This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

10 Sleazy Moves by Everyday Companies

Geek show
Cruise consumer-oriented websites and Best Buy (SBBY) is almost always in the mix of their coverage.

Since the demise of Circuit City, even a casual shopper can attest that the sales staff has become far more aggressive in pushing nearly worthless extended warranties and the services of the much-maligned Geek Squad.

Founded in 1994, Geek Squad was once a great idea -- a mobile team of tech support pros. Now, as a subsidiary of Best Buy it is seen as a racket by critics, who view this potentially helpful service as having devolved into a means to fleece those who lack tech know-how.

Atop the critic's hit parade: optimization.

For an extra $40 to $70 Geek Squad promises to boost your computer's speed and performance, tweak the operating system, remove unwanted software, set up basic functions and, for the higher price, install anti-virus software.

Engineers for Consumer Reports (part of Consumers' Union, which also owns the site The Consumerist) compared a selection of "optimized" computers with ones with default factory settings and found no performance improvement. In one case, an optimized laptop performed 32% worse than the factory model.

As bad, if not worse, is Best Buy's habit of "pre-optimizing" stock, meaning that if you want to go home with the computer you wanted, or take advantage of a sale price, just taking something off the shelf means you are automatically stuck with added fees and questionable "upgrades." If you want to pay extra for a system restore disc, just like the one your computer comes with, you can hand the boys in blue even more extra green.
8 of 11

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free
AAPL $93.74 -1.15%
APP $0.01 -26.70%
ANF $26.73 -2.27%
BP $33.58 0.27%
BBY $32.08 -1.75%


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,773.64 -57.12 -0.32%
S&P 500 2,065.30 -10.51 -0.51%
NASDAQ 4,775.3580 -29.9330 -0.62%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs