RE: taking money when ordered - although I don't like this, to be honest it is probably a result of the margins (as I understand it) being low in PC production and too may consumers ordering a PC (which is built to order) then deciding they've found it cheaper elsewhere and cancelling the order. At the margins some of these places work at they can probably ill afford that (i'm guessing a bit here).
We as consumers expect lower and lower prices but not to see any change in the quality of service. Something has to give. Would you be prepared to pay 25% more for your PC to have the guy at PC World answer your call? Would everyone? I think some suppliers still need to adjust to the internet age and also to perfect their CRM (Customer Relationship Management) which aims to treat all customers like a personal relationship, augmented by IT, but doesn't always work as well as it might.
These people are businesses after all, so you would expect them to try things that can increase or maintain their margins however they should be balancing that with maintaining customer good will.