Fewer like this, please

Roger gets the treatment from a lackey at an Allegedly Major Magazine:

I go to the log-in menu, and do what I’m asked to do, then try to get to the online article, but — nothing. I play with the system, and it asks for the confirmation number, but I haven’t a clue as to what that is. So I call customer service. The woman on the phone asks me what my confirmation number was and I assured her I had no idea what she was talking about.

As it turned out, the confirmation number had gone into my spam folder, which she blamed on GMail. But I wasn’t supposed to retry to register, which I was doing while I was on the phone with her, because that action generated ANOTHER, different confirmation. I was supposed to go to the e-mail and click on something. But she was so clearly impatient — “I TOLD you that you need to click on the link on the e-mail” — even while maintaining that faux professional calm, that it took me a minute to figure out that I first had to move the e-mail from the spam folder, because otherwise, the link she wanted me to click on would not work.

I don’t even use Gmail, yet now I’m tempted to blame stuff on it.

And I admit to being really inept at faux professional calm, which is why I haven’t worked a customer-service position in twenty years or so.



  1. Ric Locke »

    9 May 2012 · 6:10 pm

    Gmail has a spam filter? Well, gee.

    I retrieve my gmail via POP3 into my regular email program. Given what gets through that, gmail’s bar for what constitutes spam must be pretty darn high. Maybe Allegedly Major Magazine should consider not broadcasting everything to every address they can find or invent and reducing their emphasis level somewhat, so as not to get caught in spam filters in the first place.

    My response to somebody who told me to check my gmail spam filter would be “never mind, if you get caught in that I don’t want to do business with you in the first place.”

  2. CGHill »

    9 May 2012 · 7:07 pm

    There are two layers of filtration before something lands in my inbox; I’ve been tweaking the first layer to allow for as much useful stuff as possible without bringing in every last piece of drek. The results, of course, have been decidedly mixed.

  3. Jeffro »

    9 May 2012 · 9:55 pm

    I’ve been very impressed with Gmail’s spam filter so far – it does err, but not very often. Ric has it – if the mag is tripping Gmail’s spam alarms, then perhaps the fault lies with their emails.

  4. CGHill »

    9 May 2012 · 10:26 pm

    I’d buy that, especially since I subscribe to a sister publication of theirs, and roughly half their mail runs afoul of my filters — though I haven’t quite figured out which half. (The Web host gets first crack at mail to this domain; after that, Windows Live Mail evaluates what’s left.)

  5. fillyjonk »

    10 May 2012 · 7:59 am

    “then perhaps the fault lies with their emails.”

    This. I use Gmail (well, via my own ISP…they use the Gmail interface) and have been pretty happy. Though sometimes “real” e-mails wind up on my spam folder (I check it periodically). Often, though, it’s because the business sending them have gunked them up with so many pictures and with links fed through some questionable portal….yeah.

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