Thursday, May 29, 2008

Stories About Stupid Tech Support

"Computer Stupidities: Stupid Tech Support"

"By no means is tech support immune to exhibiting computer stupidity of their own. This page consists of stories of customers that just can't get the help they need."

The first example:
  • "Customer: 'Hi, I can't seem to connect you guys are you having a problem?'
  • Tech Support: 'Well sir, what dialup software are you using?'
  • Customer: 'The one you provided.'
  • Tech Support: 'And what version is it?"
  • Customer: (says the version number)
  • Tech Support: 'Oh, that's the problem you need the latest version.'
  • Customer: 'Ok, how do I get it?'
  • Tech Support: 'Well, just transfer the file via FTP."
  • Customer: 'Well that would be nice, but I can't connect to the Internet.'
  • Tech Support: (sounding exasperated) 'I told you just to FTP the file sir.'
"I hung up."


Anonymous said...

You would not believe the examples of tech support requests that I could show you where those asking for support blithely forget to mention the important openers such as:
my OS is
my browser & version of it are
my site is located at http://
a clear description of my problem is
Now after the tech support has sent 3 emails back & forth to obtain the required particulars that ought to have been provided up front what do they do? Complain that the tech service is too slow .... arrrggghh!

There have been days when I went nuts sending emails back and forth asking for specific information that were never answered. Instead I got a barrage of abuse. I've had to say very firmly, "If you do not answer my questions, I cannot help you." Did they then provide the deatils -- heck no they just balbbed on and on about the problem they thought they had. Finally, I have said straight out are you using a safari browser. VOILA! The answer was yes but before I could provide instructions they went into a tirade about me discriminating against their choice of browser. They just would not accept the fact that the software will not work with safari. Download firefox and use it or STFU! was the actual answer to their question but it's not polite to state that so round and round in circles we go again.

Yes, it does go both ways.

Brian H. Gill said...


Thanks for your comment - and for sharing your experiences.

I was the tech support guy for a company that dealt mostly with academics: teachers, librarians, counselors, that sort.

They're fine folks, and probably competent at what they do, but generally somewhere between clueless and pathetic in their technical expertise.

Long before that, I had a job that included taking service calls from customers of a commercial refrigeration company in San Francisco. Mondays were the worst.

I still wonder what happened to the fellow with a very thick (Middle Eastern?) accent. He'd opened his business Monday morning, to find over a ton of melted ice cream on the floor. A shipment had come in Friday afternoon and been stacked in the freezer. Then, after closing time, the freezer quit.

The techs got his freezer working again, of course: but I wonder how his business did after that setback.

I'm wandering.

You're spot-on. Customers can be monumentally dense. And I found that the software customers were a whole lot less rational than the refrigeration system ones.

It was a different demographic, of course.

I chose this URL, because there aren't that many daft-tech-support posts.

Which must mean that we've been doing a good job.

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