Best Buy hit by Banksy-style prankster [PHOTOS] [UPDATE]
"Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life too short to be of use."
-- Original post published August 13 at 7:45 a.m.; update at bottom --
As if Best Buys aren't having a hard enough time selling products, over the weekend, stores in L.A. unknowingly offered an especially unsellable item -- "Useless Plastic Boxes."
The boxes were the work of Plastic Jesus, an L.A.-based street artist whose work is inspired by "news society [and the] environment," according to his Twitter profile. The Daily Mail notes that he's "been compared to Banksy."
Plastic Jesus tweeted out a number of photos of his latest work, which consisted of inconspicuously placing one of the "Useless Plastic Boxes," complete with a realistic tag, next to real products:
-- Plastic Jesus (@plasticjesusart) August 10, 2013
And here, via the Melrose & Fairfax street art blog, is a closeup of the tag, which advises prospective buyers that "There is no warrenty [sic] with this piece of crap. If you are dumb enough to buy it you deserve all you get" (click to enlarge):
In a statement given to Melrose & Fairfax, Plastic Jesus went further in depth about his artistic motivations:
We are sold these gadgets in a way that makes us think that THIS new gadget is THE one. The piece of kit that will transform our lives. How often do we pay out hundreds or thousands of dollars and in-fact the product will not do much of what it is claimed. The frustration these things actually create in out lives is far greater than any possible benefits. It's only once you've purchased the item and you try to set it up and use it, often faced with long phone calls to overseas call centres, speaking to 'help desk' staff who read from scripts and leave us more frustrated.
We all need to make a strong statement to gadget manufacturers and demand products that work and customer support that actually support the customer and not the profit of the companies...
As intriguing as Plastic Jesus's "product bombing" is, in fairness to the tech giants and the stores that sell their gadgets, I gotta say -- my post-Galaxy s3 life contains a little less frustration than it did before, though I am kinda annoyed I won't be able to upgrade to the s4 until the s5 is about ready to be released.
:::: UPDATE ::::
A Best Buy spokesman contacted City Pages to provide the following statement about Plastic Jesus's prank:
"A few stores were affected and the boxes were removed immediately. We are also flattered that Best Buy is so top of mind for Mr. Plastic Jesus, and are happy that he presumably had the opportunity to witness our expert Blue Shirts and Geek Squad members in action during his visits. Hopefully he also had the chance to check out our fabulous back to school deals."
Spokesman, Best Buy
We appreciate the attempt at humor, but something tells us Plastic Jesus isn't in the market for back to school gadgets.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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