This Call Scores A (Ground) Zero

, , , , | Right | May 16, 2018

(I work in a call center doing senior-level tech support for a cell phone manufacturer. This interaction happens after a lower-level support transfers the call to me.)

Me: “Hi there, [Customer]. My name is [My Name], and I’ll be taking full ownership of this call from here on, so that means I’ll be the last person you’ll have to speak with to make sure we come to a resolution for your issue. Just to make sure I understand correctly, it seems you’re trying to trade your phone in with your carrier for a new one, but your device is activation locked. Is that right?”

Customer: “Yeah, that’s right.”

Me: “All right, and do you know the email address or password for the account the device is locked to?”

Customer: “No, I need you to unlock it.”

Me: “All right, that is something we can do; however, we will require that you submit the original proof of purchase for the device.”

Customer: “I don’t have that. I’m the one who bought the phone. Can’t you just take my driver’s license?”

Me: “Unfortunately not. In order to unlock the phone, we need to match your proof of purchase with what our system shows us in order to properly verify that the device is actually yours.”

Customer: “But I don’t have that. Why can’t I just go to [Cell Manufacturer Store] with my driver’s license and have them unlock it?”

Me: “They’ll end up telling you the same thing I am. Our system needs the original proof of purchase to—”

Customer: “So, you’re saying I can’t get my phone unlocked by showing my driver’s license at the store, but I can use it to get on a plane and fly anywhere I want in the US?!”

Me: “Uh, yes. That is basically the truth.”

Customer: “Well then, maybe [Cell Manufacturer] should have been flying the planes on 9/11.”

(I’m completely speechless for a good 10 to 15 seconds.)

Me: “I-I’m sorry, ma’am. But if you can’t remain professional on this call, then I will have to disconnect—”

Customer: “Fine. Bye.” *hangs up*

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