By Theives and Liars I mean the jackasses that should be treating us as customers rather than known felons. Regular readers are familiar with my extreme hatred of companies who add so many security “features” that it makes it impossible to do business with them. I was ordering a credit report a few weeks ago and ran into the same problem again: automated questions about previous cars that I’ve owned.
Again a garbage process: asking me what year my Honda is. Right now we own two Hondas, and they are not the same year. At least it gave me a second chance to guess the other one.
“Verified By Visa”, which I will now refer to as “Vilified by Visa” is the latest bonehead move. I tried to purchase an airline ticket this weekend and I was pulled away from the Northwest Reservations system to go to a special Visa site to prove that I’m not using a card that’s been stolen. As if confirming my address, the card authorization code, and my frequent flyer number weren’t proof enough.
I thought I had an account set up, but I couldn’t tell if the Vilified site is the same as the Visa site or not. After 3 tries I decided it was just much easier to give American Express the business, and they didn’t make me go through any additional stupidity.
My favorite part is how Visa has a whole campaign set up about how this is protecting you, the customer. Even though Federal Law limits the penalty to $50 per card, they try to make it sound like this is all for your sake, when in reality they are trying to protect themselves from the exposure, even if it makes it harder for you to do business with them.
Did I mention how much I love American Express?
4 replies on “Theives and Liars Think We Are Stupid”
I was in the Apple store and overheard a conversation next to me where a nice woman was explaining that her new iPod wasn’t working. The tech asked her if she ever used a charger that wasn’t sold by Apple. She mentioned, yes, I have a car charger we purchased for it. He instantly responded that they couldn’t do anything because using a charger that wasn’t manufactured by Apple voided the warranty.
It actually got me riled up standing next to her. She decided to shell out more money for another iPod… not even knowing IF this was the actual problem with the original! Even worse, there’s no reason why Apple couldn’t build in a voltage regulation system that would stop incompatible chargers from causing damage.
It was simply an opportunity to treat the customer like a stupid idiot and save their company money. If Apple thinks that illegal chargers are causing damage, they should go after those manufacturers – not taking advantage and charging the customer even more.
Have you heard about this, John? Seems to fit in nicely with the theme of this post:
Preach it brother! I had a similar situation with my Visa and I was supposed to remember every credit agency I had used in purchasing a home 10 years ago. Villified is right!
Doug – Man, that kind of stuff really pisses me off. It’s just one big game. After a while you learn that you walk in there and say “It just stopped working”, you didn’t drop it, get it wet, let the kids throw it around… whatever. It just stopped working. If you ever get any flack you raise your voice at once and mention overpriced crap from China and demand to talk to the manager. If you’re a jerk you’ll get good service, if you try to be polite you get screwed.
Justin – Interesting…
Jeff – 10 years ago… I love it.