Saturday, July 25, 2009

Things That Make You Go Hmmmm.....

The picture above is sunset at the North Pole. It has nothing to do with this post but I thought it was pretty.

I bought a book on-line from a company called "Discount Books". When I got my credit card statement this morning, there was an unauthorized charge for $19.95. Buried in small print, hidden in the corner of the "check out" panel was an unobtrusive statement that in my purchase, I was authorizing this "membership fee" to something called BestBrandValues. What a rip-off!

Bull Crap!

I called the company and was told about the "terms of use", that I had authorized the charge. After several minutes of arguing and chiding, they agreed to reverse the charge and told me it would show up on my credit card "within a few billing cycles".

Again, Bull Crap!

So.. I called Citibank, the issuer of my credit card and talked with them about the charge. I disputed it.


One of the things that really irked me, even more than the charge, is that I got a call center in a foreign country. A chirpy, heavily-accented voice said, "Today is a glorious day in Customer Service! And what can I do for you today?"

Yecht! That is the way Citibank has its customer service reps answer the phone? I prefer something a little more professional.

Citibank is one of the major recipients of the government's stimulus package, provided by the tax payers of this country ~ and they are using a call center in a foreign country. Citibank, in all its apparent glory, would have gone out of business without billions of dollars of taxpayer money.

Is something wrong with this picture?

Those jobs should be here ~ for Americans ~ who sorely need them during this recession.

Shame on you, Citibank!

What's your opinion?



heartinsanfrancisco said...

My opinion is the same as yours. Charity begins at home, and so should the distribution of jobs, even if companies are required to pay Americans a minimum wage which does not apply in third world countries.

It is especially shameful since we were forced to bail out this bank, as you stated.

As for disputing charges, you need to revoke the authorization at your bank for the offending company to take funds from your account; just talking to the company won't do it because they have already proved themselves dishonorable and sneaky. Good luck!

Cecilio Morales said...

My opinion is that the picture was very beautiful.

The rest, well ... misinformed. Citibank did not get stimulus money. It got TARP money.

Sorry. It doesn't mean I love you any less.

Anvilcloud said...

I concur that it's somewhat annoying to have your call answered offshore, but it's the way of globalization. To some extent we want cheap, and that's what we get.

secret agent woman said...

That photo reminds me of the Turkish flag.

I have mixe feelings, as I so often do. On the one hand, I think there are some good things about being a global community. But given that the jobs are exported to save the company money and are at the expense of American workers, I don't like it at all. Unfortunately, things are set up so that US companies benefit by shipping the work out - I think there whoule be stiff tax penalites for doing so that would level the playing field.

Leann said...

I love the photo. Very pretty.

I've walked into the same kind of 'hidden' fees that you did. Annoying.

Sometimes there's a good reason why our companies go out of country to get the work done. It's far more complicated than they should just keep them at home.

I felt the same way tho when I called Barnes and Noble and got someone in the Phillipines.

S said...

a "glorious" day?


i have not had good experiences with citibank.

Amy said...

If customer service answered the phone like that I think I'd laugh. It's hilarious. Unless of course you are already spittin mad, which you rightly were.

The picture - I just adore it!!!

Angela said...

Isn't that infuriating??!! I agree, Chani. Guess what GM did here? They were buying paladium from a mine in Central Montana and just cancelled the contract to purchase from Russia! Howdya like them apples?

blooming desertpea said...

The wonders of globalisation! Is there any bank on this globe which is bound to be honest?

Mariposa said...

I love the photo...and sorry to hear about your online book purchase...add to that your phone experience. I work in a BPO company and can't imagine an opening spiel like "Today is a glorious day in Customer Service! And what can I do for you today?"

I feel you...many Americans need the job there right now. But then, when they started outsourcing...they were outsourcing jobs that most Americans are not willing to take at a price these companies are willing to pay.

Late last year, Sykes for example close one of their center there because they can't find any applicants for customer service positions...and they've been posting for months. (Just saying.) I was also supposed to go there and help set-up a call center, but then it was canceled due to lack to people willing to work.

Sorry I had to mention those...but looks like this is a universal thing. We want jobs...but there are just jobs some people are not willing to take.

Texaco said...

today is a glorious day in customer service?

are you kidding me?

there are lots of people who should be glad that there isn't a "SHOCK" button on the telephone.