Silver Bullet Comics Update
A week after the news broke of Silver Bullet Comics’ tax sale, the owner has posted a response to much of the gossip. (I’m too tacky to resist making a comment about a pattern of delays continuing, but he does address the time frame, see below.)
He blames everything on bad programming. Those are some interesting bugs, that make sure the money is collected but can’t keep track of whether the ordered product was shipped. Although it does make sense that that’s where a developer’s priority would be. Oh, and “many orders were purged randomly from our system”. (For some reason, I’m reminded of when bad post offices get overwhelmed and just start throwing mail in dumpsters out back.)
They also had moving pains. Closing their store and moving everything into storage resulted in items getting “lost, misplaced, mislabeled, or just disappeared. … This problem is still being addressed, and solved in creative ways at times, currently.” The use of the word “creative” would make me nervous, if I’d ever given this company any money. That’s not what you want to hear from someone rumored to have had overdue taxes.
They’ve set up a brand-new email account, firstname.lastname@example.org, to better “work with each and every one of you to resolve your issues”. They claim over 75,000 emails a day and spam attacks means some has gotten lost, but they’re promising to reship any order where they don’t know its status. W. Alan Davis goes on to explain his silence until now:
While I subscribed to the notion that we should just fix things and not spend time making excuses until all were satisfied — and then throw ourselves prostrate to our customers – this programming issue is not like anything we’ve ever dealt with, and does not lend itself to easily being fixed without finding where problems exist. That means that we need to ask for assistance from our customers, and accept that the public message will likely create fear of the same happening to those customers not affected. Until all is resolved, though, we will attack this as aggressively and with all resources we have at our disposal, until it is behind us.
I would be very surprised if this business could continue after all this. He ends with a response to many of the rumors circulating, including this statement:
No, we did not take prepaid comic orders in the store, and close owing anyone there any money.
Meanwhile, a competitor is claiming (link no longer available) “I know the guy that just won a court case in which SBC made him prepay for comics and then refused to pay him back when the store closed.” I’ve asked for details in order to find out who is, let’s say, mistaken.