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Walmart Rejects Firefox and Safari

CmdrTaco posted more than 7 years ago | from the also-dalmations-have-spots dept.

The Internet 555

babooo404 writes "Last week, Walmart launched their online video download service. Immediately there were posts that the service did not work with the Firefox or Safari browsers. There was a collective, "WTF" when this happened as this is 2007, not 1997. Now it appears that reports are out that Walmart has completely turned off the ability to get into the application at all by Firefox, Safari or any other browser it does not like."

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WTF? (5, Funny)

DeeZee (84216) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972036)

And the internets was all like "double-you tee eff, mate?"

Re:WTF? (1)

Wornstrom (920197) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972262)

LMAO, if only I had mod points... that is an awesome end of the world flash animation...
But seriously, f*$k Walmart anyway, if they only want to cater to the internet exploder using drones then so be it.

Re:WTF? (4, Funny)

rsborg (111459) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972582)

And the internets was all like "double-you tee eff, mate?"
Hokay... [albinoblacksheep.com]

The old alliance parter program (4, Interesting)

mgabrys_sf (951552) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972040)

Raises its ugly head. I can't tell you how many development groups I'd seen hobbled by outside politics vs real-world applications and logic. Sounds all conspiracy theoryish, but in the world of marketing, you can't get away from these things. Looks like Wall Mart got the Microsoft Kool-Aid.

Re:The old alliance parter program (4, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972230)

I don't know about partnership programs, but I do know that I've run into a couple of websites that use Flash media which claim that the latest version distributed by Novell as part of OpenSuSE 10 is not complaint. Yet as far as I'm aware the versions correlate, so it's just bad scripting on the part of bands and others who insist on using Flash in their websites, not a problem with the deployed tools or browsers.

I've never liked the idea of coding to a browser. Use the standard query tags to determine the browser capabilities, and let any ugliness fall on the head of the vendor who ships incompatible crap. At very least, default to pure W3C, not Microsquishy.

Re:The old alliance parter program (3, Insightful)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972372)

Looks like Wall Mart got the Microsoft Kool-Aid.

I think Microsoft got the former CIO of Wal-Mart and that relationship appears to be influencing Wal-Mart's choice of technology. Only a massive blast of the Ballmer arrogance death ray could convince Wal-Mart to karate CHOP 35% of their potential customers.

Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (5, Funny)

Ridayah (945429) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972044)

I mean come on, doesn't everyone know that the internet is run on Windows software and IE is the only REAL web browser! Anyone who uses anything else MUST be a hacker trying to break their site.

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (1)

jrothwell97 (968062) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972104)

Precisely. The service is primarily geared towards computing beginners who would know about nothing but IE. Mainly because M$ is being monopolising and people will never have heard of Macs or Linux.
There was that campaign to get an ad for OpenOffice in the papers, why can't someone do something similar for Linux?

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (4, Interesting)

CRCulver (715279) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972242)

I mean come on, doesn't everyone know that the internet is run on Windows software and IE is the only REAL web browser! Anyone who uses anything else MUST be a hacker trying to break their site.

I don't think it's that at all. WalMart is so profitable because it targets average middle America. Its niche happens to be precisely the vast bulk of people who don't know much about computers and stick with the default Internet Explorer. Because the company targets this niche so successful, it obviously would feel little need to ensure that its site works with the minority of users who use other browsers. It's not fear of hackers, it's just a desire to do as little work as possible.

In any event, should we really care about not being to shop online at Wal-Mart? Check out a report like Fishman's The Wal-Mart Effect [amazon.com] (New York: Penguin, 2006) and you'll be convinced to take your business anywhere but there. At the same time you help Grandma install Firefox to beat the constant threat of spyware and adware installation, you might also want to do a good turn by doing some shopping for her at a locally-owned store...assuming you have any left.

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (3, Interesting)

Ridayah (945429) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972310)

Having a small-town business in my family, as well as most of my friend's families owning their own businesses, I agree with the get local first. And I haven't set foot inside a Walmart, much less bought from them, in over 3 years.

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (0, Troll)

2Dumb2B4Gotten (952658) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972398)

Come on, man. The average Wal-Mart customer isn't going to use a credit card on the Internet tubes and allow their identity to be stolen by the Trilateral Commission, the Freemasons or the Ilumminati. Sheshhh.....

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (0)

2ms (232331) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972472)

There's really no excuse whatsoever for making a site that only works on a non-w3c-standards-compliant browser rather than a compliant browser. The only possible explanations for this are simple laziness failure to take the trouble to make it work in both (which really isn't much), or deliberate failure. It's easier to make a site compliant with Firefox than it is IE -- IE doesn't meet the standards, it has its own unwritten rulebook, whereas to make a site that works in Firefox you simply follow the definitions/guidlines set by (and exlicitely, widely documented) the W3C.

It's not as if making a site compatible with IE requires incompatibility with Firefox, it basically just takes the occasional javascript (document.write html) If(IE){}, Else{} branching here and there. This is merely a little more work. It's basically unheard of for a site from huge company like Walmart to only be compatible with one browser.

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (1)

DreadfulGrape (398188) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972626)

re: "I don't think it's that at all....It's not fear of hackers, it's just a desire to do as little work as possible."

I believe parent commenter was employing sarcasm, Christopher...

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (5, Informative)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972304)

I mean come on, doesn't everyone know that the internet is run on Windows software and IE is the only REAL web browser! Anyone who uses anything else MUST be a hacker trying to break their site.

This would be funny, if it wasn't true. This was coming 1:1 from the mouth of one of my big clients (and otherwise a smart fella), just 10 months ago.

I would explain in a long tirade how Firefox is picking up and so on and so on. He'd just say "Nah, don't spend a second testing in Firefox, they'll have to use a REAL browser /IE/.".

Of course, I was secretly testing in other browsers for the hell of it, since I'm your typical thickheaded geek.

A month ago, the same client comes back crying that something broke the feature in the new Firefox 2.0. The irony.

(Also, turned out the issue was from a tweak HE made, after reverting it was ok.)

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (0)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972432)

He's not an "otherwise smart fella", he's a douche. You aren't "smart" if you're a good doctor, but a bad driver, or a good mechanic, but a lousy brain surgeon.

Re:Of course they wouldn't use Firefox or Safari (2, Interesting)

aaronwormus (716976) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972502)

See, when clients come begging that is the perfect time to MONETIZE! Except of course if you're a thick-headed geek and already programmed valuable features on your own time ;) It's difficult to develop such complex functionality using DRM for multiple platforms. I don't see a problem in selecting the most cost efficient platform and then working from that.

Boycott Walmart! (1, Informative)

TimTerrific (986289) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972594)

The simple solution. I wouldn't shop at Walmart if it were the only store in the nation.

User-Agent (5, Informative)

apathy maybe (922212) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972052)

Which is why I use a user-agent that says "I am not a Googlebot/2.1". But change it to IE or something else if websites don't like it.

Re:User-Agent (4, Insightful)

g2devi (898503) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972186)

It's not always possible. Sometimes websites use IE-specific features like VBScript or ActiveX or other IE-specific features (or bugs) as a test.

Re:User-Agent (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972462)

Dont use those websites then, duh, nobody forces you to give money to them. It is their loss more than it is yours, Im sure you can find a similar or same product elsewhere. Has everybody in Amerika forgotten how to think or are they just sheeple now? "Must give money to walmart, must give money to walmart"... drones.

Re:User-Agent (2, Interesting)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972444)

And add to the problem by 'proving' that the majority of browsers hitting the site are MSIE.

what do you expect? (4, Funny)

Peter La Casse (3992) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972058)

They're not called the Evil Store Of Death for nothing.

I wonder ... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972070)

I wonder who developed the video download site for walmart. It doesn't look or feel anything like the rest of their site.

Re:I wonder ... (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972212)

HP Video Merchant

Re:I wonder ... (1)

WgT2 (591074) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972488)


Who ever it was: they can't serve it fast enough for /.

Shocker... (4, Insightful)

ChowRiit (939581) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972074)

Shocking revelation: one big profit driven multinational corporation being paid by another big profit driven multinational corporation to do something they probably shouldn't be doing. Whatever next?

Re:Shocker... (1)

drooling-dog (189103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972330)

Because... anything done with a profit motive is holy and beyond criticism?

Re:Shocker... (4, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972332)

IIRC, there was a big splash last year about Walmart selling Linux PC's. So it was reasonable to hope for a little while that, although they are undeniably mighty and evil, that they might be fighting the equally mighty and evil Microsoft, thus (however unintentionally) serving the forces of good. Kind of a Stalin vs. Hitler thing. Now it seems the nonagression pact is back in force.

Re:Shocker... (1)

nwbvt (768631) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972642)

Why do you assume they have been paid off just because their app doesn't work with multiple browsers? Lots of apps out there are specific to IE, especially when they first come out. I remember even gmail, the hero of the non-MS world, didn't originally work with Opera and had questionable support for Firefox when it was first released. Its not a big MS conspiracy, its laziness by the developers. Yes, its been slowly getting better, but I disagree with the statement that now its considered unacceptable for something to be IE only.

Hrmph. Serves them right. (4, Funny)

BrianRaker (633638) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972078)

I guess they just lost the chance in getting my money.

Well, I take that back, they never had a chance at getting my money.

Re:Hrmph. Serves them right. (4, Insightful)

wcb4 (75520) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972220)

precisely why they do not care about what browser you use.

Re:Hrmph. Serves them right. (1)

fyw (883590) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972410)

Just another in a long list of great reasons NOT to shop at WalMart :-)

It's their business. (5, Insightful)

onion2k (203094) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972080)

Firefox users by their very nature are the sort of people to try something new. Firefox is something you have to go out of your way to install on Windows, it's not bundled with Windows, and so I rather suspect that the 15% (approx) of internet users who have it as their primary browser are among the top 15% of people who are most likely to try a new video download service. Walmart are blocking the very people who will try this thing.

Now, if I were a Walmart stock holder I'd be asking some very searching questions about whether or not the board is acting in my best interest with this move. If I invest in a company I expect the people running it to work to make my investment pay a good return. Hell, they have a legal duty to do so (in the UK where I live anyway).

Re:It's their business. (1)

UglyTool (768385) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972238)

Not to mention x% of Apple users who are not able to access their video service at all!

I'm not a big fan of Wal*Mart at all, but maybe if the price was right I could have gotten interested. The point is moot because, as I was writing, proofing, and rewriting my post I have been trying to load their video download beta on both Firefox 1.5.0.9 and Safari 2.0.4. I really don't understand, unless there is some sort of tin-foil hat thing going on, why they can't make it accessible to *everybody*.

Hmmm....

I wonder if there's a lawsuit in here somewhere.....

Re:It's their business. (1)

drooling-dog (189103) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972350)

Now, if I were a Walmart stock holder I'd be asking some very searching questions about whether or not the board is acting in my best interest with this move.
I think Walmart is privately held (i.e., not a public company), so they should be safe from shareholders' suits...

Re:It's their business. (1)

jumpingfred (244629) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972420)

Walmart is not privately held. It is one of the largest (by market capitalization) companies. Ticker symbol WMT.

Re:It's their business. (1)

thestuckmud (955767) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972464)

Walmart is traded on the big board, symbol WMT.

iMedia ? (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972092)

What are Apple users doing going to Walmart to get media, don't they have iMedia or somthing vastly superior to anything Walmart & Microsoft would produce ?

Re:iMedia ? (1)

repruhsent (672799) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972164)

somthing vastly superior to anything Walmart & Microsoft would produce?

That's like saying... a natural number greater than zero. Pretty much anything fits that criteria.

Re:iMedia ? (1)

Joebert (946227) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972450)

If that's so, I have to wonder about thoose actually complaining that they can't get to it.

Big whoop... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972098)

The sheep that march to Walmart's "Low Prices -- Whatever the Cost" beat will not be affected. They are good consumers. Not hippie freaks, using products that cannot be found on the acres of shelving at Walmart. Walmart understands the threat of free software. Walmart understands the danger of choice. Give the customers too many choices, and they just furrow their brows endlessly, taking forever to make a purchase, or worse, not making one at all!

Re:Big whoop... (1)

Elliot_Lin (972399) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972306)

But customers who take forever to purchase can take a walk down another aisle to buy a Windows PC!

Locked out of Walmart (1)

chairpatrol (300773) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972100)

Oh no! ... I can't buy stuff from Walmart!

If they want to be Windows only ... let them. Let them mix their trash with M$ trash.

What are they up to? (1)

Triynko (1062726) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972102)

I don't use Internet Explorer. It doesn't work. I won't be using Wal-Mart's video service.

Seems reasonable to me (4, Insightful)

GNU(slash)Nickname (761984) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972114)

FTA: "The video that you download requires Digital Rights Management 10 (DRM 10) software"

So, the video only works in Windows (Media Player 10+, presumably). I think it's safe to assume that if you have WMP10, you also have IE, so if making the site IE-only prevents* people from accessing it who can't use the product anyway, what's the big deal?

*Yeah, yeah. "I don't WANNA use IE on my Windows box. IE sucks." It's not like you have to UNinstall Firefox to do so, so suck it up, princess.

Re:Seems reasonable to me (2, Informative)

theangryfool (1049608) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972188)

And furthermore, depending on how they detect "non-ie" you could probably greasemonkey https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/748/ [mozilla.org] it away (maybe), use the ie tab https://addons.mozilla.org/firefox/1419/ [mozilla.org] in firefox, or just change the user-agent.

Re:Seems reasonable to me (1)

58797A7A79 (795378) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972250)

You must be missing the point: Even thinking about loading up IE is likely enough to get your system infected by spyware...let alone actually running it...let alone actually visiting Wal-Mart's website with it. I think I'd probably be safer against spyware by visiting porn sites than I would visiting walmart.com. Of course, since Wal-Mart's dong the whole DRM thing, I wouldn't be interested anyway, so I guess it's a moot point in my case.

Re:Seems reasonable to me (3, Insightful)

inode_buddha (576844) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972470)

DRM 10, eh? That's what Snort and Ethereal are for. Sniff a few packets and figure out what the Wal-Mart site wants to hear. Compare dumps between an Win/IE boxand one of the alternatives... Oh wiit! I don't even *own* a Win/IE box! How am I supposed to get legal videos?

Re:Seems reasonable to me (2, Insightful)

arevos (659374) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972484)

So, the video only works in Windows (Media Player 10+, presumably). I think it's safe to assume that if you have WMP10, you also have IE, so if making the site IE-only prevents* people from accessing it who can't use the product anyway, what's the big deal?
Because, generally speaking, users don't like hassle. Sure, they could close down Firefox and load up IE every time they visit, but they could also just go to a competitor's website instead. Now, it could be that Walmart offers sufficient incentives (such as low prices, monopoly over certain movies) to justify the extra hassle for most people, but this restriction isn't going to do Walmart any favours. Nor does it help that early adopters for services like this tend to be the same technically competent people who use alternative browsers.

In short, it's going to result in a lost percentage of potential users, hence a loss in revenue, hence a loss in profit. It's going to be a small percentage, but when you're dealing with millions of potential customers and tens, if not hundreds, of millions of potential dollars, a small percentage is suddenly a lot of money. Enough to justify the cost of making it standards compliant? Perhaps, perhaps not; but every other major website seems to consider it worth the price.

/. fully operational (1)

theangryfool (1049608) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972116)

Well, the video service is dead in the water. One wonders if this was a marketing ploy to drive traffic or simple market research. What better way to see how many people give a damn about firefox/Max/Opera than to disable it on a fairly high volume site. Of course, to cover up their inability to handle the traffic, we'll probably hear a story how their new service was "hacked".

Won't shop there (4, Insightful)

mgkimsal2 (200677) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972118)

I've been on the fence about shopping at walmart for awhile. They're never my first choice, and I think I've only been shopping there about 5 times in the past year. After this, it's one more reason not to shop there. Yet another reason - unrelated - was that the last couple times I've been there I had great service from a particular employee. In both cases I made a point to call up the store's regional manager and praise this person. Two months later I found out that this employee had not received any mention, acknowledgement or recognition. Just seemed to speak volumes about how they treat their people, and this latest move speaks to how they treat their customers.

Don't worry (5, Insightful)

wirefarm (18470) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972120)

Bit Torrent still works. It's completely cross-platform, too.

(When I said "Don't worry," I was saying that to the customers. WalMart should worry.)

So what happens.... (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972122)

...what happens when one configures a browser to identify itself as I.E. on Windows and goes to their site?

Would anyone higher up hear about it if a bunch of us went into Walmart, filled carts full, then asked someone in customer in the video department about the online videos browser/platform support, and then just walked out on getting an unsatisfactory answer?

Why no user agent check? (1)

Excelcia (906188) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972128)

I'm surprised the article's author didn't try a user agent string from IE7. I couldn't reach what I velieve to be the web site in question [walmart.com] in either Firefox or IE, so the site just may be having problems at the moment.

I reject Walmart! (1)

Oniros (53181) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972136)

It'a all cool. I reject Walmart. So there.

Seems obvious to me (1, Interesting)

Tim Ward (514198) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972140)

(1) The slashweenie community don't want to pay for anything, so they aren't customers, so keeping them out won't lose any money.

(2) On the other hand the sort of people who hack DRM systems are most likely nerds who have a religious antipathy to IE, so won't be able to get onto to site in order to work out how to hack it.

(3) So, by restricting access to IE they have achieved the following:
(a) delayed, possibly by as much as many days, the hacking of the DRM system, thus protecting their business model for long enough for them to actually make a little money
(b) lost exactly $0.00 in business that they wouldn't have got from the slashweenies anyway.

Sounds like a good decision.

Re:Seems obvious to me (1)

ichigo 2.0 (900288) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972546)

Why would anyone care about cracking their DRM? It's not like their videos are of higher quality than DVD rips! No, the only thing this accomplishes is negative publicity, and as a pay-for video download service is pretty much based on goodwill, it will lose them business as well.

Re:Seems obvious to me (1)

DannyO152 (544940) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972614)

Hmmm... yes, except my Windows-running non-tech-interested parents were taught by me to use Firefox from day 1, so let us extend this to slash-weenies, their relatives, and their friends who are having a choice to run Windows mitigated.

And isn't the slash-group-whine-wisdom about Apple customers that they overpaid for their computers, and doesn't that suggest that Wal-Mart is leaving on the table disposable income from a wealthy demographic willing to spend?

So? (1)

romland (192158) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972150)

I fail to see the news-worthiness of this (besides, it's a trendy thing to say on ./ these days). Maybe because I'm not living in the US? I don't know, are they abusing their dominant position in the market here? I thought they were NEW in this market? If they don't think it's worth penetrating the entire market, oh well. Big deal.

This sounds like bad coding more than some browser-war.

One hand washes the other... (1)

tamrood (821829) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972158)

Next, once millions of people are using the service, we will be forced to "upgrade" to new computers, running Vista, in order to keep using it.

born dead (4, Interesting)

gravesb (967413) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972160)

A lot of people thought this would go the way of their last video offering. It now seems that they are dedicated to making it a failure. Too bad, the more competitors in the on-line video business, the better.

Slashdotted (1)

Spad (470073) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972172)

The Walmart video download site (http://mediadownloads.walmart.com/ [walmart.com] ) appears to be Slashdotted already, so I can't check to see if it's just a UA check or something that actually won't work outside of IE (Like ActiveX controls).

Re:Slashdotted (1)

theangryfool (1049608) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972314)

That's funny, I was trying to do the same thing, someone already posted one workaround and I wanted to test it and evaluate some alternative. Instead my machine is hung (both IE and FF) waiting for a response.

This was only 5 minutes after the story broke.

So Either:

They have a 386 with 8MB ram running tomcat

OR They have a cluster of 8 2way core2 duo machines with 16 GB RAM running Websmear.

Either way it looks like they can only support a couple hundred simultaneous requests.

I tried User Agent IE7 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972482)

and the WalMart site just crashes and burns. Not only won't it format, but all the fill in boxes return an invalid data response.

WallyWorld screwed the pooch on this one. It doesn't even look that great with IE6. I can't even imagine how stupid are the idiot managers who run the meetings and set employee goals.

WalMart has jumped the shark, short the stock.

they are doing a favor (4, Funny)

KH (28388) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972174)

Think of this as a favor on Walmart's side. They only want to suck money out of sackers who use IE. They spared FF/Safari users from their greed, so to say...

How many of FF/Safari users out there sincerely want to buy movies from Walmart? I don't even live in the States, so I wouldn't even try.

DRM is the problem (3, Insightful)

ServerIrv (840609) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972176)

If you want to use this service, the downloads require Digital Rights Management 10 (DRM 10) software. This doesn't just lock out browsers that they don't know how to code for, but also all non-Microsoft operating systems.

The fact the Walmart is behind this also scares me. Walmart has changed the face of American retail for good and bad. Walmart has been able to force it's suppliers to bow to their knees for fear that Walmart doesn't carry their product. If the number one retailer in the world would have realized what their customers want, media without restrictions, this could have actually fought and easily won against the iTunes store, and NetFlix. I just hope this doesn't catch on, because it will give other retailers another justification to place Microsoft's desires above that of the consumers.

stop supporting the product if you dont like it (4, Insightful)

bl8n8r (649187) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972178)

The part I dont like is people continue to support these tactics by using/patronizing the products/places that are directly responsible to taking away their choice and alternative. Wise up people. You may one day wake up to find you have no options left.

Re:stop supporting the product if you dont like it (1)

theangryfool (1049608) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972210)

That's right! Shop at Kmart, they aren't evil.

Re:stop supporting the product if you dont like it (1)

jaavaaguru (261551) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972340)

people continue to support these tactics by using/patronizing the products/places that are directly responsible to taking away their choice

Do they? Everyone I know stays away from things they don't like or approve of unless there's no alternative.

The movies are probably the altered (2, Interesting)

jzarling (600712) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972184)

Does anyone know if the movies are the altered "family friendly" versions of real versions?

even if we cannot access it (5, Funny)

SilentGhost (964190) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972192)

we can always /. it

will Wal-Mart customers go for this? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972196)

Do trailer parks even have broadband?

Re:will Wal-Mart customers go for this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972588)

Yep. I've only got 4 TV channels, but I've also got 500 k/sec all day, every day.

So what (2, Informative)

jm.one (655706) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972200)

Lauch.com still doesnt support Firefox for their audio streams and goes the more than doubtful way of attempting to install a flavor of the Mozilla ActiveX Plugin (bases on this one [www.iol.ie] , just with the WMP ActiveX Plugin and their page in the whitelist) This gets more funny when u go to a european MTV side and start thier "Overdrive" plattform, which will attempt exactly the same. I guess this wide use(without contributing to the code at all) is the very reason why there isn't any ActiveX Plugin for Firefox 2.0 yet on the original page.. But going back it s just idiotic to try to get the user to install it at all.. it s not stable enough.. it s more a proove of concept than mission critical code.. and it s more to bypass the problem of sites that are coded in an IE only way... There is a WMP plugin for Mozilla Browsers!!! You just have to script it properly (with JS that is) it s not rocket science. Why am i telling this all? My point is: if Yahoo and MTV can't do this, why should out of all Walmart be able to? (okay it seems like MTV_com is better.. i just cant open any video cause it seems to check the IP and then says they cant show me that in my country... IP block cause of IP rights.. isnt it ironic? i know, proxy is the solution) On a sidenote AOL doesnt seem to be any better.. right it s AOL... hey guys... if your new strategy really shall work you better.. ah hell we have told you a million times...

and again (1)

no-body (127863) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972204)

another million $ amount has mysteriously disappeared from Microsofts accounts

Are we surprised? (1)

fury88 (905473) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972218)

Seriously, are we surprised at Walmart's ignorance? C'mon, they don't give a flying fuck. I had identity theft back in 1999 and some fucker stole my checks and wrote 50% of them at Walmart. Walmart accepted all of them and when I tried to straighten it out they could give a shit.

Re:Are we surprised? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972518)

Ya, that reminds me of the time when Walmart (I used to shop there, don't anymore) tried to tell me that I couldn't use my debit/visa card as a visa. I could only use it as debit, it wasn't a visa card. I tried to explain that I use it as a visa all the time and had just bought gas with it as visa earlier today. About 3 managers came over and argued with me about it. Saying it wasn't a visa. It even has visa logo on it. I thought they were just freaking dumbasses. But turns out, Walmart was forcing customers to use it as debit cause it was cheaper for them.

Later, before I stopped shopping there, I mentioned this crap to a cashier, she said you use it how you want. The managers try to force customers to use debit, but you don't have to if don't want to. I used it as a visa just to spite Walmart. I can see them trying to cut cost, but when those managers came over and acted like I was the dumbass for trying to use a debit card as a visa and that I didn't know what I was doing it still pisses me off to this day.

Nope, I don't like Wallymart and don't shop there anymore, except under extreme circumstances. So I probably wouldn't be buying any movies to download from them anyway, but trying to force me to use IE and not offering the choice of Firefox,... well that pretty much clinches the deal that I won't be using their video 'service'.

Stuffing the Server Logs with Visits (1)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972236)

I'm surprised that someone hasn't created a nice way to stuff the server logs of websites that insist on only supporting noncompliant proprietary browsers. If a just 1000 Safari users visited Wal-Mart's site and reloaded the page once every 30 seconds, they'd generate nearly 3 million page views per day. And with a little app to help, one could even erase cookies between reloads or use of proxies to look more like 3 million unique visitors.

What would a company think if the majority of logged visits came from unsupported browsers?

Re:Stuffing the Server Logs with Visits (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972308)

Go to google. Search for "buy dvd."
Find the walmart adwords ad.
Click it.
Walmart sends money to google.
You go to the beta entrance to walmart downloads.
Click it.
Start over.

Re:Stuffing the Server Logs with Visits (3, Insightful)

Tim Browse (9263) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972408)

If a just 1000 Safari users visited Wal-Mart's site and reloaded the page once every 30 seconds

Safari runs on Mac OS X. You can't watch the Walmart movies without WMP/DRM v10. You won't have that on a Mac. That's probably where Walmart's reasoning ends.

Re:Stuffing the Server Logs with Visits (1)

Macthorpe (960048) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972540)

They would think "Some geek came up with a way of stuffing our server logs, so let's ignore it"?

Overly large Corporations (1)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972288)

This is the danger of letting them exist at all. They will restrict choice as they get more and more powerful. Sure its their right when they are small, but as they approach the status of monopoly the rules change.

What's the problem? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972290)

If they don't provide the ability for users of other browsers, that's their choice as a business - your choice as a consumer would be to go elsewhere or comply. Just like shopping in the real store.

Re:What's the problem? (1)

Obsi (912791) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972606)

What would you do if Wal-Mart said that:
1) You must be able to identify at least 20 NASCAR drivers to enter.
2) Your mother must also be your sister to enter.
3) You must have attended at least 5 Monster Truck rallies to enter.

Wouldn't you be up in arms too?

Odd given their history (1)

sacremon (244448) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972312)

It was Wal-Mart that starting selling PC with Linspire preloaded instead of Windows, in order to have a low cost machine. Now they are supporting MS exclusively.

Re:Odd given their history (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972554)

It's odd that different divisions of a company might make different, sometimes contradictory, decisions? If you think that, you've never worked in a company with more than 250 employees.

Look, Walmart is a retailer--not a technology company. They're not terribly likely to have a truly universal technology strategy across the company, unifying what software (limited as it is) they sell, their limited computer hardware selection, and the walmart.com group.

Walmart has 2 basic priorities. Sell, sell sell! And low, low cost.

They sell Linspire PC's because they're cheap. Cheap PC's, high margins. Plus it gets people in the store, rather than going to Best Buy, Circuit City, or Dell.com.

They're supporting IE only (as far as I can see) because they're only supporting Windows and certain ActiveX controls for DRM. No, this isn't sales maximizing, but they want a service they can get out there that's cheap. And they can do that because they can convince owners of content that their content will be protected. That way they can get a good selection, and still price it where it's competetive with respect to DVD. Frankly, they can't do that cross-platform.

Now, the one major piece that's out of character for Wal-Mart is that they're on the cutting edge of video downloads. Their typical strategy is to wait for a market to be proven to exist, then wade in with their massive customer reach, negotiate a tremendous supply deal, undercut competetors, and drive them out of business.

it's not just the video service (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972348)

The website for Wal-Mart employees to check on their benefits is the same way.

http://www.walmartbenefits.com/ [walmartbenefits.com]

Re:it's not just the video service (3, Funny)

nomadic (141991) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972426)

Walmart employees get benefits?

Don't know why this is surprising. (1)

yoder (178161) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972400)

They are the 800 pound gorilla, and they believe that they can do no wrong. For decades, Wally World has been the poster child for everything that is wrong about corporations getting too big.

All their employees must use Explorer (1)

dave_f1m (602921) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972454)

Once a year I have to install IE on a machine just to say my benefits haven't changed. Walmartbenefits.com (also needed for electronic tax info) will not work with anything else. I've tried. At least now I can get IE working under linux easily and don't have to throw together a windows box just for that crap.

That's fine Wal-Mart (1)

j0nkatz (315168) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972512)

I know where the local Target is.

Isn't this the same Walmart (1)

tsmithnj (738472) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972524)

That sold a customized PC running Linux that did not have IE?

Slashdotted? (3, Informative)

griffjon (14945) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972530)

I get (after a few refreshes) (rendered as text from the server) an HTML page that reads: "The Wal-Mart Video Downloads store is currently unavailable due to temporary site maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience."

Either they're fixing it or are slashdotted?

As much as I hate Walmart, they did sell the Linspire systems; I think this is laziness more than intention.

store is currently unavailable .. (0, Redundant)

rs232 (849320) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972532)

The Wal-Mart Video Downloads store is currently unavailable [walmart.com] due to temporary site maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Meh. (1)

alisson (1040324) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972542)

Just more money I won't be giving to walmart.

Spoofing? (1)

wile_e_wonka (934864) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972580)

Anyone know if spoofing resolves this? I thought I'd try it just now, but the link on the wal-Mart site to the downloads section seems to be slashdotted(?).

Also, does anyone know if Wal-Mart does something similar to that with its music downloads?

This is news (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 7 years ago | (#17972622)

Please, slow news day is it? This is hardly ground breaking news.

Simple, if they design their shop to only work with specific products, and you dont use those products, SHOP ELSE WHERE. Simple!

Has everybody on this planet (expecially Amerika - the so called land of the free , what a joke) forgotten how to shop around or are you all sheeple "Must give money to walmart, must give money to walmart" drones?

Please, wise up, you are just making a laughing stock of yourselves.

use ie tab in firefox (1)

Ranger (1783) | more than 7 years ago | (#17972630)

I wonder if the ie tab will work.
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