Subtitled: Why I’m not going to ECCC this year and my semi-new out of hiding superhero identity.

Due to a one digit typo in my address (which resulted in it being sent to the wrong building), and despite the fact I have all the original email receipts, ECCC’s current stance is waiting for my 3-day pass to be returned to sender, which is pretty much never going to happen. Sold out con in a convention city? Ripe for scalping!

Originally they were all “oh it never showed? wait til Tuesday (3/25) and then mail us so we can make alternate arrangements” (and this was a good move, and I was happy until I realized it was because they didn’t read all the way through), then I pointed out the mail address discrepancy again in the original mail I sent (I knew it would never get to where it was sent because it was sent to the wrong place). Suddenly it became “nope not helping you out, you’re just out of luck here” attitude. I’ve been nothing but polite about the matter because CS people are people, and it is not their personal fault, you know.

I waited until Tuesday to call my bank. They said, get as far as you can and someone on the phone to get a refund – then let us know what happens. So clever and resourceful person I am, I tracked down a phone number and called. After explaining the situation, I didn’t like what I heard so I asked to be escalated to someone with more say so. Now the same person called me back and I have no idea if she actually did that escalating, or just waited a bit, but I’m going to give her the benefit of the doubt and say she asked someone else. The answer remained the same.

ECCC holds all the advantage in this situation. They claim they check mail daily and “if it shows up we will let you know”. If it shows up post show, I can have a refund then. If it shows up end of day Saturday, I still have to pay for all three days. And if it never shows I am out both show and the cost of the three day pass. The kicker?

There’s no way to prove they got it back. They can just stiff me out of the money and get away with it. I don’t doubt this is going to happen in the slightest. This is shady behavior. If you’re going to hold someone’s weekend hostage like that, have tracking on your badges, or just suck it up and work with your customer. Your stance on mailing badges is not a get out of jail free card when inevitable mistakes happen in the process.

These are the things I understand:

  • They are indeed, a business.
  • These tickets are hot commodities.
  • As any business, they want to guard against potential fraud.

These are the things I do not understand:

  • Why they insist on alienating what was once, a pretty eager fan who was even taking a day off work to attend (and probably drop even more money inside the doors).
  • Why customer service is clearly difficult for some organizations. This is not the Superbowl, okay.

Good customer service isn’t always about getting your way. I know this. I’ve been on both sides – customer, customer service rep, and the escalated-to manager. I get it. But good customer service leaves you with a feeling that everyone did the best they could in a situation. Did they do their best? No, they did not. Were there ways to resolve the situation in a fair manner? Yes. Did I offer to bring print outs of email receipts and any photo/residence ID they would want to show I live where I say I live? Yes I did. Did they choose to be reasonable and try to see it my way? No. All I got was a flat, “I know you’re upset but that’s the policy.” when I finally asked, “Okay. You realize this is absolutely ridiculous, right?”

I am not the only person ECCC has probably screwed over this way. That’s what makes me write.

I am Customer Service Crusader, champion of the badly treated and annoyed customer.

Cons, don’t do this to people.

And yes, I’ll be working with my bank to get that money back.