Good morning. For starters and to establish my bonafides, I am a senior "corporate weinie" though not employed by BB or any other electronics store or outlet, or for that matter any retail entity. I generally find the AVS forums very helpful for my weekend AV projects. Thanks for providing this very useful service!
I would like to speak to the detracters of bricks and mortar store fronts like BB:
1. Typically, the biggest problem for these retail outlets is employee theft. Unfortunately, many of the younger folks today are not taught at home that stealing in any form is bad for everyone... including ultimately themselves. Their bad habits force companies to respond with protectionist efforts like return policy monitoring, or to leave a specific location.
2. I shop at bricks and mortar locations as much as I can to support my local communities. I research on the internet, and buy locally. Even if it costs me a few sheckles more. I do this for MANY reasons, but mostly to keep those stores in business.
3. I feel that buying something on the internet and then trying to or even accomplishing a return or exchange of that item to a brick & mortar location is a form of stealing. If this stings someone reading this because they do and think they are somehow winning... so be it.
4. Local jobs provided by corporate entities with headquarters elsewhere still provide salaries for local purchasing to include: homes, groceries, gas, clothes, and yes... even AV equipment typically NOT made in America. The bricks & mortar store front provides tax monies to local and state goverments to provide municpal services we all enjoy. It also provides many "first jobs" for the youth of today, thus why many are poorly equipped to answer questions or handle difficult customers. They just don't know how. Poor training, or upbringing, you decide.
5. There seems to be a line of thought that "the man" is out to get them. Typically, "the man" doesn't even know you are out there unless you suddenly fit a profile. That profile could be good: card holding mutiple purchaser with little penchant for buying stuff they haven't thoroughly researched and bringing it back when it doesn't do what they thought it would or should. Or, bad - multiple returner of goods or possible fraudulent person. Profiling, though some find intrusive, is one of the few ways a company can protect itself from bad guys, or reward good guys. Firing, prosecuting, or refusing to do business with bad actors is another way.
I shop at BB. Sometimes I run into rude and/or inexperienced sales help. It happens. Frankly, it is something that unfortunately happens everywhere. Even in the company I work for. I regret it, but we are not perfect. Neither is BB. I have never had a problem returning anything at BB for any reason. Sometimes if it is outside of a time limit, I can only get a store credit. So be it. I know I will use it one day.
I urge anyone that can be objective to buy locally where possible. Even big box stores like BB or WalMart (I don't work for one of those either!). Even if it costs a few dollars more. It WILL mean something to your local community and locally employed folks. Even if that big, bad ole corporation is headquarterd elewhere. And, by the way, profit is not a 4 letter word. It is one of the pillars of capitalism. Something the US of A is still quite good at. Though China is deifintely catching up!
I wish all good listening and viewing... and, shopping.