Native Instruments Acknowledges Bug, End of Relationship With Guitar Center

As I previously posted, I was having an issue with Native Instruments’ Kore 2 not being able to operate the way I needed it to, and the way I specifically asked about before purchasing the product. Native Instruments has acknowledged the bug, but this post isn’t about that, even though the ordeal is almost over (by Monday I should be able to move on, keeping in mind that Monday marks the end of the *second month* of trying to get this resolved!). This post is about the amazingly bad way I was treated by my Guitar Center sales rep during our last conversation.

It used to be that companies needed every customer they could get, and would do whatever they could to keep their customers satisfied and coming back. Now, maybe there are companies out there that are so big, and do so much business that individual customers don’t actually matter, and maybe in a slight twist of irony, the negative word-of-mouth that can be spread so easily via the Internet (say, via blogs) is obviated, or at least offset, by the increased business a company can do on the ‘Net, creating this situation in the first place. In any case, I’m sure these guys still work on commission, and whatever they’d like to think looking at their weekly or monthly pay checks, their customers *are* important.

So if you’re one of these, here’s a little tip: don’t tell your customer that he’s not important (actual quote: “sorry I forgot about this, but I see 200 customers a day”), don’t blame your customers or call them difficult (“I tried to work with you, and you changed your mind”), and don’t put your vendor sales reps in a bad light (“I just talked with him, and he said you weren’t interested in working with them, you just wanted to return the product” – this one especially got me, as I spent a *month* waiting for their tech support to eventually acknowledge a bug I knew was there from the first day I used the software). Oh, and I’m not just dumping on the sales reps – the store’s general manager and the district manger (whom I spoke to directly at one point) were both involved in this debacle as well. So after Monday (or whenever this is resolved), I plan never to set foot, or spend another dime, in a Guitar Center store (or website) again. I can’t (and won’t) tell you to do the same, but the next time you do, remember that you’re likely just a number to them, and hope that you don’t need to take anything back. And if you do, I hope you’re treated better than I was.

Edit: The first part of this is here.

Information For Potential Kore 2 Buyers

Keywords: Native Instruments Kore 2 2.0.1 MIDI bug

As part of the story relating to my experience with Kore 2, I wanted to have a separate entry warning potential purchasers of Native Instruments’ Kore 2 Product. Although it would seem that there aren’t very many people buying Kore for the reason I had, this might be useful to someone in making a decision. I purchased Kore 2 with the intent to use it as a host, and specifically to be able to send MIDI program changes to external gear when switching to a new “song” (my terminology, not Native Instruments’). Although Native Instruments claimed version 2.0.1 could do this, my experience was different, and after a month, Native Instruments technical support acknowledged that there was indeed a bug in this functionality. The original Kore product (and indeed, Kore 2.0.0 as well) was completely inward-focused as a host: it could not communicate with external gear. The apparently-too-quickly-added functions to allow this in 2.0.1 were not well-tested and I’m recommending anyone with external gear to control look elsewhere for a host solution until Native Instruments fixes the bugs.