Tiptoeing around TigerDirect’s Proper Noun Limitation

I buy most of my computer parts online these days. Radio Shack’s a joke, there’s no Fry’s in Oklahoma, and most of the retail shops I’ve personally visited are overpriced, with parts marked 50%-75% higher than mail order sites (if they even have them in stock).

Last week I bought a wireless repeater for the new house. It’s an Amped Wireless SR300 High Power Wireless N Smart Repeater, according to TigerDirect.com. At $89.99 it was higher than most of the other repeaters, but this one has a built-in 5 port 10/100 Mbps switch. I need the repeater for my PlayStation 3. Even though my wireless router supports 802.11n (fast), the PS3’s internal wireless card only supports 802.11b/g, which is apparently too slow to stream DivX/XviD movies across my network.

So I bought the wireless repeater, configured it, hooked my PlayStation 3 to it, and everything is working perfectly. $100 well spent, and a win for all. A few days later, TigerDirect e-mailed me. “How are you enjoying your latest purchase? Click on this link to leave a review on our site for other potential customers.” I’m a sucker for writing reviews, so I did just that. I clicked on the link, and this is what I wrote:

My wireless router is upstairs and my PlayStation 3 is downstairs. Even though my wireless router supports 802.11n, the internal wireless network card in my PS3 only supports b/g. When connected using 802.11g, video streaming via Netflix as well as videos streaming from my server sputtered, hung, and crashed. I installed the Amped Wireless SR300 (takes 2 minutes to install and configure) which supports 802.11n, and connected my PS3 to it using the console’s 100 megabit wired connection. Videos now stream perfectly over the wireless connection. I’d rather pay the $100 than try and string network cable across the house and in between floors. It’s been up and running for a week so far, no complaints here!

This is the response I got:

Sorry! We do not accept web links, the names of specific companies, or special characters in our product reviews. Please edit your review and try again.

I tried three different revisions, each one more generic than the last, each one rejected with the same generic warning. In one revision I changed all references of PlayStation to GameStation and PS3 to GS3. This is the final review I submitted:

My wireless router is upstairs and my generic game station 3 is downstairs. Even though my wireless router supports 802.11n, the internal wireless network card in my gaming console only supports b/g. When connected using 802.11g, video streaming via a generic video streaming rental company as well as videos streaming from my server sputtered, hung, and crashed. I installed the wireless repeater (takes 2 minutes to install and configure) which supports 802.11n, and connected the generic game console 3 to it using the console’s 100 megabit wired connection. Videos now stream perfectly over the wireless connection. I’d rather pay the $100 than try and string network cable across the house and in between floors. It’s been up and running for a week so far, no complaints here!

After that one got rejected, I gave up. I removed the name of the product (Amped), the name of the console (PlayStation), and the name of the service (Netflix). I don’t know what was hanging up the review at that point and frankly I didn’t care. The product works for me, and that’s good enough I guess.

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7 comments to Tiptoeing around TigerDirect’s Proper Noun Limitation

  • Kevin Moon

    Dollar signs and commas are special characters.

  • ladyjaye

    That’s simply ridiculous. I can understand weblinks but proper nouns? How the hell are you supposed to review your product that way? At least the repeater works fine…

  • Zeno

    Believe it or not, I’m still using an 802.1/b wireless adapter for my modded Xbox and it streams DivX pretty much flawlessly even when there’s significant traffic to other network locations (everything else in the house is 802.1/g).

  • For whatever it’s worth, personal pronouns were high on the “don’t do that” list when I was writing freelance for All Game Guide; a lot of places don’t want the author to refer to himself. I can understand it from a journalistic editorial perspective, but a review is a journal of how the author perceived the product being reviewed. I’ll be the first to admit that I sometimes try to practice the no-personal-pronouns rule for other stuff, like thelogbook, and there are times that I just can’t write like that. That may have a lot to do with my lack of a busy freelance writing career.

  • It must be too early for me to be awake because my brain filtered the title of the entry from “proper nouns” to “pronouns”. Guh. This reviewer needs more caffiene.

  • Rob

    It would be more convenient if their website told you what the offending word(s) were. At least then I would have a fighting chance at correcting it.

  • I get not wanting to tell people they can get it cheaper at Newegg, not wanting them to mention prices in case the price goes up, and not wanting links that could contain other material beyond their control, but that’s really taking it too far. When I’m shopping for products, I look for reviews exactly like the first one you posted. Tell me what problem you were trying to solve, and how it worked out for you.

    Now I remember why I buy a lot from Newegg and Amazon, and not so much from Tiger Direct. I’m already at one of those other two sites anyway, reading reviews.