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GameStop Is Causing An Uproar With TikTok Competition

GameStop hasn't drawn much public praise recently. The company already came under fire for questionable practices before the pandemic. Then the higher ups tried to argue their stores were "essential retail" and should remain open despite the risks. After that, the companydecided to permanently close over 300 stores. GameStop employees fear for their jobs, so what is a store manager to do to improve employee morale? It seems a TikTok competition may not be the answer.

Recently, word spread that GameStop is hosting an internal contest. First spotted by The Gamer, as well as ResetEra user Cheddahz, the contest asked store managers to turn their employees into makeshift dance troupes and record their unique takes on the #redwinechallenge trend. For those new to the dance, it starts off disguised as the Macarena, but eight seconds in, it evolves into something out of Fortnite.  Normally, this would be the perfect opportunity for GameStop staff to flex their creative dancing chops, but the point of the challenge is to record yourself performing the exact same moves to the exact same music as the original.

The contest announcement lists several prizes, which is what many people appear to be taking issue with. "The winner of the challenge will receive an Echo 8, Echo Auto, $100 VISA gift card and 10 additional labor hours to use during Black Friday week," the original post reportedly stated. "Imagine what you could do with all those prizes!"

What exactly are "labor hours", and what can you do with them? Are labor hours time off you can redeem for paid vacation? Are they billable hours that are automatically added to the amount you work during Black Friday?

One ResetEra user claimed the 10 labor hours will allow store managers to add the extra hours to their store's payroll — which also implies store managers will walk away with the rest of the prizes. Meanwhile, self-proclaimed GameStop employee and Reddit user Genericwittyaccount provided a different take on "labor hours." As they saw it, 10 labor hours isn't the ability to take 10 hours off during Black Friday or add 10 hours worth of billable work to your pay stub. No, 10 labor hours is permission to work 10 extra hours during the most hectic shopping period of the year.

Thanks to the announcement, people on sites like Reddit and ResetEra are having a field day at GameStop's expense. One particular Reddit thread mocks the very notion of the contest, as well as its prizes. The thread's creator, ImThatGuy5674, claimed to be a GameStop employee and pointed out that the official GameStop Conference Facebook page quickly took the contest's announcement post down due to overwhelming negativity. Since they asserted you can only join that group if you are an active GameStop employee, that would imply few individuals who works at GameStop want to participate or like the prizes. Moreover, the GameStop Conference site has also removed any mention of the contest, so ImThatguy5674's statement has some credence.

Related Reddit and ResetEra threads are brimming with negativity, with the contest and its prizes sitting squarely in the crosshairs. Many commenters pity the GameStop employees who have to, as Reddit user IamDeafdrone put it, "look like fools for peanuts," while others are using the contest as an anti-GameStop rallying cry. Many users called for GameStop's dissolvement, while others claimed they will boycott the store — after they pick up their next-gen console pre-orders.

ResetEra user Transistor, meanwhile, took the opportunity to regale readers with a similar competition held when they worked at Hollywood Video. Store employees were allegedly asked to sell as many MVP discount cards as possible. The store that sold the most got to send its manager to Vegas, and their district manager received a Chrysler. What did the average Joes get? A free coke and candy. According to Transistor, the people they worked with were so miffed they intentionally sold as few cards as possible. Don't be surprised if GameStop employees follow Hollywood Video's example and intentionally dance with two left feet.

Usually, you find some dissenting opinions, but in the case of the GameStop TikTok competition, it seems much of the internet is in agreement. Apparently the thought of dancing for permission to work more hours has struck a bad note.