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This is a question Complaining

I like writing letters of complaint to companies containing the words "premier league muppetry", if only to give the poor office workers a good laugh on an otherwise dull day. Have you ever complained? Did it work?

(, Thu 2 Sep 2010, 13:16)
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Netgear let me down.
In February 2008 I bought an inexpensive Netgear ethernet switch from Amazon. It's worked without fail ever since. I wonder if there's an inverse correlation between how much tinkering with something I can do, and its eventual lifespan.

A couple of weeks ago the power supply started buzzing. It's one of those factory-sealed "wall wart" blocky things, liberally covered in all sorts of foreign hieroglyphics, like some sort of electrical Rosetta Stone. Current UK legislation puts the retailer, not the manufacturer, on the hook for six years from date of purchase, so I prepared to telephone Amazon to get a repair or replacement arranged.

Then I stopped for a few seconds and realised that calling Amazon might be technically correct, but probably an exercise in frustration. Amazon would most likely not have spare power supplies in stock, but would instead either contact Netgear on my behalf, or suggest none too subtly that I might want to contact Netgear directly. So I didn't bother with Amazon after all, but went straight to Netgear.

After wading through interminable IVR menus I eventually got through to the inevitably Indian call centre, and my spirits sank. I could expect to be treated to a barrage of irrelevant and unnecessary questions while the sub-minimum wage staffer on the other end robotically followed his ridiculous script without any consideration for what the caller was saying. I mentally geared myself up for the witheringly scornful letter of complaint I'd be obliged to scribble. Or so I thought.

The chap on the other end listened to my description of the problem ("the power supply is buzzing today. It wasn't buzzing yesterday. I've removed it from the device it powers and it's still buzzing") and, without subjecting me to any unnecessary interrogation, agreed that yes, my power supply was indeed faulty and a replacement would be shipped directly to me, at no cost.

A replacement duly arrived two days later.

How dare Netgear offer decent customer service without a legal obligation to do so? How dare Netgear employ intelligent people in its foreign call centres, depriving me of my right to have my prejudices confirmed with each phone call?

Bah. Bloody Netgear let me down.
(, Fri 3 Sep 2010, 12:42, closed)
Hooray for Netgear
And how come 3Com want proof of purchase on switches that have a lifetime warranty? Switches that can be put into two categories: those that have fans that go "rawrawrawrawrawrawrawraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaawwwwwwwrawrawrawraw" and those that are red-hot because the fans have failed completely?
(, Sun 5 Sep 2010, 23:36, closed)

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