Monday, January 21, 2008

OLPC -- The Dog Ate My Laptop

I tried to get through to OLPC again today. I tried the 1-800-201-7144 number and got through. Interestingly: they jump you directly to the "problem" line part of the decision tree. Obviously they know that the only reason people phone them is to ask they they've been scammed. Dial and you immediately get their Muzak. ah.... Seventies-dining-porn music.
After 45 minutes on hold, I got through to someone thoroughly confused. She did confirm my name (good, after 45 min. I forgot my name). Where beforce I got a "FedEx tracking number" that wasn't a number for tracking FedEx shipments, this time I got a clarification-- they aren't giving out FedEx tracking numbers.
I asked when my laptop would be shipped: they didn't know.
I asked why there was a delay:
OLPC scammer: "It because we are having a hard time getting laptops to Canada."
Scammed OLPC victim: "So, what you're saying is that laptop.org can only ship to the US?" (ironic, as these laptops are intended to benefit the world at large)
OLPC scammer: "It's because of the Customs. They are making a delay."
Scammed OLPC victim: "Customs would only cause a delay after the laptop was shipped. Are you saying you've shipped my laptop?"
OLPC scammer: "Please hold." (five minutes later) "Your laptop has not been shipped. We are sending another batch to you."
Scammed OLPC victim: "I didn't order a batch. I ordered one laptop."
OLPC scammer: "Please hold..." (five minutes later) "We are sending another batch to Canada."
This pointless dance went around and around for a while and both of realized we weren't going to get anything out of the deal. She ended the call. I fished out my credit card statement. After some consultation with the family, I am going to have that charge reversed; then cancel the laptop order.

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