Five-Hour Gap In Your Geography

, , , , , | Working | July 19, 2018

(I call a tech company that is based in the USA. I’m in Canada.)

Tech Company: “Just drop into our nearest store and we can do this.”

Me: “That won’t happen.”

Tech Company: “What do you mean? It is just the next town over, right?”

Me: “Yes… which is about five hours away.”

Tech Company: “What do you mean? It’s the next town; it can’t be that far.”

Me: “You do realize how far apart cities are here in Canada, right?”

Going To Need Some Shots After This Screenshot

, , , , , | Working | July 16, 2018

(I provide IT support for a real estate company that covers a large part of the southeast of England. One day I am providing support for a colleague when the following happens.)

Me: “Can you let me know the error message you’re getting on the screen?”

(My colleague is unable to describe the error message.)

Me: “Okay, if you can send me a screenshot of the error, I think I know the problem.”

(My colleague sent me a screenshot that consisted of the following: a print screen of the error, pasted into Word so it was shrunk portrait, printed out, scanned, and saved as a .tif file. The file was then attached to an email and sent to me. The colleague is a lovely person but really struggles when it comes to common sense.)

Lost Phone, Confused Owner

, , , | Right | July 11, 2018

(I used to work as online technical support for a well-known company, supporting their smartphone and tablet devices. One day I get a support chat from a customer who has lost their phone and needs help locating it. We do not track customer phones, but the phones themselves do have a tracking feature available for the user where they can sign into their account online, and locate and even lock down their phone if it’s lost or stolen. When I am connected with a customer in the chat program, I am presented with their name and other info that they have provided, as well as a description of their issue.)

Me: “Thank you for contacting [Company], Mr. [Customer]. My name is [My Name]. I see that you are contacting us regarding a lost phone; is that correct?”

Customer: “Yeah. I lost my phone, and I want to know if you guys can track it down for me.”

Me: “I’m very sorry to hear that you are unable to locate your phone. We do take our customers privacy very seriously; therefore, we do not have the ability to track any phones or devices. However, we do offer a feature on our devices that allows you to track the device yourself online by logging into your account at [Website]. For this feature to work, you would have had to enable it before your phone was lost. Sir, do you know if you had this feature turned on?”

Customer: “No, because I don’t want you guys having all my information and being able to track me! So I didn’t turn it on!”

(I just stare at my monitor for a moment, trying to process exactly what the customer is telling me.)

Me: “Well, as I stated before, we take the privacy of our customers very seriously, so we do not have the ability to track phones ourselves.”

Customer: “Can you at least lock down the phone for me in case someone finds it, so they can’t use it?”

Me: “I’m afraid we have no way of doing that. We do not have any access to your device whatsoever.”

Customer: “Is there someone else there who can?”

Me: “Sir, I assure you that nobody at [Company] can track or lock down your lost phone. We have absolutely no way of connecting to your personal devices. You may want to contact your mobile carrier to see if they are able to disable service to that particular phone. I’m happy to provide you with the contact information for any mobile carrier.”

Customer: “Nah, I’ll do it myself! This is bulls***!”

(The customer disconnected from the conversation.)


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Giving Voice To Your Concerns

, , | Right | July 11, 2018

(I work for a Voice over IP company, and I’m sitting next to my coworker who takes this call. To use a phone, the user has to first log into it with a pin — this makes it possible to use phones on other workplaces with the same number.)

Support: “[Company], how can I help you?”

Client: “Hello, I’m [Client]. I can’t log into my phone with my password. But I’m sure it should work. Is it ‘123456’?”

(The phone pins are very low-security, and they are actually stored as clear-text in the phone’s configuration file. The support checks it.)

Support: “Yes, that’s correct. I can’t see any other problem with the device from here; just try again.”

(Now, the support listens and hears the client mumble something. He assumes it’s just the client repeating what he’s doing.)

Client: “One-Two-Three-Four-Five-Six… It still doesn’t work.”

Support: “That’s weird. I can log into it from here; I’m sure it’s correct. Try to restart it?”

(The client restarts it, and then tries again.)

Client: “One-Two-Three-Four-Five-Six… Still nothing.”

Support: “Very strange. Maybe you’re putting the password in too slowly?”

Client: “One-Two-Three-Four-Five-Six… No, doesn’t work.”

(They go through different possible problems, but it just doesn’t work, even if it should. This goes on for about fifteen minutes.)

Support: “I can’t detect the problem from here; I’ll have to schedule one of our employees to check it out—”

Client: “Wait… perhaps my secretary has more luck. She has a better grasp on this stuff.”

(The client calls his secretary.)

Secretary: “One-Two-Three-Four-Five-Six… Doesn’t seem to work.”

(The supporter goes through a few things again, with no result. Eventually, the client takes over again.)

Support: “All right, I’m sorry that I can’t help you from here. I’ll schedule a technician to check it out for you.”

Client: “Ah, technology apparently isn’t as advanced as they claim, after all.”

Support: “I’m sorry?”

Client: “Oh, nothing. You’d think this voice-recognition stuff would work a bit better.”

(I can see my coworker facepalm next to me.)

Support: “You are supposed to type the password.”

Client: “Oh.”

This Service Ticket Died

, , , | Right | July 3, 2018

(My coworker is calling someone who has put in a service ticket.)

Coworker: “Hello, [Customer]. This is [Coworker] from the [Company] Help Desk. I noticed that you put in a request for your account password to be reset.”

Customer: “Yes, I did.”

Coworker: “All right. Are you near a computer at the moment?”

Customer: “No, I am not.”

Coworker: “Is there a way you could access the Internet?”

Customer: “No, I am at my grandmother’s funeral.”

Coworker: “Uh…” *at a loss for words* “Maybe you could call us at a time that is better for you.”

Customer: “Yeah, that would be good.”

Coworker: “Okay, give us a call when you are free and near a computer… Have a… nice day… I’m sorry?”

(I hang up.)

Coworker: *turning to me* “Why would you answer the phone during your grandmother’s funeral?”

(I about died laughing.)

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