by Daniel T. Zanoza, Executive Director
The other day, my wife and I visited a Best Buy store in the Chicagoland area and were pleasantly surprised. As we were checking out, the young cashier went out of her way to wish us both a very merry Christmas. My wife and I were taken aback by the young lady's obvious enjoyment in extending her greeting, to the point it was a topic of conversation as we left the store.
Shortly afterward, I received an e-mail sent out by an individual who was supporting a boycott of Best Buy. The individual was forwarding an e-mail he had received which, unbeknownst to him, referred to outdated information regarding Best Buy's policy related to Christmas greetings issued by employees (or the lack thereof) to their customers. The e-mail suggested Best Buy was conducting a war on Christmas, as some retailers are, and the writer said the information was true because he confirmed the information by going to Snopes.com. He even provided the link to the website which supposedly reports on whether issues are factual or not. The only problem is, none of the people who forwarded these e-mails--which supported the continued boycott of Best Buy--went to Snopes.com and carefully read the information posted on the site at this link: http://www.snopes.com/politics/christmas/bestbuy.asp.
Subsequently, I went to Snopes.com to see if Best Buy was indeed not allowing employees to wish customers a merry Christmas. This was factual, but the only problem was the information was clearly outdated. The Snopes.com data was posted in 2006 and since then Best Buy has obviously changed its policy. Now, of course, during my visit to the store, there might have been an entire shift of rogue employees who were putting their jobs on the line and ignoring store policy regarding the prohibition on wishing customers a merry Christmas. But anyone with common sense would perceive Best Buy had changed its policy regarding the issue, but Snopes.com had failed to update the data it provided in 2006 regarding Best Buy's policy.
Obviously, the e-mail regarding a continued boycott against Best Buy is unfair. Also, I was taught a lesson because those who administer the Snopes.com website fail to do their job. Subsequently, the store is being punished without merit. This story should be a lesson for all when receiving forwards. Those who pass such information along to their databases have a duty to confirm the information by contacting the actual source and not depending on Snopes.com as the ultimate purveyor of the truth.
In a time of economic depression, there are those who obviously believe Best Buy is continuing a policy which surely has resulted in the store's loss of revenue. Perhaps at one time, the boycott of Best Buy regarding its policy towards Christmas greetings had merit. But, sadly, the retailer is a victim of inaccurate and outdated information.
Right at the top of the Snopes.com website, it clearly states, "Collected via e-mail 2006". Near the bottom of the same page it reads, "Last updated November 2006". So, I suppose Snopes.com is blameless, but, at the same time, Snopes.com should be blamed for its omission of current information about Best Buy's current Christmas greeting policy.
RFFM.org wishes everyone a Merry CHRISTMAS and a new year filled with God's blessings.
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