Thursday, April 02, 2009

The Good Old Days

Most people, particularly the young, dislike hearing how great the good old days were. Most of the time I agree with them. Life is change and change will happen whether we are ready for it or not. One hopes it is for the better.
Now that I’ve said that, I want to make an exception. I do wish for the good old days when I could phone my Internet provider, press 4 for technical support, and hear a human being offer to help me. He listened to my problem and then would walk me through the solution while I sat in front of my computer and followed his instructions. I could tell him to repeat them or to slow down until I got it right and my problem was solved. Now, I phone a number and am told to phone another one. Sometimes it rings and instead of being answered it just disconnects. Sometimes I get a recording that says, “The operator isn’t available, goodbye,” and then the line disconnects. Sometimes I get a recording with instructions that whiz by me, and then when I get it right and press the correct extension, I get another recording or loud music and I wait. I wait and wait until I give up and hope that next time I call, I will get the help I need.
I guess I shouldn’t complain because for the past two decades or more whenever I was visiting my family in the States and needed to call an airline, an airport, a large corporation, a bank – you name it – I would get a recording and then a long wait would follow. In fact, a major complaint from my family in the States is that they dream to talk to a human being when they make a phone call. But I suppose that is the way of progress in this technical age. Jordan obviously isn’t going to be left behind. Our small little companies, locally owned, have been sold to bigger (better?) and certainly more impersonal mega corporations. They offer faster, more up to date products and services supposedly. The customer is forced to manage as best he can with the mediocre service he is given. At least when I call I’m not ‘outsourced’ to India, China, or the Fiji Islands – yet.


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