Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
Canada Government Your Rights Online Games

Man Fired For His Online Customer Service Game 210

First time accepted submitter DiscountBorg(TM) writes "An employee of the Canada Revenue Agency lost his job after releasing a humorous game in which the player answers customer service calls for the Agency, usually leading to his termination. In an email National Revenue Minister Gail Shea said: 'The Minister considers this type of conduct offensive and completely unacceptable. The Minister has asked the Commissioner (of Revenue, Andrew Treusch) to investigate and take any and all necessary corrective action. The Minister has asked the CRA to investigate urgently to ensure no confidential taxpayer information was compromised.'"
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Man Fired For His Online Customer Service Game

Comments Filter:
  • by Sockatume ( 732728 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @06:45AM (#42748985)

    "Man not fired from job he doesn't like, for making game about how much he hates his job, to fund aspirations of leaving job" doesn't exactly invoke outrage.

  • by ciderbrew ( 1860166 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @06:54AM (#42749017)
    Years ago when I had a phone job - I got pulled in to the office for drawing at my desk. I said everyone here doodles. Apparently there is a skill level limit to the doodle. Bored managers amusing themselves by being awful never helps a bad job.
    Good job this guy didn't work there []
  • by Smauler ( 915644 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @07:04AM (#42749055)

    And then complain when it's outsourced for someone else to cope with.

    One point to note is that _we_ are the abusive customers. I personally always try to be nice (I'm not talking "have a nice day" nice, I mean sincerely - I don't have to do it all day, every day), especially to people I call up for a service (even if they do have to try and sell me the little add on warranty whatever it is at the end).

  • by Phrogman ( 80473 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @07:53AM (#42749253) Homepage

    I did a few years of tech support for a Real Estate software company. They claimed they had 700,000 US Real Estate agents as customers.
    * The software was written in Visual Basic 5, and used an Access Database.
    * We suggested that customers limit their list of potential customers to 20,000 so that the database would not have issues as often (it was Access based so it was guaranteed to have at least some issues some of the time). One of the people I talked to wanted to load 1 million names into his database, and tried to do so before calling. He had no forethought to back things up first. It did not go well.
    * Real Estate agents as a whole do not understand computers, and seem generally to have little patience for any problem - whether or not they caused it. The conversations got rather heated - a lot. I remember one guy who worked in Beverly Hills, screaming at the top of his lungs that he was losing 100k a hour while he was on the phone with us. My coworker in the cubicle took the call but I could hear it clear as day over top of the call I was taking at the time.
    * We had over 60 tech support people crammed into their cubicles. I must say the quality of the Staff and the Tech Support leaders was actually quite high.
    * We had a script we were required to follow and which was almost never relevant. This was a major problem since usually we could identify the problem quite quickly, but had to trudge through the routine first until that failed to solve the problem and we could carry on with actually solving the problem.
    * A lot of the problem was of course the Sales staff who would lie through their teeth to get a Sale, knowing that Tech Support or Development would have to solve the problem, not them. In general, I hate Sales people as a result of those at this company.
    * Our in house tools were written by the company too, and since what they knew was Visual Basic, thats what they wrote them in. Since the database they knew was Access, thats what we used. Every day at noon, for 1 hour, we had to revert to pen and paper because the Access Database for *our* customer base had to be repaired. Then we would madly enter call details in, in between other calls until we got caught up.

    It was an "educational" experience, but not one I care to repeat if I can avoid it :P

  • by prefec2 ( 875483 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @08:13AM (#42749329)

    There are a lot of people out there calling help or support lines. Some of them are frustrated, some of them are angry, depressed or helpless. Depending on their mood and way dealing with it, they use the support stuff as a verbal punching ball. However, for some problems there is a solution.

    a) A person calls and does not have ready all the stuff required to have a successful help line talk. For example, the do not have their customer number or other details available. And they start searching for them while on line.
    A) Tell the person on the other end which information they have to collect, and that they can call back when the have it. These request should include all required and optional information you want to have as a help line person. Then wish him or her goodbye.

    In cases where people are waiting for hours to get through, this is often not an option. Also some company policies could require you to keep the line open. In that case use B

    B) Tell the person on the other end which information they have to collect, and that you are waiting for her/him until she/he can bring all the information. To survive this situation you have to switch from a goal centric state of mind, to a service state of mind. Even if you are doing nothing beside breathing and other vegetative stuff, you are there for the caller, your pure presence is the job. This might look like nothing, but it means a lot mentally for the caller, which has now someone who is there for him or her. For Europeans and people with a similar cultural determination have often a problem with that. That's why (beside the money) India is so popular for helplines. For help on that issue ask someone who meditates or a Buddhist.

    In cases where the person is angry or otherwise aggressive, it helps to think that it is not you the person is angry with. It is like parenting. If you little baby cries, it is not angry with you it is just angry. It is not personal. Therefore, do not act like you are the source of the anger. You just have to comfort the baby. For older children, the approach is a little different. However, do not try to persuade it, as it is not open to any reasonable argument. Working at a help line is very similar. And you should act similar to that. Also you might have a supervision talk with your colleagues on a regular basis. If your company is great, they pay for it. If not, do yourself a favor and organize something privately.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 31, 2013 @08:56AM (#42749545)

    Maybe he isn't allowed to talk more because he has a decent lawyer who told him to STFU and not say anything to diminish his payoff for illegal termination.

  • by DaMattster ( 977781 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @09:22AM (#42749723)
    America has always been about sweatshop workplaces. We need more unions, not less but styled after a European one. Heaven forfend should we offer an real perks to our employees. Why, perish the thought, we might be seen as socialists! Hopefully you've concluded that my statement is dripping with sarcasm. No wonder America ranks lower than its industrial counterparts in lifespan, health, and education.
  • by ArsonSmith ( 13997 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @10:01AM (#42750055) Journal

    " The information we get from the US"

    and is mostly false. It's mostly good here except for the noisy people with political agendas to push.

  • by prefec2 ( 875483 ) on Thursday January 31, 2013 @10:05AM (#42750103)

    I never heard of any factory worker, who works for 1€ per hour. This 1€ program is for people who are unemployed for a long time, who require help to get back in normal jobs. Therefore the state provides them with a basic income, called ALG II. which is considered the existential minimum (I personally think it should be higher, but that is not the point here. They get money to live and the state pays their rent and health insurance, definitely more than the average unemployed person in the US has). On top of that income they can earn extra money in such so call 1€ jobs. By law these job grants are not allowed to be used by employers to replace staff on normal income.

    I personally think, that the German system is too harsh, but compared to the US, it is still better.

When a fellow says, "It ain't the money but the principle of the thing," it's the money. -- Kim Hubbard