Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Going The Extra Mile

I know I've ranted commented on the state of customer service these days at least once or twice before, but I got a new one today that I thought was noteworthy.

So first the background. I got an iPod Touch for my birthday. And after dropping it once or twice, I decided it would be wise to get some sort of skin for it, to protect it. Also, Big Daddy has an iPod Touch, so the skin would also serve to differentiate the two. When I searched on Amazon, I found a skin I liked, and it came with a screen protector and neck strap too. I thought the screen protector was a good idea. And the neck strap, well, I couldn't think of a specific use, but I thought perhaps it might come in handy. So I ordered the trio. It came in about a week. The skin was about as I'd expected. The screen protector was much too wily for me and I couldn't get it on without bubbles. But that was my bad. Then came the neck strap. I opened it up and then picked up my iPod to attach it. Hmmmm...where does it go? There was no place on the skin to attach it, and the skin wasn't tight enough anyway. That kind of pull would have detached the skin right away. And I couldn't find anywhere in the iPod itself to wrap the little cord around. I turned it over and over, but nothing presented itself. So I fired off this email to the company I bought it from (via Amazon) called

Hi, I received an iPod touch skin and neckstrap from you. However, I cannot figure out where or how to attach the neckstrap to the iPod. Can yougive me help with this? Thank you.

-Arianne Thompson

And here is the response I got back today...

Dear Customer,

Your I-pod should have some kind of hook on it. You can hook up the neckstrap on the hook.


customer service team

So what you're telling me is, you have a whole TEAM of people in your customer service center, and yet none of you know if my iPod Touch has a hook. It should, but you're not really sure. And rather than investigate this product you sell and how, exactly, it works with the product you have sold it for, you just sent me off a notice saying that, if the hook exists, I should be able to hook the neck strap to it. THANKS. Thanks a TON! Wow, that was brilliant logic. I am so impressed, not only with the spectacular design of the product (which may or may not actually attach to my product), but also your amazing powers of deduction. And you have really impressed me with your interest in my problem and making things better. By the way, my name isn't "Customer." It's "Arianne Thompson" as I said in my letter to you. But then, actually addressing your email to me would have required you to look at the original email, and looking for things is, we both know, not your strength.

Well, never fear, I'll keep looking for that elusive hook on my iPod. And when I find it, rest assured, your neck strap will not be on it. It's already in my local landfill. Thanks for nothing.


Kristina P. said...

Can you call them at all?

Sara said...

That's funny,sad, but funny!

Chadlock said...

thats is hilarious/ sad at the same time!

Mindi said...

this is why i hate dealing with ANY customer service. it's like a contradiction in terms.

you still heading to vegas this weekend? JEALOUS.JEALOUS.JEALOUS.

Appalachian Woman said...


i got my mister an mp3 and 2 mps cd's with books on them. he loves to listen to books on commute

we could not get them to transfer.
called Support and after less than 3 minutes of her trying to help me - she actually said - wow, that is really sad, you spent all the money and i don't think we can do it - wow

i hung up = will call later and hopefully she is not the only one in the warehouse answering the phone!

Chelsea said...

Stuff like this makes me so mad - especially since I have worked in customer service before and I know how absolutely EASY it is to do a good job at it. Just a tiny bit of consideration is all it takes!

If you don't like the skin you got, I got a really cool one for my iPhone on Amazon - the seller was ifrogz. It was only $14, which for a structured case/skin is a steal.

L. said...

You have to wonder who DESIGNS these things in the first place. Is it a zombie from Uranus? Don't the designers come with brains? All the Blackberries previous to the "Curve" had hook holes from which to hang the phone. But the new "Curve" is FAR too cool to have anything as plebeian as a hook hole. So after spending $300 or so, we are free to buy a skin (without a hook hole) or just drop and break the phone, necessitating buying a new one for $300.

Maybe it isn't blank and astounding stupidity in the designers. Maybe it's greed in the manufacturers who instructed the designers to make the product easy to break. (as if we would buy another one to break!)

Anonymous said...

Isn't it sad that in the state of the economy that customer service is going down hill faster than ever? You thik it would be the exact opposite and they would be treating their customers like gold.

Trooper Thorn said...

Amazon should stick to what it knows best: meandering through the Sounth American rainforest to the Atlantic Ocean.

Melissa said...

That sucks!

Shawn said...

A hook, a hook, my money for a hook...

Too bad you got that kind of reception---but it was hilarious!

Christie said...

I'm sure that was answered by someone in India making $2.00 an hour. Sucks how everything is so depersonalized.

Anonymous said...

Dear blogger,

Try using a 1/16" drill bit to create your own hook for the neckstrap thing. We won't charge you for the extra work.


Blog reader

PS. We bought a new camera on and it suggested a carrying case for $5, so I got it. You'd think that they'd recommend a case that would fit the camera, but apparently they forgot to measure or even do a test to make sure the camera didn't stick halfway out. Luckily some kid at the store knew a special password to get me a more expensive case that fit and didn't charge me for it.