[xplorer˛] — It takes all sorts to make a world
home » blog » 21 August 2011 [rant]

"Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity; I'm not sure about the former" — Albert Einstein

We all have heard of computer customer support anecdotes like the problem with the "broken cup holder" (aka CD/DVD tray :) and got amused. It is not so funny when you actually have to deal with such customers. Thankfully for my personal sanity xplorer˛ as a product appeals to users with higher than average IQ so I didn't have too many incidents with "difficult" customers over the years.

Recently following the v2.0 upgrade I am spending 2-3 hours a day answering emails, more or less of the same theme — "why my old key doesn't work?". This is not the way I planned to spend the remainder of the summer. I was dreaming about windsurfing. More emails for customer support mean that statistically you will get the odd irrate customer too. When you are stressed and overworked the last thing you want in your mailbox is a rude/threatening/ impatient message. I am biting my lips every now and then, and struggle to reply in a helpful and polite manner and ignore the insults and disrespect.

However as a human being with mediterranean temper I fantasize being able to give such customers a piece of my mind. Tell them what I really think about their demands! So below are actual messages from the customer support box (identity withheld) along with the reply they deserve. I must vent some steam before I explode <g>

Take irrate type #1: (he sent 5-6 of these in short succession, probably with a broken junk mail filter so all my replies to him bounced)

I need a new code. That ment to get it work, 4ever and ever. Xplorer2 was meant to work as usual, by the date above. Something isn't okey! CNET Download.com should dig this mess. But I don't care. Just fix this asap!

[Nikos replies]: Listen mate, there's what you want/need and whatever all other people want, and the two won't always match. Just because you paid me $30 doesn't mean I am your slave. What was the last time you got spotless immediate customer support about anything technological?

This is my second attempt to complete registration on one of your programs. The first involved a number that was some 200 characters in length and I couldn't copy and paste it. Can't you just note in your records that I have paid for my copy as well as the lifetime of upgrades?

I can't argue, this one is polite, but note the impossible belief in technology and efficient bureaucracy. Sorry chuck, this is not NASA (even they lose the odd shuttle). Compared to greek public sector standards I am way ahead of the curve but still we'll have to waste 5 minutes of your valueable time if you want to upgrade to v2.0.

search didn/t work as advertised
you will get negative feedback from me

This is a negative uninstall feedback. He didn't leave an email. What was your problem mate? Did I cause you any harm? Were you inconvenienced by the free trial? Could it be that you were too hasty and missed some obvious feature? Surely you could sue me for compensation?

In any event, I have wasted far too much time on this already, and unless I get a free V2 key by return I shall be passing this correspondence to the three Australian computer magazines to which I subscribe, so they can share with their readership my experience of zabkat's unhelpful and frustrating customer "support".

Another sue-panda here. Some people have difficulties getting a v2.0 upgrade key automatically because they have castrated their browsers with noscript and similar plugins. Is it my fault guv'ner? You tied your hands and you blame me now?

i found the pro version that is cracked.

Yeah, thanks for letting me know. I hope your right hand dries up and falls off and gets eaten by some passing dog.

I feel somewhat relieved now that's off my chest. It's hard life doing customer support. When you contact whichever support line please remember there's a human being behind, so be polite and patient. If any problems or errors occur, we are all human, we will sort them out together. I am happy that the vast majority of you are such good sports!

Works perfectly, thanks

you are welcome sir!

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