Firing Squad: After a surprise, reevaluating Quartet

Ava Wallace, Reporter

I really couldn’t write this follow-up without including a “squeaky wheel gets the grease” joke, so I’ll just get it out of the way right off the bat.

This morning, I opened my laptop to see an email from the owner of Quartet Copies, so I did what I can only assume every student journalist does when they see the subject of their article has written them a note – ignore it for a couple of hours.

When I finally did read the email, I found it was not an angry response letter calling for my resignation from The Daily, but rather a genuine and well-crafted apology.

And most importantly, Quartet wanted to refund my money.

I was taken aback and very pleased (dancing ensued, texts written in all caps were sent). This was journalism in action! My words had consequence! Someone had read something I wrote!

But throughout the day, I debated taking the refund. Yes, I had wasted a significant amount of time and was behind in my reading because of Quartet, but dozens of my friends are in the same boat as I am and they aren’t getting any money back.

Moreover, writing for a student publication doesn’t make me any more important, and I’m sure I’m not the first to complain about Quartet in a public sphere. I wasn’t totally comfortable getting my money back just because I had given the store some bad publicity.

I took my refund. This is not to say that I choose money over ethics, but I could use $81 and it would have been pretentious to turn down the store’s offer.

So I solidified details with Quartet’s owner on the phone. He apologized for the poor service many times over, assured me that Quartet prides itself on customer satisfaction and generously offered to help out with any printing I may need in the future.

He sounded tired and truly sorry on the phone, but, I kid you not, the minute we hung up a friend texted me, “DOWN WITH QUARTET,” followed by her own course packet grievance.

In fact, multiple friends have messaged me since my Quartet rant was published with similar complaints and sentiments of solidarity.

So I stand by what I wrote earlier. Employees and management at Quartet work hard and may care about quality customer service, but I doubt the printing company could bankroll all of the Northwestern students who deserve a refund similar to what I got.

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