Friday, January 06, 2006

Wal-Mart at it ... again

Damn, just when you thought it was save to back out in public, you discover that your favorite business in the entire world - Wal-Mart – is at it again.
It seems that, according to the Associated Press on Thursday (Jan. 5), Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has stopped the system that makes (and creates) the movie recommendations on its shopping Web site. Why do you ask should I care? Well, it seems that the pride of Bentonville, Ark., in the cradle of the Southern mentality, linked a “Planet of the Apes” DVD to films about … famous black Americans, including the late Martin Luther King Jr.
According to AP, “Wal-Mart said it had removed what it called the ‘offensive combinations’ from a walmart.com page advertising a boxed DVD set, Planet of the Apes: The Complete TV Series. Under a ‘similar items’ section, the DVD set’s page linked shoppers to four films about the lives of King, actress Dorothy Dandridge, boxer Jack Johnson and singer Tina Turner. Wal-Mart later altered the page to link with television show DVDs.”
Smart move. And no one in the company can figure out how it happened. Does the word, “Arkansas,” offer a clue?
“We are heartsick that this happened and are currently doing everything possible to correct the problem,” Wal-Mart spokeswoman Mona Williams said in a preapred statement. “Walmart.com’s item mapping process does not work correctly and at this point is mapping seemingly random combinations of titles. We were horrified to discover that some hurtful and offensive combinations are being mapped together. We are deeply sorry that this happened.”
“To further illustrate the bizarre nature of this technical issue, the site is also mapping movies such as Home Alone and Power Puff Girls to African-American-themed DVDs.”.
This is the same Website that has, in the not-so-distant past, sold books that expound white supremacist and neo-Nazi themes.
A little salt with that, cracker?

1 comment:

Teresa Acosta said...

Somehow, Chuck, I missed this incident/accident. But now I know - one more reason I'm glad I am not a Wal-Mart shopper.