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A month-old website,, reportedly has been providing consumers with an instruction manual and the means to print barcode stickers so that consumers can actually reprice items in retail stores.

While experts in the field told MNB that they have no sense at this point in time how extensive a practice this might be and how much money it could be costing the industry, lawyers are looking into the situation.

John Terwilliger, vice president of market development with the Uniform Code Council (UCC), told us that his organization only became aware of the situation yesterday, and that it “is very concerning to us.”

The Associated Press yesterday reported that Wal-Mart attorneys have demanded that the site immediately cease and desist.

However, the site itself -- while having shut off the printing function -- is positioning itself as social commentary, not criminal.

“ is designed to stimulate discussion about the prices of products and goods as they might relate to corporate and governmental agendas,” the site says. “ does not advocate re-labeling items in stores. servers do not store any barcode images only the data entered by our customers which is not verified by to be accurate. Any image of a barcode you see on your screen is generated and visible only to you the user on your local machine. The video commercial on's site is a dramatization and we have been assured by the anonymous videographers that no actual items were mislabeled or mispriced during the taping of the commercial.”

Furthermore, the site says that “if you understand that is a site of satire then you may enter. We are not liable for any misuse of the contents of this site. The creators of only wish to use barcodes as a vehicle for satire and political commentary. By entering this site you acknowledge the value of as political satire.”

The site also clearly targets Wal-Mart, both in pictures and text. It goes on, “If, on the other hand, you are planning on using this site for illegal practices or you are generally offended by satire then feel free to leave us now. If you believe that Wal-Mart, a corporation with a long list of complaints against it, is somehow more ethical than a web site that makes no profit and is simply satire then go spend your cash at their online store. They are sure to want your business...and your small businesses, and your under 18 year old employables, and your senior citizens, and your land, and your economic stability.”
KC's View:
The interesting here isn’t the guerilla tactics being advocated and facilitated by, which would be a lot more interesting if the writing were literate and entertaining, rather than looking like the word of a 10th grade techie who never took an English class.

It isn’t even the notion of Wal-Mart as target. After all, if you want to be a behemoth, you have to face the fact that not everybody is going to love you. (Wal-Mart executives seem at peace with this notion, and probably find solace by counting and recounting their money.)

What intrigues us is that this technology exists, and quite possibly could be used by hundreds or even thousands of individuals across the country with no other agenda than to lower their expenses and stay beneath the radar. The re-code battle with Wal-Mart actually could end up bringing attention to a problem that could be epidemic in nature, and that nobody even realized was going on.