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…


| Austin, TX, USA | Liars & Scammers, Technology

(I work at a home improvement store, specifically in the appliances department. I get a call from a customer who has me look up an order of hers. Note: it’s currently December 2014.)

Customer: “I really want to get this dryer fixed, but I can’t remember when I bought it exactly.”

Me: *reading purged order* “Okay, ma’am… Looks like you bought it in September of last year, so the manufacturer’s warranty is expired.”

Customer: “Oh, shoot. Oh! Did I buy an extended warranty?”

Me: *scrolls through order again* “No, ma’am, you didn’t.”

Customer: “Oh… What if I go to another [Company I work for] store and don’t tell them anything and buy the extended warranty?”

Me: *pauses* “Well, you only have 90 days from date of purchase to buy the extended warranty, ma’am.”

Customer: *with serious disappointment* “Oh, so they’re all smart, then?”

Me: “…”

A Catalog Of Errors

| FL, USA | Food & Drink, Money, Technology

(I am working a temporary account for a well known holiday gift catering service that specializes in meats and cheese. The account has ads in newspapers, and in their catalogs and website.)

Me: “Thank you for choosing [Company]. My name is [My Name]. How may I assist you?”

(The caller sounds like a woman in her late thirties.)

Customer: “Hi, I saw you were having a special sale on a spiral cut honey glazed ham. I’d like to get one of those.”

Me: “I’d be happy to order you one today. May I have the gift code?”

Customer: “I don’t see a gift code. Where is it?”

Me: “It should be in a box on the side of the page, with the gifts letter designating the code.”

Customer: “I don’t see it? I’m scrolling up and down and don’t see any boxes.”

(I get a sinking feeling but keep strong.)

Me: “Oh, do you have a catalog or are you on the website? If you need assistance using the website I can help you with that as well.”

Customer: “I’m on the website.”

Me: “All right, then instead of looking for a gift code, all you need do is look for the button that says ‘add to c-‘”

Customer: “I know that! What do you think I am, a moron?! I want to order items off the website, over the phone!”

Me: “I can certainly do that for you. Now what weight spiral cut ham is it?”

Customer: “It’s the 20-pound for $35.99.”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am. The only 20-pound ham we have is for $49.99.”

Customer: “Well, that’s not possible. I’m looking at it!”

Me: “Is it a special offer?”

Customer: “Yes, it is. That’s obviously why I want to order it!”

(The sinking feeling kicks in all the way.)

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but we cannot use the website specials in place of catalog specials. Website specials are for the website only.”

Customer: “So you’re telling me that I cannot get this ham for the price that it is advertised at?! That’s false advertisement!”

Me: “No, ma’am, you can, but you have to order it online. The systems at the call center can only process catalog specials. You can order the product online, just not through the phone.”

Customer: “But I don’t want to order it online. I want to order over the phone!”

(At this point I’m at a loss. My manager has noticed how long the call has taken, and takes a headset to listen into the call.)

Customer: “Here, I have a gift code, like what you asked before. Try that!”

Me: *I try the gift code that she pulled out of thin air* “It says it is void in my system, ma’am. As I’ve explained this is only an Internet offer and—”

Customer: “Can’t you just adjust the price of the ham on your end?! I’ve had people do that for me before!”

Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, but all catalog prices are as shown. We cannot adjust the product price.”

Customer: “What the h*** kind of customer service is this?! I want to speak to a manager!”

Me: “Certainly, ma’am. I’ll call him right over.”

(I mute my mic and take a moment to explain what my manager has missed on the call. My manager un-mutes his mic.)

Manager: “Hello, my name is [Manager], supervisor for [Company]. How may I be of assistance?”

Customer: “Your employee is refusing to give me correct price for a ham!”

(My manager then takes another 10 or so minutes on the phone. Outside of the call, I kind of get to laugh at the trouble the woman gives him. And then on top of THAT, after he re-explains EVERYTHING I have already told the woman, she demands to speak to HIS manager. The MOD manager, a woman I’ve never even seen before, comes on to the floor and takes a mic. She looks bemused.)

MOD Manager: “Hello I am [MOD Manager], [Manager]’s manager. How may I—”

(The woman on the other end immediately sets off on a rant.)

MOD Manager: “Ma’am, this is a business. You’re wasting our time. If you want an online product, order it online. Good-day.”

(The MOD manager doesn’t wait for a reply, just hangs up on the customer and turns to us.)

MOD Manager: “Thanks for the call. I needed a laugh.”

No Sign They Read The Sign

| UT, USA | Extra Stupid, Money, Technology

(I work at the self-checkout registers, helping customers with machine errors and doing theft prevention. Four of our self-checkout registers do not accept cash, to save space.)

Customer: “Where do I insert my cash?”

Cashier: “Sir, this machine accepts debit and credit only. It does not accept cash”.

Customer: “Really? You should have a sign that says that”.

Cashier: “Actually, we have several. There’s one posted just above the register in bright orange, one above the self checkout entrance, and at the beginning of the transaction, you pressed the button that says ‘yes, I understand this machine doesn’t accept cash.'”

(The customers always, with a red face, quickly and quietly run to one of the cash machines!)

Wish You Could Firewall These Customers

, | St. Louis, MO, USA | Extra Stupid, Technology

Me: “Thank you for calling [ISP]. How can I help you?”

Customer: “Yeah, my computer is on fire. What should I do?”

Me: “Call the fire department! Why are you calling us? You should try to put it out!”

Customer: “It’s your fault, though! What are you going to do about my computer?”

Me: “Sir, I strongly advise you trying to put out the fire before we continue. There is nothing we can do about your computer being on fire.”

Customer: “Look here! I was following your instructions on the CD that came with the kit. It told me to install the ethernet adaptor. I opened my laptop, put the green card inside, put it back together, and now it’s on fire.”

Me: “Whoa! Wait, you said you got a green ethernet card, and you opened your laptop up and put it in there?”

Customer: “Yes! Now what are you going to do about my computer being on fire!”

Me: “Sir, the adaptor we sent you was for a desktop computer, not for a laptop. There is no way that the card supplied will work for your computer. We could have assisted you had you called in prior to you attempting to install the adaptor, when you could not find a place to plug it in. Instead you slammed it all together, and caused your own fire hazard. I strongly suggest that you call the fire department, or try to put out the fire yourself while the firefighters arrive. There is nothing that I can do to support you at this time.”

Customer: “But what is [ISP] going to do about my computer?!”

Electric Sense Of Humor

| IL, USA | Technology

(I work in the electrical department of a hardware store. I’m a young male with pretty long hair, so sometimes the customers don’t want my help with electrical questions, as they believe me to be too young to know what I’m talking about, even though I also work as an electrician. A middle-aged woman approaches me and impatiently knocks on the desk to get my attention.)

Woman: “I need help with some wiring my husband is doing at home.”

Me: “Sure thing. What exactly did you need help with?”

Woman: “I have some questions.”

Me: “If you’d like to explain the project to me, I’d be happy to answer any of your questions.”

Woman: *looks me up and down* “No, I need someone who knows what they’re doing.”

Me: “I’m certain I can help you if you’d like to explain the problems you’re having.”

Woman: “No, I’d like you to call somebody else over.”

Me: *seeing this is going nowhere, I get on the store intercom* “Guest assistance needed at the electrical desk, please. Guest assistance at the electrical desk.” *to woman* “Someone will be right with you.”

(I go back to reading the Sunday ad while she waits. About 60 seconds later I look up.)

Me: “Hi there, ma’am. You needed some help in electrical?”

(The woman just looked at me in astonishment and stormed away.)

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