SAN FRANCISCO (CBS 5) — The San Francisco District Attorney’s office is looking into Best Buy’s business practices. The popular electronics retailer has been telling many of its customers that the Black Friday deals they snagged may never be delivered.

Best Buy waited until the week before Christmas to inform consumers of the bad news that it would be canceling many of the Black Friday purchases people were counting on for the holiday season.

People have gone to the web with complaints, many going to Best Buy’s online forum. One writer headlined their post with how Best Buy “Single handedly ruined Christmas.” As of Wednesday, there were 17 pages of complaints on Best Buy’s message board and several tweets about the canceled orders.

Brad Wilson, a deal expert from believes Best Buy sold too many items at deep discounts and is trying to recoup losses.

“A PlayStation 3 is not hard to find right now, so it’s not as if Best Buy is out of PlayStation 3s,” Wilson said.

The retailer is in a similar bind to what many online retailers found themselves in last year. Due to a computer glitch, various companies oversold limited Black Friday bargains in 2010. Those retailers eventually made good on the deals, because according to experts, following through with the Black Friday prices was their legal obligation.

Former U.S. attorney Anthony Brass explained that under California law, companies in this situation must honor the deals and prices like those offered on Black Friday.

“What consumers lost was opportunity. They lost the opportunity to seek similar Black Friday deals elsewhere, and when they lost that they gained the right to seek redress,” Brass said.

Erin Bix issued a statement on Best Buy’s behalf saying that “due to overwhelming demand of hot product offerings…we have encountered a situation that has affected redemption of some of our customers’ online orders.”

The company also added that it has no intentions of honoring the Black Friday purchases and pointed to a disclaimer on their website that says it can cancel any order and that its terms and conditions tell customers about limited inventory.

Legal experts disagree, however, and said the disclaimer does not supersede California law and consumers have the right to sue for the difference between the sale price and the current price.

Best Buy’s full statement:

“Due to overwhelming demand of hot product offerings on during the November and December time period, we have encountered a situation that has affected redemption of some of our customers’ online orders. We are very sorry for the inconvenience this has caused and we have notified the affected customers.”

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (6)
  1. JaneQPublic says:

    Quote from Best Buy: “We are very sorry for the inconvenience this has caused and we have notified the affected customers.”

    Well apparently they are “best’ in fraud only. Their words ring pretty hollow – especially waiting til shortly before Christmas to renege on legitimate sales.

    They will feel sorry for real, however, when they face a consumer class action lawsuit…..

    They are just BAD BUSINESS!

  2. Greg Smith says:

    Does not surprise me. I have had many bad dealings with Best Buy. In my opinion they are often not fair.

  3. tn says:

    Best Buy is Good Guys or Matthew’s in disguise. Remember them?

  4. Sam Carval says:

    BEST BUY ruins my Christmas. BEST BUY ruins Christmas for niece and nephews. Black Friday deals:

    In my case, the items were ACTUALLY SHIPPED! Within an hour of arriving in my city, St Paul, MN, the shipper recalled the items. I have the FEDEX records.

    Best Buy told me such things as the items were “not in stock”, no longer available, “not listed” . Best Buy and cos. removed the SKU. But, the same item is available under another SKU.

    Would like redress. Wiling to support any “Class Action” suits. Let me know of any organizations looking into BEST BUY’s Black Friday deals.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

Watch & Listen LIVE