And they already have your credit card number...
For those of us growing up in the post-9/11 era, crazy security measures are rather commonplace. Whereas our elders are appalled by the idea of pat-downs at airports and racial profiling, we young, apathetic members of Baba O'Reilly's teenage wasteland need a lot more to be shocked.
Ladies and gentlemen, the title says it all. I have been sufficiently shocked.
Supposedly, this is a policy put in place to help track down stolen merchandise that is traded into GameStop stores, and while I'm all for bringing thieves to justice, the procedure seems not only extreme, bur inefficient for the stated purpose. Unbiased journalism aside, it's stupid, and I can tell you exactly WHY it's stupid. The news article ends here, folks- get out while you still can.
Let's say I'm a thieving scumbag who steals a copy of Super Mario 3D World. I scrub the box clean of fingerprints and decide to sell it. I could get near or even above full price for this game selling it on ebay, with little to no possible legal consequences, or I could sell it to GameStop for a discount / a few dollars (if I'm lucky). Not to mention I don't even have to leave the house if I choose the ebay option.
But whatever, I'm a thief who likes to play it straight. I walk into the GameStop and pawn my goods for barely enough money to get a packet of Ramen. Whoopee. Let's say that my victim, we'll call him Rob [thanks! -ed], after waking up from a drunken stupor, realizes instantly that someone has broken into his house and stolen nothing but 3D World. "Not again", he mutters, putting on pants and calling the police (not necessarily in that order). In a world of murderers, arsonists, rapists, and drug cartels, the cops have to put your case on the backburner. Even if they had a slow week to find this game, there's almost no chance a single disc could be recovered out of the thousands sold in your town of residence.
So Rob puts on his Batman mask and decides to take matters into his own hands. Because there are, let's say, three GameStops within driving distance, he has a one-in-three chance of finding the GameStop his precious Mario was pawned off at. Let's say he finds the correct one, and the game is still there. How does he know which one is his? What if it has been sold within that time? How do the employees know if he's telling the truth? Unless Rob held onto that receipt, there's no way to prove he ever even owned the game to begin with. And what of the thief? The State isn't requiring GameStop to abide by this rule, so it doesn't have direct support of the Police. The thief goes scot-free, Rob has an incredibly minuscule chance of recovering his game, and now GameStop has access to genetic information that not even the Police always do.
I'm not trying to start a conspiracy theory or anything, but unless the higher-ups of GameStop in the Philly region are stupid or high, this is not solely to protect the customer.
The takeaway? If you're in Philadelphia, order your games online or, preferably, LEAVE PHILADELPHIA. And don't try and tell me the cheese-steaks are worth the freezing winters, high crime rate, and hellish property taxes. Most kids probably don't even know why you're supposed to be important to begin with. They're too busy being patted-down on their flight to L.A..
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"Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety." -Benjamin Franklin (Who, ironically, rose to prominence in Philadelphia. The more you know.)
Speaking of knowing more, I happen to have this weird thing called a twitter, and for some reason everything I post on it is an article, podcast, funny, or interesting. You could NOT follow it... But then the terrorists win. @NoBeanChiliCost. Be a Real American.
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