Woman talking(l+r), Ross Dress for less(c)

Jonathan Weiss/Shutterstock @queentayshops/Tiktok (Licensed)

‘I’m literally so embarrassed right now’: Ross customer calls for ‘gatekeeping’ deals after 49-cent sale disaster

'We have to gatekeep.'


Stacy Fernandez


Posted on Jan 24, 2024   Updated on Jan 24, 2024, 10:54 am CST

A self-proclaimed deal-hunter said some sales are better left “gatekept” as she called out TikTokers for ruining a Ross markdown event that only some people used to know about.

TikTok is not the place to gatekeep. There are entire accounts dedicated to calling people out for gatekeeping and then revealing the place or item they wanted to keep a secret.

But Tay (@queentayshops) doesn’t think this is always the right approach. In a viral video with more than 700,000 views, Tay explains that she’s been in the clearance and extreme couponing community for the last two years and has looked forward to events like Ross’ 49-cent markdown day. On that day, out of out-of-season items get significantly marked down to make room for new merchandise.

The last two years she’s attended, Tay noticed that there were mostly other people from the clearance community there who found out about the event through word of mouth. But this year was wildly different.

“I’m literally so embarrassed right now at the people. Like, the way the people were acting to employees at the Ross right now,” Tay says. “… It’s literally embarrassing and disgusting how I saw y’all treating the workers in the store.”

Tay says that this year, because of people posting all over social media about the markdown event, the masses were out at Ross, and they were making a mess of the store and being rude to employees. Some people were even cursing at the workers because they expected every item to be marked down to less than two quarters “as advertised.”

But the markdown event isn’t actually advertised by the retailer, and people mainly hear about it through word of mouth.

“This is why we can’t have nice things. This is why we cannot. We have to gatekeep,” Tay says.

She adds that there’s an etiquette to clearance and coupon shopping that the casual shoppers around her were unaware of, such as looking for an item for at least an hour before asking a worker.

Tay notes that the store was in such chaos that she left without buying anything.

“The workers couldn’t even get work done because this store was so full. The line wrapped around the back two corners of the store. I can’t even begin to describe the look on the worker’s faces,” Tay says.

@queentayshops I feel so much for the workers at ross today 😵‍💫 #queentayshops #shoppinghaul #rossdressforless ♬ original sound – Queen Tay | reviews + vlogs

In a vlog she did about the experience, viewers can hear an alarm going off in the background and see picked-over shelves, and Tay says the checkout line was wrapped around the two back corners of the store.

The original video has more than 1,400 comments from customers and former Ross workers.

@queentayshops Replying to @Jas my FULL Ross store experience; i need a drink yall!! 😭😭 #rossdressforless #queentayshops #storytime ♬ original sound – Queen Tay | reviews + vlogs

“The Internet ruins everything,” the top comment read.

“Yesss i would go to Ross for these sales years ago and it’s so sad to see what people have made it now,” a person wrote.

“As someone that was a manager at Ross. everything gets marked down every week,” a former manager pointed out.

The Daily Dot reached out to Tay and Ross for comment via email.

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*First Published: Jan 24, 2024, 6:00 pm CST