Monday, March 30, 2009

Competitor Bitch Slap

One of our Magic organizers was discovered handing out flyers during Friday Night Magic, advertising his new store. It strikes me as rude, and somewhat hostile, and I'll have none of it, especially after offering to be civil and helpful. So he's banned, which I'm sure is only a minor nuisance for him, at least until his store fails in 9 months and he has to recruit players to draft at the local Taco Bell. I suggest a flyer.


  1. "His" store? Do you mean this was the store owner himself, or a player who considers the other store as his store?


  2. The store owner himself, or at least one of them.

  3. Heh. In that case, I WON'T bother checking out the new store. If he's that daft, it won't be worth a hill of beans.

  4. Poor form!

    It's one thing for a player to talk to his friends about his new store, but as an organizer, he's been given a certain amount of authority - which he has badly misused. And that he was handing out advertisements, rather than just talking about it makes it worse.

    I wonder how he'd feel if people went to his store and handed out BDG flyers during his gaming events?

    Wotta maroon!

  5. Ack. It would have been bad enough if it was simply an over enthusiastic patron. With an owner it seems a bit more insidious.

    They've infiltrated our ranks! Trust no one!


  6. I don't know the guy, but passing out flyers at a competitor's store is strictly amateur hour. Especially when you're in an industry where it's possible to leverage synergies with your "competitors" so that both you and they can benefit (please excuse the buzzwords).

    I've seen it happen before. Heck, the FLGS here just fired their 40K organizer for something similar. He was putting the name of his "production company" on the flyers for the store events without asking if that would be OK.

    A lot of people seem to have zero comprehension of all the overhead that goes into running a store, and think that they have a right to just piggyback on that effort. If this guy stays in business long enough he might learn, but the fact he made the mistake in the first place makes me doubtful.

  7. Report him to Wizards of the Coast. They'll take away his ability to run tournaments, because it was misusing his authority.

  8. I wonder if this is the store that's supposed to be on Monument. How could a MTG organizer possibly have enough money and investors to open a store in this economy? With that behavior and lack of forethought, I'd do the same and ban him. I miss "my players," but that was in the past. If anything, set stricter rules for game organizers, especially if they're running a competitive game like MTG. Likewise, I'd report him to WOTC; BDG doesn't need people like him destroying an established game store.

  9. Yes, it's the monument store, according to his flyer. I'll see if WOTC cares, but I doubt it.

  10. By the way, I had to be convinced to ban him. I had to be shown the knife in my back.

  11. To be fair, a knife in your back can be very hard to spot. What with it being behind you and all.

    And if it's in that place right between your shoulder blades that you can't scratch, forget it!


  12. His co-owner has also been identified as passing out flyers and is also banned. Did I mention the "free pizza" for the month of April during Friday Night Magic?

  13. That's moving into really daft territory. Is he determined to fail? So far, he's done everything wrong in terms of community relations...

  14. I've got some really angry customers, which surprised me.

  15. Are they angry because you haven't been offering free pizza all along? [joke]

  16. Maybe I'm dense, but I'm not sure what they'd be angry about. Whose side are they on?

  17. They're livid at this other store. By the way, I'm told they decorated it just like mine, even using the same paint scheme and birch slatwall.

  18. That's weak.
    If they wanted to make some money, wouldn't they have been better off offering to buy in with you, or perhaps buy you out?

  19. There was a conversation in which I explained to one of them that his understanding of the numbers was way off. I'm told it was taken as a rebuff of sorts which led to where we are now. It's too bad his business partner is going to lose all his money.

  20. Free pizza?!


    Idea stealer!


    P.S. Make sure you bring some with mushroom.

  21. I wonder who the moron that's the co-owner and didn't LEARN from the other guy who was banned. It's like they never learn.

    But free food...well, eating is a hobby for me.

    As I mentioned before, where's the money coming from? Magic, especially if you're going to run tourneys, costs a lot.

    Besides, they may be adults, but their mindsets are like children who go out of their way to cause trouble. Although I can say this for A LOT of individuals at the store.

  22. I know where the moneys coming from, but I don't want to discuss it publicly.

  23. "Besides, they may be adults, but their mindsets are like children who go out of their way to cause trouble. Although I can say this for A LOT of individuals at the store."

    Hey! Are you talking about me? That's it, you're not invited to my birthday party anymore. And, and, and I'm gonna have my brother beat the tar out of you!

  24. Wow, more proof that Magic and those that play it are not major producers of team players.

    -The Griffin

  25. You would expect this kind of behavior from Diplomacy players, but not outside of the actual game.

  26. I have been going to Black Diamond for a while now and thought I would share a few thoughts about this new store. I don't really care if they were handing out flyers. What I saw that friday was the bearded guy giving a couple out to his friends. Your reaction seems lame. And this past friday with the pizza and the land discount, just seems desperate. a couple free pizzas wont make up for consistently not caring about your magic players (aka me) I plan on playing in their events because nobody working at your store seems to know anything about magic, or care about me as a customer. Thankfully i have somewhere cool to play now. adios black diamond. nice knowing ya!

  27. I'll be sorry to see you go (anonymous) and you're always welcome back.

    The flyer issue is settled, but let me say two people handed out flyers (two of the owners of the new store), and widely enough to where I easily obtained one. Clearly it was more than "just friends." I already received apologies for this, so there is an understanding that it's unacceptable for someone in a position of authority to use it to promote themselves, especially at the detriment of the store they're representing.

    I'm not quite sure what you need from me for you to feel that I care about you. I'm not your mother, although I do seem to be feeding you without any thanks. We provide a solid event on Friday Nights to support a small percentage of loyal Magic customers. Thank you for coming, but put it in perspective.

    FNM gets premium treatment from us. We recognize it as our premier Magic event. However, it is one of many events and Magic is one of many games we support. No game is so big that it requires royal treatment, just well done events, and our FNM is one of the best, with strong attendance. Look at all the card shops that have closed over the last two years if you think focusing on Magic is the way for a store to go.

  28. Gosh Gary, I didn't realize how you take advantage of those poor, unfortunate MtG players.

    I guess that you don't:

    1) Sell MtG below retail price.

    2) Spend time, effort, and money to bring release and prerelease events to the store, and maintain DCI status.

    3) Preempt normally scheduled games for weekend MtG prerelease and release events.

    3) Reserve the game room for FNM on Friday evenings.

    4) Compensate your FNM/DCI organizers/judges with product discounts and other perqs.

    5) Allow people to play in the game area whenever table space is open (i.e. when there aren't other events scheduled).

    It's a real shame that BDG doesn't do any of these things to support the local MtG players. :rolleyes:

    I wish that other games got that much support! And I haven't even mentioned free pizza.

  29. I've been going to FNM on and off for a few months at BDG...
    I have never got the impression that they care at all about their players.
    I have played there only because of a lack of stores in the area.

    I wasn't aware of a new store until the condescending announcement was made last week...
    "Anyone with fliers will be banned for life."

    Way to force your customers into the arms of a new retail center.

    Bribery and threats is not the way to encourage customers to give you their money...

    I welcome the new store, even if I am in the minority.


  30. J,

    If your brother or your best friend sleeps with your girlfriend, you are supremely pissed at your friend.

    If a random guy sleeps with your girlfriend, you're still upset, but not so much with the guy.

    If I hire you at my business to perform a task and then I find out you are taking my customers and directing them to take their money somewhere else instead of to me, I'm going to be pissed.

    If some random guy tells my customers to buy stuff somewhere else, it's not cool at all, but it's not anything like having your 'partner' do it to you.

    It's not that fliers aren't allowed at BDG.

    Just like anywhere else, if you have a flier to distribute, check with the management first.

    I highly doubt having a single flier in your possession will get you banned from BDG for life, but I'm guessing you already knew that.


  31. J - There isn't a problem with a customer in the store or game area saying to a friend/someone that they are playing a game with "There's a group that plays this game on Tuesdays at store X. You should come check it out."
    This is conversation and it's not a big deal.

    Where the problem starts is when owners, employees, or agents of another store enter the store and start promoting another store.
    This is business, and it is not being conducted in the appropriate place. If you don't have permission from the owner/management, you're not paying the rent, and you don't have a business license up on the wall, then you have no business advertising or selling in someone else's shop. It's pretty simple.
    If you owned a business, and were paying rent for that business space, you probably wouldn't want other people conducting business in your space. I'm sure that if you were compensating someone to work in your business, you would be especially unhappy if they were conducting their own business in your shop.

    It would be nice if we lived in a world where people didn't do improper things and screw over those who placed trust in them.

    Unfortunately, we don't. This means that when people decide to try to screw your business over, you may ask them not to return to your business. It also means that when a group evidently doesn't understand what types of behaviors are acceptable, you must tell them what is and isn't acceptable.

    This is why the announcement was made that the people who were handing out flyers for another store were not going to be returning to BDG, and the group was told that handing out flyers at the store was not appropriate behavior.