Contrary to popular belief, I did not grow up with computers.
I have just as much empathy for frustrated people trying to fix their computers as I do for frustrated techies trying to explain the internet and help upset people without being able to see their screens, via the phone.
People seem to assume that working with tech is easy for me because I’ve always been doing it, but I haven’t. We didn’t get a computer until I was in my last couple of years of high school. There was a UPS strike at the time, so we ended up getting it late, too.
It didn’t work, right from the very beginning, straight from the box, and for some reason, probably because I didn’t have a job and because I had slightly more patience than my dad (very, very slightly), I ended up becoming the tech support phone jockey most of the time. Occasionally I tagged my mom in to take my place, but mostly, I think, it was me.
Knowing what I know now, which can be summed up by "we spent hours and hours getting that &@#% thing to work", I would have demanded the company send us a new one. There was something wrong with it when they shipped it, and all the partitioning and unpartitioning and reinstalling every program and sacrificing a chicken to Moloch in the world wasn’t going to help.
But I was wishy-washier back then, so I sat through the phone trees again and again and again, while the techs patiently explained what a "browser" was and what an "operating system" was, and together we tried to get the computer to work.
Eventually, we got it so that it limped along pretty well, but the computer never really got completely fixed. I remember how frustrating that was.
So when a nice lady calls me on the phone with a question about the Globe’s site and I have to pretty much explain the internet, I’m okay with that. Really.
If you’re having trouble with our website (www.dglobe.com), please email me at email@example.com, or call the Globe and ask for Kari Lucin. If I can’t help, I probably know somebody who can. That’s part of what being the online content coordinator means. Heck, I like helping.
And while I can’t promise instant results, I can say this: I will try to help you.
I didn’t grow up with computers.
I still vaguely remember staring balefully at the glassy screen and thinking: "Why can’t you just WORK?" and getting progressively more and more annoyed with the whole phone tech-support process.
I didn’t care why it wasn’t working. Hardly anyone cares why it’s not working. They just want it to work.
I didn’t grow up with computers, and I do remember what it’s like to try to decide whether you’d rather put a fist through the screen or throw the phone across the room with extreme prejudice.
My recommendation? Throw a pencil. It’s a lot cheaper, you can probably erase the mark on your wall and you won’t have as many pieces to pick up afterward. Plus, you won’t have to buy a new phone just so you can call tech support.