Customer Service

Although the impetus for this blog was a “customer service” call I experienced with the “help” available at Charter/Spectrum when my cable was out, most everything here applies to all companies that assume artificial intelligence can serve customers as well a breathing, thinking, human being. Eventually, my problem was solved—but not before I developed a deep and abiding hatred for Charter/Spectrum in spite of a long history of good service from the human technicians who work for the company. Here’s the story:

I was at home nursing a very sore back (which probably reduced my tolerance for the stupidity . . . → Read More: Customer Service

Time Flies

I knew that it had been a while since my last posting, but I had no idea how long it had been. John Lennon is usually given credit for saying that “life is what happens while you are making other plans,” which is included in the lyrics for Beautiful Boy, written for his son, Sean. Since my last blog, we’ve had two major holidays (Christmas and New Year’s), and more than a month has slipped away while I was busy making other plans. And shoveling snow. It is, after all, winter in Michigan….

We have had some winter weather . . . → Read More: Time Flies

The Spin I’m In

In “That Ol’ Black Magic,” in reference to the Ol’ Black Magic of love, Robbie Williams says he’s loving the spin he’s in. Love isn’t of course, the only “Black Magic,” that puts people in a spin. In the U.S., we’ve grown increasingly aware of the “spin” used by major corporations and politicians to influence politics and consumer behavior. “Spin” is basically a biased interpretation. While some form of “spin” has undoubtedly been with us throughout human history, the “father” of modern political spin is usually thought to be canaries in cages down in coal mines so that, when the . . . → Read More: The Spin I’m In

The Left-Behinds

No, not the The Leftovers TV show…. The “left-behinds”—those who are failing to keep pace with the technological revolution. I am increasingly one of them.

At one time, I was among the “techno” leaders. I was one of the first academics to embrace email and did so at a time when most of my colleagues were rejecting email as a method of communication. I have previously mentioned secretaries I knew in days gone by who resisted having their typewriters replaced by computers and word processing programs. They were among the first left-behinds. At the time, I didn’t fully understand why . . . → Read More: The Left-Behinds

Cheating on Our Ethics Test

We certainly live in interesting times, don’t we…. Lately, we’ve recently seen a number of complaints about how a percentage of those living in the US are only interested in “free stuff.” The main complaint is that those people will vote for Democrats for political office rather than for Republicans, who want to make sure that no one receives “free stuff.” According to some, we have become a culture of “cheaters.” The original impetus for this blog entry was a comment a friend made about the concern companies have about people who “telecommute” and work from home rather than driving . . . → Read More: Cheating on Our Ethics Test

Customer Service

While we don’t always get good customer service, I hope that we (you and I) always do our best to provide it. This blog post is a follow-up to my previous post on Gas Pains. When I wrote that blog entry, I had received less-than-wonderful customer service from #Napoleon Fireplaces and blogged about my experiences attempting to get a new plastic knob to control the gas valve on a Napoleon gas log insert. You can still see much of the discussion on Facebook, although at this point you’ll need to search for it.

To summarize, the original gas knob, . . . → Read More: Customer Service