A Los Angeles artist recently tried to pass off empty black boxes as actual Best Buy products at multiple stores in the area. The fake product, named the "Useless Plasticbox 1.2" and priced at $99.99, was accompanied each time by a fake Best Buy label and manufacturer warranty.
California street artist "Plastic Jesus" -- who says he's been described as "The Banksy of LA" -- took responsibility for the prank in an interview with The Huffington Post but did not provide his real name. He said he had no trouble going into five Best Buy stores across the city on Friday and placing the fake products on the shelves.
The artist uploaded pictures of the gadget and its label to his Twitter feed on Sunday:
— Plastic Jesus (@plasticjesusart) August 10, 2013
— Plastic Jesus (@plasticjesusart) August 11, 2013
A detailed description of the plastic product reads:
"Another gadget you don't really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of use."
And then underneath the manufacturer warranty:
"If you are dumb enough to buy it you deserve all you get."
In an email to The Huffington Post, Best Buy Spokesman Jon Sandler said the company is looking into the claim and doesn't have anything else to report at this time.
The artist cited what he sees as the country's widespread consumerism as the inspiration behind the prank. Americans, he said, are always inevitably let down by the latest gadget after it is quickly replaced by something even newer.
This isn't the first time that the street artist has placed his "Useless Plasticbox 1.2" in Best Buy stores. Several weeks ago, he claims, he placed one in a store in West Hollywood that remained on the shelf for at least four full days.