Here’s a call that has haunted me for years:
I first started my call centre life at 18 years old. I worked for an ISP company in the UK that offered BB, TV, Telco and Mobile. I started off in the fist line customer service team. I helped with billing enquiries and service information. The calls were relativity simple and our billing system usually confused the customers, so I spent most of my days dealing with billing issues…
Cust: Hello, my bill is a bit more than I was expecting this month and I can’t see why.
Me: Okay let me help you… Okay you are paying £65 per month for our TV, Phone and BB. And on average your bills add up to £70pm, that’s the total cost including any extra calls out with your allowance and any PPVs (pay per views)… But this month I can see that your bill is just over £80. The call costs seem to be the same as previous months but you have a few more PPVs on your bill.
Cust: A few more? How many more? I know we usually order a movie or two monthly but they are usually £3-5.
Me: Well I can see 2 purchased movies from our on demand directory. Those add up to £6 and the rest are marked here as “Other PPV showings”.
I dread whats happening next. Anyone who worked for my department knew that “other” was either a sporting PPV or an adult film
Customer: Other PPV Showings? I don’t know what that is.
Me: it could be anything like a live event such as boxing or wrestling. It could even be other movies purchased outwith our media collection.
Customer: I never purchased that… Could the box be faulty?
Me: That could be a possibility. I have a system that can check each PPV. The system looks at the box event history, such as what button commands the box received to purchase the movie and if the viewing was paused rewound etc… Please hold.
If the box was faulty, then it would show no route to the purchase, just that it was subscribed at X time with no input from the remote at that time. It would usually have multiple purchases within the same second (which is impossible for a human to do).
Me: Thanks for holding, Ma’am it looks to me that the PPV was purchased. I can see that it was purchased at 22:08 and It was viewed at that time also. It was also paused at 22:30 and it has been rewound at 22:40. It seems that someone has watched this viewing.
Customer: But I never purchased this!
Me: I understand that you may not have bought this, but do you have anyone in your house that could have maybe purchased this?
The penny finally drops and the customer realises that her husband would have purchased hem
Customer: Can I ask, what was the PPV?
Me: let me find out… okay, I can see it was an adult movie
cue the awkward silence
Customer: Like a porno?
Me: Yes, a blue movie.
more awkward silence followed by some heavy breathing from cust.
Cust: I’m going to kill him, up at all hours watching porn. I’m going to confront him about this! What was the name of the title?
Me: Let me have a look, as you would guess some of the titles of the films can be a bit rude, so they are usually redacted on the billing system, If this is the case then I’ll send you an itemised list of all purchases from the last 60 days. This will include the title of the PPV.
I pull up the PPV title and I make an audible gasp. I cover this up by clearing my throat and some coughs. I make an excuse to the customer that I need some water and put her on hold. I call a floor walker over and explain the situation. She calls a manager over and we ultimately make a decision to tell the customer the name of the title, since it is her data and she is legally entitled to it.
Me: Thank you for holding. I’ve got the title for the PPV.
Again some awkward silence which is broken by the customer…
Me: It’s called (not the actual title) “George goes to town on Billy” – Gay Rabbit.
Awkward silence intensifies
Cust: I’m sorry, what?
Me: *repeats title*
Cust: A gay porno?
Me: I guess it is…
Cust: Right…and you said it’s been watched? You’re 100% sure?
Me: according to the system it indicates that its been legitimately purchased and watched.
*click*…*beep* “Customer service whisper” *Beep*
and onto the next call…….