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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…

Not Creating A Pretty Picture Of Themselves

| San Francisco, CA, USA | Bad Behavior, Technology

(I am working as a photographer’s assistant at a large corporate Christmas party. We are taking pictures in front of a green screen backdrop and then printing them out and giving them to guests for free, as the company is paying us. The printer is slow, so I generally send several pictures in a batch and then put them in clear envelopes and hand them to the waiting guests. Therefore, the picture on my screen is the last one coming out of the printer. Most of the guests are waiting patiently in a line, as their pictures are coming out in the same order that they were taken. One lady bypasses the entire line and comes around my table to look over my shoulder, where it’s fairly obvious she’s not allowed. Her picture happens to be on-screen.)

Lady: “Oh, look at how it looks like I’m in a pretty snow globe. What a neat trick!”

(The next picture comes out of the printer. I pick it up, put it in an envelope, and am about to hand it to the next guest in line when the lady SNATCHES it from my hand and starts to walk away.)

Me: “Ma’am, that’s not your picture.”

(The lady ignores me as she looks at the picture. She then turns around huffily.)

Lady: *angry* “This ISN’T MY PICTURE! You gave me the WRONG one!”

Me: *politely* “No, ma’am, your picture is still in the printer. That is the picture of the guest waiting in line. If you’ll wait just a minute, I’ll give you your picture.”

Lady: “Hmph!”

(She stood impatiently as I gave pictures to other guests, finally getting to her picture. She took it and stomped off without thanking me. Sadly, she was only one of about ten greedy people who grabbed pictures that weren’t theirs and then blamed me for it.)

Logged Too Many Logins

| England, UK | Extra Stupid, Technology

(This happens far too regularly.)

Me: “Hello, [Company]. How may I help?”

Customer: “Hello I would like to know how to [generic query].”

Me: “Okay, from [screen], open [other screen], and select [option].”

Customer: “Oh, hang on. Let me get to a computer and log in.”

Playstation Depreciation

| NH, USA | Bad Behavior, Technology

(It’s near the end of my first day on the job and I’m still apprehensive. A customer calls the store and the manager picks up.)

Manager: “Yes, sir, we do have PS2 games, but they’re so old that they’re actually not in our system anymore; they’re just permanently marked down and sitting in the bins. The only way we could find a specific one for you is if we physically searched through each one.”

(Pause.)

Manager: “No, sir. As I said, we do have them but if you want a specific one, you would have to find it yourself in our bins. I’m sorry, but those games are very old and as I said, the specific titles are just not in our system anymore.”

(Another pause, and I actually hear the customer screaming “YOU JUST LOST MY BUSINESS!” over the phone.)

Manager: “Yes, sir, I’m sure I’ll cry myself to sleep about those lost 50 cents. Have a good night!”

(I was significantly less apprehensive about the job after that.)

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.)

Related:
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.”

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