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  • November Theme Of The Month: Black Friday!

    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…

    Laptop Flop, Part 7

    | England, UK | Crazy Requests, Money, Technology

    Me: “How can I help?”

    Customer: “I need to buy a computer. I don’t want you to sell me insurance or anything else, just the computer.”

    Me: “What will you be using it for?”

    Customer: “I need to use ‘The Google,’ and some word processing. I’ve been told by my technical friend it needs two ‘tetrabites’ and at least eight ‘jiggabites.'”

    Me: *trying not to laugh* “I think you mean terabytes and gigabytes.”

    Customer: “Yes, I am well aware of what I need.”

    Me: “For the things you are using it for, I don’t think you will need those specifications. You might end up spending a lot of money and not make full advantage of the machine. You could get a cheaper machine and spend more money on attachments.”

    Customer: “No, I know what I need; my friend told me.”

    Me: *politely* “Is your friend a technician?”

    Customer: “No, he’s a decorator.”

    Me: “Right.” *shows customer to a computer that matches her specifications, priced £899*

    Customer: “That’s too expensive. I was hoping to spend £150 – £200.”

    Me: “We have nothing that cheap. The lowest priced and most basic laptops start at £350.”

    (The customer walked off, whilst muttering how customer service was terrible.)

    Laptop Flop, Part 6
    Laptop Flop, Part 5
    Laptop Flop, Part 4

    Not A Picture Perfect Way To Advertise

    | Dallas, TX, USA | Rude & Risque, Technology

    (I’m new a programmer at a company that sells high end hardware for scanning, printing and capturing images. This is back in the DOS days, before it was common to do that. We have written a utility to convert images between different formats, to display them on PCs. This was also before the Internet has really taken off.)

    Me: “[Company]. How can I help you?”

    Caller: “Yeah. I was wondering where I can get some more pictures.”

    Me: “Pictures? Do you mean you’re looking to purchase a scanner? I can transfer you to a salesperson.”

    Caller: “No. I’m looking for some more pictures. Like I found on the BBS.”

    Me: “BBS? I’m not sure what BBS you’re talking about? Our company doesn’t run a BBS.”

    Caller: “I downloaded these pictures, and this phone number is on a bunch of them.”

    Me: “I’m afraid I don’t know what pictures you’re talking about.”

    Caller: “So, you don’t have any more pictures?”

    Me: “Hang on. Let me ask around. I’ll see if anyone knows what you’re talking about.

    (I put him on hold and walk across the hall to a coworker’s office.)

    Me: “I’ve got this guy on hold who’s asking about more pictures, like he downloaded from a BBS. Do you know what he’s talking about?”

    Coworker: *sighs and shakes his head* “That’s him on line one? *picks up the phone* “I’m sorry, sir, but we don’t have any more pictures. No, sir, we actually have nothing to do with them. Yes, I’m sure. Goodbye.”

    Coworker: *to me* “A couple of years ago, someone negotiated with [Company Owner] for a free copy of our image conversion utility. In exchange, the guy agreed to put our phone number on every picture he converted with our software. Unfortunately, [Company Owner] had not bothered to ask what kind of pictures he was converting. It turned out, this guy runs one of the largest BBS systems in the country, filled with porn. Over the years, we’ve gotten calls from as far away as South Africa looking for more pictures of naked women.”

    Es-pwñ-ol, Part 3

    | Newark, NJ, USA | Family & Kids, Language & Words, Technology

    (I’m with my mother buying a pouch and a case for my brothers hand-held gaming system. I go off on my own to find some computer games. Not even five minutes later I return to my mom looking very flustered with an employee. My mother and I are Peruvian. She speaks Spanish and struggles with English.)

    Me: *in Spanish* “Ma, are you okay?”

    Mom: *in Spanish* “No, I can’t remember the stupid name for this s***. The thing that covers the DS for you brother, what is it?”

    Me: *to the employee, in English* “Oh, my mom is looking for a cover for the 3DS. Do you have any?”

    Employee: “Yes, I showed your mom the selection right here; these are the ones we have.”

    Me: *in Spanish* “Ma, they only have these.”

    Mom: *in Spanish* “No, this f****** idiot isn’t understanding me! I want the ones in foam because your brother keeps breaking the plastic ones.”

    Employee: *in Spanish* “I’m sorry, ma’am, I know what you want. They’re over here at the next aisle.”

    (My mom turned a deep shade of red and mumbled out an apology, saying she was flustered and couldn’t control her temper. I was laughing so hard because I’m always telling my mom that just because she thinks they can’t understand her Spanish and talks s***, doesn’t mean she won’t get caught!)

    Es-pwñ-ol, Part 2

    The Light-Bulb Moment When Wifi Took Over

    | Canada | Bizarre, Technology

    (I do tech support over the phone for a large Internet company. Some of the worst calls are for people’s wifi connections, because there’s so many things that can interfere with it, and people of course try to hook up everything from Blu-ray players to printers, but we’re only trained on (and support) actual computers.)

    Me: “…And is there anything else I can do for you today?”

    Customer: “Yeah, I got these special [Brand] light bulbs; you can control them from your iPhone?”

    Me: “Uh… light bulbs?”

    Customer: “Yeah. Except I can’t make it work.”

    Me: “So… these light bulbs connect to your home wifi and then you use the iPhone to turn them on and off and things?”

    Customer: “Yeah. Can you help me?”

    Me: “I’m really sorry, but I don’t have a clue what to do with that. You have your wifi name and password now; I’d suggest talking to [Manufacturer] directly because I’m afraid I’m only trained on computers. I honestly have no idea how to connect your light bulbs to your wifi.”

    Customer: “Oh, okay. Thanks.”

    Me: *to coworker* “…and a little piece of my soul just died just from having to say that.”

    Hashtag Fail

    | Huntington Beach, CA, USA | Bad Behavior, Extra Stupid, Technology

    (I am working the till at a popular clothing store when a teenager comes to me to check out with her debit card.)

    Me: “Please hit the pound key before you start typing your code.”

    Girl: “Pound key? Where is that?”

    Me: “It’s the number symbol.”

    Girl: “HA! You mean the hashtag? I can’t believe you just called the hashtag a pound key!”

    Me: *silence*

    Girl: *finishes paying and goes to leave* “How old are you? Did they call it that in the 70s or something? I will NEVER get over that!”