The other day, we all rather winced at footage of people rushing into a Walmart to grab Pokémon cards. It was a right ol' mess of limbs and tempers. Not the kind of thing anyone wants to see. And now it's time to wince again - but this time, incredibly over-eager customers are after graphics cards, rather than actual cardboard.
As brought to our attention by Kotaku and Hypebeast, a restocking of Nvidia GPUs at a Micro Center store in Dallas, Texas brought out the worst in those waiting to step inside and make their purchase. The incident was filmed by Preston A Lewis, who streamed what he was saying onto Twitch. You can watch the whole thing unfold, below.
As you can see from the very start of the video, there's a decent crowd of customers gathered, keen to get their mitts on one of these Nvidia graphics cards. What happens next: pretty darn chaotic. "One card per household," cries a store employee at three minutes 48, before being asked: "Is that going to be enough for all of us?"
"No," comes the reply. And then, the crowd runs. Towards the store they race, everyone desperate to get there first, to grab what they've come for before stock sells out. IDK about you, but it's very messy, and really not safe - not at the best of times, given the crush that follows, but certainly not during a period where social distancing is so vital to beating this pandemic.
Customers line-up outside the Micro Center, way too close for comfort to each other - but, at least, there's no actual violence on show. People just kind of stop and chat to each other, almost forgetting the incredible rush they were just a part of - a rush that could so easily, needlessly, have ended up with someone getting hurt. There is a better way to do this, to sell hot-ticket items, when they're in limited supply. Micro Center, Dallas: this wasn't it.
In related Nvidia news, remember when someone spent $800 on a photo of a new RTX 3080? That was a thing that happened. Late last year, there was also a story about someone being assaulted over a graphics card, which is just... No, stop, people, please. I know these things matter to you, but they can't matter that much.
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