"Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again..."

Location: Tampa, FL, United States

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Advancement of Artificial Business Associates

We can't recall when we first heard one but we know they've been around awhile, and that they infest phone lines--those computer-created voices that companies utilize to save payroll expenses. At some point the use of this techno-technique expanded to make these "people" not only disseminators and gatherers of information but personable and friendly "folk" to boot. "I'm sorry, you said 'stupid'? I don't understand. Please say 'yes' or 'no'." These army of empathetic fake voices displaced the friendly live people that used to work the phones and took over as the frontline apologists for corporations nationwide. "Apologists" in terms of apologizing for the expected delay and decline in customer service. Why have a real person shoulder blame when scapegoats can be created using software! They never lose their patience and they never "talk back." They're not very bright but as pro bono workers one wouldn't expect them to be very bright.

A new level of activity has been added to the repertoire of the artificial employee--audible artificial working. With yesterday's phone inquiry I was privy to hearing the artificial employee type away while researching my question. This went on about 20 seconds. Every key stroke was neatly spaced and they went at a nice ventricular tachycardic-like rate.

I'm thinking, why stop there? Why not maybe have these artificial employees have a grand mal seizure while someone is on hold, or maybe choke on a memory stick. A knife to the back could explain a long delay. There would enough gullible customers (i.e. "most important asset") who would hold a bake sale and retract their dificult inquiry to boot. There are other ideas.

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