Sky being a pain

What can I say!

They call, insist they need to replace the sky box, but want me to give out details of who I am. FFS they called me!!!



  1. Quality! I've not laughed so hard for ages.

  2. One of the most understandable foreign call centers I have heard. Shame about their inflexibility.

  3. Called Sky, they confirmed I was right to be wary and confirmed it was a genuine call from Sky.

    So invoice being sent!

  4. Also they're trying to take YOUR box away?

  5. It sounds like their systems are so badly designed that they don't understand the difference between them calling a customer and a customer calling them and want to verify details regardless - sadly this seems quite common, it used to happen all the time with banks though they seem to have got a bit better recently...

  6. Got to bless him for sticking so stubbornly to his script ;)

  7. To be honest you were such a dick about this. The guy is clearly just a call centre worker and he just wanted to make sure the address was right to send your box to. He even told you to call sky directly if you didn't trust him. You're clearly looking for a fight. Get a life.

  8. "Thank you for your order" nicely put :p

  9. Interesting comment about looking for a fight. No. I was quite happy for him to get on and send the sky box. He was the one being stupid. He agreed with me several times on the call that I should NOT give out details to callers yet persisted in asking for details. When I called back sly confirmed that I was right to be wary and even said there are people trying to scam their customers selling extended warranties and insurance. I am sure such scam callers sound just the same and are just call centre workers just the same. He was also determined to tie up my time when I was busy, and then asking me to call an expensive number taking up more of my time. I am sure that all of this is in their interests and not mine as they want all the sky boxes on the latest software.

  10. I don't get why it's so hard for these people in the call centres just to say "Can I confirm that your address is 123 street and your post-code is XY12 3AB" - that would have been a 30 second phonecall, job done. I agree he already knows the details, otherwise he wouldn't be able to confirm them by you telling him...

  11. Calling a number that he gave you isn't going to verify that he's actually from Sky anyway - if he's a scammer he would've given you a number that is routed back to the scammers. You would need to call a well known number (e.g. one published on the Sky website) in order to authenticate the call.

  12. Indeed - on this occasion I recognised that as a number of Sky.

  13. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/05/05/bank_practices_open_door_to_phone_phishing/

    Is that your doing too? :-)

  14. Brilliant. I agree that you were being a bit of an arse about it but also agree with you that you shouldn't need to verify who you are if they called you. If they call you they should ask if that's Mr RevK of 23 The Avenue, Glasgow or at the least verify your account number to you that way they carry out the checks but prove to you that they have the relevant details as Jason says up there.

    I should point out that being a bit of an arse is fine, I'm often quite rude to cold callers who first ask for someone who doesn't live at my address then ask if I am the home owner. If you don't have the correct person hang up and move on, don't try and continue trying to sell me something I don't want.

  15. I agree with the principle, but I think there was probably better ways of going about it without ruining the guy's day. Like he said, he's just an employee. It's Sky's procedures that are messed up. Having said that, he's representing Sky, so if you can't make your point to him, then who can you make your point to? I think I would have tried to strike a balance between getting my point across and sympathising with the fact it's not actually his fault though, but that's just me. He tried his best bearing in mind the ridiculous parameters he has to work within.

  16. I bet you think you're clever don't you?

    He wasn't wasting your time, you were only wasting your own time. If you weren't happy with the call you could have ended it much sooner. Or were you really enjoying being such a twat?

    You might not like the fact that he had to verify who he was speaking, but had he not done that he could have been out of a job. He was, after all, only trying to earn a living. Why make it so difficult for him?

  17. awoodvine, no, sorry. I made it very clear he could send me a new HD box or an engineer. That should have been the end of the call.

    His asking me for details - no! He *agreed* I should not give them, more than once, and so did Sky when I called them back.

    He *knew* I should not give him details, and still he called, knowing that the call should (if I did what agreed I should do) would be a waste of time.

    If anyone was making it difficult for him it was his employers. What I was doings is what *he* agreed was right.

  18. Going to have to agree with these other guys, fair enough you were being careful, he was following a script that he knew was fairly retarded, but you didn't have to be such a dick to him about it. What did you gain from it? Nothing.

    I really enjoy reading your blog RevK, this is the first time I've been disheartened enough to comment.

  19. Look, I tried to sort this quickly. I said, several times, yes, send the box.
    He was the one BEING A DICK, by continuing to insist that I give personal details even though he agreed I should not give personal details. He could have just arranged to send the new box which is the purpose of his call. He had confirmed he had in fact reached the person he called at the start of the call.

    What did I gain, apart from the contractually valid right to now charge them £100? Nothing... That was he point. He was WASTING my time.

    But you are right, I should have just given my personal details. That way they can never rely on those as securely identifying me by those details in future as their policy is that I give them to random callers. I wonder if that means relying on those details on a future call is a DPA issue...

  20. To say you have such a linguistic advantage over a third-world call-centre drone, the caller clearly managed to get your goat. Are you really that easy to wind up, or was it just theatrics, knowing you would publish it on here and gloat about it? (Don't think he actually gave you permission to publish by the way - I suspect call-centre drones don't normally have that kind of authority, so I think it was a bit stupid of you to ask him...)

    It's no wonder your customers don't want to deal with you personally (I include myself in this number). It saddens that me that you felt it necessary to give the guy such a hard time.

    You once tried it on me by changing your email address to "I-Agree-To-Pay-Adrian-Kennard-£500@aaisp.net.uk" or something similar... that was many years ago and you clearly haven't grown up (or got a life) since then.

    You clearly were happy to have your time wasted - you did most of the time-wasting. You could have done the sensible thing if you were unhappy with the call instead of delighting in the haranguing of and - basically - bullying and abusing of the bloke.

    Just twisting the words and manipulating the conversation of a man who's not speaking his first language is low. To then publish it is quite frankly disgusting. This is worse than a 'happy-slapping' on YouTube... the most un-'Reverend' like behaviour I've ever seen... you really are a nasty piece of work.

    On Monday I will be closing all my accounts and moving all my services away from your company.

    I am now 40 years of age, so assuming a reasonable life-expectancy of 80 years if I'm lucky, that gives me another 40 years to tell every single person I ever communicate with how much of a petty person you really are, and never to do business with you.

    I can honestly say I haven't felt so outraged over anything for many years. That was absolutely out of order an an example of the worst kind of degrading bullying I have ever seen.

  21. Wow, sorry you feel that way...

    Whilst I appreciate some of the comments here, I do think yours are especially odd, and somewhat extreme - but having dealt with you for so long that is not a huge surprise.

    Yes, I do not talk to everyone like that. Unfortunately he demonstrated some stupidity very early on in the call. If you think it is right for someone like Sky to operate broken policies, call up wasting peoples time, and (as you seem to be implying) get people that cannot handle English well enough to call their English customers, then that seems odd. I don't think it is.

    His call could only have been to waste my time - there is no other logical outcome given that he knew and agreed that people could not give callers their details.

  22. Do let us know how long it takes them to pay your invoice, won't you?

  23. Yeh, issue is I don't actually want to lose Sky service.
    I'll send one with a stroppy letter anyway...
    They usually ignore letters!

  24. Hi,
    I feel for you! I've had so many calls like this from call centres. I hope you get it sorted.
    Angie L-M

  25. I'm sorry, but reading as an observer, this is incredibly rude. As irritating as this was for you, your attitude is terrible. I have been in similar situations, have been polite yet firm, and have solved many of such issues; not all, but many of them.

    For someone that is in a customer-facing role, this is very poor. I had to stop listening halfway through as I was finding myself getting more and more annoyed.

    This employee, seems to have been very polite and was trying to do his job. Yes, Sky should have allowed him to perform it more sensibly but I agree with the previous comments that that employee is working under restrictive parameters.

    I hope you get your issue resolved, but I do feel sorry for the employee here. Being a frustrated customer is very irritating, and it is often difficult to know who to speak to and since this person is your only route to Sky at present I can see why you needed to vent your frustrations but there was no need for your pompous, arrogant tone.

  26. There are two completely separate points here. The first is that Sky have a strange/pointless/annoying process. The second is your attitude towards the man calling you.

    I happen to agree that the Sky process is flawed.

    However, there was absolutely no reason for you to be as rude as you were to the man calling you.

    If you don't want to work with Sky's systems, then I don't understand why you simply didn't say this and then hang up. There was only one person wasting your time here and that was you. You had the power to end the call and yet you chose to spend your time berating and belittling the poor man, taking advantage of the fact that he was not allowed to hang up on you, before tricking him into agreeing something he clearly didn't understand or would have had any authorisation to make.

    Knowing a little about how outsourced call centres work, it wouldn't surprise me if your invoice to Sky would cost this man his job. That you could have this potential effect on another person's life just so you could make a point sickens me.

    How, I wonder, would you react if somebody spoke to a member of your staff like that?

  27. It is clear that people feel I was rather rude, and that is feedback I can consider, obviously. Whether I am morally allowed to be as rude as I like when someone phones me at home and pointlessly hassles me is another matter - I was annoyed by the stupidity of the call, and that is almost certainly why I ended up being so rude, but sounds like it was OTT. Thanks for the comments everyone.

    As for what would happen if my staff were treated like that - good question. I have been pondering this already.

    Basically, I would not want to ever put my staff in a position where they are stupidly annoying a customer with a call like that. We rarely call customers at all. Certainly if we have some process which is fundamentally flawed, the staff have the opportunity to take that on board and try and get the process fixed. If somehow we had that very scenario I would hope it would be a simple matter of "yes, you are right, this is a crazy process - I had not realised. I'll go away and get that sorted. Is it OK if I call you back in a few days when we have a more sane process or perhaps just write you a letter?". There are many ways the call could have been resolved without the repeated stupidity.

    Now, I have been too busy all weekend to write to sky, and they tend to just ignore letters. I do plan to complain about the stupidity of the call. The caller was no doubt put in that position by Sky. If the caller was sacked for this, I would be very unimpressed with Sky.

  28. The other thing that surprised me about the comments is that they are either "awesome", "brilliant", etc, or "disgusted", etc. Very polarised responses. That alone is interesting.

  29. I also noticed this polarisation and agree with you that it is interesting, however I'm afraid I have to disrupt the statistics and express my indifference.

    Did you post your letter to Sky?

  30. Ultimately, you are right.

    I am a fellow pedant and I respect and applaud more-or-less everything you do or say over a period which is now in the decades.

    But even I think in this one case I thing you were doing something a bit like flogging a dead horse (and a somewhat old one at that).

    I'd be tempted to read between the lines and suspect a case of getting out of wrong side of bed resulting in the verbal flamethrower temporarily developing a bit of a hair trigger.

    If is sounds like they're talking about something which you would be interested in (the classic case is unusual activity on a credit card), but are insisting on going through security, then I would tend to go along the lines of:

    "OK. From what you've said it sounds like I should probably speak with you on this issue. But I don't reckon to give out my details to callers if I have doubt over who I'm talking with. So I'll call you back on a published number. Is there a specific department I should ask for, or do you need to leave a note on my account?"

  31. I must say I found this incredibly funny to listen to, while I felt slightly sorry for the caller, I agreed with you completely and thought you were quite witty :). Personally, if someone such as my bank were to call me I'd ask for them to tell me my postcode and the bank's sort code before continuing.

    Did Sky reply to your letter?

  32. I agree somewhat with both opinions, however I would categorise calls like this as "verbal" spam.
    After a recent torrent of spam coming through to me without any easy way to prevent it I came to the conclusion that any unwanted communication can lead you to feel the same way.
    I personally dislike any "cold" calling be it in person or on the phone.
    I even told vodafone (my network provider) to clear off when they insisted on pestering me in an attempt to "keep" me as a customer.
    I do however feel sorry for the poor buggers that have to make these kind of calls, so in most cases I do try to be polite (up until the point that their politeness disappears and I just hang up).
    Hopefully one day big companies will realise that this approach isn't necessarily the best one.
    I was even recently suspicious over a demand for "forgotten" about duties on a dhl package, coming from an odd company by post. At least it was reasonably easy to confirm they were genuine.
    I do feel I am having to be suspicious by default nowadays though.


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