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Creepy User Support Stories

or fun ones!

4:56 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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This happened to a friend of a friend! :)
It really happened to my sister.
A user called her to complain that his "coffee tray" was broken.
"Coffee Tray"? What coffee tray? What's that got to do with a computer anyway?
Well, the "coffee tray" according to this user, was the computer's CD tray!
He really used the CD tray to place his coffee mug.

I don't have the patience to listen and solve other people's problems with computers, that's why I have someone else do that!

So, what's your favorite creepy/fun user-support story?

6:11 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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My all time favorite is when they ask where the "any key" is.. When I was doing tech for the hosting co I worked for we got alot of beginners - they always asked where it was.. then there's the guy that thought the only way to turn off your computer was to unplug it.. yeoch.
6:13 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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When I got my first computer, I called apple tech support to find out how to get some files out of the trash.
6:22 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)


WebmasterWorld Administrator jatar_k is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

joined:July 24, 2001
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My best friend does tech support for hotels

guy phones him from a hotel and reports that his server isn't working. My friend asks a few questions and the guy confesses there is smoke coming out of it.

friend: "What do you mean there is smoke coming out of it?"

Hotel: "I think it is on fire, what should I do?"

friend: "phone the fire dept, not tech support"

So let this be a lesson, don't phone tech support for flaming servers. I guess the hotel got some good fire damage while this joker was on the phone with my friend. What an idiot. :)

[edited by: jatar_k at 6:23 pm (utc) on Oct. 23, 2002]

6:23 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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my favourite(read it somehwere and now searched for it again):

Tech Support: "OK Bob, let's press the control and escape keys at the same time. That brings up a task list in the middle of the screen. Now type the letter 'P' to bring up the Program Manager."

Customer: "I don't have a 'P'."
Tech Support: "On your keyboard, Bob."
Customer: "What do you mean?"
Tech Support: "'P' on your keyboard, Bob."
Customer: "I'm not going to do that!"


here are some great ones:

7:50 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Not my story, but..

I once read a tech support talking to a customer who was convinced she could not see a web page because she did not own a 'color baud modem'

8:00 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member mivox is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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For the Mac users out there:

Me: "Mom, the reason your computer wouldn't start is because your System file was in the trash. Who threw away the System?"

Mom: "Well, I had your little brother throw away all the files we didn't use, to make more space on the hard drive..."

Brother: "Hey, how was I supposed to know what the System was? I never used it!"

Me: "Well, as you may have noticed, you actually use the System every time you use the computer. That's what runs the whole thing."

...add this to the fact that they'd been dumping things in the trash for SO long without emptying it, the poor old machine actually crashed when I tried to select the "Empty Trash" command. Thousands of files in there.

I had to drag everything back onto the desktop, put the System file back where it belonged, and then systematically throw away the real trash in batches of 200 files at a time...

8:11 pm on Oct 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member lorax is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 31, 2002
votes: 4

I once chatted with a lady who had our install CD and dutifully put into the computer as I asked her to. The conversation went something like this:

Me: "ok, do you see the start-up screen?"
Her: "no"
Me: "what do you see on your screen right now?"
Her: "a bunch of little pictures with words beneath them"
Me: "words like 'My Computer' and 'Recycle Bin'?"
Her: "yes"
Me: "ok, pop out the CD and let's try it again"
Her: "how do I get it out?"
Me: "push the button and it should eject"
Her: "the on button?"
Me: "no, the little button right beneath or above where you put the CD in"
Her: "that's the on button"
Me: *pause*, "there isn't another little button right there?"
Her: "no, just the slot I put the CD in"
Me: "slot?"
Her: "yes, it's right above the on button"
Me: "is there any writing anywhere near it?"
Her: "no"
Me: *longer pause*, "umm... is there a solid panel immediately above or below the slot that's about 1.5 inches by 5 inches?"
Her: "yes, one above and one below"
Me: "oh, Gawd"
Her: "what's wrong?"
Me: "ma'am, you don't have a CD player!"
Her: "then why'd you send it to me?"

I should add that I asked our Customer Service person about why she was sent a CD. I was told she asked for one - her friends told her that a CD was the best way to load our software.

7:53 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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A freind of mine was on tech support and he was called down to look at a PC that was SLOW SLOW SLOW. The owner had got 42 separate games of solitairre running. He had never shut them down, just started a new one.

Be thankful that you dont run into this bloke

[edited by: eelixduppy at 9:44 pm (utc) on Feb. 18, 2009]

8:18 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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joined:July 15, 2002
votes: 4

Some good stories here.

On a narrow band tech help desk for an ISP that I used to work for, we would get alot of calls from people who were trying to register and having problems.

The CD that we would send out, wasnt the best and there would always be problems with it, so we would have to make a manual dialer and then give them the registration username and password to get them going.

After being on the phone to one lady for about 20 minutes, I still had the error "No Dial Tone", now the phone number that she had called to me on was a premium rate number and was charged at 50p per minute (0.70 cents to $1).

Turns out the bright spark didnt have a modem cable long enough, it was about 5 cm's short, she thought that the signal would travle through the air and find its way to the phone socket....

We used to call it EU disease "End User disease"

[edited by: creative_craig at 8:59 am (utc) on Oct. 24, 2002]

8:39 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Let's just hope none of those people ever bump into this site...
8:57 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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customer : "I was typing a letter on my new computer and the screen went blank"

Tech-support go through the usual problems power lead to the monitor, the switch on monitor blah blah, after twenty Min's or so the Tech guy tell's the customer to get the warranty form.

Customer Replies "I will have to do that later, because it's it in the basement and the electricity has been out for the last half hour"

Tech guy hangs up


9:03 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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Tech guy hangs up

I heard that ending different. The tech support guy launches into the caller with a barage of abuse and as a result lost his job.

10:04 am on Oct 24, 2002 (gmt 0)

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I think this guy should have been promoted, not fired. This is a
true story from the Word Perfect Help line which was transcribed from a
recording monitoring the customer care department.
Needless to say the Help Desk employee was fired; however, he/she is
currently suing the Word Perfect organization for "Termination

Actual dialogue of a former WordPerfect Customer Support employee
I know why they record these conversations!):

E= Employee C= Customer

E: "Ridge Hall computer assistance; may I help you?"
C: "Yes, well, I'm having trouble with WordPerfect."
E: "What sort of trouble?"
C: "Well, I was just typing along, and all of a sudden the words
E: "Went away?"
C: "They disappeared."
E: "Hmm. So what does your screen look like now?"
C: "Nothing."
E: "Nothing?"
C: "It's blank; it won't accept anything when I type."
E: "Are you still in WordPerfect, or did you get out?"
C: "How do I tell?"
E: "Can you see the C: prompt on the screen?"
C: "What's a sea-prompt?"
E: "Never mind, can you move your cursor around the screen?"
C: "There isn't any cursor: I told you, it won't accept anything I
E: "Does your monitor have a power indicator?"
C: "What's a monitor?"
E: "It's the thing with the screen on it that looks like a TV. Does
it have a little light that tells you when it's on?"
C: "I don't know."
E: "Well, then look on the back of the monitor and find where the
power cord goes into it. Can you see that?"
C: "Yes, I think so."
E: "Great. Follow the cord to the plug, and tell me if it's plugged
into the wall."
C: "Yes, it is."
E: "When you were behind the monitor, did you notice that there were
two cables plugged into the back of it, not just one?"
C: "No."
E: "Well, there are. I need you to look back there again and find
other cable."
C: "Okay, here it is."
E: "Follow it for me, and tell me if it's plugged securely into the
back of your computer."
C: "I can't reach."
E: "Uh huh. Well, can you see if it is?"
C: "No."
E: "Even if you maybe put your knee on something and lean way over?"
C: "Oh, it's not because I don't have the right angle - it's because
it's dark."
E: "Dark?"
C: "Yes -the office light is off, and the only light I have is
in from the window."
E: "Well, turn on the office light then."
C: "I can't."
E: "No? Why not?"
C: "Because there's a power failure."
E: "A power... A power failure? Aha, Okay, we've got it licked now.
Do you still have the boxes and manuals and packing stuff your
computer came in?"
C: "Well, yes, I keep them in the closet."
E: "Good. Go get them, and unplug your system and pack it up just
it was when you got it. Then take it back to the store you bought it
C: "Really? Is it that bad?"
E: "Yes, I'm afraid it is."
C: "Well, all right then, I suppose. What do I tell them?"
E: "Tell them you're too ****ing stupid to own a computer."


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