Come the revolution.

A couple of days ago was hacked with such a degree of thoroughness that I was left with no choice but to change all my passwords, strip the site bare, and start over. Because of the severity of the attack, I decided to call my hosting provider and let them know. Their response was to attempt to sell me their “watchdog” service (which would only *triple* my monthly hosting fee). I hung up, shaking my head at their apparent lack of concern, and set upon the task of rebuilding. I’ve wanted to switch from WordPress to WordPress MU on this account anyway, and this seemed like a chance to make lemonade out of lemons, even if I wasn’t 100% confident that my lemonade stand wouldn’t be kicked over the next day by the exact same bullies.

During that time of digital catharsis, however, I ran into a problem with one of the tools the provider offers (it seemed to be hung), so I called customer service again. At this point, I decided that if there is another revolution in America, it won’t be over bankers, gun control, or religious fundamentalism. It will be over dealing with customer service.

The conversation started innocently enough:

“Thank you for calling our company, my name is Paul, how may I help you today?”

“I’m having a problem I can’t fix myself, and I need your help.”

“Certainly, I just need to verify some information about you before we start.”

“Ok. [Gives information].”

“Now what’s the problem?”

“[Explains problem].”

“Ok. Here’s a suggestion about how to fix a completely unrelated problem.”

“[Explains problem again.]”

“I see, well, I’d like to help you, but I notice that on a completely unrelated note, you don’t have a required field in your profile filled out to my liking. I cannot help you further until this tangential issue is satisfied.”

“[Explains problem again and offers possible solution.]”

“I’m sorry, I can’t help you until my desire for irrelevant changes to your account profile is satisfied.”

Imagine the time I would have saved if I had just gotten out my Customerserveless to English dictionary at the start of the call.

“Your call is yet another nail on the blackboard of my life, but it’s costing me fifty bucks a night to visit my girlfriend at the strip club, so I guess we’re stuck with each other for as long as I want to hang on to the fantasy that I’m going to get laid someday, my name is none of your damned business, what is it going to take to get you to shut up?”

“I’m having a problem I can’t fix myself, and I need your help.”

“I understand. I’m going to look for a loophole that either allows me to hang up on you, gives me a chance escalate your call to someone I hate worse than my current life at this desk, or emasculates your sense of self worth in an attempt to drive you to the point of giving up this pointless conversation.”

Now, I’m freshly tinged with the sting of having either an ill-mannered teenager or a calculating pharmaceutical link slave fire off an emotionless script designed to rape my web-site, so perhaps my translation from Customerserveless to English is tainted with emotional residue, and my idea of revolution is actually a bit of over-reaction. After all, there is no shortage of customers who are rude, deceiving, manipulative, and downright unpleasant to deal with, and they may be the reason that the Customerserveless language was invented in the first place.

But consider the problems being outlined in this article from the New York Times, and tell me that there aren’t thousands of others out there who have far more justification in calling for an overthrow than I.

The only downside I can see is that after the revolution, we’ll have to establish a customer service department to deal with the complaints.