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Saturday, Jan. 21, 2017

Help for Americans by Americans

Posted Wednesday, November 7, 2007, at 2:18 PM

If a company's going to do business in the United States, they should have help lines answered in America by Americans.

This point was made clearly this week when my parents struggled to set up their new cell phone.

They've had an old, analog phone from a company which specializes in accounts for those with relatively low usage.

The company, which doesn't have a local office, attempted to switch them to a digital phone and the troubles began.

They sent a "new" reconditioned phone -- upsetting to my parents because their previous phone actualy was new -- which was defective and cut off as soon as I or anyone else answered their outgoing calls. My parents' number was also changed despite being specifically told it wouldn't be.

After two days and hours on the phone, the firm's finally sending another phone.

Most of the problem was because of communication: The call center was obviously in a foreign country, according to my parents. Both sides had trouble understanding each other.

Remember when, if you had problems with practically anything you bought, local help was available? Or, at least, from individuals in the United States?

Just another example of a company trying to cut costs the arrogant way by transferring jobs out of the country.

I don't have a problem with foreigners. I wish them the best of luck and hope they achieve highly -- but not at the cost of Americans who have lost jobs because people in other nations, whose sense of self-worth has been destroyed through generations of abuse and arrogant leaders, will work for far less pay than they deserve.

Anyone, in any country, should be able to obtain technical help for malfunctioning products from people who speak their own language fluently. Maybe some day the tide will turn back toward America.

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I have had the same problem with a satellite tv company, when I had a problem and called the 800 # I could barely understand the broken and accented english that the 'technician' helping me was using, I ended up so frustrated that I just hung up and spent the evening with a good book.

-- Posted by Bill H on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 2:34 PM

AT&T is the worse . . . they actually have sales people from India calling to try and sell new services and I have no clue as to half of what they are saying. I don't understand that mentality . . . yes, they are saving money by hiring cheaper labor but how much business and money are they losing because people can't understand a word they are saying.

Dell is another example of this . . . they have seen their sales go down because of that but yet they evidently don't see the problem because they continue to let people go here in the USA and transfer it to India. I have actually decided to not do business with them anymore because it was become difficult to communicate with them.

-- Posted by jaxspike on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 3:08 PM

We need edit buttons . . .

I meant to say "because it has become difficult to communicate with them."

-- Posted by jaxspike on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 3:14 PM

add lexmark to the list. had a problem, called the tech line and could not understand a thing they were saying. i said where are you located? she said india!!

-- Posted by tdc on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 4:17 PM

I guess they'll use the excuse that Americans don't want those jobs.

-- Posted by neena on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 4:41 PM

American's want those jobs, companies just aren't willing to sacrifice their lavish profits for highly trained, highly skilled American professionals...

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 8:37 PM

I mentioned in a blog a couple of months ago that I couldn't understand my HP techs, & they didn't understand my problem. I asked where they were, & they were in India. Thank goodness it got worked out without having to depend totally on them.

-- Posted by bettyhbrown on Wed, Nov 7, 2007, at 10:20 PM

In many cases, these folks in foreign call centers are highly intelligent except for one point, they do not UNDERSTAND the language and/or they are not able to SPEAK the language in a way that we can understand.

Indian technicians have AT TIMES, done very well in solving my issue, but the majority of the time the basic communications are so bad that all they can do is go by a standard script and I get asked the same questions over and over, each time I call in. Yeeeesh!

-- Posted by stevemills on Fri, Nov 9, 2007, at 7:45 AM

That's why I love VERIZON. All of their call centers are based in AMERICA. You can atleast understand your "customer service representative"...

-- Posted by darrick_04 on Fri, Nov 9, 2007, at 10:40 PM

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David Melson is a copy editor and staff writer for the Times-Gazette.