Customer Service Chat Quickly Goes Off the Rails

Verizon trying to track down responsible employee

By Shane Allen and Scott Gordon
|  Friday, Jan 21, 2011  |  Updated 10:43 AM CDT
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A man's customer service online chat with a <a title=Verizon rep about cell service turned totally bizarre." />

Scott Gordon,

A man's customer service online chat with a Verizon rep about cell service turned totally bizarre.


When it comes to customer service, people don't always get the treatment they expect.  A recent incident with a Verizon representative highlights the perfect collision between poor customer service and the anonymity of the Internet.

Jeff Williams of Joshua logged onto Verizon Wireless’ website late one night earlier this month to ask about a $10 monthly fee for GPS service on a Motorola Droid X cell phone.

"I was wondering why they were charging this amount for GPS when I can get a GPS in my car for just the cost of the GPS," he said.

He was surprised at the response he got in an online chat from the Verizon representative identified as "Wendy."

“Why do you [need] such a flashy, pricey phone that needs everyone to look at them????” she typed. “You [sic] just hating due to not having the cash to pay my flashy phone price. I see you do not look at the free phones just the most expensive [ones] we have. So the 'baller' you are makes you pay my price due to your need to look good.”

Stunned, Williams asked, “Are you an actual Verizon employee?”

Wendy replied, “I am, it is late night and your [sic] my entertainment.”

Here’s a portion of how the chat continued:

Jeff: I am actually laughing over here...hopefully you are trying to be humorous and not actually trying to help sell a service and a phone for the company you represent.
Wendy: I have been the whole time jeff.
Jeff: Which one???
Wendy: funny
Wendy: I am not selling right now, I am on a break
Wendy: not really
Jeff: So you couldn't care less if I buy a phone through Verizon?
Wendy: Nope
Wendy: Only if your a baller.
Wendy: why are you on here chatting me up?
Read the entire chat log here)

"I was like, 'This couldn't be the real person working for Verizon,'" Williams said. "Several times I thought this had to be a hacker or something."

This chat was real. Verizon verified its authenticity and the company is not happy about it.

Spokesperson Audrey Lundy said the chat was the work of a third-party vendor hired and trained by Verizon. They’re still trying to track down “Wendy” to address the issue with her.

“This conversation is not consistent with how we train our employees, or how we want to interact with our customers,” Lundy said in a telephone interview Thursday. "This is totally inconsistent with our core values. We will make sure that employees are following Verizon's procedures and are being consistent with our core values, which includes respecting and appreciating our customers.” 

You can read the chat obtained exclusively by it in its entirety here

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