Gary McCann's Black List of Bad Business Practices, less than good service, rude or disrespectful employees, bad return policy, cancellation policies, etc. and More  
             
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This Black List page lists and explains when bigger International businesses including like software companies and phone companies, piss me off.  I normally understand when there are problems with services or products, and if the service is great, it counteracts any product problems and vise versa.  Read on and if you have any questions about anything written here, please send me a message and ask me about it.  Enjoy!

 
             
 

This page does not necessarily services provided to Keller Texas, these problems could hit you no matter where you live

 
             
             
             
  Tech Support at it's finest  
             
       
          "Defragment your hard drive, reinstall your operating system, update your drivers, and buy more memory, that will keep you busy while I figure out what's wrong with your computer"  
 

          You hear horror stories about people's experiences with tech support.  We I am a computer tech support technician myself and so of course I would expect more than the average person.  I won't accept; "were sorry but your system doesn't have the proper hardware for our software to run" yea right, I wouldn't have tried it if I thought that was true.

 

          I bought Marisa a new laptop computer.  Her old one is real small, (made to take along to class or trips), but not made for daily use, and her desktop is in the spare bedroom, not a great place to sit unless she is studying for a test.  When she wants to play games, check her Email or just surf the Internet, she either has to sit in the kitchen with her tiny screen, or in the spare room.  I got her a Toshiba laptop, running an Intel core 2 processor and has a special upgraded video card, and 3 Gb of ram.  At the same time that she got the laptop, she got a couple of computer games, one of those games is The Dead Reefs by The Adventure Company.  Normally these games just run and everything is ok, but this one after installation gave the normal Windows Vista garble; The program had problems and will shut down.  There was nothing we could do but click ok.  So I got on the computer and sent an Email to The Adventure Company for technical support, thinking they have seen this before, and it should be an easy fix.  The first time I sent the Email a week went by with no response, so I sent another one.  Immediately I got an "Out of Office Auto Response" response; "Thank you for contacting the technical support department of DreamCatcher Games and The Adventure Company. Your e-mail has been received", well I gave them the benefit of the doubt that maybe the first time I didn't get through.  Then the first deduction came in from a tech named Philip Priest;

 

Thank you for contacting DreamCatcher Interactive’s Technical Support department. Please verify that your computer meets the video card requirement for the game:

1. Click Start, and then click Run.

2. In the Open box, type dxdiag, and then click OK.

3. Click the Display tab. 

4. Under Device, look for Name, Manufacturer, and Approx. Total Memory.

 

NOTE: If the Name or Manufacturer lists SiS, S3, Intel, or Via, your computer has an integrated graphics controller which is not sufficient to run the game. In addition, the Approx. Total Memory must be 64 MB or greater.

 

5. Under Driver, look for Driver Date and verify that the driver date is within the past 6 months. If it is not, contact your computer or video card manufacturer to obtain the most recent drivers for your video card.

 

Sincerely,

 

Philip Priest

Technical Support

DreamCatcher Interactive Inc.

 

As I said above, if I had any knowledge of the hardware being anything less than meeting minimum requirements, I wouldn't bother.

My response;

 

I opened the dxdiag dialog and clicked on the display tab, this is what is reads;

 

Name: ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3470

Manufacture: ATI Technologies Inc.

Total Memory: 1531Mb

Driver Date: 1/30/2008

 

Looks like it is still within your specs.  What’s next?

 

Thanks,

 

Gary McCann

 

You always expect for the next step to be some diagnostics, configuration setting tweak or if he can't figure it out, step it up a level to someone with more experience, but like I said earlier, I expect more than the average person.  Here is his response;

 

Thank you for contacting DreamCatcher Interactive’s Technical Support department.

 

According to your description, your computer has an integrated graphics controller, whereas the game requires a video card to run. Please note that your computer does not meet the minimum requirements of the game and we cannot guarantee that the game will work properly, if at all.

 

In order to play the game, you will need to play it on a computer with a supported video card as listed on the game box.

 

Please let me know if you have any additional questions or comments.

 

Sincerely,

 

Philip Priest

Technical Support

DreamCatcher Interactive Inc.

 

So this is it?  No additional support?  Were sorry?  Well I was not done with this issue, I went back to the game, looking at the installation and then I looked at the menu, what's this?  A configuration settings shortcut, I opened it.  There were a few settings you could change before launching the game, wow who would have thunk it...  My Reply;

 

Dear Phillip,

 

Just to let you know, I was not happy with your answer and I never am when I ask for tech support and get absolutely none.

 

After receiving your latest response, I played around with the game a bit on another computer.  Once I installed the game, I noticed in the Programs menu there was a settings utility program, I opened it and found that prior to starting the game I can change the screen size and some other settings called Texture Filtering and Bloom, whatever those are.  Just for fun I went back to the computer which would not run the game, opened the settings utility and changed the texture filtering to Bilinear, the maximum screen size on the laptop is 1280 x 800 and the default setting is 1280 x 1024, so I changed the screen size to 1024 x 768, and left Bloom enabled, the game started fine, works fine and looks great.  There doesn’t seem to be any lag as yet, however my wife has not played the game very much yet.

 

According to your initial response, the video card is integrated and not compatible with your game, or maybe it is not integrated and you just don’t know, otherwise all laptop video cards must be integrated, and that would mean your game Dead Reefs will not work on any laptop computer.  I suggest you go back and do some additional studying about your product.  Without doing any diagnostics at all you sent me an Email saying Too Bad, there is nothing we can do, get a better computer.  At a minimum I would expect an offer for a refund.

 

When I ask for tech support, I expect to get tech support.  I will think twice before purchasing another Adventure Company game, knowing the tech support department is either under staffed, or lacking in the knowledge required, and that I can expect minimal to no support if needed.

 

I would love to discuss this with your department supervisor or manager.  In the mean time I will be sending a nice little Email to my friend at PC World Magazine; he is always interested in a good tech support story.

 

Thanks,

 

Gary McCann

817-372-3276

 
             
  I got no reply, I wonder why his supervisor never called me?  

and then it came to me

 
     

 
      I'll just fix the problem myself!  
         
     
 

 

 
 

 

 
 

 

Isn't our Medical Insurance Situation Wonderful?

If you answered NO to the question above, click below;

 

'What can I do?' - SiCKO

 

 
             
             
     
             
 

 
 

Who's plan is really the best?  I think the industry is out of control!

 
             
 

          We started with AT&T back when Cingular was not yet heard of and  cell phones were very expensive, costing $30 a month for 10 minutes of prime time calling.  Marisa knew I wanted a cell phone, so for Father's Day one year, she surprised me with one.  My first phone was large.  I hung it on my hip, it was large compared to cell phones today.  From that time, Marisa used the phone and decided she needed one, then Brandon became a young man and was walking home from school in the 4th grade so he got one too.  We have been with AT&T, then Cingular, and now AT&T for about 8 years at least.  This year we found out (with the help of an ATT&T rep) that we are purchasing more minutes than we are using, and thus with their roll over minutes, we racked up over 9,000 minutes.  Marisa changed the plan to lessen the minutes to about half, we now share 700 minutes, then added 200 text messages to both hers and Brandon's phones.  During the downgrade, the representative on the phone said they would have to take away all of our roll over minutes.  Marisa threatened to move over to Verizon, and they then agreed to let us keep about half, which was ok with us, and she said she was putting in a note to explain the exchange in the future.  Then because my phone number was up for renewal, and Marisa had another 6 or 7 months on hers, I decided to let her use mine to get a new phone.  She got a Blackberry which required an Internet connection which was another $30 a month.  So we reduced our minutes which reduced our cost by about $15 a month, then we added 200 minutes on 2 phones at $5 each a month, and then added the $30 data package.  Then the unthinkable happened, Marisa checked our bill on-line and found they had taken away all of our roll over minutes.  When she called she was told that it was because we downgraded our plan, and that there was no note in the account explaining anything.

 
             
 

If you just wanted our Roll Over Minutes, why don't you just eliminate it from all plans?

 
             
 

We will continue to use AT&T because we have so much time invested, at least until they remove the roll over minutes program, which will make them the same as the other guy.  We will work towards a month to month plan on all of our phones, so they will not do this again, or we will be able to switch immediately...

 
             
             
             
             
   

     
   

Thank you for calling Verizon Fios TV what can I try to help you with today?

 

 
   

I apologize for the inconveniences you have experienced here today sir, but I am also sorry to say you will have to experience them again in the future because there is not a damn thing I can do about any of it!

 
     
     
   

I don't know if I called you or you called me, with this automated phone system you never know what to expect!

 
     
     
     
             
 

Don't believe anything you hear and only half of what you see!

 
         

 

 
 

I knew it was just a matter of time until I would write about my experiences with Verizon's Fios tech support.  No matter if you are calling for support on the Internet service or the Television service known as Fios TV, you get the same terrible sounding auto attendant.  I love Verizon's Fios services, the Internet is the fastest I have ever had, and the TV service competes with any cable company, and is way better than any wireless service.  In fact if it weren't for the few times I have had to call tech support, I wouldn't be writing this today.  We have had our Verizon service for about 3 years so far, and I knew the first time I had to call that I was going to face a wall, mainly because you see, I don't have a Verizon home phone.

 

When you first dial the 888 number, the first thing you hear is that voice.  "Thank you for calling Verizon, are you calling about 817-372-xxxx? NO", "ok,  are you calling about a recent order? NO", "OK,   are you calling about, NO, OK" At first it's no big deal, however if you don't answer the questions correctly, the voice starts to sound frustrated, that's F-ing amazing for a computerized voice.  I would like to meet the lady who recorded the voice so I could SHOOT her!  So you are trying to get somewhere with this voice of frustration which starts you getting frustrated, OMG.  Answering NO to every question usually ends the battle connecting you to a live person, usually the wrong live person but the feeling of freedom sets in at that point, and you really don't care.  "Thank you for calling Verizon, can I have your Verizon telephone number please?"  OMG! I don't have a Verizon phone, I have my BAN number, will that do?  It's exactly the same every time.

 

Finally I get through to a technician, but they are in Maine, so they have to connect me to someone in Texas, I get disconnected, OMG!  Finally I get a tech in Texas.  My HD-DVR set top box went bye bye and I need a replacement.  I had one go about a month and a half ago so I know the symptoms, but nothing is that simple.  The guy is really easy to talk to and if it weren't for the auto attendant, talking to tech support would get mostly high ranks with me, (remember I also am a tech).  I explained to the tech that my set top box went off all of a sudden, he said "we are having trouble in your area with the HD DVR's and the HD non-DVR boxes, the standard box is not effected.  I explained that I have 2 of the HD-DVR's and I swapped them and the other one, (the one replaced a month or so ago) works fine.  He said that if it were the same problem as in the area, neither box would work.  He did some tests on the dead box and determined it is possible that the box is dead for sure and said; "you will have a tech at your home tomorrow between 1 and 5 PM", I said great, gave him some shit about that lady, the auto attendant bitch, then hang up.  All is fine, I was thinking...

 

I'm sitting back working on my Web Site and watching a little TV and I get this call; "hello, this is (forgot his name, wish I didn't) from Verizon calling to tell you that THERE WILL NOT BE A VERIZON TECHNICIAN AT YOUR HOME TOMORROW", basically he said it like that, like he was pissed that I would even think it.  I asked why and he said "because the problem you are experiencing is on our end and not the set top box, it is effecting only one model, the HD and HD-DVR and not the standard model.  He said "you will have to wait until we fix the problem on our end, then if your set top box is still not working we will send someone out" OMG, you mean I will have to go through what I just had to go through in a week or so, be paying rent on a set top box that is dead for a week while you piss me off more?  He said you have a 6442 and a 2550 (I don't know what he said but that is close) I said "I have no idea, one of them was replaced a while back, is it a different model?"  He said yes, they look similar.  I said no they look exactly the same.  He said the problem is not effecting the standard models only the HD, then it hit me, I have 2 HD-DVR's and one standard (non-HD) set top box, 3 in all.  I said this to the tech then I got a busy signal, OMG, I lost the connection, lost that rude tech and couldn't remember his name, I have to start over, OMG!

 

I called back and got a tech right away, which was kind of weird, I had to ask him if he called me.  He said I don't think so but with this automated phone system you never know what to expect, OMG, they don't even know their own system.  So I explained to him, totally frustrated about the call I just received, this tech I couldn't remember his name, and what he had told me.  I knew they could see I had 3 set top boxes, because the first guy I spoke to said that is what my account shows and of course, I can prove it by my monthly bill, I don't get them for free.  He said nothing has changed, I said you need to check with the guy who just called, he could be canceling the tech visit as we speak, or after we hang up.  He said "hang on I think I know who it was that called you, I'm going to IM him", he put me on hold and then came back to the phone and said, "Mr.. McCann, the technician will be at your home tomorrow between 1 and 5 PM, and I apologize for any inconvenience you experienced today".  Well we'll see if the tech shows up.  I don't have any plans so I will be home all day.  So it's 3PM and still no call, Marisa said I better call them to see if they are still coming.  OMG I have to go through that crap with the Auto Attendant, something I'm not looking forward to.  I finally connect and I am told that they can't find my account using my BAN number, which is something new, because they have been able to up to today, then I am told the technician was cancelled at 1:00 PM today, no call or anything, they just cancel it.  I am also told that they fixed the area wide problem earlier this morning, yet I still have my problem and I'm still without technical support.  The guy last night basically lied to me, saying he would guarantee the tech would show up today between 1PM and 5PM.  I asked to speak to a supervisor, I didn't get that, however I did get another guarantee that a tech would be out today.  And I got another apology saying I apologize for the inconvenience you experienced today.  Got a call about 3:45 PM and the tech showed up 15 minutes later, swapped out the box in 10 minutes and was gone.  Finally, done, both boxes are working again.  The tech who came to the house said the area problem was only effecting new installs, not homes that had been installed more than a year for sure.  My problem was never associated with the area wide problem, but they tried damn hard to associate it.

 

I just hope they send me some survey or something...

 

 
 

You will have to wait on tech support until we see if we can fix our problem, then if you still have a problem, we'll take care of it

 
 

but you have to start over with your request that took you several hours

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
             
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 
 

Want to know what I think?  Check out - "My Thoughts" page Click Here!

 
             
             
     
             
  Only the United States of America has to be Politically Correct!  
      Why is that?