Tuesday, July 15, 2014

When Good Programmers Go Bad

All programmers are this cool.

I’ve been searching for an autoposter system for Facebook that I can do my marketing with. There are a number of programs out there, but they seem to be all feet—everyone has one and they all stink. It’s even more of a battle because I’m not a tech guy, and some of these require some installation . . . ummm . . . tech-word-stuff.  No one wants me to fail, and they’ve all got some YouTube videos that are reasonably decent, but still . . . tech-word-stuff.

The latest was a program I picked up Friday, but it wouldn’t work with my system. So I shot the company an email and asked for a refund. I know my computer is old and twitchy and not really set up to do this kind of stuff.  I’ve known it for some time.  But really, at the end of the day, I don’t need to explain why I want a refund.  The timing between Friday and Monday asking for a refund, when I don’t computer on the weekends, is pretty telling.  A guy from the company (which appears to be a one-man show) named Sam (not Sam’s name) emailed me, asked me what the problem was.  My exact response was:

You can see I haven't had the software for more than a couple of days, and I haven't been able to use it.  Rather than talk you through all my issues, I'd prefer a refund so that I can keep moving forward.

Sam pressed me some more, so I responded:

. . . I feel your software will definitely be useful to me in the future when I get an updated computer.  At this time, it's not, so in order to get the computer, I need to start saving money so that I can in turn buy your software again when the time is right.

Let me introduce you to our Customer Service Rep: Lefty!
Rather than sit on software I can’t use, I’d rather put that money to a computer that can run his software and come back and buy it at that time. Call me odd.  Sam told me (and now I see the underlying threat) that he could check and see how many times I’d used the software.  That seemed a bit invasive to me, and is now a not-so-subtle way of calling me a liar.  I honestly didn’t see it as that at the time.  I figured that’s cool and he’d know immediately I couldn’t use the software and everything would be okey dokey. Alas, Sam seems determined to hold onto his $49 and insult a customer at the same time.  His next email was quite long, involved, and accusatory.  I ignored it, contacted PayPal and submitted the claim.

Sam must have gotten the PayPal claim, because he sent me yet another, long, involved, accusatory email and mentioned lawyers.  I like when people mentions lawyers.  Over $49.  Makes me want to write a long, detailed, and extremely accurate blog post.

So there ya have it.  People.  Even when you’re trying to be open and honest and just get on with your day, they manage to screw things up.

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