Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: Your Whining Is Important to Us

127 Responses

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  • Craig Ranapia,

    How's your cleavage, Craig?

    If I say so myself, my man-boobage is of Parton-esque proportions. Oh dear, that was an concise over-share I should have Twitted wasn't it...

    And linking to PA columns, because I have a number of friends who only read them that way.

    QFT -- I don't think it's a coincidence that traffic to my PAR stuff goes up when I remember to TwitFace a link...

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I have in front of me the latest Jaron Lanier book that seems to be largely about this very issue. There appears to be no faster means of uploading its contents than reading the bloody thing unfortunately. I'll report back.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Beard,

    Facebook is for playing word games. And linking to PA columns, because I have a number of friends who only read them that way.

    Really? I thought Facebook was for checking the RSVP list to see whether any hot people are going before accepting the invitation.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1039 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    I don't think it's a coincidence that traffic to my PAR stuff goes up when I remember to TwitFace a link...

    The powers that be could add a link to System...

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • LegBreak,

    This has included receiving an email saying "If you believe Andrew Mulligan is engaging in abusive behaviour..." which frankly is a question I don't know how to answer.

    Fiar to say Andrew Mulligan isn't quite on your wavelength over on Twitter yet?

    Just saying.

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 1162 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Fiar to say Andrew Mulligan isn't quite on your wavelength over on Twitter yet?

    I just sent him a link to some Black Caps slash-fic. I think we'll be there quite shortly.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    BTW, Twitter has done one useful thing -- I don't need any more reasons to be Emma's personal hag-fag but she keeps providing the damn things.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • Craig Ranapia,

    The powers that be could add a link to System...

    Yeah, but bugging Russell to bug the lovely chaps over at Cactuslab to gratify my ego seems a tad prickish.

    North Shore, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 12034 posts Report Reply

  • Marcus Turner,

    Sorry if this has been posted before.

    It seems relevant: http://propr.ca/2010/thornley-fallis-new-online-communications-policy/

    Since Nov 2006 • 202 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    I don't need any more reasons to be Emma's personal hag-fag but she keeps providing the damn things.

    Heh, to be clear, Craig is talking about my love for Benjamin Disraeli, not the slash-fic.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Morgan Nichol,

    Ben's break-up with Orcon was hilariously awkward to watch. Orcon weren't sitting on their hands, they were clearly trying to resolve it, just failing. Sucks to be them I guess, but I'm really glad he finally shifted to some other provider and shut up about it.

    Auckland CBD • Since Nov 2006 • 297 posts Report Reply

  • Matthew Poole,

    For a start, most of the customers complaining about us on Twitter/Facebook/blogs would be the ones we already put the most time into.

    Are you sure about that? I'm a pretty easy customer to please, I just expect "you" to provide the goods/services for which I am paying, as described by "you", in a timely fashion.

    I will bitch about you on FB when you are unable to deliver me a coffee until I ask for the third time (and then it's horribly burned), and your counter staff argue with another member of my table when he wants a refund because his coffee still hasn't arrived after 45 minutes and two promptings and now he needs to leave. Hi, Library Cafe, Onehunga.

    On the other hand, I will lavish praise on you on FB if you do something extraordinary without even being asked, such as booking out your whole restaurant at no charge and with no minimum spend, creating personalised-to-the-occasion menus, and giving the happy couple a special dessert on the house, as happened to recently-married friends of mine. Ups to the restaurant at Hotel Grand Chancellor, and I have to say that that was quite possibly the best customer service I've encountered in years. Quite a contrast from Rice, the bride's first choice, which would only seat a maximum of 37 people and wanted a minimum spend of $4500. That's a whole hell of a lot of booze!

    My experience is that most kiwis are like me. They'll tolerate far shittier service than is actually warranted, and not complain about it at the time, but then they'll let rip to their friends. Nine people told about every bad experience, against one person told about every good one, as they say. At least Web 2.0 balances it out, by giving the same audience for both positive and negative feedback.

    The pit from whence crawl… • Since Mar 2007 • 3909 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    I dont twitter, nor do I have any social networking page. *But* I have a helluva long email list of family & friends, and waua! do we chatter between ourselves!

    Which means shitty service or goods get a 'silent' thumbsdown and the good stuff gets more patronage. Works for us.

    O, the younger whanau (mid-late teens/20s) *do* have social networking pages but also respond to whanau emails-

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • giovanni tiso,

    This:

    Heh, to be clear, Craig is talking about my love for Benjamin Disraeli, not the slash-fic.

    Immediately followed by this:

    Ben's break-up with Orcon was hilariously awkward to watch.

    And presto, I am now wondering about what it was that made Benjamin Disraeli break up with Orcon.

    Wellington • Since Jun 2007 • 7386 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Heh!

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    For those curious about my (for me) prolonged absence from Public Address, this blog may go some way to explaining it – both in its content, and the shitty shitty quality of the writing.

    It does go quite a way. Stress can be affecting you in ways you aren't aware of. You've had a huge amount to cope with. I don't think it's bad to tell us, even in a "shitty shitty" way. I didn't think it was shitty, just not the fantastically witty prose we're used to, but straightforward telling. Get it off your chest, sometimes it helps. Trying to be witty about your problems can trivalize them, and force you to say things that aren't really what you meant, sometimes. Or say nothing.

    btw, your book became my Christmas present to myself in the end, cause I didn't finish it before Christmas and got all greedy and just kept it. Highly recommended.

    I've also discovered that people are a de-stresser. Possibly on account of too much solo work. They may be tiring, but it's tiring like training. Overtrain and you get fatigued by it. Undertrain and you get fatigued by everything. We need people in appropriate doses.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    Are you sure about that? I'm a pretty easy customer to please, I just expect "you" to provide the goods/services for which I am paying, as described by "you", in a timely fashion.

    Yes, very. Very very. But I'd be interested to hear the opinions of other people who've worked in customer service. It may be that I've had a bad run of it and I've been spending too much time on this site lately. I did say most, and I did talk about having made two complaints myself. (Also, though I don't think it's relevant, none of our customers are Kiwis.)

    I've also discovered that people are a de-stresser. Possibly on account of too much solo work

    Y'know, Ben, that might be part of it. Through that period I was doing a content work contract, which is very much solo no-feedback work.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4369 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    I've also discovered that people are a de-stresser. Possibly on account of too much solo work. They may be tiring, but it's tiring like training. Overtrain and you get fatigued by it. Undertrain and you get fatigued by everything. We need people in appropriate doses.

    One of my de-stressers is exercise. Particularly, martial arts and punching things.

    Given that Ben has also expressed martial arts love in the past, I am now wondering exactly how he 'uses people as a de-stresser'....

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2401 posts Report Reply

  • David Hood,

    Apropos of the public/private/anonymous internet thing. I was reading an article earlier today about deanonymising based on the perfectly reasonable idea that you can identify identities talking about the same topics in different communications media, and a strong enough similarity is evidence of being the same person.
    It's still at the press release "promising new technology" stage though.

    Dunedin • Since May 2007 • 902 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Given that Ben has also expressed martial arts love in the past, I am now wondering exactly how he 'uses people as a de-stresser'....

    Funny you should ask. Not 30 minutes ago I was chucking people around, and being chucked around. I feel tired, but I'm glad I did it, nothing takes your mind off work like it.

    Y'know, Ben, that might be part of it. Through that period I was doing a content work contract, which is very much solo no-feedback work.

    It sounds like a dream, until you try it, eh? Going through it right now, especially today. Presented the culmination of a year's work to Test, and despite them tearing it a new one, I feel great. Yesterday I was almost in despair. People are a good thing.

    Indeed, a mate is without an office for a bit, so I offered him to use mine. Practically, it's an inconvenience to me, but I'm actually looking forward to it. I think he is too, also being a solo worker. We might keep each other a bit more honest on keeping regular hours too, something that solo work is prone to challenging, and I don't think in a good way.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 8592 posts Report Reply

  • Deborah,

    Regarding "followers", I've just found out that some of my very conservative uncles read my feminist blog, which I think is very mild, but my mother says it can be a bit challenging at times. BTW, I have some uncles who are conservative and some who are not. I've had one too many glasses of wine to try to sort out the proper modifiers to use to indicate clearly exactly which people I mean.

    Regarding people being stressful, may I point those of you who find this to be the case to the best article evah on teh intertubes: Caring for your introvert.

    Manawatu City • Since Nov 2006 • 1323 posts Report Reply

  • Islander,

    Deborah- have I printed that off and physically posted, or just onsent it-so so many times!

    Me. Little quiet (except when enraged) me.

    Big O, Mahitahi, Te Wahi … • Since Feb 2007 • 5643 posts Report Reply

  • Kris V,

    Isobel wrote:

    Must we consider the possible reactions of every one of our (quite likely hundreds of) friends and followers before we Tweet or update our status? Or can we let it all hang out?

    I have an online gaming alter-ego under which the more colourful & interesting parts of my life are blogged about. My professional life will stay attached to my proper name and with any luck those twains shall not meet... much...

    A fine line to walk and a fun game that we play, whatever the rules/guidelines we set ourselves!

    Shakeytown • Since Nov 2008 • 61 posts Report Reply

  • Morgan Nichol,

    But I'd be interested to hear the opinions of other people who've worked in customer service. It may be that I've had a bad run of it and I've been spending too much time on this site lately.

    Not for a really long time, and then with a fairly specialised service (well, internet stuff, but way back in the day, when only people who were a bit geeky were interested). I particularly liked talking to the really upset people, I liked to soothe them. This was easy on the whole, all they needed was some straight talk, honest appraisal, and timely help. Which apparently isn't something they were getting from the others (or they wouldn't have made it to me).

    Some people, only a very few, should never ever ever be allowed to provide customer service. There was one guy on the helpdesk (later on, after I'd moved departments - otherwise I would have straightened him out) who would scream and shout and (literally) hit the walls after practically every call.

    Completely out of order. It just wasn't the line of work for him, and I don't know why he didn't just get a job that suited him better.

    I hope no one has to work with anyone like that. Even just the stories fucked me off, and I never had to sit in the same room as the guy.

    Not 30 minutes ago I was chucking people around, and being chucked around. I feel tired, but I'm glad I did it, nothing takes your mind off work like it.

    I never liked the chucking much, probably because it was too easy for me. Far rather the hitting and being hit. Half torn off callouses on the hands and feet and a chestful of good honest bruises... good for the soul.

    Auckland CBD • Since Nov 2006 • 297 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    It just wasn't the line of work for him, and I don't know why he didn't just get a job that suited him better.

    As someone who hates customer service as much as it hates her, yet did it for three years: because most entry-level jobs are customer service to some degree or description, and it's often not as easy as "just get a job that suits you better." If you need work, you need work.

    That said, there's no excuse for going nuts at the *existence* of customers. They're kind of a prerequisite for the existence of your job, after all.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

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