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'New Games' at GameStop Not Necessarily New

Video game outlet GameStop allows consumers to buy and sell used games, and, until recently, has been the only major retailer to provide such a service. According to reports this month from video game blog Kotaku, the franchise has been taking advantage of its market domination by selling used games as new ones.

GameStop permits its employees to "check-out" games by playing them for up to four days, but has allegedly been selling these previously played games as new. To explain the opened packaging, some employees have allegedly been telling customers that such games are display models (which are removed from their packaging as a shoplifting deterrent). Mark Methanitis, an attorney for The Vernon Group, told Kotaku that the practice may violate state deceptive trade practices if GameStop is "representing that goods are original or new [when] they are deteriorated, reconditioned, reclaimed, used, or secondhand."

This isn't the first time GameStop has been embroiled in an uproar over its used game policy. The company doled out $375,000 to settle a 2003 class action suit that claimed the retailer was selling used games as new from 1998 to 2003. This current situation couldn't come at a worse time for the company, as Amazon and Toys 'R' Us both recently announced their entry into the used game and trade-in market. Rumor has it that Best Buy will soon join the market, as well. GameStop's used game business has been extremely successful, bringing in billions of dollars a year. But, with consumers becoming increasingly picky with their money and with competition for business getting more heated, now is not the time for a retailer to fall into a controversy over ethical business practices. [From: Kotaku Via: Daily Tech]

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Tags: deception, ethics, gamestop, retail, scams, shopping, trade-in, used, used games, UsedGames



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