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Comedy: 'What if people bought cars like they buy computers?'


The computer car Found via reddit: Welcome to the General Motors Helpdesk, where automobile drivers call in with the same breed of complaints foisted upon the typical tech support guy at your favorite PC manufacturer (no word on whether the GM assistant had a noticeable subcontinental accent). Here is but one of the four sample calls available for your reading pleasure:

Helpline: "General Motors Helpline, how can I help you?"

Customer: "Your cars suck!"

Helpline: "What's wrong?"

Customer: "It crashed, that's what went wrong!"

Helpline: "What were you doing?"

Customer: "I wanted to go faster, so I pushed the accelerator pedal all the way to the floor. It worked for a while, and then it crashed -- and now it won't even start up!"

Helpline: "I'm sorry, sir, but it's your responsibility if you misuse the product."

Customer: "Misuse it? I was just following this damned manual of yours. It said to make the car go to put the transmission in 'D' and press the accelerator pedal. That's exactly what I did -- now the damn thing's crashed."

Helpline: "Did you read the entire operator's manual before operating the car sir?"

Customer: "What? Of course I did! I told you I did EVERYTHING the manual said and it didn't work!"

Helpline: "Didn't you attempt to slow down so you wouldn't crash?"

Customer: "How do you do THAT?"

Helpline: "You said you read the entire manual, sir. It's on page 14. The pedal next to the accelerator."

Customer: "Well, I don't have all day to sit around and read this manual you know."

Helpline: "Of course not. What do you expect us to do about it?"

Customer: "I want you to send me one of the latest versions that goes fast and won't crash anymore!"

About

Jay Garmon has a vast and terrifying knowledge of all things obscure, obtuse, and irrelevant. One day, he hopes to write science fiction, but for now he'll settle for something stranger -- amusing and abusing IT pros. Read his full profile. You can a...

12 comments
kurtdaniel
kurtdaniel

Edited Message was edited by: beth.blakely@...

kurtdaniel
kurtdaniel

Edited Message was edited by: beth.blakely@...

BenOddo53
BenOddo53

Most consumers have no idea what they are buying or leasing when they walk into a car dealership. They also have no idea what they are buying when they walk into a computer superstore either. For the last 50 years, consumers have been trained to be impulse shoppers. All advertising is geared to appeal to a consumer's impulsive side, and not the rational side that analyzes needs and costs versus bells and whistles. Microsoft is no different from GM, Ford, or any other car maker stuffing their products with useless whiz bang gizmoes and gadgets whose sole purpose is to fatten the bottom line. But these product are advertised as technology's gift to the world and consumers eat them up. We don't see the same level of consumer protection for cars as we do for most other consumer products, nor will we ever since the automobile lobby is too powerful. Can you imagine the Consumer Product Safety Council approving a consumer product proven to kill, on average over 40,000 people each year in the US alone? What happened to our right to chose. Why can't I go into a store and buy a PC with my choice of O/S or even no O/S, instead of that overblown piece of garbage Vista? Don't expect our government to protect consumers from Bill Gates as well. He's been getting away with monopolistic business practices far too long for the government to exercise any power over his domain. I will exercise my choice. I will research the internet for the quality hardware components for my next PC and build it myself; as I have for the past 9 years. And I will load it with my choice of O/S. For example, Windows 2000 is leaner and with the latest updates, and firewall software, it is just as secure as Vista. I can take all that new horsepower and apply it to my apps rather than run an overstuffed O/S. Microsoft claimed XP as the latest and greatest, the most secure O/S. I can't begin to count the number of machines running XP Home that were basically unusable for all of the spyware, adware and viruses that made it on to the these machines. Was it the fault of the O/S? Perhaps, or was it due to the users' lack of understanding of "what goes on under the hood" that made them even more susceptible to attacks by the "bad guys". These poor souls need protection from the biggest bad guy of them all, Bill Gates.

kc5qla
kc5qla

noticeable subcontinental LOL! and they get mad if you complement their Brittish accent...

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

Although it was funny, and I did like it, there should have been more. Also, the title was a bit off, this should have been called "GM Helpdesk" The What if people bought cars like they buy computers?" would have me thinking on the lines of Buy a new car everytime the road is painted. buy a new car to get a better cd drive installed buy a new car to learn how to control it all over again buy a new car because the warning light goes on buy a new car because you moved to a new location etc.

nathanv
nathanv

Great article. I really liked the line about "send me a new one." (grin)

david
david

go on, do it, don't just criticise

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

While I agree with a lot of what you wrote, this is unproven so far "For example, Windows 2000 is leaner and with the latest updates, and firewall software, it is just as secure as Vista." That is a bold statement right now since even the most security concience people have not determined if Vista security is actually bettr or worse at this point in time. Vista security has many newer features, that are unproven as of yet. But yes, I am doing the same. Usually I build my own, but last time round I bought a pre-built media center. now I got the bug to build one up (and really make it personal again)(play on HP's slogan).

taylorjamer11
taylorjamer11

This is a very great article and the title says it all. It made me laugh thinking that car usa auto part and computers have in common, they both "CRASH".

daveo2000
daveo2000

I am always entertained at how Microsoft advertises the new version as so much better than the last one. Each time the buzz seems to be the same sentences with the version names/numbers changed. Worse than that, the "grass roots" noise is practially the same too. "That last version was a real piece of and I had to reboot it way too often. This new version is rock solid and never needs rebooting." I remember hearing that line about Win 95 and every version since.