Nintendo Japan will refuse to repair or replace customers' products if they harass its...

midian182

Posts: 8,493   +105
Staff member
A hot potato: Buying an expensive device only to find it breaks within days would make anyone angry at the manufacturer, but taking your rage out on its employees isn't helpful. Nintendo Japan is taking a stand against abuse directed at its workers by refusing to repair or replace items if a person acts in an abusive way or makes an unreasonable request.

The Japan Times writes that Nintendo has been receiving praise from social media users for updating its customer service terms and conditions in October to include a new section on harassment by customers.

The company's Japanese arm has asked customers to refrain from using any actions that go beyond what is socially acceptable as a means of fulfilling a request. These include

  • intimidation or threats
  • insulting or denigrating remarks
  • invasion of privacy
  • excessive demands, such as for a free repair when the warranty has expired
  • demanding an apology from Nintendo or its staff without reasonable cause
  • excessively repeating the same request or complaint
  • defamatory comments on social networks or websites

If Nintendo deems any of these actions have taken place, it could refuse to replace or repair a faulty product. It adds that if any of the conduct is considered to be malicious, the company will contact the authorities and take appropriate action.

A PR official at Nintendo said, "We made the decision after concluding our customers would understand because of the reputation we have built of faithfully responding to them."

One expert said Nintendo Japan had "improved awareness and called for societal understanding" and that the company's example would "have a good effect on other businesses, too."

While Japan has laws against bullying in the workplace, there are no similar legal protections for employees when the abuse comes from customers.

Most of the actions Nintendo lists as beyond socially acceptable should be universally condemned: intimidations, threats, insults, etc. But there are a few on that list that could prove controversial. Customers are sometimes forced to repeat the same (reasonable) request or complaint if a company refuses to address it. Elsewhere, Nintendo will be the one that decides what constitutes "reasonable cause" or "excessive demands."

The biggest point of contention might be the "defamatory comments on social networks or websites" action. Some companies, not necessarily Nintendo, often ignore legitimate complaints from customers until they draw enough attention to the injustice on social media, as this writer can attest. If someone tweets that a company is "crap" because they've genuinely been treated poorly, will that be considered defamatory?

Ultimately, though, the rule change should dissuade people from being abusive to staff who weren't responsible for that broken Nintendo Switch they just bought. And that can only be a good thing.

Permalink to story.

 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,959   +7,014
""Customers are sometimes forced to repeat the same (reasonable) request or complaint if a company refuses to address it. Elsewhere, Nintendo will be the one that decides what constitutes "reasonable cause" or "excessive demands."

Some companies, not necessarily Nintendo, often ignore legitimate complaints from customers until they draw enough attention to the injustice on social media, as this writer can attest. If someone tweets that a company is "crap" because they've genuinely been treated poorly, will that be considered defamatory?

Ultimately, though, the rule change should dissuade people from being abusive to staff who weren't responsible for that broken Nintendo Switch they just bought. And that can only be a good thing."

Remember: monitoring your social media and policing speech is OK when nintendo does it, because Mari0!!!!!!!!!

 

Phyrino

Posts: 40   +55
It's that last point that is dangerous.
"defamatory comments on social networks or websites"
if your nintendo product breaks after a week and you post on (idk) tiktok something like "Look at this nintendo crap. They produce total garbage"
Just something like that could be seen as "defamatory comments" and void your warranty.... Luckily that's illegal where I live and they have no right saying that the warranty is void.
If someone is threatening their employees, that's something they should take to the police.
 

Theinsanegamer

Posts: 3,959   +7,014
It's that last point that is dangerous.
"defamatory comments on social networks or websites"
if your nintendo product breaks after a week and you post on (idk) tiktok something like "Look at this nintendo crap. They produce total garbage"
Just something like that could be seen as "defamatory comments" and void your warranty.... Luckily that's illegal where I live and they have no right saying that the warranty is void.
If someone is threatening their employees, that's something they should take to the police.
I'm not really sure where such an action would be legal. Hopefully it gets challenged in court because the last thing we want is warranties and support tied to social media profiles.
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 9,363   +8,581
Nintendo would be wise to remember the old salesman's creed ....... You are only as good as your last sale ..... and your reputation is only as good as the last time it was tested ....
 

eforce

Posts: 1,048   +1,509
Customer: My Switch is faulty, I need help.

Nintendo: I find your need offensive, warranty void.
 

Avro Arrow

Posts: 3,392   +4,405
I have no problem with this. Whenever I have an issue with something, I am always polite and articulate when dealing with customer service agents for the following reasons:

#1 - It's not their fault that something went wrong.
#2 - If they're in that line of work, it means that they really do want to help you.
#3 - You attract more flies with honey than vinegar.

The most important reason of all is the fact that with anything made by human hands (especially mass-produced items) is always going to have X-number of defective items per 1,000 items, it's unavoidable. Whenever I buy something, I always have the expectation that something may possibly go wrong with it so when it does, it's not the end of the world.

When my XFX RX 5700 XT Triple-Dissipation card turned out to be defective at the hardware level, I didn't call up XFX and start screaming profanities like some crazed lunatic. First, I emailed them, they tried to be evasive so I called them. I told them what was happening and explained that drivers don't cause system resets. They agreed and I sent the card in for RMA where it would remain for several weeks.

Now, for someone who stupidly sells their old card immediately after they buy a new card, this would be a problem but it would be THEIR problem, not XFX's. While the card was away at XFX, I simply used the R9 Fury that I had replaced with the 5700 XT. The card worked fine and so I still had a gaming rig to play with. Sure, I had to turn some things down to get good frame rates in Godfall and Assassin's Creed: Odyssey but it was no big deal and the games were still playable.

When the first card that XFX sent me back was also defective which annoyed me but I had no idea what was wrong (columns of weird characters on my ASRock splash screen). This was actually interesting to me because I'd never seen anything like it before. I took a video of it and showed it to Jim from AdoredTV. He recognised it immediately as a VRAM error (good ol' Jim!) and so when I called XFX (in California) I told the customer service agent there what the problem was.

He asked me how I knew (he'd never seen it either) so I told him that I know a TechTuber and he diagnosed it for me. The agent was curious and asked who it was so I told him that it was Jim from AdoredTV. The way the agent reacted, you'd think that I told him I'd been hanging out with Drake ( :laughing ). As it turns out, the agent was a fan of Jim (and also Hardware Unboxed and Gamers Nexus).

Now, on the first card, it had cost me about CA$40 to ship it to XFX and so I made sure (in very polite terms) that I expected XFX to pay for ALL of the shipping this time. The agent agreed and the card I ended up getting back was not only flawless, but was an upper-level model, a THICC-III.

Remember that customer service agents have to deal with entitled and irate a$$holes on the daily. If you're polite and understanding to them, it makes them willing to do anything for you. The problem is that too many people think that they're King or Queen $hit and to them, customer service agents are there to make them feel better by acting as verbal punching-bags. Most corporations don't care about their employees and just tell them to deal with it.

I applaud Nintendo for actually taking steps to protect its employees from these a$$holes. I see no problem with expecting adults to behave like adults. Now if Nintendo screws you over, then by all means, that's what scorched-Earth on social media is for. Personal attacks should be limited to the CEO however, since they're the one with the power and with great power comes great responsibility. ;)
 
Last edited:

Rocky4040

Posts: 144   +174
Wouldn't it be considered not legal for them to cancel your warranty & refuse to fix your device because you happened to mention them on your social media page? It's called free speech and if a product breaks in a short time of coarse you will probably mention it on your FB page or twatter page. This is human nature and Nintendo knows this and this is one of the ways they can your warranty & proclaim I was abusive towards them for saying oh my Nintendo Swatch died in 2 days and what kind of crap are they selling people these days. it's not abusive it's stating what I happen to most likely would feel if this happened. Glad I do not own anything Nintendo but I do see other companies going this route as well if Nintendo gets away with it.
 

Zinixo

Posts: 69   +45
What ever happened to stick and stones will break my bones but names will never hurt me[unless I let them]. Quite frankly I was planning on buying a switch for the kid but wont now.