Monday, May 1, 2006

I swear, I didn't do it!

While surfing some business related blogs who talk about customer service, I was reminded of a particular problem we have at the Undisclosed Customer Service Center™™.

We offer free virus support. No matter what AV software you are running, no matter where you got your computer or how you obtained your software.

Some people phone us the second they think they might have a virus. Some after their AV software tells them they have one, and that it can't remove it. They rarely think of calling the company whom they pay for virus protection software. It never crosses their mind.

"Ya, 'MARTIN' says it found a virus and it can't delete it."

"Have you thought about calling MARTIN?"

"They want $39.99 per minute to work on it."

"They want you to pay them to remove the virus that you paid them to keep off your computer?"

"Sounds worse when you say it out loud."

"Well, the first thing I would suggest is that you stop paying them. I will set you up with a case and get you to support who will help you get rid of this and recommend a few security programs that are free for download off the internet"

"Free for download? How good are they?"

"Well at least if they let a virus through, you didn't pay them for the privilege."

Some people at this point 'get' that we are just trying to help. Others come away with the mistaken impression that we are fixing something we are responsible for in the first place. Since they got the virus on the internet and we 'are' the internet.

The Big Giant Head may have had a hand in making the internet available to the masses, but that still doesn't make 'us' the internet.

Most people do not understand that we are a software company, we don't make hardware. They don't understand the difference. When they start their computer it says 'Undisclosed Computer Software Company™™' so we must be the makers of their computer. Ergo, anything that goes wrong with it, including smoke from the monitor, is our problem. SO FIX IT!

By providing a service that fixes the screw up of another company, I am not sure we are doing such a great service to ourselves. Most customers think it is our fault to begin with and are less than greatful.

I guess that is why, after all these years, the Undisclosed Computer Software Company™™ is getting into the AntiVirus business. If we are going to fix it, we might as well be the ones who actually broke it.

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