"Your call is very important to us..."

The Audiophiliac rants about lousy customer service

No, it's not. If it were I wouldn't still be on hold for 43 minutes. And if I were so important I wouldn't be speaking to a know-nothing idiot from God knows where, who doesn't even understand my question.

Bleep! Steve Guttenberg

Lets face it, customer service can be a cruel joke. And sure, there are exceptions. I was truly impressed with Lexicon's staff; their tech crew was absolutely top notch and I didn't have to punch my way through an automated phone directory hell to get to the right person. Lexicon is a high-end audio manufacturer; it backs up its reputation with first class service.

But it seems like most mainstream companies have determined that it's not cost effective to employ knowledgeable customer service people. Once you've bought the product the company couldn't care less about you. Sure, they can make all the claims they want about customer satisfaction, but when I'm on hold I sometimes wonder if the company's big shot CEO ever thinks about us folks who provide him or her with their hefty salary and stock option plans. No, probably not, their prime directive is to slash costs and increase profits. You're just a number, a very small number to them, and if you ever got really pissed off, the worst thing that could happen is you won't buy their product again. But they're determined the costs required to keep you happy don't justify the increased expense, so they continue to provide awful service. Hey, it keeps the stockholders happy. Have a nice day.

About the author

Ex-movie theater projectionist Steve Guttenberg has also worked as a high-end audio salesman, and as a record producer. Steve currently reviews audio products for CNET and works as a freelance writer for Home Theater, Inner Fidelity, Tone Audio, and Stereophile.


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