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Big Business Arrogance

 2:01 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Am printing up some new point of sale material for a bricks and mortar

and have been trying to download images from Amex, who have a ridiculous system where not only do you have to register (i'm already a merchant obviously) on their website, but then you have to register again on their 'web store' (to get free downloadable logos)

i ended up on the phone as my postcode wasn't being accepted ... and believe me i know my own post code!

and then they tell me that i have to use internet explorer and i can't download the images without it ...

i said fine ... i'll just use Visa and Mastercard on my new sign-age! ... we are a relatively samll operation and i've yet to meet a customer that only has amex and doesn't have one of the other cards too ... so now of course i'll accept amex if offered but won't be advertising the fact, so most users will just offer one of the other two instead.

... end RANT!



 2:46 pm on Feb 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

i have to use internet explorer

"That will do nicely"



 11:09 am on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

I recently tried to ask a very simple question of my gas provider. Very, very simple question - literally a yes or no answer.

Decided to ring them. Got put on hold and was told the wait was 25-30 minutes, but told that I should use the website. Hung up.

Decided to log on to my account on their website, which I'd only just been on the day before checking something out. Tried to log on, failed. Tried again, failed. Tried to reset password, got sent new password, tried to log in, failed. Realised I was on FireFox and was on IE the day before. Logged on via IE, absolutely fine.

Found contact form. Filled out. Got automatic response that they would reply in 7-10 days. Seriously.

Rung them again. Wait was still 25-30 minutes. Got put in this odd callback queue thing. Got called an hour later. Asked the question. They didn't know, I was speaking to the wrong department. Got transferred. Asked the question. Answered.

I'll be changing gas providers soon.

Oh, and if you're interested, the answer was yes.


 2:29 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Begin Rant 3 :)

While trying to get a question on my online banking account answered, I was transferred to different people about 5 times (explaining the issue all over again to each one of them) before I was directed back to the same person I talked to the first time. When she said she was going to transfer me yet to another department ... I went on 5 minutes rant on how dissatisfied I was and hang up. Someone resolved it 5 minutes later, and called me back to let me know. Yelling sometimes works, I should start doing it more than once a year :)


 2:37 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

Sounds like the phones we use are smarter than ever. But the people they connect to are going the other direction.


 4:48 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

i've yet to meet a customer that only has amex

Well I have and as a matter or fact I was one of them about 20 years ago.

When I was young living in the KS/MO areas I made a good salary and paid cash for everything and somehow managed to get to the ripe old age of 30 without owning any credit cards nor, except for a couple of minor inconveniences, needing one. I always had a bank account and had checks and an ATM card from the bank so it wasn't an issue.

Then I moved to CA and I couldn't even open a checking account at Wells Fargo at the time unless I had a credit card. HUH?

Mind you I didn't have bad credit, I had no credit whatsoever on file because I didn't have any revolving charges, none. Visa and MC both said "NO" but Amex said "YES" probably because you have to pay off the bill in 30 days and they have a very limited exposure. Maybe a year later I had an Amex Optima card since I spent a lot on the card for business and paid it off rapidly and suddenly Visa and MC companies were stumbling all over themselves to give me a card and the next thing you know I've got 10 of the things.

I've also had co-workers over the years that either didn't have a CC other than the company Amex used for expense accounts or their personal cards were max's and it didn't matter anyway.

Point is you can never know why someone only has an Amex but some people also can't get an Amex so it should hardly be the only option but I wouldn't hide it or exclude it because some customers not seeing it may look elsewhere immediately just like I used to do.


 5:06 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

i've yet to meet a customer that only has amex

Many businesses only have corp AMEX cards. We had a lot of problems with processing AMEX cards (according to them, if a customer doesn't want to pay the charge for ANY reason, tough luck to the merchant), so we stopped accepting it for most customers. However, we kept the account active for many months just because of one big customer that only had AMEX.


 5:27 pm on Feb 20, 2013 (gmt 0)

>>i've yet to meet a customer that only has amex

i'm based in the UK, the websites all take AMEX and advertise as such, this was for my bricks and mortar UK store.

i can't believe there is a single UK citizen who only has an Amex card

however i do have a great many US customers who come to visit and i think it a reasonably good rule that if you are an American travelling in europe today (not 20 years ago) then you have one of the other 2 big cards (there are a lot of places like restaurants in uk that don't take amex and even more in europe)

also .. and this is quite a good point, most people don't even see/read the (very prominantly placed) signs, the amount of times someone asks, do you take cards! while standing directly infront of the eye level credit card banner!


 12:56 am on Feb 21, 2013 (gmt 0)

while standing directly infront of the eye level credit card banner!

It's visual white noise, like the "must show ID" signs. Or the stuff in a differently-colored area to the left of every message-board post ;) If you couldn't filter it out you'd go bonkers. (Possibly even vice versa.)


 3:17 am on Feb 21, 2013 (gmt 0)

i've yet to meet a customer that only has amex

Amex rents out most of 3 World Financial Center in Lower Manhattan, across a street from a new Freedom tower, including an entire floor that is dedicated to Amex Cafeteria. Center Stage on construction of the Tower.

All though the Cafeteria is available to all visitors who can pass metal detector and fingerprint scan to previously "registered humans" they do not accept anything other than Amex Card or Cold Hard CASH. If You are an Employee(Amex Only) - You pay regular already jacked up prices for that area of Down Town NYC if you present an Amex ID. If you are not, it's like 25% more.

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