I can be tough customer. My sister I am a very demanding costumer and I am not denying that. I do not like it when sales ladies follows and breathes down on my neck as I am looking around any stores. Sometimes before entering the store, I like telling the sales lady to quit following me around of I am off their store.

I have read enough stories from Consumerist that made me raving envious about how posting their rants at their site help dissatisfied customers. Consider this story about Sam who got a new MacBook Pro after the Apple Customer Care erased his hard drive without his permission when this guy brought his Mac in and Apple found some ladybugs inside his laptop. Sam seeked the help of Consumerist and got a replacement in order for him to “restore faith in the company.” Or about J. Money who blogs at Budgets are Sexy thought he did everything to get the photographer who skipped town without handing out his wedding photos. He threatened to sue, without avail and when he finally thought to create a blog about the wedding fiasco. He named names and even included dates, and viola! Two days and 300 hits after, the photos were all emailed to him and two weeks after that, the photos were in his hands. According to J., “so for a measly $9.99 (for the domain name) and a few hours of hard work, Operation Wedding Pictures was a success!

At any rate, it does pay to blog about bad customer services– in the US, I am afraid. I have read enough bitching in the local blogs here but there really isn’t any clue if Customer Service in our country is topnotch or at least has improved.

Local Companies with B a d R a p s

1. Smart Bro– There have been alot of complaints about Smart Bro and how bad their client response is. Too bad that even the creation of their own Smart Broken website did not seem to help encourage their customer service department to improve their services.

2. PLDT– Nixon’s PLDT incident as retold by Jepoy ranked highest in my PLDT bad Customer rap sheet. What happened was a PLDT CSR swore at him after he demanded two day rebate for the two days downtime. The incident was very well blogged about but there was no follow-up on whether the CSR was reprimanded or even if Nixon got his rebate or better yet an apology from PLDT. No wonder according to a market poll, the level of frustration of customers for services of telephone companies are at a high 90% for landline, 85% for internet and 92% for cellular phones.

3. Bayantel– I am a Bayantel subscriber, and although I personally have no complaints about their services, I have read enough to jam my reader. One of my best Bayantel complaints come from their very own forum. Most of the complaints about delayed services and extremely bad CSR.

4. Banco de Oro– Ohhh, I have alot to say about BDO, but my favorite CSR complaint came from Salve who got a mangled P500 from a BDO machine. Another one came from Marie Casas who just gave BDO the title Worst Pinoy Bank Don’t forget my very own BDO horror story, which is so like this other guys fake money experience, but his was in Metrobank. BDO has alot of gall because although they have alot of bad juju going, BDO continues to be one of the top banks in the country.

5. Meralco- Angelo Racoma’s complaint about Meralco comes first in the list. And yes, Filipina Mom’s who has to use her bitch powers to deal with Meralco’s CSR. The best entry comes from KAKAMMPI, who are currently organizing a class suit against Meralco over over-charging…

Notice that most of the companies with bad raps are the telecommunications companies? Why is this? One thing is for sure, there is something wrong with our system. I know that there are simply alot of places in the net where consumers like us can vent our frustrations but are the companies actually taking down notes? Does blogging about bad customer service in the Philippines actually gets result? According to Annalyn Jusay’s article, that Filipinos as consumers tend to be slack.

“Majority of Filipino (consumers) believe that the situation is not likely to improve soon, so they might as well stick with the provider they’re used to dealing with.”

Having low standard and warped sense of loyalty, it seems that we need to reassess and reevaluate our own attitude and standards for services. We need to jack up our standard and complain like mad to get the best and appropriate service there is. I have traveled to some countries in Asia and the Pacific and so far perhaps Laos’ customer service is the worst there is. I complained before about bad cable tv reception and the cable guy they sent did not even carry any tools with him. To make it worse, he asked my Lao maid if he could borrow our kitchen knife so he could check the wirings at the back of the television. It was so bad, I told him to leave my television alone and send me an English speaking electrician with tools! Suffice to say, our service record is better than some countries, but this doesn’t mean we could just let companies like Banco de Oro, Meralco, Bayantel, PLDT and Smart browbeat us. We need our voices to be heard. How else can we do it? We need to complain, complain and most importantly, have our voices be heard.

If you have other service complaints, let me hear about them and perhaps we could demand the respect and appropriate action from these companies. If you want to learn how to write a complaint letter, you can check out the draft from Consumerist. And here are tips from Life Spy if you want to complain about bad food service.

For funny stories on Bad Customer Service, check out Customer Disservice.

Photo by Stock Exchange

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