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Customer Service Terror Level - Nuke-u-ler RED

0Live image from Customer Support.

It’s not just AOL. It’s not just Comcast. Across the board, the Customer Service Terror Level is Nuke-u-ler RED.

There is no such thing as Customer Service anymore. Lawsuits don’t help. This has become an all out war and it’s time to strike back with Shock and Awe.

Customers are so irate over the dilapidated state of support, that they generally BEGIN the conversation by cussing out the poor sap on the other end of the phone. This has created a veritable army of “service” reps who are steeled for such calls and BEGIN each call on the defensive, readied with an arsenal of accusations and seeminly relevant diversions designed to DEFEAT the customer in this battle, rather than HELP the customer in any historical understanding of the term.

I don’t have time to catalog the past year of incidents with PayPal, the company that shuts down my account every time I use it and claims, “we have reason to believe” a third party has accessed the account … but when I ask WHAT that reason is, they never respond. I’ve spent over 20 years in IT and I could help them troubleshoot if they told me WHAT they think the problem is, but they refuse. With my background in security, STRONG rotating passwords, use of encryption, daily virus and spyware scans, I can pretty much guarantee that my account is not compromised. But I could ABSOLUTELY guarantee a solution if only someone at PayPal would actually respond to my questions. They never do, the response is always a boilerplate of bullshit problems that I’ve already methodically eliminated a dozen times.

But I do have time for Yahoo, today. Below is this morning’s exchange with Yahoo. After 45 minutes thinking that I MUST BE CRAZY and carefully checking and rechecking all settings, trying different browsers, different computers, I look for a support number.

THERE IS NO WAY TO PHONE FOR SUPPORT.

Fine, I’m a diligent archivist, I have prior email exchanges in my records, I figure that I’ll write directly to the support address I have from last time. WRONG! The auto-response comes back explaining that, “While you’ve reached a Customer Support area, you must begin the process on the web site.”

THERE IS NO WAY TO GET DIRECT EMAIL SUPPORT.

Fine. I go to the goddam web site and begin clicking through the nine million steps on the so-called help pages describing all the steps I’d already taken, I finally get to a form that ALLEGES to reach a THINKING human being.

I begin writing in the little form, the one designed to make you think that you’re supposed to limit your communication to about 25 words. I write:

Dear Service Rep:

Do you want to know why people cuss at you as a customer service rep?

It’s because NOBODY SERVICES THE CUSTOMER anymore.

It’s because we can’t just pick up a phone and get authentic SUPPORT.

It’s because we can’t just send an email and get authentic SUPPORT.

It’s because it took me 15 minutes just to finally find this little form to finally TRY to reach someone.

It’s because we know, from experience, that your first salvo will be a boilerplate email that rehashes items that I’ve already eliminated as possible causes of the problem.

It’s because customer service people don’t READ these emails, they scan for keywords and push back useless boilerplate.

It’s because we know that this is a WAR, and YOU have become the SHADOWY CUSTOMER TERRORIST enemy.

THAT’S why we cuss at you. And since you hold all the cards, only YOU can begin to lower the CUSTOMER THREAT LEVEL by actually beginning to HELP people.

Still, before I begin cussing, I will first DUTIFULLY, if hopelessly, explain the current problem with the Yahoo service.

All of a sudden, I can’t login to Yahoo, today. EVERYTHING I work with is on there, it’s my primary email, calendar, notepad … EVERYTHING.

I am writing today from my backup email address, which you have on file, as proven by the automated response received by the Yahoo bot, following this message.

[Pre-emptive launch sequence initiated. 3, 2, 1 … Fire.]

DO NOT RESPOND TO THIS WITH BOILERPLATE BULLSHIT!!! ESCALATE TO SOMEONE WITH A BRAIN, IMMEDIATELY!!!!!!

DO NOT waste my time with bullshit about capslock and caches and cookies. I know about ALL of that stuff, I use strong passwords, and I HAVE EXTENSIVE RECORDS OF EVERYTHING.

I have typed in the CORRECT password many times, but the YAHOO system is clearly broken and thinks it is wrong. Other Yahoo accounts still work fine – I CAN LOG IN TO YAHOO – only this, my primary account, is currently broken.

NO BOILERPLATE BULLSHIT!!!! ESCALATE IMMEDIATELY!!!

I KNOW KNOW KNOW KNOW KNOW KNOW KNOW KNOW my freaking password, because it’s encrypted in my saved database, so there is no way in HELL that I have it wrong.

My PC is 200% SECURE and my passwords are always STRONG – very difficult to guess, and I never give my password to anyone.

When I use the online form for reminder of my Yahoo ID, the robot knows where to find me, as the message below, sent to my backup address, proves; but when I ask the Yahoo bot to reset my password – EVEN THOUGH NOTHING WAS WRONG WITH IT IN THE FIRST PLACE – it never sends me the reset email.

SOMETHING AT YAHOO IS BROKEN. I NEED ACCESS TO MY INFORMATION TODAY.

THIS TECHNICAL ISSUE IS NOT ON MY END!!!

NO BOILERPLATE BULLSHIT!!!! ESCALATE TO SOMEONE WITH A BRAIN, IMMEDIATELY!!!

—— Original Message —— Received: 05:53 AM PDT, 06/27/2006 From: my-login-request@yahoo-inc.com To: killthecustomer@customerssuck.com Subject: Yahoo! ID Search Results

The search results for your forgotten Yahoo ID are listed below:
 
customerID
 
You can request a new password for your account
by going to the Forgot Password screen.
http://edit.my.yahoo.com/config/eval_forgot_pw
 
Thank you for using Yahoo!

YOU CAN REQUEST, but you won’t GET what you request. I don’t feel better for the rant above. I don’t feel that I’ve vented, or let off any steam. I don’t even feel angry in any traditional sense of the term. I am communicating with ROBOTS. ROBOTS that have no capacity for independent thought, judgement, or action. The robots are substrate independent. Some are based on silicon, some are based on carbon. Some are metallic, some are flesh. We’re in the midst of a Customer Service Chernobyl; ALL SERVICE SYSTEMS ARE INCORRECTLY PROGRAMMED and the overall system is MELTING DOWN.

The Customer Service Terror Level is Nuke-u-ler RED.


0Oh wait! It get’s even better! Here’s the subsequent exchange:

—— Original Message —— Received: 07:14 AM PDT, 06/27/2006 From: account-security@cc.yahoo-inc.com To: yours@truly.com Subject: RE: Feedback - myYahooID - Other (KMM681blahblahblahKM)

Hello,

Thank you for contacting Yahoo! Customer Care.

I appreciate the opportunity to address your report regarding Account Security. My goal is to provide you the best service possible, especially when it comes to safeguarding your account. I’ve sent you this auto-generated response as confirmation that my team has received your report and also to provide you with information dealing with the most common Account Security questions.

INVALID PASSWORD - If you are unable to login to your Yahoo! account due to an Invalid Password error please visit:

http://help.yahoo.com/help/us/edit/edit-10.html

REQUEST A NEW PASSWORD - If the above information did not assist you, please attempt to request a new password. Remember that our team may not reset your password or remind you of your current password.

1) To request a new password visit:

http://edit.yahoo.com/

2) Click the Password lookup link and follow the instructions to request a new password.

If you have followed the directions above, and are still unable to obtain a new password for your account or feel that your account may have been compromised, please reply to this email with the following information you supplied during your Yahoo! registration. Please know that we do have access to original account information and that we will be unable to provide login or other assistance without completely verifying your account.

  1. Yahoo! ID (This is the single most important piece of information that allows us to access your account. Without the ID, we will be unable to assist you.)

  2. Your name

  3. Date of birth (mm-dd-yr)

  4. Your alternate (non-Yahoo!) email address

  5. Secret Question and Answer

  6. Your city and state

  7. ZIP Code or Postal code you entered during registration

  8. Your country

—— Original Message —— Received: 08:21 AM PDT, 06/27/2006 From: “Yours Truly” To: account-security@cc.yahoo-inc.com Subject: RE: Feedback - my_yahooid_here | - Other (KMM6blahblahblahKM)

If you have followed the directions above,

I have done so, a dozen time. I will also follow Yahoo’s instructions below, even though is so doing YAHOO IS INSTRUCTING ME TO SEND ALL OF THIS CRUCIAL INFORMATION COMPLETELY IN THE CLEAR, UNENCRYPTED, UNPROTECTED, IN A PLAIN TEXT EMAIL.

THIS STAGGERINGLY IRRESPONSIBLE RISK IS A RESPONSE TO YAHOO’S DEMAND FOR THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION AND IS NOT A COURSE OF ACTION I WOULD EVER UNDERTAKE OF MY OWN VOLITION.

1. Yahoo! ID (This is the single most important piece of information
that allows us to access your account. Without the ID, we will be unable
to assist you.)

myYahooID

2. Your name

Terrorized Customer

3. Date of birth (mm-dd-yr)

06-26-2006 (I was born yesterday, right)

4. Your alternate (non-Yahoo!) email address

yours@truly.com

5. Secret Question and Answer

Geeziz! Who documents this for every account? Fuck. I think it’s Mother’s Maiden Name: munkiefucker. Or it could be Fave Childhood Hero: bitchslap. Or Father’s Middle Name: fuckwad. Of First School: holyshit. Or Street I Grew Up On: retaliate rd. Or Dog’s Name: shithead. Or … let’s see … can I disclose EVERY secret question I’ve ever used in a single plain text email? Well, I can try, at least. I hope it was one of those. If not, I hope you’ll at least send me a list of the Yahoo Secret Questions so I can send back a list of all possible responses, thereby fucking over the entire future set of choices I can ever use. Sending all of this in PLAIN TEXT is utterly FUCKING STUPID BEYOND COMPREHENSION. NOW THAT THIS IS OUT IN PLAIN TEXT, I CAN NOW NEVER EVER EVER USE ANY OF THAT IDENTIFYING INFORMATION ON ANY ACCOUNT. GREAT.

6. Your city and state

Wilmington, DE.

7. ZIP Code or Postal code you entered during registration

19808

8. Your country

USA

New and Improved Yahoo! Mail - better than ever!
PROTECTING THE PRIVACY AND SECURITY OF YOUR ACCOUNT -
http://security.yahoo.com/

ROTFLFMAO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Written on June 27, 2006


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