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    Fifty Shades Of Dorian Grey

    | Cardiff, Wales, UK | Coworkers, Movies & TV

    (During a quiet moment, a coworker mentions that he is getting a Kindle and is getting some recommendations for books. We suggest checking out Amazon’s free book section where you can download classic books and novels for nothing. My suggestions eventually reached ‘The Picture of Dorian Gray’ by Oscar Wilde.)

    Coworker: “Wasn’t there a film adaptation recently?”

    Me: *checking on IMDb as I thought the only one was the 1945 one* “Yes, you’re right. There’s one from 2009 starring Colin Firth.”

    Second Coworker: *overhearing* “What? Back then they made a ’50 Shades’ film?”

    Me: “Dorian Gray. This is actual literature.”

    Why Does This Have To Be So Card?

    | The Netherlands | Employees, Ignoring/Inattentive, Lazy/Unhelpful, Technology, Transportation

    (In The Netherlands, public transportation companies try to reduce cash transactions and paper tickets as much as possible by introducing a (rechargeable) card with cash on it, good for bus/train fare. That did not go smoothly. A couple of years later my father, a senior citizen, moves to a new place. I help out, and so also with the rechargeable bit. For that, I need online access. The following conversation spans about three months:)

    Me: “I cannot sign up my father. He has never been online before and moved months ago.”

    Customer Service Rep: “Wait a couple of days; maybe you made a mistake. Let the system reset.”

    (Days later:)

    Me: “I still can’t sign him up, and I am getting a strange error on the site.”

    Customer Service Rep: “There is a bug in the system and we are working on it. Can you please wait a couple of days?”

    (Days later:)

    Me: “I still can’t sign him up and I am still getting a strange error on the site.”

    Customer Service Rep: “I see this card still is registered to the old address. Please use that. The card on the new address is expired.”

    Me: “I also can’t sign him up using the old address.”

    Customer Service Rep: “Very strange. I’ll have it looked at.”

    (Days later:)

    Me: “What’s the progress?”

    Customer Service Rep: “On what?”

    Me: *explains*

    Customer Service Rep: *gives call center standard explanation on website use*

    Me: “Is there no way somebody there can try this card number?”

    Customer Service Rep: “We will call you back.”

    (Days later, after never being called:)

    Me: “What’s the status?”

    Customer Service Rep: “On what?”

    Me: *explains again*

    Customer Service Rep: “I have no records of such issue.”

    Me: “Can you restart the investigation, please?”

    Customer Service Rep: “No. For privacy reasons your father must be the on setting it up.”

    (Losing it, I hang up. Although along the way being tempted to “lose” dad’s card I always keep thinking someone will eventually get this simple issue and will fix it, if I only can get through to second line support behind this “wall.”. Months later, he really loses the card. Not wanting to call myself after I lost my cool, he calls for the replacement himself.)

    Dad: *explains*

    Customer Service Rep: “Mister who? We have no record of him owning a card.”

    (I have no idea how they are running this organization…)

    Angelic Behavior

    | UK | Employees, Religion

    (I’m calling another department on behalf of a customer with a seriously messed up account.)

    Colleague: “[Department], this is Gabriel speaking. How may I help?”

    (The call progresses and we finally get the account fixed, something that has taken the best part of an hour and multiple phone calls to achieve.)

    Gabriel: “There you go. You’re all set.”

    Me: “Thank you! You’re an angel! I’ll call the customer back.”

    Gabriel: “Heh. That’s good.”

    Me: “Huh?”

    Gabriel: “I’m an angel?”

    Me: *pause* “Oh, no! I didn’t.”

    Gabriel: “Yeah, you did.”

    Me: “I am so, so sorry. It’s one of those things. I say it to everyone! I’m mortified!”

    (Luckily he found it amusing but every time I called that department from then on I desperately hoped that I wouldn’t end up connected with him again. I was so embarrassed.)

    Truly Modem Workers

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

    (I work in a call center that deals with doctor offices that are often techno-phobic. Today, I have one with an Internet outage. It’s usually a simple fix if they will take five minutes.)

    Me: “Do you see the modem? It will have a lot of flashing lights on it, and may say [Brand Name].”

    Nurse: “I don’t have time for this. Get out here and fix it!”

    Me: “Okay, but I’m in another state that’s at least a 12 hour drive from you. I can put in a service call, but that will take 2-3 days to be dispatched, or if you can take five minutes, I think we can get you back up.

    Nurse: “Hmph…”

    Me: “Which would you like?”

    Nurse: “What am I looking for?”

    (Five minutes later, she was back up and happy as a clam that SHE fixed it.)

    Password Overheard

    | Boise, ID, USA | Bad Behavior, Employees

    (I work in a call center doing tech support for a popular cell phone company. We often get calls from stores that sell the carrier’s phones, asking for help with phones or customer accounts. Since these callers are employees of the stores they are working for and not our company, we must verify the customer’s account with the customer before making any changes.)

    Me: “Thank you for calling. This is [My Name]. May I have your name, please?”

    Employee: “This is [Employee]. I’m with an authorized retailer, and I need to get call forwarding set up on our customer’s phone.”

    Me: “All right, I can definitely get that going for you. Can I go ahead and speak with the customer?”

    Employee: “You’re on speaker.”

    (I introduce myself to the customer.)

    Employee: “The customer’s name is [Customer] and his password is [password].”

    Me: “I’m sorry, ma’am, I do need to hear that information directly from the customer.”

    Employee: “Well, that’s completely unnecessary, but all right.”

    (The customer gives me the information.)

    Me: “Thank you. I understand it’s a bit of a hassle, but it is part of our security policy to verify directly with the customer.”

    Employee: “What call center are you located in?”

    Me: “I don’t feel comfortable disclosing that information.”

    Employee: “Well, then can I get your ID number or the name of your supervisor?”

    Me: “Can I ask why?”

    Employee: “So I can report you. You embarrassed me in front of my customer.”

    (I repeat my spiel about the security policy and tell her that, no, I will not be giving her my information. She relents, and I get the call forwarding set up.)

    Me: “Is there anything else I can help you with today?”

    Employee: “No. Now you’ve made the customer upset.” *hangs up*

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