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Tech Support

by vmbrasseur on November 10th, 2011

The following is a paraphrased phone conversation which I had this morning.


33 minutes of hold music frequently interrupted by recorded pleas for me to remain on the line since my call is in “priority sequence.”

Her: Hello and thank you for calling $eReader support. My name is $Unpronouncible how many I help you today?

Me: Hi, eight days ago I filed support ticket $number and have heard nothing about it despite having contacted $eReader support several times about it via email.

$Unpronouncible looks up the ticket.

Her: So what is the problem you are having?

Me: When I plug my $eReader into my MacBook and open it in Finder I can see that my books files are on the device but they are not appearing in the library on my $eReader.

Her: So when you add books via the $eReader desktop app they do not appear on your device?

Me: I don’t use the desktop app. I don’t like it. I drag and drop files to my $eReader using Finder.

Her: It is not possible to transfer books to your $eReader that way. You can only use the desktop app.

Me: <…pause…> Uh, no, it is possible. That’s the way I’ve been doing it for years now.

Her: The only methods we know for transferring books to your $eReader are the desktop app and wirelessly through your $eReader account.

Me: I turned off wireless. It uses too much battery and I don’t want it. Plus I don’t use my $eReader account. I just drag and drop books to my $eReader in Finder. It’s always worked before. Could you help me troubleshoot why it does not work now?

Her: It is not possible to transfer books to your $eReader by dragging and dropping books to it like that.

Me: <…pause…> Is there anyone else there to whom I can speak? Someone who knows about this method?

Her: I will ask my colleagues if they have heard of this.

A few more minutes of hold music

Her: None of my colleagues have ever heard of this method. We do not believe it will work.

Nigel walks into the living room dragging a skein of yarn he dug out of a closet. I take it away from him, put it back in the closet and slide the door shut.

Me: I understand that you haven’t heard of it before but I’ve always used this method for getting books onto my $eReader. It has always worked in the past. It seems to work now but the books do not appear in my library. It seems as though when processing new content my $eReader is not updating its internal database. Here, let me show you… OK, my $eReader is plugged in. I open it in Finder and can see the new books there. Because they take a long time to process I’ll remove all but two new ones. Now I’ll eject my $eReader. Now I’ll unplug the USB cable from it. It’s now saying “Processing…” OK, all done. I call up my library and the books are not there. I use the search function to try to find either of the two books and they are not there. Yet when I plug my device in again…yes, there are the files. They just don’t appear in the library.

Nigel walks into the living room dragging another skein of yarn he dug out of a closet. I take it away from him again, put it back in the closet again and slide the door shut. Again.

Her: Let me consult with my colleagues.

Several more minutes of hold music.

Her: My colleagues say that you can also use Adobe Digital Editions to transfer files. Have you tried that?

I take a very deep breath.

Me: I strongly believe that Digital Rights Management is wrong and I will not install any software designed for the purpose of maintaining files encumbered with it. Nor will I purchase any books that have DRM on them, which is most everything in the $eReader online store. So, no, I have not tried Adobe Digital Editions. It is not an option I will consider.

Nigel walks into the living room dragging a third skein of yarn he dug out of a closet. I take it away from him, put it back in the closet, slide the door shut and lean the bike against it. The world comes very close to containing one fewer little black cats.

Her: I do not think I will be able to assist you today. Is there anything else you need?

Me: Yes, I need you to escalate ticket $number to the next tier of support. There is a problem and I cannot use my $eReader again until it is solved. Could you please do that for me?

Her: I will escalate ticket $number. You will receive an email notification. Is there any other way I may help you today?

Me: No, I believe that is all. Thank you for your time.


Honestly, it’s things like this which make me want to knock back a drink (even though it’s before noon). I didn’t, but I kinda felt like I should.

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