Dial ‘S’ For Stupid

| Vancouver, BC, Canada | Extra Stupid, Technology

(I work for a well-known cable company that offers home phone, Internet, and cable TV. After normal greeting and verifying customer info:)

Customer: “Please help me; I don’t have a dial tone and I need to make a phone call.”

(I look at the phone info and see that it is currently being used. I look at the caller ID and realize it matches the customer’s telephone number.)

Me: “Sir, are you calling from your phone right now?”

Customer: “Well, yes, how else would I be talking to you?”

Me: “Sir, if you do not have a dial tone how did you call me from the phone?”

Customer: “Well, I don’t remember!” *hangs up*


Microsoft Word To The Wise

| UK | Criminal & Illegal, Extra Stupid, Technology

(I work for an IT company that provides support for a large restaurant chain and their franchises. I receive a call from one franchise that recently had their office PC replaced. These franchises have to provide their own software and licences for installation that we help with as part of the service.)

Me: “Welcome to the [Company] support desk. You are speaking to [My Name]. How can I help you today?”

Customer: “This is [Customer] from [Franchise]. I just went to [Computer Retailer] and bought Microsoft Office but it won’t install.”

Me: “No worries. I will remote in and see what is happening with the install.”

(I remote in and find the software installed fine but the license code will not activate the software.)

Me: “Can you confirm the license key is the same as it is on the software package?”

Customer: “Yes. I bought it from [Computer Retailer] but it’s not working. I tried each of the license codes but it’s still not working.”

Me: “Wait, you said there are several license codes? Can you send me a scanned image of the package so I can find what might be the problem?”

(I provided the user with an e-mail address to send the scanned image to and after half an hour the pictures came in. The customer had bought a CD sleeve with a blank disc with “Office” written on it and a piece of paper showing the front and back cover. The paper showed he bought “Micrasift Oofice 2012 Profecinal eddition”, which included a list of authentic-looking license keys.)


It’s Too Much Trouble To Troubleshoot

, | WI, USA | Crazy Requests, Extra Stupid, Popular, Technology

(I work in an inbound call center that works as a hardware help desk for veterinary clinics who purchase our products. On a relatively slow day for us, I get the following phone call.)

Me: “Hardware Support. My name is [My Name]. How can I assist you?”

Customer: “Yes, I am having trouble with our label printer.”

Me: “I can help you with that. On which computer are you having problems with this printer?”

Customer: “Several of them.”

Me: “Okay, I can check on the server for you to make sure it is shared correctly, but I also need to be remoted in to check on the ones you are having problems with.”

(At this point I give the customer a session code to put into the server so I can remote in and check settings.)

Customer: “Thanks, I will put that into the computer. Have a great day.” *hangs up*

(I am slightly confused as we need the customer on the line to troubleshoot any printer problems as when we print pages we don’t actually know if it prints. So I call her back.)

Customer: “[Clinic], how can I help you?”

Me: “Hi, you called in about needing help with your label printer; I need someone on the line to troubleshoot the issues with me.”

Customer: “Well, we are really busy here. Can’t you just do it?”

Me: “Unfortunately, I am not sure what the problem is and I can’t just guess. If you are having problems printing I can check the settings on the computers you are having problems with, but if I print anything, I won’t know if it worked.”

Customer: “Well, I don’t know what computers are having the problem, so you will just have to figure it out.”

Me: “Ma’am, I don’t have the ability to do that unless I get remoted into the computers with the problem.”

Customer: “I have 30 computers and I just don’t have the time to walk around and find out which ones have the problems and which ones don’t. I have 20+ customers standing in line waiting to be checked in for the weekend. You just need to fix it.”

(Unsure how to proceed, I explain the issue to one of my colleagues. He suggests to explain to the customer exactly what she is asking me to do and what steps would have to be taken for me to complete the troubleshooting.)

Me: “Ma’am, for me to do what you are asking I would have to remote into every computer, kick off the person currently working and check the settings, print a test label, then call you back to see if one printed. I would have to do this 30 times and interrupt your work each time.”

Customer: “There has to be another way. Just fix it.”

Me: “There is another way. If someone could find out for me what computers are not able to print, I would only have to access those computers and speak with that one employee.”

Customer: “I don’t have time to have one of my employees do your job. Forget it. I don’t know why we pay for you to fix things when we are the ones who have to fix them.” *she hangs up*

(I sat for a moment and a colleague walked up to me and explained that every time she called in, if she needed to help or it took longer than five minutes, she hung up on us. We have since stopped supporting her clinic.)



| Petach Tikva, Israel | Crazy Requests, Criminal & Illegal, Technology

(I’m working the night shift on a Friday, around 3 am.)

Me: “[ISP]. This is [My Name] at your service.”

Customer: “My Internet isn’t working, and I know why! It’s because of [unintelligible].”

(I thought I’d heard something about spies, but I wasn’t sure, so I just kept going.)

Me: “I see. Let’s figure out what the problem is, so we can find a solution.”

Customer: “But I know what the problem is! I’m being spied on! It’s the spies! They’re ruining my Internet.”

Me: *sticking to the protocol that exists exactly for that purpose* “Well, if you’re sure someone is spying on you, you have to contact the police.”

Customer: “Nah, I don’t need to call the police. I’m not that paranoid. Anyway, they’re spying on me, too, so they probably know all about it.”


What Good Was That Chat

| RI, USA | Bad Behavior, Technology

(I work as a remote chat agent for a phone and Internet provider. I help customers add features to their phones, like international if they are traveling, or parental controls. I do not have direct account access, and usually this is no problem for most people.)

Me: “Happy Tuesday! Welcome to [Company] Online Features Sales! How may I assist you today?”

Customer: “So, what good are you? You can’t do anything because you don’t have access to my account. You’re just a waste of time and my money.”

Me: “I can still do my best to assist you, even without direct account access!”

Customer: “So, what good are you? And you’re probably not an American.”

Me: “I am, actually. I live in Rhode Island. What can I help you with today?”

Customer: “So, what good are you? You can’t help me. Your job doesn’t help anyone.”

Me: “I am very sorry to hear that. Unless you have a question or inquiry, I will need to end this chat. Do you have any questions for me before I do so?”

Customer: “So, what good are you? F*** you.”

Me: “Thank you for choosing [Company]!”

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