Saturday, 26 May 2012 01:36
Games - Games
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One of the cool things about modern phones and tablets is the ability to recieve and read magazines on them. It saves space, saves the need to recycle or throw away and is no doubt cheaper for the manufacturer to produce. Still, some people aren't ready to give up on the soft, glossy feel of magazine paper and would prefer to have a physical copy delivered to them in the mainl. GameStop, in all their wisdom, is trying to make the choice a little bit harder for people that fall into that category.
Kotaku are reporting that subscribers to Game Informer and employees of GameSpot are writing in to tell them that a change in policy has resulted in individuals getting digital copies instead of physical copies of the magazine. This is allegedly largely done without consulting the purchaser.
From Kotaku, an employee's explanation:
"At least in my district, our [district manager] wants us to just renew the customer with a digital sub and mention it's a digital sub and explain all the benefits. However, if the customer challenges and asks for a printed subscription, then we give them one. I don't know whether this was from higher up or just from the DM to make numbers look better to corporate. Against my DM's wishes and to be fair to the customer, I always ask the customer what their preference is. I'm not sure what the corporate policy is though.
"Also, we never were told to unknowingly switch customers. However, the default selection for renewing on the POS computer screen is the digital option. So if the employee is not paying attention or just quickly accepts the defaults, I can see how customers can be 'switched' without ever being asked. Unfortunately I have seen this happen first hand."
The motivation to sell readers on digital subs, the GameStop workers say, is expense. One worker said the digital copies cost the company 50 cents per issue to fulfill as opposed to $5 per print issue. Digital subs contain all print contents plus online video content.
GameStop didn't deny that changes were being made, but did clarify that those who wanted physical copies could call or contact the company via email to have their preferences switched. Many, I suspect, probably won't bother.
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