Record store pauses profit to serve during pandemic

By Jamie O'Toole, Columnist

DeKALB — After suspending store hours March 15 out of fear of a recession and not knowing when the store could reopen, Green Tangerine Records turned to the internet during the COVID-19 pandemic and put a pause on profit.

On the record store’s Facebook page, customers will find the items they currently have in stock. From there, a customer can select an item listed on the page and pay to have it shipped. If customers do not have the money now, the store will hold it until the customer wants it shipped to their house.

The customer can also choose to wait until the store reopens and they’re able to pick up and pay there. Until then, the store will hold it.

This hits profits heavily for the record store as they have closed the store during the pandemic, but at Green Tangerine, the customer comes first.

It did not seem like the store’s best interest to lean on an online store, and ask people to keep buying there.

“In these uncertain times, it didn’t feel right to ask people to spend money with us when they may not know where their next dollar is coming from,” Owner Bill Kippel said.

During regular operation, the store’s standard hold policy states they will hold any item for seven days with a deposit.

Green Tangerine is not allowing people in the store, nor is it doing curbside pickup for public safety, so seven days on hold has been extended until when the store opens back up for regular pickup, or until the customer has the money to have it shipped.

Some customers are still prepaying for their items online, Kippel said, and having it shipped to their house. However, unless they are shipping the item, a prepayment or a deposit is not required right now.

“Sure, things are rough for us at this time, but we would rather things be rough for us than our customers,” Kippel said.