Monday, July 28, 2008

A stroppy social experiment

The Dell Blog I refer to in this post has now been deleted. The reason for the deletion is that I got a phone call from the Australian consumer regulators which pointed out a specific legislative provision that Dell had structured its terms to get into. The post is wrong in law. Law is not my usual thing. Sorry.

Michael Dell has gone back to Dell to solve its problems. The problems are usually described as customer service but that the techs I asked pointed me to faulty equipment being produced and customer service problems are really customers with faulty product overwhelm the system.

  • "The Apple model" – make sure it works simply and easily – and then you hardly need customer service. You will wind up with a deserved reputation as the "consumer company"
  • 'The Dell model" – make it cheap and sloppy and sell overpriced warranties because the customer will need them.

Anyway I spent a whole lot of time looking at Dell stock – and then the Dell problem fell in my lap. I wound up in the customer service vortex – and it was caused by a computer with technically inadequate cooling.

The computer is faulty. The fault is described in no less a source than Wikipedia as the design fault with my computer.

Dell attempted to extort (illegal) warranty fees out of me. The fees are illegal because Australia has a statutory warranty requirement which makes the “Dell Model” as described above illegal.

Anyway – rather than spend more time researching Dell stock – I am conducting a social experiment in analysing Dell. I am going to sue them for breach of Australian statutory warranty – for the faulty equipment that they are knowingly selling.

It’s a small-claims process so it will probably take only three hours of my time. And I don’t have to go very far out of my way – I can file in the local court which is – would you believe – in Bronte Road.

As most of this is going to wind up being computer-technical (and not of much interest to my general readers) I have started another blog.

I will report back on this blog only on the basis that the results have investment implications.

But if you want to follow the saga you can do so here.

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The content contained in this blog represents the opinions of Mr. Hempton. Mr. Hempton may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog based upon Mr. Hempton's recommendations. The commentary in this blog in no way constitutes a solicitation of business or investment advice. In fact, it should not be relied upon in making investment decisions, ever. It is intended solely for the entertainment of the reader, and the author.  In particular this blog is not directed for investment purposes at US Persons.