Plain Dealer reports on Circuit City receipt/Michael Righi case

The link for today’s Plain Dealer story, “Can Store Security Guards Search Your Bags?” is here.

Jeff Hess first wrote about it here four days ago, I wrote about it here on the same day. Michael Righi’s own words are here.

As I just wrote on Jeff’s blog, here’s how I feel:

Of course enforcement is another thing and then there’s always standard usage/practice, and then there’s how they apply what they’re saying they’re going to do. The company’s lawyers tell them what to put up and I would guess it’s usually as Draconian as they think they can get away with. Then, yes, people need to challenge it and we end up learning what the community value actually is, versus what the store wants to get away with in order to meet whatever objective they were trying to meet in the first place.

What is disappointing in ALL of this, the whole broad range of such things, is that if people had more common ideas of what was reasonable, we could make agreements – that if you do this, I’ll do that. If you don’t do this, I’m okay with not doing that. Whatever.

These waivers and disclaimers and policies reflect distrust. That is the saddest thing of all to me. That behavior gives rise to distrust and then everyone and everything gets swallowed up.

How’s that for pre-Rosh Hashana opining?

Yeah, that about covers it for me for now. The PD has some input from Case law school professor Lew Katz and the ACLU here.

4 thoughts on “Plain Dealer reports on Circuit City receipt/Michael Righi case

  1. If they ask to look at your receipt, they could be/are checking the cashier to see that he/she is not taking cash for an expensive item and not ringing it up. That happens a lot with meat at grocery stores. But what if they ask to look in your bag, or your purse, or your pockets, or your pants?I don’t believe the paying customer needs to be an unpaid part of a business’ security strategy.I applaud the strong Righi stance!

  2. Hi Jill –I don’t like to be a customer in a store where they also think I’m a crook or dishonest or came to steal their goods. Also, I am aware of and understand the economic problems of shoplifting. But I don’t like to go into an armed camp.I have patronized Circuit City in the past but this incident kind of creeped me out. I have an alternative to visiting a store that gives me bad vibes: I can order electronics (and almost anything else) over the Internet. Up to now, I have always preferred shopping in person. But things may change.

  3. One other thing …These waivers and disclaimers and policies reflect distrust. That is the saddest thing of all to me. That behavior gives rise to distrust and then everyone and everything gets swallowed up.Yeah, waivers, disclaimers and such reflect distrust. But it’s not as if the distrust is totally unjustified. Stores do suffer from shoplifting and employee theft. I don’t take it personally if some guy at the door asks to see my receipt. (I might if I were the only one asked.) So I don’t let myself “get swallowed up.” In fact, being asked for a receipt is a big nothing burger to me.

  4. From the PD article: What if the store has a sign saying that it inspects packages?If a sign exists, then by entering the store and buying something, the shopper agrees to follow the rule, the ACLU said.So, do Circuit City stores have such signs? Nobody seems to have said. It could be quite relevant in the Righi case. (If CC stores don’t have them, they should be posted ASAP if CC wants to continue checking receipts and has any corporate smarts.)

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