notmypresident: (Bugs Monsters are interesting)
Over the past couple of days I've had a variety of experiences with the customer service departments of companies that I've need to contact. So let's start with the worst experience first.

Giant corporations have terrible reputations when it comes to customer service, and Comcast certainly embodies that quality. I needed to cancel my account because of my imminent relocation, but the company seems to go out of its way to prevent customers from doing exactly that. There is no way to cancel service without first calling customer service, and that means plenty of option menus and waiting. The first representative flat-out told me that I was locked into a one-year plan and that I would be charged for the entire term if I canceled. Having read none of that online when I initially signed up, I hung up. That was last week. I called back today and went through all the options and waiting for a different rep, who (this time) told me that I could cancel but that there would be a $10 early termination fee. After struggling through his hard-sell patter ("Are you sure you want to leave the company that offers the best service and the fastest internet options???"), I told him to cancel the service and to send me a last bill with the termination fee. When I asked him to read back what he needed to do, the termination fee had suddenly become $15. I was so sick of being on the phone with "the best company" and simply said good-bye.

I knew that I needed to backup my iMac before the move in case something happened to the system en route to Oregon, so I ordered a 2TB external drive for that purpose. Western Digital pre-formats its drives for use on the Windows platform, but states that the drives can be reformatted for Macs. Except of course that mine wouldn't reformat even after following instructions found on the internet, which meant I had to call customer service. Now, we all know the horrors of dealing with outsourced customer service departments. I usually don't mind, except for today. Our language barriers saw me having to repeat the serial number for my new drive around ten times. At the end of the tunnel, the rep simply referred me to the company's web site to download its proprietary disk formatting software. I did, and it worked. But, oh man, was it a tough call.

I would think that smaller companies would offer the worst customer service, but not with Acoustic Sounds. It's an independent distributor of vinyl, SACDs, and digital downloads. I will use them on occasion, and they've never let me down. This time out, I was curious as to why the new OMD album hadn't shown up as a new download option when I'd seen it offered by a competitor. The rep was extremely personal and quick to look up and then explain how Acoustic Sounds didn't currently have a licensing agreement with OMD's label. He even broke precedent by saying that I should download it from the competing service. Wow.

Okay, enough kvetching. Time for Another Hot Guy.