Tech Support email I wish that I could write

The problem that you are having, while not uncommon, is ultimately caused by the buggy, overcomplicated software that you foolishly chose to purchase from our two-bit operation.

While I in no way give a rats ass about your problem, they pay me to write sympathetic sounding emails and listen to you whine on the phone. It kind of sucks for both of us, but there you go.

If you really want to get something done about the problem, I suggest that you refrain from using the product except for the most rudimentary tasks. As a last resort, you can call sales, as they are way better at sounding as if they give a fuck.

I’d like to write…
Further to our phonecall in which you could not understand our site and you clicked on “withdrawal” when you wanted to deposit money to us and you clicked on “deposit” when you wanted to withdraw money - Please follow these steps…

Find the box that your computer came in.

Put the computer in it.

Send it back.

You are obviously too stupid to use one.



My Company
My Company’s Toll free number


That’d tarnish your reputation with your manager…! :smiley:

Thank you for your reply. Although I suspected the software and/or vendor was responsible, and begged my manager not to purchase said application (nor do business with your two-bit operation), I am gratified to learn my suspicions were true. Expect this information to be forwarded to management.

However, as it is my unfortunate responsibility not only to deal with your buggy software and two-bit operation, but also the unreliable lackwits who run tech support for my own two-bit operation, I might expect some sympathy. After all, neither of us gives a tiny little rat’s ass about the application itself, doomed though we are to struggling with the ineptitude of its programmers.

Lastly, thanks for your suggestion to speak with Sales, although, as you may expect, I will respectfully forgo that option. If I remember correctly, they would be the ones who got us both in this situation in the first place. The next time I feel the need to have that much smoke blown up my ass, I’ll stay home with a carton of cigs and a short length of tubing.

Thanks again for your support.

I resemble this thread, since I worked once in telephone technical support. With the help of large doses of Thorazine, I am on the road to recovery.

Things I wish I could have said:

Sir, that OS is pronounced DOS like in floss, not DOS like in dose.
AUTOEXEC.BAT is spelled with a C.

User: My sound card doesn’t work.
Me: Are the speakers plugged in?
User: Hey, I’m not stupid!
[Several minutes of useless diagnostic work]
Me: Sir, please do me a favor and check to see that your
speakers are plugged in. Just humor me…
User [sounds of scuffling]: Hey, the plug came loose. Now how
did that happen.
Me: [incredibly filthy expletive deleted]

User: I am on the district attorney’s staff for the state of . If you don’t fix this, I am going to go after your company.
Me: Fuck you, strong letter to follow.


Please purchace our competitor’s product. We will cut our support costs significantly while adding to thiers. And I won’t have to talk to you again. Looks like win-win-win for us!


One of my favorite websites:

Computer Stupidities: an entire section devoted to what happens when one joins idiots and technology.

There’s even a couple that make fun idiotic tech support.

[hijack]Forgot to add this to the above. Is N9IWP a ham radio handle? One of my friends is into that.

Sir, I realize your computer is broken. I know you are angry about it. I know you feel a need to express your anger at the computer company, and I, being with the company and also the person who is to help you fix your computer are obviously the best target for your venom.

However, you must realize, I am not the person who took the 3 1/4 floppy, opened the CD ROM tray, put said floppy in tray and FORCED IT SHUT WHEN IT WOULDN’T CLOSE.


(thats a true story by the way)

As the proud owner of a 5 1/4" floppy drive that has a Beethoven CD rammed into it, I don’t doubt you at all.

(Your computer won’t play music? And now the discs won’t fit in the drive? Can you describe the discs to me? And you say it won’t play CDs? I’ll be right over…)

That was eight years ago, and I still hurt from laughing that hard.

This happened with regularity at a telecommunications company where I used to work. The product was bad, the billing was horrendously inconsistent, the service was nonexistent, etc., etc.

So the customer service reps would pass the word when the supervisor wasn’t eavesdropping (“this call may be monitored”), and they’d tell customers with particularly insoluble problems that, in all seriousness, the recommended solution was to cancel the account and go elsewhere.

That company provides the only example I can recall of the mainstream business press using the term “train wreck” to refer to a corporation in non-opinion writing. :slight_smile:

I don’t know whose side to be on, here, since I write user manuals. They take a hell of a lot longer to complete than you’d think. You think you’re confused? Try documenting a new product when every day there’s a new software build with numerous changes.

Where I work, the tech support guys tell me stories about what they’ve heard on the phone. I also read it on web tech support forums.

The first question the tech support guys ask is, “Did you read the manual?”

Clueless user: “Ummm… no…”

Tech support guy: “Well, on page 54 it says that you should configure… (etc. etc.)”

Clueless user: “Oh… OK.”

Tech support guy: “OK, I’ll walk you through it. Click the ‘Start’ button. Do you see the [my company] subfolder?”

Clueless user: “Um, hold on, OK yeah.”

Tech support guy: “OK, now click on [whatever plug-in].”

And so on, and so on.

Look, that nice, glossy-covered manual that came with your $1000 PCI video editing card isn’t just there for decoration. Don’t just stick the card into your PC, shove the CD-ROM into the drive, and expect things to go perfectly. It’s not always that simple, fuckwit. That’s why end-user documentation exists.

Then again, I can understand frustration when dealing with tech support calls. Where I work, tech support is understaffed, and can only do so much. It’s not our fault, but the fault of whoever decided to cut tech support jobs.

  • s.e.

BTW my use of “fuckwit” was not directed at the OP, but at clueless users. My apologies for any misunderstanding.

I actually wrote a mail to a customer at one time. The guy was complaining that a story on our site was biased and the company I worked for was to blame. The story was about civil unrest in some third world country that I can’t remember right now and was reported by AP. The source of the story was clearly noted.(Note, his rant was over 8 pages long when I printed it to show to co-workers)

It started, IIRC, like this:
"Dear Fuckwit,

The story you are refering to in your email was not written by (my companies name). After reading your ranting, barely intellegable conspiricy theory (that by the way, makes Charles Manson sound sane) I decided that you are obviously a total idiot that is in need of serious medication. Dear Fuckwit, Thorazine can and should be your friend. On top of that, Dear Mr. Fuckwit, if the story concerned you being anally raped with a chainsaw by the Third World Facist Military-Industrialist conspiritors I would applaud for a moment and then move on to a person with an actual problem."

That is the first of the long letter that I wrote and then, accidentaly, sent. Thankfully my Boss was really cool and we got the mail pulled from his box before he read it.


A couple of years ago my 17" monitor went bad. It was still under warranty, because it was less than 2 years old, and so I had to call tech support for them to authorize shipment of a replacement.

The monitor would do nothing but display a rather amoeba-like (shape changing) green mass on the screen, regardless of whether the monitor was plugged into the video card with the computer on, or it was not connected to the video card (thus in ‘Self Test’ mode).

So I call tech support and explain the situation to the male on the phone.

TS: Now missss… are you sure the monitor is connected to the computer? There’s two cables coming out of the back, and both of them do have to be plugged in properly.

CS: Yes, the monitor has AC power and is connected to the video card. I’m looking at the cables right now.

TS: Misssss… are you sure you’ve got it plugged in to the video card?

CS: Yes, I’m sure. Ten minutes ago, I had a picture. Now I don’t. I checked to make sure the connector hadn’t come loose.

TS: What operating system are you using again?

CS: Windows NT.

TS: Oh. Well. There’s your problem Missssss. Your monitor is not compatible with Windows NT.

CS: Could I speak to someone else please?

TS: Look, Missss, you may not know much about computers, but montiors have to be compatible with the operating system, and your monitor is built for Windows 95.

CS: I’d like to speak to someone else. Preferably a supervisor. Because I am quite sure this is not an operating system problem.

TS: I already told you your monitor is not compatible with Windows NT. You need to uninstall it and use either Windows 95 or 98.

CS: Hold on, let me boot into 95.

TS: Do what Missss? That’s not possible.

CS: Look, you obviously don’t know your head from a hole in the ground. The operating system has no bearing on whether or not the circiutry in the monitor has gone bad. Now, I’ve got your badge number written down and if you don’t transfer me to a supervisor in about 3 seconds, I’m going to find someone who will and let them know what an arrogant, condescending, ignorant turd you’ve been for the duration of this call.

At that point I was transferred to his supervisor, who apologized and within 5 minutes was ready to ship me a replacement monitor.

I think the funniest (in hindsight) thing is when they rant at you for about ten minutes, then they pause, and in a perfectly rational and friendly voice say, “I’m sorry, I know this isn’t your fault, but…” and then launch into another ten-minute foul-mouthed tirade.

I worked for the Commonwealth of Kentucky when they were still using DOS on the personal laptops. As a prank, I changed the prompt on a fellow employee’s computer to “Hard Drive Has Crashed. Call Frankfort Immediately.”

I came close to a massive cardiac arrest listening to this guy talk to the IS folks in Frankfort about how his hard drive had crashed, and the IS people trying to convince him that there is no such error message in the system!

For years, I’ve been on the side of tech support. I’d heard enough calls, and of enough calls and email and stupid questions, to know that they really did have a difficult job - and did extremely well under circumstances that would try a saint.

I now feel that you get exactly what you deserve. Over the past 2 months, I’ve had various hardware/software/network problems and been forced to deal with “customer service.” My experiences have been like catsix’s. I type in a description of the problem, I type in the steps I have taken to fix it, I type in all the settings that I think might be remotely useful for the person on the other end of the line. I get back responses like “are you sure it’s plugged in?” (well, yes, obviously as I’m using the machine right now to type the email you idiot), or text that is cut and pasted based on a keyword in the problem description that have nothing whatsoever to do with my problem, or requests for system settings that could be found if they’d bothered to read the entire problem in the first place, or (my personal favorite) instructions that match almost exactly the fix that I’d tried on my own in the first place, that I sent them as part of the original problem description. The differences do not lie in the actual actions, but in word choice - they’d say “select” I’d say “click” mine was in past tense, theirs was present indicative, but they’d tell me to do exactly what I’d already said I’d done. Obviously, reading comprehension is not a job requirement for email based support teams I’ve been dealing with.

I would send the problem back, and get a reply that had nothing different whatsoever than the first email, except this time there might be less of it. After about 4 or 5 requests to be escalated to someone who could help, I would finally, finally get a fix.

Customers who must deal with clueless tech support are much worse off than techsupport that must deal with clueless customers.

Tech support at a telco, you get it in both ears.
There’s the usual assortment of clueless users, complicated by years of experience at it. “Sweetie, our passwords expire on a schedule, that has been there for years. You have called every time your password expired for five years, and you STILL can’t remember the procedure? And we STILL spend a week resetting your damn password until we hit one you remember? Let me guess, it’s your dog’s name with a number on the end.”

Then we get the Amazing Tech Managers, who do things like ooooohhh, upgrade the antivirus software without telling anybody. How many times in a row can you answer the following question without cracking - or making smartass remarks? “My computer says Insert formatted floppy disk into drive A and hit any key to continue. What do I do?” My record is thirty-two.

Then, of course, there’s dealing with other Clueless Tech Support. I do find a twinge or two in my withered little techie soul for the poor average guy dealing with these drooling morons. They drive those of us with clues absolutely apeshit. The ones that ask inane questions like “Is it plugged in?” are at least marginally more useful than the ones who ‘customer service’ you. Those ones will outright lie to you in beautifully technical language in order to get you off the phone and keep up their call times. At least us techie types can get through that (eventually, with much argument) to get the help we need. Most of you poor suckers are hosed.

And no thread like this one would be complete without mentioning the God of Tech Support (no, not Jerry, the other one), The Bastard Operator From Hell. Madman or genius? Depends how long you’ve been in tech support…

What was your username again? :smiley:

Here are a couple fun tech support sites: