Is buying a product before it hits shelves unfair?
September 21, 2006 4:42 AM Subscribe
Should employees of stores be allowed to take (potentially rare) merchandise and buy it themselves before it hits the store shelves?
posted by IndigoRain to Shopping (40 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
For example, when I worked in a particular retail store, if we took a product from "the back" before it had been placed on shelves, and set it aside to purchase later, we got in trouble. If it was just behind the register where we worked, we just got told to put the product back; if it was in our lockers, it was considered theft. (Not exaggerating - unpurchased items in your locker was theft.) I am not certain, but I don't think taking it from the back after the end of the shift and purchasing it was allowed either, if the product had not yet hit shelves.
So here comes the new Tickle-Me-Elmo Xtreme, as an example. Why should retail employees be allowed to snap up all of them first and sell them for greatly-inflated prices on eBay? (Let's assume they'll be as rare and as in-demand as the original, which I highly doubt.)
Someone on another site argued that retail employees put up with a lot of crap for low wages. So? Just because people put up with X amount of crap doesn't entitle them to take unfair advantage of their position over other paying customers.
What do you think? Should retail employees be allowed to buy products before they hit shelves?