"Geekfather . . . ."

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As of now, Best Buy seems to be sending emails to those who had attempted to purchase that stupid video card almost at random. People get cancellation emails, then a backorder email, then another cancellation email, no apparent rhyme or reason to it. Looks like the automated systems are just firing off as preprogrammed.

No matter what spasms they’re having, it’s clear that ecommerce is a different beast than the old brick-and-mortar stores.

If a store got a sales price wrong in an ad, there was plenty of time for mistakes like that to be corrected, and that is standard procedure in the B&Ms.

With ecommerce and what can only be described as a vulture network, if somebody makes a mistake at 5 PM and goes home, by the time the office opens up the next morning, there are thousands of orders waiting.

So long as human beings have something to do with it, mistakes are going to be made. Simple, plain human error.

And so long as human beings are not 24-hour real-time cyborgs, when mistakes happen, it takes time for decisions to be made. Sometimes a couple days.

So long as human beings aren’t hooked up like the Borg, even when an organization makes a decision, it will not get transmitted to all the corporate parts instantly or even at all.

It is very safe to say that businesses are not going to tolerate an environment where they can suffer large losses or even face bankruptcy just because some dodo didn’t type something in right.

For every action, there is a reaction. You copy software left and right, you end up with Product Activation. You do MP3s, you get all kinds of copy protection, too. These periodic incident will inevitably trigger a different kind of error correction eventually occur here, too.

It may not occur due to Best Buy, it may not come for a few years, but eventually, businesses are going to find themselves a way to protect themselves from errors. Period.

I outlined one possible solution earlier today. Not saying that will be the solution, just saying there will be a solution.

If you have people who have to have laws shoved down their throat to comply, that’s just what will happen. This increases the burden on all of us.

There is no free lunch. There’s just leeching off other people’s plates. It might be off the shareholder’s plate, more likely, it will be off our plates, either through higher prices, or increased burden to comply with those requirements made necessary by those who have to be forced to do the right thing.

There are those who apparently like to think they’re some sort of geek Robin Hood stealing from the corporate Sheriff of Nottingham. But Robin Hood was a thief. You want to say the Sheriff of Nottingham at least represented more socially respectable thieves, you have a point there, but it’s pretty hard to equate onerous taxation with refusing to sell a video card at a big loss.

The idea shouldn’t be to steal more from them than they steal from you, the idea should be to be against theft, no matter who does it.

Email Ed

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