Video Embarassment for Wal-Mart

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Lord Blackadder, Apr 11, 2008.

  1. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #1
    Before anything, I have to mention that I dislike Wal-Mart pretty intensely and am therefore totally biased against them.

    News link.

    A production company that worked with Wal-Mart for years producing video for internal consumption has made the videos public - for a price. $250 an hour to "research" Wal-Mart's dirty laundry. Wall-Mart offered to buy the videos and the company asked for $145 million or else they go public...

    Sounds like a scumbag move, blackmail essentially. Lawyers will comb the videos for a sniff of a lucrative class-action lawsuit and the production company rakes in the cash. Way to actually sink lower than Wal-Mart, guys. :rolleyes::mad:

    I don't think taking the videos public is wrong, but trying to gouge Wal-Mart for money and then charging lawyers a small fortune to look at them (charges that will get passed on to their clients) is really unethical.
     
  2. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

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    #2
    Man's gotta get paid. If it ain't illegal, props to them for monetizing what sounds like a situation where they otherwise would've gotten ripped off.

    I have trouble feeling sorry for Wal Mart, one of the world's most massive companies, having to pay $145 million to prevent embarrassment.
     
  3. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #3
    Someone at Walmart will get fired for this. How hard is it to draw up a contract with a production company for internal videos that keeps the videos as the property of Walmart? Who let this production company retain ownership if they contain information that is damning?

    That being said I don't necessarily like what the production company is doing, but if the videos are truly their property they have a right to sell them to whomever wishes to buy them. If they could provide documentation that states they will make the amount they are asking from Walmart then I don't have a problem. If you're going to sell your company and/or product over to another corporation, you should be able to at least get what you think the company and/or product is worth.
     
  4. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #4
    If they were internal videos only I would assume there are trade secrets? So why would Walmart not want to own the videos out right. Seems someone dropped the ball years ago. Usually these are videos that are produced for the company and are owned by said company. Obviously the production company is out for some quick cash but Walmart is at fault for not owning them outright.
     
  5. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #5
    I figured I'd let a few others bash Wal-Mart before I added my opinion on that...;)

    With the amount of money they have at their disposal, Wal-Mart should have negotiated the purchases of the videos to avoid any further unpleasantness, so in that regard they only have themselves to blame. Besides the previously mentioned fact that they should have ensured they owned the rights in the first place.

    The production company had been working with Wal Mart for 30 years, so it's likely that the person responsible for this has already left the company.

    No honor among thieves, I suppose. I really would like to see Wal-Mart bled white; unfortunately $145 million is a mere pin-prick for them.

    I would think that other corporations might now think twice before doing business with that production company though, or at least be extra careful in creating a contract.
     
  6. mactastic macrumors 68040

    mactastic

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    #6
    Yeah, if Wal-Mart is going to stick it to someone over a lack of reading the fine print in their health care agreement (and yes, I realize Wal-Mart flip-flopped on this once public pressure was brought to bear), then the lose the ability to complain when someone sticks it to them because they didn't read the fine print in their video production agreement.

    Plus, it sounds to me like this split between Wal-Mart and the video production company was particularly nasty, and like a jilted lover, the video production company wants revenge.

    Lesson being, you've got to handle your breakups carefully, lest your former confidant spill all your secrets into the public domain.
     
  7. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #7
    ...And yes, I realize misspelled "embarassment" in the title. It's quite embarassing, and been bugging me all afternoon as I sit here and edit a chapter of my thesis...:(:rolleyes::D
     
  8. atszyman macrumors 68020

    atszyman

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    #8
    You should be able to edit the title yourself...
     
  9. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #9
    Yup just do an advanced edit.
     
  10. Lord Blackadder thread starter macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #10
    :eek: Further embarassment. Good grief, I hope I don't have to use that word in my thesis...:rolleyes:
     
  11. Killyp macrumors 68040

    Killyp

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    #11
    Of course, but I'd imagine the indent on their public image (if they even care about having one, or need one) is rather larger...
     
  12. cheekybobcat macrumors 6502a

    cheekybobcat

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    #12
    Kudos to that production company. I hate Wal-Mart with an intensity unknown to mankind. I hope those videos go public.
     
  13. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #13
    While I have no warm and fuzzy feelings for Wal-Mart what the production company is doing is completely unethical ("two wrongs..." and all that). As another poster said, this seems like a reaction from a jilted lover and that's no way to run a business.


    Lethal
     
  14. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

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    #14
    so how I find it hard to believe Walmart would of dropped the ball on the contract that badly. I can expect this to go to law suits with the company before it is said and done.

    That and the production company will get slammed with responiblity of damages of any lawsuits against walmart that come out from this.
     
  15. iJon macrumors 604

    iJon

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    #15
    The reason they own the right to the videos is cause they have been doing business with Wal-Mart since the beginning and their contract was based off a handshake only. Why Wal-Mart's lawyers didn't change the contract is beyond me.

    I don't think this will affect Wal-Mart much but it is one of their bigger blunders that could have been prevented.

    jon
     
  16. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #16
    I also refuse to patronise Wal*Mart, but this smacks of extortion.
     
  17. rhett7660 macrumors G4

    rhett7660

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    #17
    Kind of late to the game, but why does everyone hate wal-mart so much? Just curious.
     
  18. CanadaRAM macrumors G5

    CanadaRAM

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    #18
    Bull$^^^. The production of the videos were presumedly paid for by Walmart. I cannot believe that there is no contract ... a paid invoice is a contract.

    What rip off BTW? How does a library of industrial videos become worth $145 mill? I think I know the party attempting the ripoff.

    Publishing the videos to the public is an infringement of the participants' rights (the Walmart employees) unless they signed releases for all of the footage.
     
  19. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    #19
    A fair question.

    Mainly because they have sale-associates, not employees, and so avoid providing legislatively-mandated benefits. What they actually pay is of less importance to me, as everyone has a choice in that regard.

    But playing on the lowest level of society is distasteful, to say the least.
     
  20. stevegmu macrumors regular

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    #20

    What, are you kidding? Years ago businesses dreamed up the terms sales associates for employees and guests for customers. Neither has anything to do with skirting labor laws, or 'legislative mandates.' If they had wanted to do so, they would simply classify all employees as seasonal, in order to avoid paying overtime.
     
  21. solvs macrumors 603

    solvs

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    #21
    Looking around, you'd see why. In another thread we pointed out how they were suing a permanently disabled former employee because her husband won some money in a lawsuit from the person that hit them. They had every legal right, but some questioned it being in the contract in the first place, and wondered why they had to ask for all of it, plus interest. Especially since they didn't help at all in the lawsuit, didn't count any of it as pain and suffering, and that there was less left after her expenses had been paid since the coverage they did pay for didn't cover everything. They finally relented, but the damage was done, and it's not like it's an isolated incident. Add in the fact they're known for treating employees unfairly, pushing suppliers to lower their costs sometimes at a detriment, pushing other businesses in the areas they come to out of business, putting Made In America stickers on their products even if they aren't. There's more, that's just some of it.

    Actually, they have done that in the past. Not to every employee, but some of them. I thought everybody knew that.
     

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