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    Putting The Ink Into Think

    | Edinburgh, Scotland, UK | Extra Stupid, Technology

    (We are the IT support for the British Army. Units not in our immediate area have to bring the equipment into our workshops for us to look at it. One day, we get a laptop printer brought in from a town quite a distance away. My workshop manager decides to look at it himself as it’s a slow day. The printer is picking paper up but not actually printing anything on it.)

    Manager: “Easiest job I think we’ve ever had. Would you contact the unit to send someone to pick it up?”

    Me: “What was the problem with it?”

    Manager: “The owner forgot to remove the plastic strip from the bottom of his new ink cartridge!”

    (The printer was returned with half a ream of test printouts which all read: ‘I must remove all packaging from the printer cartridges.’ The soldier who had to make two round trips of over 60 miles was not best pleased!)

    Towering Ignorance

    | NY, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology, Transportation

    (I work in tech support for cell phones. A coworker is having a conversation with a customer whose phone isn’t working.)

    Agent: “Okay! Have you tried checking out the settings on your phone? You may have turned those services off.”

    Customer: “No, I didn’t. Definitely didn’t do that.”

    Agent: “Hmm, I see! Well, you could always give our customer service department a quick call to see if something is up! How’s that sound?”

    Customer: “I’m at my cousin’s house and the elevation is very high so I made sure to turn ‘airplane mode’ on. It’s pissing me off that this isn’t working.”

    Agent: “Oh! Airplane mode is actually going to disable your phone from using those features. Take that off for me, please, and try again.”

    Customer: “Wow! Do you think I’m going to be fooled like that? You’re lying. How do people talk to each other on airplanes? DUH! Sucks when I know more than an employee…”

    Agent: “I’m not entirely sure what you mean. Could you elaborate, please? ”

    Customer: “Uhm, wow. I can’t believe I’m doing this: Airplane mode is for when you need to call someone while up high in the air to connect to satellites and stuff rather than towers. How do you think pilots and astronauts contact ground control? You’re a complete idiot. Goodbye.”

    Phone Support Leads To Rapport

    | USA | Technology

    (We have a website people use to generate leads for their business. Recently, a competitor has come into the market, undercutting us severely on price, but they provide no tech support and have a confusing interface. A long-time client of ours who has left us for the competitor calls in. I’m listening in as a manager on the call.)

    Customer: “Hi there. I have some questions.”

    Coworker: “I’m sorry. I thought you’d switched to [Competitor]. I’m glad you’ve come back to us!”

    Customer: “Oh, no. We still have [Competitor]‘s service. I was hoping you could help me with it. It’s confusing!”

    Coworker: “Are you asking me to help you figure out how to use our competitor’s product?”

    Customer: “Yes! I’m so lost, and you guys have always been so helpful!”

    Coworker: “I’m sorry, but I can’t support our competitor’s product. You’ll have to call them.”

    Customer: “Well they don’t have tech support. No one ever answers there! I don’t understand the product! You have to help me!”

    Coworker: “I’m sorry; I don’t have access to their products. I wouldn’t be able to answer your questions.”

    Customer: “Well what the h*** am I paying for then?”

    Coworker: “You’re not paying us anything, ma’am. You switched to [Competitor].”

    Customer: “This is ridiculous! What kind of service is this?”

    Coworker: “Better service than you get at [Competitor], I guess, since they don’t pick up the phone.”

    Customer: “Er, I, er… d*** it!” *hangs up*

    Me: “I should be annoyed that you sassed her, but that was awesome.”

    (They came back to us two months later!)

    Got Their Cables Crossed

    | AL, USA | Crazy Requests, Theme Of The Month, Top

    (I work in tech support for a national car insurance company.)

    Me: “Thank you for calling [Company] auto insurance tech support. My name is [Name]. How can we help today?”

    Caller: “Yeah. I need to know why the repairman hasn’t arrived yet to look at my cable box. I’m still not getting any of my channels right now.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but you’ve reached [Company] auto insurance. It appears you have the wrong number.”

    Caller: “I know that. I don’t even have a car. This was the only number for [Company Name] I could find.”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but again this is [Company] auto insurance. We are not your cable television provider. You may need to double-check the number you dialed.”

    Caller: “Look, just give me their correct number already! They hung up on me last time I called, and I need to get my cable back on now.”

    Me: “Ma’am, I am sorry, but we are not affiliated with your cable provider and do not have information on their contact numbers. You may want check the phone book or possibly your most recent billing statement or other mailing. I know my cable provider has their number plastered all over the mails and bills they send to me. Yours may have a similar practice.”

    Caller: “Look, why are you making this so d*** difficult?! I don’t want your d*** insurance! I don’t have a d*** car, so I don’t need it! Just give me the d*** number so I can get someone out here to fix my cable box!”

    (This back and forth continues for several more minutes with the caller confirming she is completely aware she’s called the wrong company, but expects us to provide her with the right contact info.)

    Me: “Again, ma’am, this is [Company] AUTO INSURANCE. We provide CAR INSURANCE. We do not have anything to do with cable television, satellite television, television of any kind or any other type of service other than CAR INSURANCE. We can’t give you the number for your cable repair, because we are not that company. We do not have contact information for other companies except for those involved with our CAR INSURANCE policies or the DMV for your state for concerns with your driving record. You’ve dialed… the wrong… number.”

    Caller: “Don’t condescend to me you little s***. I demand to speak with your supervisor right now!”

    Me: “I apologize ma’am, but the supervisors here at [Company] INSURANCE will only speak with callers who have legitimate concerns regarding some aspect of their CAR INSURANCE policy with us. As you are not a [Company] INSURANCE policy holder and do not have a concern regarding our INSURANCE services, I will not be able to transfer you to a supervisor. Again, ma’am, I advise you to re-check the number you have dialed or take one of the many suggestions I have offered to locate the correct company regarding your cable service.”

    Caller: “How dare you treat your customers in this manner!”

    Me: “Ma’am, you have repeatedly confirmed that you are not, in fact, a customer of [Company] AUTO INSURANCE. I have attempted multiple times to explain that you have dialed the wrong number and have reached the wrong company. You need assistance fixing your cable television service. However you have called a car insurance company. We simply cannot help you with this.”

    (My supervisor has noticed I have been on a call for much longer than usual, and has been listening for the past few minutes. He decides to jump in.)

    Supervisor: “Hello, ma’am. This is [Name], a supervisor here at [Company] auto insurance. I have been monitoring the call.”

    Caller: “Oh, finally. Maybe I can get some actual help now instead of dealing with this useless—”

    Supervisor: “—and you really need to hang up and call the right number.”

    Caller: “WHAT?!”

    Supervisor: “Unfortunately, you’re either being willfully obstinate and called solely to waste the valuable time of my techs, or you are so painfully stupid that you can’t comprehend the simple concept of a wrong number. Frankly, I don’t care which one it is at this point. What you are doing now is the same as calling McDonald’s restaurant to complain about Joe McDonald’s Plumbing not coming to fix your sink.”

    Caller: “How dare you! I demand—”

    Supervisor: “You can demand all you want, but this call is over, lady.”

    Caller: “I will not stand for this type of treatment. I will be cancelling my service and never use you again.”

    Supervisor: “Good luck with that, since I imagine to cancel your cable service you’d still have to actually call the right number.” *click*

    (The supervisor comes over to my desk chuckling and shaking his head. He takes me off the phones and we are chit chatting. A few minutes later, one of the new techs walks up to us looking nervous.)

    New Guy: “Um, I’ve got this really pissed-off lady demanding a supervisor to give her the number for her cable company. And she just starts screaming at me when I tell her this she has the wrong number.”

    (The supervisor grabs the new guy’s headset right there and takes it off hold.)

    Supervisor: “This is still an insurance company, lady. You’re still calling the wrong company. Get your s*** together and stop bugging us.” *click*

    Taxing Faxing, Part 11

    | OK, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

    (A customer calls into my place of employment asking a question about her laser printer.)

    Customer: “Hello. I need to know what my fax number is.”

    Me: “Fax numbers are issued by your phone company. You would need to contact them to find out the number.”

    Customer: “What? You mean they don’t come through the air?”

    Me: “No, ma’am. They do not come through the air.”

    Related:
    Taxing Faxing, Part 10
    Taxing Faxing, Part 9
    Taxing Faxing, Part 8
    Taxing Faxing, Part 7
    Taxing Faxing, Part 6
    Taxing Faxing, Part 5
    Taxing Faxing, Part 4
    Taxing Faxing, Part 3
    Taxing Faxing, Part 2
    Taxing Faxing


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