt blame their customers for simply looking for an honest bargain.

eh (1)

Knara (9377) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114551)

I was never really a huge fan of Circuit City I still miss Computer City, though. Was pretty good in my area.

A sad day (5, Insightful)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114553)

It was a sad day when Enron closed its doors after making horrible management decisions that cost their employees, customers, and the general public billions. But curiously enough, nobody ever blames management. "The market is bad." Yes, the big bad evil market -- tell me, even in a recession or depression, does the market for electronics suddenly disappear? No. It might shrink, but a business that's properly built will shrink with it, not simply die off. A corporate mass-extinction like this has only one cause: Bad management. Period.

Re:A sad day (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114825)

It was a sad day when Enron closed its doors after making horrible management decisions that cost their employees, customers, and the general public billions. But curiously enough, nobody ever blames management.

Huh? In the Enron case, they certainly did! [wikipedia.org]

And the bank chiefs in the UK are the ones being vilified and getting stick for what happened. (But eh... they'll still mostly keep their fatcat bonuses and pensions, despite the best attempts of Her Majesty's Government to backtrack over their unpopular agreement to let them keep it when they nationalised the banks, and pretend that they opposed it all along [bbc.co.uk] .).

What you describe was true in the majority of situations until recently, but it's changing now... partly. Thing is, too many will still get away with blaming it on the economy.

Re:A sad day (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114859)

But curiously enough, nobody ever blames management.

Because doing that would put their salaries, credentials and individual existences in jeopardy.

Never liked CC stores (3, Insightful)

enderwig (261458) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114581)

I never put much stock into the psychological games retailers play to get you to buy products until I went into a Circuit City. Whoever they got to design their stores obviously didn't understand what makes people feel at ease and happy. Every time I stepped into a CC, I couldn't wait to get the hell out. Something about the layout, the ceiling, and/or the lighting just made me feel uncomfortable. Then on course, you had the staff. When you wanted help, they were no where around. When you wanted to be left alone, they came in droves.

I admit their online->in store pickup functioned much smoother than Best Buy's.

Re:Never liked CC stores (1)

boyko.at.netqos (1024767) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114755)

It did kind of creep me out. My local Circuit City only opened about 9 months ago. The first day I stopped in, I decided to browse, to see what they offered and what the prices were, etc. Hey, new store, maybe they have something Best Buy didn't.

In every goddamn department, I was bothered by someone asking me if they could help me, and if I'm finding everything alright. I expected it the first time - but after about six times with six different staff members, I actually complained to the manager about it.

"We're just trying to be helpful."

I now know what I'm finding so distasteful about it - when I was browsing, I was interested in looking at what they had, and my concentration was on browsing. My concentration got interrupted every time I was interrupted; "Can I help you" only helps when you're looking for a specific product.

Re:Never liked CC stores (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114917)

>

In every goddamn department, I was bothered by someone asking me if they could help me, and if I'm finding everything alright. I expected it the first time - but after about six times with six different staff members, I actually complained to the manager about it.

"We're just trying to be helpful."

I now know what I'm finding so distasteful about it - when I was browsing, I was interested in looking at what they had, and my concentration was on browsing. My concentration got interrupted every time I was interrupted; "Can I help you" only helps when you're looking for a specific product.

Keep in mind, the next five people probably didn't know you already turned down the first. Some people, shy people wanting help, do like being asked. I'm not like that and I too hated being talked to by staff. I'm shy too, so I felt they were asking because the managers wanted them to ask and so felt complicit in "forcing" them. Staff in these stores are damned if they do and damned if they don't. The problem for customers now is that instead of comparing CC vs. BB flyer specials, and having local and direct competition, you're left with whatever Best Buy offers if Target/Walmart/etc aren't around (urban markets like Manhattan).

What's worse is that there is one less retailer that the electronics makers can use as leverage against Best Buy. The toy makers bend over backwards trying to keep Toys R Us alive, because when they go down, it's nothing but Chinese plastic that'll be moved through Walmart. Nothing creative and new (albeit still mainly made in China). Basically, the business ecology just got a little closer to monoculture.

Re:Never liked CC stores (1)

IKnwThePiecesFt (693955) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114999)

It's a lose-lose that no one who has never worked retail will understand. If a customer is greeted, they may complain. If they're not greeted, they may complain. It happens both ways and my money is that the execs have determined the chance of annoyance by having every customer contacted whenever possible is lower than the opposite.

As far as being greeted once in every department, what do you expect? "Oh, I see that Mike in computers is talking to that guy so if he comes over here I better make sure to leave him alone as to not double-greet him"

Seriously, what do people want? If the sales associates just hang out and wait for you to approach them, people will bitch that they're lazy and reluctant to help. If they come ask if you need help people complain that they're nagging you even if each person only asks you once. These are salesmen, not mind readers. There's no way to discern someone that's browsing from someone that needs help without asking.

Re:Never liked CC stores (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 5 years ago | (#27115021)

    That's exactly why I didn't shop at Circuit City.

    I went in on very very rare occasions, usually when someone asked me to go with them. I can summarize every visit as the same.

    A half dozen or so people would ask "Can I help you?". We'd get to the department where the item would be, see the price was way over what it should be, compare other items, all at higher than expected prices, and within just a couple minutes, be asked "Can I help you?", frequently by the same "friendly" people who already asked me and I told them that I was fine.

    On the way back out, I'd be asked at least a half dozen times "Can I help you?" even though I made no eye contact, and wasn't even looking at the items. I was walking *THROUGH* the department, not shopping in that department. Obviously, there's nothing you can help me with in that department.

    Mind you, I'm not downright rude. I will smile and nod, or even say "hi", in the casual "hi, I'm walking past you, but I'm not trying to start a conversation" kind of way.

    When I'm shopping, I know what I'm looking for. I generally know all the specs on the item in question. I can read the price tag. Outside of that, what can they really help me with? I approach sales people if I can't find something. I never ask questions unless I want to entertain myself by seeing if the people in the department have a clue.

    I'm a good customer. I come in, I buy things, I leave. I don't waste anyone's time, and I'm in the store for as little time as possible.

    It was very rare in any store to find a sales rep who knew the product that I was looking for. I may be a little behind the times on a few things, like car stereos (I haven't wanted or needed to change one in several years). More often than not, regardless of the store, I've overheard conversations between customers and sales reps, and they'd spew incorrect information.

    The new CompUSA folks have been cooperative though. I can't say the stores I've been in are great, but at least they admit when they don't know something. I was looking for an IDE (aka PATA) laptop drive for an old tablet. They didn't have any in stock, and told me that they honestly didn't expect to get any in. I asked about the drives in the external carriers. They didn't know if they were PATA or SATA, and they helped me look online. When I asked to do the searching because I'm faster, they let me. They didn't hover. They didn't try to upsell. They were available, but not pushy.

    If I get pushy, hovering, overly friendly "can I help you, let me stalk you through the store until you let me help you, I won't leave you alone until you buy something", I leave.

    It's the same reason I won't give my name and phone number when I go onto a car lot, if I just want to read the price tag. Those bastards will keep calling you for months trying to make the sale.

Hopefully... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114605)

Ford and GM will be next. It will be sad to seem them go, but someone smarter than the idiots running those companies will fill in their places.

Nobody bailed out Edsel and Packard and tons of other motor corporations 'back in the day' that went under, and the world kept on turning.

If you get lazy and don't inovate or rape your customers (Circuit City) then you eventualy lose. BestBuy is big now sure, but the same thing will happen to them eventually, especially at the rate they discard customers.

CC closing is sad (3, Interesting)

keytohwy (975131) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114633)

It is sad for so many employees there. It is certainly easy for us to sit here and comment on how crap their knowledge was, blah, blah, blah. But in reality, most of the people that worked there were not bad people. They were in a bad business, though. Their company did not support them through adequate training, etc. Couple this with declining margins, and the bottom falling out of several of their key products (PCs, TVs, etc) and they didn't really stand a chance. So all of the points here are valid, but I really feel for some of those folks that showed up, and worked to the best of their abilities. This is a shitty time to be looking for a new job.

Re:CC closing is sad (1)

Doctor_Jest (688315) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114775)

It's true, but in effect we're seeing the same thing that Wal Mart did to the Main Street independents. The difference here is that online is taking larger retailers. Wal Mart did it on price, and online can beat just about any B&M store. It's a shift that occurs in an ever-changing market, and Circuit City hastened their demise by piss-poor management decisions. Best Buy is next. B&M can't compete with online in terms of price. So the only thing left is service, and Best Buy isn't exactly high-quality in that regard. I still prefer to use B&M for my large TVs, but for just about everything else, I can save oodles of money (even with express shipping) by buying online.

It remains to be seen what shakes out... but I'm not putting my money behind Best surviving the online onslaught.

Inflating prices. Haha. (1)

zymano (581466) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114657)

Prices are still crap.

Never had good luck with Circuit City (3, Interesting)

david.emery (127135) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114721)

There's the time I was pricing DVD drives, and got thrown out of the store because I dared to -write down- prices.

And the time we bought a 'open box return' DLT TV, and the bulb blew out a couple weeks later. The installer pointed out there was about 150 hours on the bulb, a lot more than you'd expect for an 'open box', but consistent with this as a demo/floor model.

My neighbor had a disastrous experience with their installation service, he ended up having to redo it all.

And of course, that's before their dumb-assed management failures. Unfortunately, I'm sure the -corporate officers- won't suffer (except in the loss of future rip-off income...)

So Good Riddance, Circuit City! You sucked!

Re:Never had good luck with Circuit City (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114961)

I look forward to Apple closing down for the same reason.

A few words (0, Redundant)

Hao Wu (652581) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114733)

"Whether or not you were ever a fan, it was a sad scene."

I just heard some sad news on talk radio - Circuit City was found dead this morning. There weren't any more details. I'm sure everyone in the Slashdot community will miss them - even if you didn't enjoy their work, there's no denying their contributions to layoffs and unemployment. Truly an American icon.

Good Riddance (1)

that this is not und (1026860) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114759)

In my personal experience, the place was full of sharpie sales clerks with an attitude. I was treated like a freak when I went in there wanting a USB to RS-232 adapter. It was like 'who would want something like that?'

I've detested Stereo Store Salesmen since I was a young teen, wanting connectors and what-not. Particularly because I always know more than them. And that's basically what Circuit City was packed with. Hucksters with an attitude.

Same old Circuit City, even in its last days (1)

SwabTheDeck (1030520) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114787)

I haven't owned a game console in a few years and I had become jealous of some of my buddies' XBoxes, so I decided to pick one up during the liquidation. I managed to pull 30% off, which actually is a pretty good deal on something like a game console, which usually will have a very strict price set by the manufacturer and is constant at any place you try to shop for it (including online). Of course, when I got it home, I realized it didn't come with an HDMI cable, and that's the online type of inputs my current monitor has (plus old timey VGA). So, I crawled back to Circuit City expecting a good deal on a cable. I found two crates full of 3 ft HDMI cables, priced at nearly $40 apiece (this is the price AFTER the discount, and about a quarter the cost of the console itself... wtf). They were all Monster brand, of course. I asked around to see if there were any cheaper ones, and I was told that there weren't. By pure chance, I happened to find one in a torn up box, that was shoved in the wrong place. It was another 3ft cable, but it was different than the others and had no price on it. After looking around for someone for about 10 minutes, I found one of the sales dudes and he told me it was $18, but that he had been hoping to pick that one up for himself. I halfway felt bad for him, but if he really wanted it, he could've stowed it somewhere. Anyway, it was only through sheer luck that I managed to not get screwed by them on my very last outing to that store.

Re:Same old Circuit City, even in its last days (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114907)

Actually that you really can't blame on CC. All retailers charge way too much when it comes to hdmi cables. Actually $18 is still a little expensive when you consider that you can buy them for less than $10 online and get the exact same signal.

Re:Same old Circuit City, even in its last days (1)

tylersoze (789256) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114915)

It's not just Circuit City, never *ever* buy cables at places like Best Buy, Radio Shack, etc, either, or you will be completely raped. Always buy online at places like monoprice.com

Re:Same old Circuit City, even in its last days (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114931)

Unfortuantly you still got screwed for a 3' HDMI cable, they're $4-6 online

Re:Same old Circuit City, even in its last days (1)

mochan_s (536939) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114981)

. It was another 3ft cable, but it was different than the others and had no price on it. After looking around for someone for about 10 minutes, I found one of the sales dudes and he told me it was $18, but that he had been hoping to pick that one up for himself.

You paid $18 for an HDMI cable and you didn't think you got screwed.

Have you heard of Monoprice [monoprice.com] ?

And, you fell for I want to get it for myself trick?

I managed to pull 30% off, which actually is a pretty good deal on something like a game console, which usually will have a very strict price set by the manufacturer and is constant at any place you try to shop for it (including online).

XBox has holiday bundle, 20GB or 60GB bundles, jasper and other chipsets etc etc. Buying a new xbox isn't that straightforward.

More retailers to come (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114841)

Borders and Blockbuster - coming to a bankruptcy near you!

bye bye (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27114861)

Bury their ass in unused Divx DVDs.

The Real Reason Circuit City went under (5, Funny)

microcars (708223) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114899)

from : http://www.barracudamagazine.com/downcline/commentary/circuit-city-cant-locate-any-help/ [barracudamagazine.com]

The company was unable to reach a deal with a new buyer or secure debt refinancing.

Mexican billionaire Ricardo Salinas Pliego, had been named as a potential buyer of the troubled retailer, but an agreement was not reached.

"We were just looking to buy one company," said Pliego in a statement, "We were sure it would just be an easy in-and-out. Five minutes, tops."

However, during takeover negotiations, Pliego said he stood around Circuit Cityâ(TM)s executive offices waiting for someone to show him "a balance sheet, an income statement, a cash flow statement, anything."

After fifteen minutes of being ignored by Circuit City executives, Pliego decided to try to find the documents himself. Frustrated, Pliego ultimately tapped acting Chief Executive James A. Marcum on the shoulder and told him he couldnâ(TM)t find the financial statements he was looking for.

Marcum said he would go in the back to check if they had any more. He reportedly did not return.

"I think he went on break," said Pliego as he stormed out of the building, sarcastically muttering to himself, "Sorry to bother you."

Hopes of making an 11th hour deal with the Golden Gate private equity firm broke down late last night after the organization became annoyed by a hard-sell on an extended warranty plan.

Maybe Microcenter will fill the CC void? (2, Interesting)

mark_osmd (812581) | more than 5 years ago | (#27114987)

My whole state of Maryland only has one Microcenter and it's miles from me. Microcenter seems to have very conservative growth plans. I'm hoping this will interest them in moving into the void left by Circuit City, MC is way better than BestBuy or Circuit City.
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