Newly anointed Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler said this week that it would be OK for Internet service providers to charge Netflix and other companies for a faster lane to consumers.
Wheeler’s stance is surprising given that it…
And my personal favorite by Tyler Nordgren. Again, found at Wired.
Who really benefits from the pink ribbon campaigns: the cause or the company? In showing the real story of breast cancer and the lives of those who fight it, this film reveals the co-opting of what marketing experts have labeled a “dream cause.”
If you’re a woman, take the time to watch the documentary Pink Ribbons, Inc.
Watch it on
Youtube (for now…) (x)
Glad to see this on Tumblr. I don’t Pink. I don’t Run for a Cure. Write a check to your favorite women’s health charity.
I want a cure, I want research and support services and free diagnosis and treatment, I want lives saved. I do not give a flying fuck about pink ribbons, when less than 25% of Komen’s budget goes into research, but they do litigiously pursue competing organizations for trademark infringement.
Find an org that is all about research or care or free services or support and write a check, click a donate button, give to someone who calls you but stop supporting an org that doesn’t do the actual work.
Congratulations! Your company has managed a thing that even I didn’t know was possible. You’ve managed, through the worst customer service I have ever seen or experienced, to turn my calm, chill husband into a person so angry that he is literally pulling at his own hair.
We’ve been married for nearly ten years, in times good and bad, and even I didn’t know he could be pushed to this point. You guys are good.
Let me start from the beginning.
At the beginning of 2013, my husband heard about a new Cricket iPhone offer. “We can get 2 phones for 100 dollars a month.” he said. “They will have texting and calling and internet!” he said.
“What’s the catch?” I said. (Because we all know there is always a catch.)
“We have to pay full price for the phones.” He said.
“Anything else?” I asked? (That sounded way too easy.)
“Nope.” he said.
I love my husband and believe that he wouldn’t purposefully lead me astray. But when we got to the store, I asked a lot of questions anyway.
I asked about coverage. “We travel for work.” I said. “I need this phone to work literally all over the US, especially in busy situations.”
“No problem!” Said the guy, smiling like every used car guy your dad warned you about. “We get great service. You are going to find that we beat out AT&T and those other guys in busy situations.”
I asked about this ‘locking thing’ I’d heard about. The guy at the store told me, more than once, that this was not a problem for us.
“You guys are buying your phones straight out, so we aren’t gonna lock your phones. Even if Cricket was that kind of company, and we aren’t, I don’t think we legally could.”
“But won’t you do something to ensure we can’t go elsewhere?” I asked, still certain there had to be a catch.
“Nope.” He said. “There’s no contract and that means you can take that phone anywhere else that uses the same hardware.”
It all sounded good, but I don’t like to be hasty. We left, much to my husband’s disappointment, and discussed it. He was excited. (Apple fan all the way.) I checked the budget and thought it could work. So we went back to the store the next day. A new, slightly less enthusiastic clerk told us all the same things we’d heard before.
Still, I dutifully read the language of everything I was asked to sign anyway. Yup, I’m a read-all-the-small-print kind of gal. I’m not an attorney, obviously, but I didn’t see anything in any of the wording to make me feel like we’d been lied to. I didn’t find anything that said we were, in fact, in a contract or that our phones would be locked. It looked fine.
So we signed up and paid cash for our phones.
The first thing we noticed was that our service was terrible. Sure, in Portland it was…ok. But outside the Portland metro area, we had spotty service most of the time. Worse, if more than five people in a room had smart phones, my phone was on an “extended network” that simply chugged. If ten people were in the room, even that didn’t come up. Forget internet or texting, I couldn’t make or receive calls.
We called customer service, and stopped by the store, and were given no help. “Cricket is constantly upgrading it’s service!” We were told. Or, “Perhaps you’d used all your allotted data.” it was suggested. We hadn’t. It’s hard to use up your data when the decorative brick attached to your hip doesn’t know what internet is.
So we started checking with other people when our phones were useless. “Can you use your phone?” “Do you have service right now?” Turns out, every single carrier in the US, including a few I’d never heard of, get better service than Cricket.
So we started to plan a switch. It wasn’t that we wanted to. I hate shopping for cell service. It wasn’t that we found a way better deal. We didn’t. We simply needed our phones to work on a regular basis in places that weren’t Portland.
It turns out that T-mobil is currently offering a similar deal to Cricket. Due to our extensive testing (Do you have service right now?), we knew that they get better service outside of Portland. So we decided to switch.
This is where the entire experience goes from irritating to brain warping.
The day before Thanksgiving, my husband walked into a T-mobil store and asked if our phones would work with their plan. They tested it first, and it appeared that they would. So the T-Mobil people began the process of porting our numbers. Eventually, they hit a snag. Our phones were locked.
This was shocking. We’d been told repeatedly that our phones weren’t locked, would never be locked. My husband called Cricket Customer Service. He was told that Cricket locks all iPhones, but blamed it on Apple. “They make us.” he said.
Everyone, including my husband, the T-Mobil staff and the Cricket Customer Service Rep, agreed that this was not going to be fixed that day. The T-Mobile staff reversed the number porting. The Cricket Rep updated our account. He said that once the port came through as cancelled, our service would be restored with no problems.
Thanksgiving arrived, as it does every year. Except this year was a little different for us because our phones weren’t working. The Cricket Rep was wrong. Our service did not resume. In fact, our service was cancelled. Our numbers were in limbo. We couldn’t call our families in the midwest or my sister on the east coast. They couldn’t call us either.
The day after Thanksgiving, my husband went back to the Cricket store. He went alone because I “tend to yell.” So he drove to the store with our expensive, paid for in cash phones and some questions.
He asked these questions.
“Why is my phone locked when your store employees told us repeatedly that they wouldn’t be?”
“How come my service was cancelled when I was told it wouldn’t be?”
“Where was I informed that my phone would remain locked indefinitely?”
“How do I get my phone unlocked?”
He was escorted from the store.
My husband has never, ever, so much as been asked to leave by a retail establishment. He just isn’t that guy. He doesn’t yell or speak loudly. He’s never threatened anyone in a store, ever. It takes a lot to make him angry and he would never think to take that out on a retail clerk.
I know this because I am that guy. I get mad. I get loud. I’ve been known to yell. I’ve thought seriously about kicking things. But I wasn’t there and he was. My husband, the calm one, the nice one, asked reasonable questions and was kicked out of the Cricket store by a Cricket employee.
So there we were, the day after Thanksgiving with phones that wouldn’t work, a back log of family calls we couldn’t make, and a local store with a manager that wouldn’t so much as talk to us.
So my husband called Cricket Customer Service. “We need working phones.” he said. “Please finish the port.”
“Your account has been deactivated.” she said.
He tried to explain the whole story. She didn’t care. “Your account has been deactivated.”
“We had half a month still paid for on our service.” he said.
“Not anymore.” She said. “You can sign up for a new plan and pay full price tonight, if you like.”
He didn’t like.
Saturday, my husband talked to Apple. They told us that it was possible for the phones to be unlocked, but only by Cricket. We told them that Cricket said Apple won’t let them. “No” said the nice Apple lady, “That’s all up to Cricket.”
So my husband called Cricket Customer Service. Again. The first person he spoke to barely understood english. My husband asked for someone to unlock our phones. After 5 tries, the guy eventually just transferred him to another rep. She also didn’t speak english well. After just as many attempts to communicate, she did transfer my husband to the iPhone department…except it was the spanish line.
My husband doesn’t speak spanish.
Luckily, this guy was bilingual. He couldn’t help, but he could at least understand the questions my husband was asking. After talking to him for a while, my husband was transferred to a manager. This was the end of the line. My husband was told that it was Cricket policy to never unlock a phone. It didn’t matter that Cricket employees lied to us repeatedly. “Cricket isn’t responsible for what Cricket store employees say about our service.”
And that’s when my husband started pulling out his own hair.
There were lots of ways to make this right. (Or at least not so terribly wrong.) We could have been told the truth from the beginning about the locked state of Cricket iPhones. Our service could have been reinstated after T-Mobil cancelled their port. The manager of the Cricket store could have been less rude and answered some questions.
Any of these options would have made our lives just a little easier. But that’s not your problem. I get that.
So congratulations. You’ve given us the finger better than any other company in 2013. Hell, you’ve probably won for 2014 too. Well done, Cricket, well done.
**I sent a copy of this to Cricket Customer Service. I’d be shocked to hear anything back, but let this be a lesson to the rest of you…
(via Octopuns: #49 - Coffee)
Ok, this needs to be on my wall so I can see it every single day.
Lock your fucking doors on Tuesdays in Thedas. [x]
My doing, I’m afraid. Buffy reference.
If I have my way, one day I will do an homage to “Once More With Feeling”. Fade adventure. Demon of Revelry. Singing. Dancing. At least one reference to bunnies, mustard stains, and perhaps a Bollywood number.
And then I’ll be good. I can put Buffy to rest forever. :)
I would pay for this DLC.
Since it was first reported by Utah CBS affiliate KUTV, the story of Jen Palmer’s travails with KlearGear, an online merchant of geeky “desk toys,” has been splashed across some of the most popular technology and
I have a new rule.
Any restaurant serving coffee with “cream” that comes in tiny white cups is not allowed to brag about their coffee. None of those raving, magical descriptions in the menu. Don’t tell me how fresh it is. And do not, DO NOT tell me the name of the company it came from.
If you can’t be bothered to open a carton of honest-to-God half-and-half or even better, CREAM, then you don’t respect the coffee enough to name it. I promise you, the company doesn’t want to be associated with the pathetic coffee service in your establishment.
Lets have a moment of truth here. Those little white cups of strange white fluid taste bad. It doesn’t matter what brand or “flavor” they are. It doesn’t matter what kind of coffee you dump them into. They are terrible and do nothing but add sadness and pain to the entire experience of drinking coffee.
You are allowed to say three things about coffee you plan to serve with those demon cups:
1. It’s coffee.
2. It’s hot.
3. It contains caffeine.
That’s it. Anything else is a mean and cynical build up for the betrayal and disappointment I will ultimately feel when you deliver my coffee with “cream” that isn’t.
"Well, when I was nine years old Star Trek came on, I looked at it and I went screaming through the house, 'Come here, mum, everybody, come quick, come quick, there's a black lady on television and she ain't no maid!' I knew right then and there I could be anything I wanted to be.”
— Whoopi Goldberg