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    Category: Technology

    The realm of Technical Support is there to provide expert assistance to those who are not so tech-savvy. Although they still expect you to know what a computer is, and how to turn it on, and to know that you can’t ‘fix the internet’ because it isn’t pretty enough. You have been warned…

    Social Insecurity, Part 3

    | NV, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I’m one of the owners of a rental company. I had just finished setting up the unit, going over the rental agreement with the customer, and swiping his credit card on my phone.)

    Me: “Okay, sir, would you like us to email you a receipt?”

    Customer: “I really don’t like giving out my email address.”

    Me: “…I just ran your credit card on my phone.”

    Related:
    Social Insecurity, Part 2
    Social Insecurity

    Common Sense Has Folded

    | Wilsonville, OR, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

    Customer: “Where are all my old emails? I had them in the deleted items box so I could refer to them.”

    Me: “They were removed from the deleted items box because they were deleted and you no longer wanted them.”

    Customer: “I store them there so I only have to push a button to get them filed. Also so I can find out who contacted me previously about a construction contract I have in case I get sued.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, sir. They were in the deleted items box and they were deleted to help ease the migration from POP to IMAP.”

    Customer: “Can you restore all my emails?”

    Me: “With your backup I can put them in a folder.”

    Customer: “What’s a folder?”

    Me: “It’s a place to put email you want to save, manually.”

    Customer: “That seems like a lot of extra work. Why can’t I just push a button?”

    Take A Swipe At Reading

    | Raleigh, NC, USA | At The Checkout, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (The card reader in my store is a little different, in that it asks you to select credit or debit before you swipe. It is much more intuitive than most, and the machine gives very explicit instructions, but it still trips people up. The following happens at least 10 times a day.)

    Me: “Your total is [total]. Go ahead and select credit or debit on the screen first, and then swipe.”

    Customer: “Credit.” *swipes card*

    Me: “You’ll need to hit the credit button first, and then you can swipe.”

    Customer: *swipes card*

    Me: “Ma’am, if you’re using credit, you’ll need to hit the blue button on the screen. After you do that, you can swipe your card.”

    Customer: *hits button on screen*

    (Screen now reads, in large letters, PLEASE SWIPE CARD.)

    Customer: *stares blankly at screen*

    Me: “Ma’am… swipe your card now.”

    Customer: *swipes card* “Why is it asking for a PIN? This doesn’t have a PIN, it’s a credit card! Why doesn’t your machine work?!”

    Me: “It’s asking for a PIN, because you hit the green debit button instead of the blue credit button. Hit CANCEL, and we can start this again…”

    You Shall Not Pass(word)

    , | MB, Canada | Crazy Requests, Extra Stupid, Technology

    Customer: “I’m not getting my emails on my phone.”

    Me: “Okay, your email isn’t syncing because you haven’t typed your password in.”

    Customer: “What’s my password?!”

    Me: “I don’t know sir; it would be whatever you originally chose for a password.”

    Customer: “Well, I don’t remember. Why don’t you know it?!”

    Me: “That would negate the purpose of a password, sir. You don’t WANT me to know your password. Your email accounts have nothing to do with [Company].”

    Customer: “AND YOU CALL YOURSELF CUSTOMER SERVICE?!” *storms out*

    This Customer Is A Train-Wreck

    | Wales, UK | Bad Behavior, Family & Kids, Technology, Tourists/Travel

    (A woman comes in with her daughter.)

    Customer: “Hi, I’d like to collect some pre-booked tickets.”

    Me: “Sure! Have you got the booking reference printout?”

    Customer: “No.”

    Me: “Oh, well, never mind! If you have it written down in another format or maybe saved in your phone, I should still be able to find it.”

    Customer: “No. I don’t have it. The girl who served me last time didn’t ask for it. I just put my card in the machine.”

    Me: “I’m sure you must have misunderstood. We cannot issue tickets without some type of secondary reference. Do you know the postcode associated with the billing address, and could I have your surname?”

    Customer: “I don’t see why I need to give you those details. Look, I just want to print my daughter’s tickets and go back to work. You’re costing me money here.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but unless you can give me more details such as name, postcode, and destination, I can’t print your tickets. Look—” *swivels computer screen so the customer can see* “—here are the search fields I have for when there is no collection reference number available. Unless I can fill in two of these, I cannot print your tickets.”

    Customer: *turning to daughter* “WHY DIDN’T YOU SAVE THE REFERENCE NUMBER?”

    Customer’s Daughter: “Sorry, mum, you said I shouldn’t waste paper and the ticket people didn’t need it.”

    Customer: “Well, clearly they do. YOU’RE ALL COSTING ME MONEY HERE!”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but one of the terms is that you provide a reference for collection. Could you please let me try and help you with some of your other details?”

    Customer: *snappily* “FINE! It’s [Surname] and [postcode].”

    Me: “I’m sorry; nothing’s come up.” *shifts screen around again so she can see* “See? Could you have used a different postcode?”

    Customer: “No. Look, this really isn’t good enough. Why won’t the destination work on its own?”

    Me: “I’m sorry, but hundreds of people travel every day from [Our Station] to [Major London Station]. I’m just thinking: whose email did you put in? Since it’s quiet in here, I could let you around the back to use one of the staff computers to log in and find me the reference number. I should tell you though, that this is against company policy and that I am doing this at my own risk. I could face disciplinary action.”

    Customer: “It’s [Daughter]’s email. Can she just do it? Can I go? I need to get back to work.”

    Me: “If yours was the payment card, then I am afraid you will need to wait until your daughter has accessed her emails since the reference number is useless without the payment card and vice versa.”

    Customer: “Fine. [Daughter], go in the back with this idiot and see if you can’t find this bleeding reference number between your half-a-brain-cell each.”

    (The daughter nips around to my side of the booth, accesses her email, and within 30 seconds I have the tickets up. The woman inserts her card and collects her tickets, and before she leaves decides to have one more dig at me for how slow I was to get her tickets up on the system.)

    Me: “I’m sorry it took so long to resolve your issue, but perhaps next time you might consider writing the reference number down? You needn’t print it; in fact [Train Company] offers to send a free SMS containing the details to your phone. It would save an awful lot of problems.”

    Customer: “Or, you know, they could just hire competent staff who don’t need reference numbers!” *to Daughter* “Look at all the money you’ve cost me! I’m selling your Xbox when I get home!”

    (She stormed out. Fortunately I haven’t seen her since, although the daughter stopped by on her return journey to thank me for helping her.)


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