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Just Sweep This One Under The Rug

, , , | Working | October 14, 2021

I spot a woolen rug on a website that I want for my first own apartment. Its starting price is quite good, but it is even on sale for 99€ , and I check that they have the same rug in their store near me for the same price. I quickly go with my mom to get it, since it’s quite big. We search all the carpets and finally find one. The tag reads twice the price stated online, and in the store, there is no sign of sale anywhere — according to the web store, most rugs, including this one, are 50% off — so I flag down an employee to be sure of the price.

Employee: “Can I help you?”

Me: “Yes, I’d like to buy this carpet. What is the price?”

Employee: *Looks at the price tag* “It’s 199€.”

Me: “Funny, I looked online before coming here, and it should be much less.”

Employee: “The price is what reads on the tag.”

Me: “Could you check the price? I’m sure it isn’t right, as there is a sale on the rugs.”

Employee: “No, we don’t have any sale on the rugs. The price is 199€.”

Me: “I’m sure your store website read 99€.”

Employee: “This is quite a big woolen rug; I’m sure it wouldn’t go that cheap.”

Me: “Could. You. Go. Check. It. For. Me.”

The employee huffs and leaves.

My mom is quite shocked because normally, I’m so shy that I would never do that. On several occasions, when she demanded customer service like me here, I slunk away under displays or left the store altogether because I hated drawing attention. I kind of surprised even myself.

The employee comes back.

Employee: “Yes, it is 99€.”

I did a little victory dance in my head and I think my mom did the same. While ringing us up, the employee looked like he’d eaten a sour lemon. All the other carpets were on sale, too, and I was left to wonder if they marked them down.

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The Final Word On Passwords, Part 12

, , , | Right | September 30, 2021

I work for an online shop. Like most online shops, you need to make a profile where you keep contact info and such. With us, you can also store the payment info, so it’s easier and faster to finish your next shopping. Usually, it works fine and the customers are happy with our security.

Then, this customer calls in.

Me: “Hi, welcome to [Store]. This is [My Name]. How can I help you?”

Customer: *Fairly annoyed* “Every time I try to make an order with you, I have to put in a new password. I cannot pay anything before I put in the password. Why is it so difficult to order from you?”

Me: *Slightly confused* “I’m sorry to hear that you are having problems ordering. When is it that you have to put a password? I do know that for some payments you have to do that, but what exactly is it here?”

Most payments via credit card have to be done with double passwords — a demand the bank and security there has put forward. It’s nothing we can control. I think that’s what the customer is talking about.

Customer: “It’s every time I try to pay. I have to make a new password before I can get to payment. It asks me to log in. Why can’t I just write my email and then make an order?”

The conversation was longer, but by the time the customer mentioned this, I realised that they were talking about the password to log into their SHOP profile. The customer seriously couldn’t understand why we would demand the customers to have a password to log in and why the email wasn’t enough.

I did my very best to explain the reason without sounding like I was belittling their intelligence. I mean, why would we ask people for a password in order to keep their personal information secure when shopping with us?

Related:
The Final Word On Passwords, Part 11
The Final Word On Passwords, Part 10
The Final Word On Passwords, Part 9
The Final Word On Passwords, Part 8
The Final Word On Passwords, Part 7

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The Chosen One Has Chosen You

, , , | Right | September 23, 2021

I work for a huge company that operates in a variety of fields, including running hotels. I, however, work at a law office. The phone rings and I answer.

Me: “[My Name] at [Law Office].”

Customer: “Hi, I would like to book a standard room with a queen-sized bed for the upcoming weekend.”

Me: “I’m afraid you have the wrong number. This is a law office.”

Customer: “No! I’m looking at the Internet and this is the number!”

Me: “Not to worry. It’s a common mistake. We are a part of [Company Group], as are the hotels you are probably looking for. The phone numbers are quite similar. Have a nice—”

Customer: “You’re not going to hang up, are you?! What kind of customer service is this? Why, I never!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I just can’t help you any further. You need to call the hotel to book a room. Bye.”

I hang up, but the phone rings again almost immediately.

Me: “Yes?”

Customer: “How dare you hang up on me?! I need to book this room now. I’m going to the wedding of [Person #1] and [Person #2]. They can have only ten people attending because of the health restrictions and I am one of the chosen ones!”

Apparently, the wedding is for some celebrities, as she assumes I would know the names. I’ve never heard of these people but am also honored to speak with “the chosen one.” For some reason, I start to feel a little sorry for her. She is annoying and demanding sure, but she’s also clearly confused.

Me: “Okay. Let me see what I can do for you.”

I go to the website of the hotel chain.

Me: “Which of our hotels would be the best for you? We have six in total in the central area of Helsinki.”

Customer: “The one I called, obviously!”

Me: “We have a shared booking number. Please, just state the name of the hotel.”

Customer: “Well, actually, I’m not sure which one would be the best. Can you recommend the nicest for me?”

We spend about twenty minutes on the phone comparing the hotels and she finally chooses one. I go to the booking section of the website, get her details, and book a standard room with a queen-sized bed for her.

Me: “…and we are all done. I hope you have a wonderful stay at [Hotel] and hopefully all goes well at the wedding.”

Customer: “Thank you so much! Sorry I was rude in the beginning! I’m just so nervous to be one of the chosen for such an event. Sorry again. Have a nice day.”

Me: “Not a problem at all. Bye!”

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This Telemarketer’s A Real Charmer

, , , , | Working | September 3, 2021

A telemarketer called me and wanted me to order one of those “free samples” that lead to subscription traps — the kind that triggers when you consent to receive the “free” sample and is almost impossible to cancel. The free samples were women’s underwear and lady shavers.

I was under twenty years old and I was inexperienced. I just told him I didn’t want the sample and wouldn’t order, but he was very insistent. I should have hung up, but I didn’t want to be rude.

In the end, just before hanging up on me, he told me, ”Well, then, just go the whole summer in hairy legs and dirty underwear!”

Ten years later, I’ve learned to just hang up on them.

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CopyWrong

, , , , | Legal | September 2, 2021

Once upon a time, I got a letter from a copyright troll “threatening” me — it was carefully worded NOT to meet the legal definition of a threat, but yeah, it was a threat — with a lawsuit for copyright infringement I hadn’t committed. I even checked the provided IP address against my own logs and found that it didn’t match with any of the IPs I’d had with the ISP I had been with since before the time of the alleged infringement.

I contacted them, and they told me they were absolutely certain I was guilty and that I should pay up the €800 they were demanding as compensation. I told them I was not going to pay compensation for something I didn’t do. I posted my story on social media, instead. The troll contacted me again about being aware of my social media posts on the matter, hinting at taking separate legal action because of it, I just laughed because it’s not libel if it’s true.

I filed a formal request with my ISP for a complete record of the IP addresses I had had in my time with them so that if the copyright troll tried to take me to court, I’d have documentation to prove my innocence.

The law regarding this sort of request defines, in detail, the manner in which the request must be done — which I complied with to the letter — and what the options for the personal information registry owner are; either the ISP provides the requested information free of charge, or they reply with a written letter detailing their reasons for not complying with the request. I got neither. Instead, I got an email telling me they “didn’t consider” my IP address history to be the kind of information they are required by law to hand over free of charge, but that they were happy to provide the information I had requested for a price of something like €50 per hour of work compiling the information, a minimum charge of half an hour.

I called them and the representative I talked to said the email was correct. When I mentioned how the consumer protection ombudsman had stated that it actually WAS the kind of information an ISP must hand over free of charge.

Representative #1: “Well, that’s just an opinion.

No, it really isn’t. The closest it is to an “opinion” is in the sense that a supreme court ruling is “an opinion.”

Me: “Are you saying you refuse to hand over the information as required by law?”

Representative #1: “No, nothing like that. We are more than happy to provide the information, for a price.”

I hung up and went on social media, telling about my experience with their illegal behavior and tagging the ISP in the post. A week later, I received an email from high up in the ISP’s food chain.

Representative #2: “We have changed our policy regarding your kind of information request. If you still want this information, we can have it mailed to you in a few days.”

Naturally, I said yes and got something like fifty pages of IP logs in the mail. As I already knew, none of the addresses matched with what the copyright troll had claimed had been my IP address at the time of the alleged infringement.

However, the copyright troll never bothered me again after I got a government-paid attorney to write a letter to them on my behalf.

I am with another ISP now. My only regret is that, while the reps I dealt with on the matter above broke the law, for the most part, their customer service was better than my current ISP’s. Then again, my current ISP is well-known for defying market court rulings requiring them to hand over names and addresses of their customers to copyright holders, meaning even if I did do that sort of thing, for the foreseeable future the copyright trolls will never get my personal information again.

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