Don't Like Talking To Tech Support? Hire An Agent!

Fake News written by James Baughn on Monday, March 21, 2005

from the let-somebody-else-do-the-grunt-work dept.

SAN ANTONIO, TEXAS -- Linn Gwist is the master of dealing with tech support. He knows the lingo, the shortcuts, and the right time to demand to speak with the manager's manager. He can understand fifteen different dialects of the English language, including the "Engrish" commonly spoken in Asian call centers.

But this shouldn't come as a surprise. After all, it's part of his job. He's a tech support agent, a person that wrestles with multinational corporate hell on behalf of his clients.

"It's not a pleasant job, but somebody has to do it," he cheerfully explained from his personal call center. "I'm a mercenary that goes into battle against outsourced adversaries. My weapons? A telephone and a razor-sharp wit."

During one session, Gwist successully helped a neighbor track down the problem with her Internet connection. After three hours of phone calls to BigEvilTelco, including 10 transfers, 7 holds, 3 unexpected disconnections, 5 foreign accents, and 2 shouting matches, he eventually reached a solution.

"I finally forced them to admit it was their fault," he boasted while recuperating from the skirmish. "It's amazing what you can accomplish by interjecting some Hindi curse words into the conversation."

The customer was ecstatic with the outcome. "You beat 'em! You beat Ma Bell!" she shouted. "I'd still be on hold if I tried to call them myself... Thank you so very much! I have to tell all my friends about this... Lord knows there's a huge demand for your services."

Despite his skills, Gwist has never achieved the ultimate goal: forcing Microsoft tech support to admit that their software contains bugs. "I came very close one time. But now I think they recognize my voice. I haven't been able to make any headway against them recently... they simply outnumber me."

That might change, however. Thanks to his success, Gwist wants to expand his business to include a huge team of agents that can work together on more challenging assignments.

"So far, most of my clients have been computer neophytes that don't want to get screwed by slick-talking big city corporate bureaucrats," he said. "But I will be able to provide a valuable service for businesses, freeing up their IT departments to focus on more important things than waiting on hold."

"In other words," he added, "my outsourcing firm, representing corporations, will deal with other outsourcing firms, representing other corporations. I have to laugh at all of the fools who thought that the Internet would help eliminate middle-men!"

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