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Thursday 9 June 2005

Please say... no! [Lurks]

My Glastonbury tickets failed to show up. The folks handling tickets sent me an email that looked exactly like spam and it was only fluke that I read it and found out that their special courier had apparently failed to deliver and left a card (no they didn't).
This, however, is not a whiney blog about shit courier services. I feel we've covered that subject adequately on the 'Death. It's a whiney blog about something else but I'm not quite done with 'Special Mail' yet. First of all I tried to order a redelivery via this courier's web site. It was pretty basic and I had no reason to believe it had not organised redelivery as it claimed. Only the courier never came.
So I phoned them up to sort it out and I get greeted by an automated voice mail system, as you so often are. However this was the next step of evil beyond that, this was a voice recognition system. Normally these things are about good enough to go 'yes' and 'no' and that's it. However the designers of this particularly master-stroke have apparently decided that they can do away with any sort of human-powered transaction and replace it with a robotic voice speaking in disjointed sound bites.
Press one to arrange a redelivery. So far so good. Please say the courier reference number. Hang on, that's a bloody 16 digit number. I draw breath and begin to say the number slowly and clearly like a British tourist abroad. Was it 297837239734737374? Well, actually not bad you got MOST of them right but no, it isn't. You can begin to see how some career-fuckwit middle manager has come around to believing that technology is up to understanding human speech. Well, you can begin to understand we're less than TEN FUCKING YEARS AWAY! Please try again and say or key the courier reference number. What? You mean I could just fucking type thing thing? Why not say that the first time? You wankers are sat in a fucking basement listening to a live feed, laughing away aren't you? I type the damn thing out and it confirms yadda yadda. Please say your post code. What? Oh for the love of Christ. I'm sorry, I didn't catch that. Ennn eeigght ... eeiiight teee gee. Did you mean N8 8BD? No I fucking well did not! Eventually I get it. Hooray! Maybe this shit isn't so bad?
Please say the name of your street. What? You French-born pile of crack fueled cunts I just gave you my fucking post code, that's what it's FOR! I'm sorry, I didn't catch that. Toottteeennhaaammm Laaannnee. Etc. However I need to give it the number and the street. I'm nearing the supposed finish, I've almost got this rat-fuck abortion of comp-sci student's wank-fest to finally get what I'm saying for the third time when... I'm sorry, I didn't catch that. Please stand by for an operator.
The phone rings and a real human picks up immediately. Arrrggghhh!!! WANKERS! If you pile of rancid slugmonkey donkeyscrotes had a fucking guy sat there ready to take my call in the first place... Arrrgghhh!!!
Course this chap on the phone is apologetic and quite disarming. I ordered delivery on your web site but nothing showed up. I'm seeing nothing on the system sir, can I organise delivery for Friday?
I couldn't help myself so I said. Sorry, I didn't catch that. Very funny sir, delivery is booked for Friday.
The stupid thing is, you know they paid a lot more for that fucking software than to outsource the entire thing to India. One day I shall find out where that basement of cackling boffins resides. I've put an ebay bid on a bread van and I've made a start stockpiling fertilizer.


  1. They're all as bad as each other, I too hate delivery companies. UPS, who are supposed to be expensive, but good, either lost, or someone stole two parcels that were shipped to me from the UK, having to claim for a lost package, taking over two months to actually get the third pacakge, whilst the shop that send the item was growing impatient. Then they took two weeks to deliver a box from the states, and said the invoice papers weren't enclosed by the sender and so they had to find out the value of the contents themselves, but... the box had the invoice in when it arrived!

  2. My work's put in one of these systems which you can dial with an "0" or "00" for a real live operator. Now being a fan of progressive development, clearly one wants to support teh tech.
    "Please say the first name and last name of the person you wish to call""Alan (pause) White"
    big friggin pause
    "Did you say Ahmed Tigh?"
    "please say the first name and last name of the person you wish to call"
    "Alan White"
    "Did you say Ahmed Tigh?"
    "No I fucking didn't"
    "I'm sorry I didn't understand that. Please say the first name of the person you want to call"
    "Alan. Please say the last name of the person you wish to call"
    "Did you say Alan Tigh?"
    *F**£*$*RF*D*£*"!*R**$**$**T$%*T**G*D*- *W**R£*

    Totally embarrassing we invested in this shit. The only positive is it's less rude than the RL receptionists.

  3. Yep, the local Cineworld cinema has this crap. Which of course is completeley useless when all you want to do is find out which of their screens is the dolby digital one & book your Star Wars viewing on it. Much like you guys, the best option is just to swear down the phone until thecatch(){ queueforoperator();}code is entered.

  4. Okay, someone was talking about auytomated phone systems and then someone said "Cinema". The corker of a thing about booking Cinema tickets with an automated system - on say, a Flash-infected website, or talking to a computer on the phone - is that they charge you for the pleasure. Yes, you save them time and money and they charge you a 50p/£1 booking fee on top!
    Oh it makes me laugh so hard I could die.

  5. And of course what's even more galling is that they do it in full knowledge that we hate it. Having moved, due to old fuck status and capitalist scumbag income to a posher level of banking service with HSBC, when I dial up the normal number I have to tolerate long streams of number pad input - sort code, account number, date of birth and two sample numbers from my six digit pin (really). When I dial up the premier banking number (same service, posher phone jockies) I get "If you'd like to speak immediately to a customer service representative, please press 2".

  6. Worked fine for me and my daughter - it must be that darwinian accent - you didnt say "gooerday cobber" or anything like that did you? :-)

  7. Fuck your own ass!