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  1. #1
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    Rude attitude from ServerBeach's salesperson

    I was thinking to order a server from serverbeach. When I was about to pay, I noticed that I was required to provide my date of birth. I wonder why date of birth is required, as neither credit card verification nor age verification needs it. So I made a call to inquiry why date of birth is required. A salesperson, I think his name is Roger, after listing to my inquiry, simply replied that why not go to another company if you feel uncomfortable with that (telling us your date of birth).

    I feel very lucky to call serverbeach before I buy. I believe server beach has a good network thanks to peer1. but i really suspect what kind of support i can get given the rude attitude from their employees like the Roger.
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  2. #2
    Without trying to be rude or blunt, I can definitely see their point of view, it's at your discretion to take your business elsewhere if you feel that providing your date of birth is an issue. The fact that you have a credit card doesn't necessarily mean that its yours and that you're 18. One can take their parents credit card, that only proves that their parents are 18+.

    An ISP asking for DOB is unusual, but definitely not wrong.
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  3. #3
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    I'd go along with Gene. Nothing wrong with a company that's contemplating entering into contract with you to verify that you can legally enter into that contract.
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  4. #4
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    We ask for date of birth before sign up for statistical purposes and of course age verification. Can come in handy if you face a legal dispute.
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  5. #5
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    I do not think it is appropriate. What if you go to a store and ask a salesperson "why this t-shirt/book/tv/laptop ..." and you get a reply that "go to another store" ?

    Quote Originally Posted by webair-gene View Post
    Without trying to be rude or blunt, I can definitely see their point of view, it's at your discretion to take your business elsewhere if you feel that providing your date of birth is an issue. The fact that you have a credit card doesn't necessarily mean that its yours and that you're 18. One can take their parents credit card, that only proves that their parents are 18+.

    An ISP asking for DOB is unusual, but definitely not wrong.
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  6. #6
    So why not take his advice and go get a server elsewhere rather than starting a useless thread here?
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  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiger0516 View Post
    I do not think it is appropriate. What if you go to a store and ask a salesperson "why this t-shirt/book/tv/laptop ..." and you get a reply that "go to another store" ?
    If the person is under 18 they cannot legally enter into a binding contract.(in the US) No one would want to do serious business with a person they have no legal recourse against.



    Regards,
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  8. #8
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    I was with them until a short while ago and they were often nice and responsive on the phone and in tickets, I wouldn't be surprised if a business asks for age but a salesperson should never say things like go elsewhere unless he is being nice enough to refer you to a place that meets your requirements/eligibility/etc.
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  9. #9
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    I am a little bit surprised that it seems many folks prefer such a "straight-forward" response towards (potential) customers. Do not tell me it is the usual practice for a salesperson in this industry. Fortunately, I am lucky enough not to have similar experience with any other company, either brick-and-motor or online company.

    Shall I pray and thanks for God that I am such a lucky person?
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  10. #10
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    I dont think the point of this thread is to condemn the concept of asking for DOB, I think the point is that the OP was not given a certain level of respect that should be expected.

    I may just be old fashioned, but that would probably upset me as well.

    Now my question is, was there more to this story? Was there a tone of annoyance or malice that you took with Roger? Perhaps calling their policies dumb?

    Something like that could warrant such a response from Roger, but if nothing of the sort took place, then it was a bit cold on Roger's part.
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  11. #11
    I don't think it's appropriate for us to be making assumptions as to how the OP was treated on the phone without actually overhearing the conversation, the sales persons tone could have affected the way the OP interpreted what was being said.

    In my mind I can see many different ways of telling someone to go elsewhere for a server, a few are very nice ways of putting that forth without offending the caller.

    I do not think it is appropriate. What if you go to a store and ask a salesperson "why this t-shirt/book/tv/laptop ..." and you get a reply that "go to another store" ?
    Have you ever went to GameStop or EBgames and purchased a M rated game and get asked for your ID,if you don't have it they tell you they can't sell it to you. Same thing here.
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  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan - Limestone View Post
    ... Now my question is, was there more to this story? Was there a tone of annoyance or malice that you took with Roger? Perhaps calling their policies dumb?...
    There usually is more to these stories.

    I've told prospective clients to go elsewhere. Of course, this was after lengthy discussions on how absurd my verification or any other terms of service were.

    I'm not saying that's what happened here. I'm just saying that there are times when it's appropriate to fire your customer, whether they've been with you a while or are simply inquiring.

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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by tiger0516 View Post
    I am a little bit surprised that it seems many folks prefer such a "straight-forward" response towards (potential) customers. Do not tell me it is the usual practice for a salesperson in this industry. Fortunately, I am lucky enough not to have similar experience with any other company, either brick-and-motor or online company.

    Shall I pray and thanks for God that I am such a lucky person?
    No I just think some of us don't see the point of you posting this here. Okay someone at SB was supposedly "rude" (lets face it he wasn't really rude, the way you describe it he sounds like he doesn't want to deal with you) to you, big deal it happens in all industries. Sometimes employees have bad days and customers who call to complain about their age verification might not seem worth the effort to them.

    I just don't get what you are trying to accomplish here. What did you want the outcome of this thread to be? Did you want SB customers to migrate en mass, did you want an apology from the CEO from SB and a free server or did you just want to come here to trash a company without trying to resolve your issue with the actual company first?

    If you didn't like the way you were treated then you had a couple of options:
    1. Escalate the issue to his manager.
    2. Vote with your wallet and go elsewhere
    3. Complain on a public forum to people who can't do anything about it because one employee out of hundreds they have was blunt with you. Which solves absolutely nothing.

    I hope next time you chose option 1 or 2.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by webair-gene View Post
    Have you ever went to GameStop or EBgames and purchased a M rated game and get asked for your ID,if you don't have it they tell you they can't sell it to you. Same thing here.
    If you ask the salesman at the game store why he needs your ID, he'll tell you something like "We need to verify your age in order to sell you an M rated game" rather than "Uh, go to another store!"

    Quote Originally Posted by RossH
    lets face it he wasn't really rude, the way you describe it he sounds like he doesn't want to deal with you
    Where I come from, that's called being rude.

    No I just think some of us don't see the point of you posting this here
    He's posting his experience dealing with the process of ordering a dedicated server. Perhaps he also hopes for comments from others that have dealt with the same company. I see nothing wrong with that.
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  15. #15
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    ross what r u the poster police? who cares if you don't see the point... you usually don't.

    thx for the post... I won't shop there. Rude... is rude... is rude. Once again for the post.



    Quote Originally Posted by RossH View Post
    No I just think some of us don't see the point of you posting this here. Okay someone at SB was supposedly "rude" (lets face it he wasn't really rude, the way you describe it he sounds like he doesn't want to deal with you) to you, big deal it happens in all industries. Sometimes employees have bad days and customers who call to complain about their age verification might not seem worth the effort to them.

    I just don't get what you are trying to accomplish here. What did you want the outcome of this thread to be? Did you want SB customers to migrate en mass, did you want an apology from the CEO from SB and a free server or did you just want to come here to trash a company without trying to resolve your issue with the actual company first?

    If you didn't like the way you were treated then you had a couple of options:
    1. Escalate the issue to his manager.
    2. Vote with your wallet and go elsewhere
    3. Complain on a public forum to people who can't do anything about it because one employee out of hundreds they have was blunt with you. Which solves absolutely nothing.

    I hope next time you chose option 1 or 2.
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  16. #16
    I understand why they require date of birth. However, that is not the way you speak to a client.
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  17. #17
    I mean, you have to see there point.

    They just want make sure that you are overage I'm guessing.
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  18. #18
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    Sure that is all that they wanted. And had they said that instead of what they said the OP would be happily enjoying his server. However who wants to give there money to someone that acts like they are doing you a favor by selling you something. Just my two cents.
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  19. #19
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    Rude attitude? Hardly.

    You're objecting to their sales form, which means, somewhere down the road you're going to be another PITA customer. It's best to do just what this person has done and pass on the sale.

    As others have stated, if you're not 18, you can't enter into a legally binding contract, which is most likely WHY they want this information. Anyone hiding this brief bit of information has something else to hide, obviously. It's not like they ask for your ss#, your bank #, credit history, or anything else that could kill you.

    Face it, your birthday's already out there, online. There's no reason to hide it. Calling them up and confronting them about it is just going to raise suspicions about yourself, and flag you as a 'trouble' customer. Maybe that's why they do that in the first place

    Rude? hardly. You were encouraged to take your business somewhere else. That benefits them by freeing support of a burdening customer, and lets them move on to the day to day of doing business.
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  20. #20
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    Can someone get the tapes of recording for listing purposes before we proceed further, otherwise it could be just and attack on a company from someone ? Thats what you get that weird message " your message will be recorded for monitoring purposes and blablabla.." ??

    Cause every coin has 2 sides ! And to every story there is the dark side !!

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    Woot u mean where ? Can you locate my birthday date online for me ?
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  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by PinkFloydWS View Post
    ross what r u the poster police? who cares if you don't see the point... you usually don't.

    thx for the post... I won't shop there. Rude... is rude... is rude. Once again for the post.
    So you aren't going to shop some place because one employee out of hundreds was rude? So I guess that means you will never shop any where ever again because I have seen stories of rude employees from ATT/Sprint/Cingular/Walmart/Target/Walgreens/McDonals/Burger King/etc.

    This is no big deal, some guy got told by one employee out of hundreds that he should probably take his business elsewhere and he probably should.
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by bqinternet View Post
    He's posting his experience dealing with the process of ordering a dedicated server. Perhaps he also hopes for comments from others that have dealt with the same company. I see nothing wrong with that.
    He has no real experience, he didn't want to provide his birthday and a sales person told him that maybe he take his business elsewhere. In no way is this rude, the sales guy didn't call him names, hang up on him, curse him and didn't ask why he was being a PITA. This is like the people posting 4 hour reviews of a company they signed up with.

    I guess the point I'm trying to get across in this thread is you should not judge a company on the single actions of one employee out of hundreds. If the op had spoken to a manager I'm sure this situation would have been handled to the op's satisfaction.
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  23. #23
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    You call that rude?
    Jesus christ kid, wait til you get in the real world..
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  24. #24
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    I guess the point I'm trying to get across in this thread is you should not judge a company on the single actions of one employee out of hundreds. If the op had spoken to a manager I'm sure this situation would have been handled to the op's satisfaction.
    Excellent point. As for myself, I do not see how such a question could remotely be a problem for the client (unless of course they are underage).

    Sure, maybe they could have answered in a different manner, but I definitely don't see any problem with the question posed and if the client is not willing to provide their date of birth (or even mails them asking why that is needed without signing up) then there should be alarm bells, for this very -basic- information.

    Please note that there are laws concerning "contracts", etc (you can notice this on forums especially, with the "I confirm I am 13 or over" and they may need to confirm you are over 13 years of age or have parental permission.
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  25. #25
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    I recently went to a fast food place to get a salad (love their salads) and the usual person wasn't there. I pulled up and the person said, "yea what do you want?" I said, "I need a second please", which I got no response. No more than 5 seconds later the person said in a really crappy attitude "Ok... so yea.. what do you want." Which I then reply "I said I need a minute 5 seconds ago" which was a reply of "yea".

    I finally spoke up and said what I needed. Waited a few second and asked for my total. Which the person gave me my total in a bitchy attitude.

    Believe me I talked to the manager and I will not be ordering from there again. I have no problem what-so-ever never going to a place again because that 1 person was rude.

    I have worked in customer service and know that just one employee can ruin a customers shopping experience. It appears the person at ServerBeach ruined this potential sale, and I sure hope his/her manager knows about it.

    How people can defend people with rude actions, is beyond me. Maybe its because you are rude yourself. People are allowed to post their experience on this forum, and why people like you have to bash them when they do.. is again... beyond me. Don't like the post... then move on!

    I can guarantee if you the manager over at SB knew how this potential customer was treated they would apologize and try to make the situation better. Just like the manager at the fast food place did. They knew they were in the wrong.. ofcourse they were. Its not the policy the person is 100% complaining about, its how he/she was treated.
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  26. #26
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    How people can defend people with rude actions, is beyond me. Maybe its because you are rude yourself. People are allowed to post their experience on this forum, and why people like you have to bash them when they do.. is again... beyond me. Don't like the post... then move on!
    The point is that there was nobody with "rude actions" here. It was suggested that the individual take his business elsewhere. I've done that more than a few times, as have other people in this thread. That is hardly rude at all.

    The point of suggesting someone take their business elsewhere is to pawn off burdensome customers like this individual, who demanded an 'explanation' as to why they were required to put the most trivial of things into a form. If they're going to be that troublesome about the more basic things, they're going to be a LOT more troublesome about more advanced things. It's always best to just pass the customer along in this case.

    Suggesting to someone "You can always take your business elsewhere" is hardly rude at all. In fact, in most cases, it's beneficial to the business AND to the consumer.

    Does the person have a right to question things? Sure, of course they do. Do they need to be so nitpicky about things? No, not at all. That'd be like calling up a company and saying "Why are you providing XX processor and not YY processor" or "Why are you only providing XX hard drives". Really, it's a waste of the company's time, and the customer knows this going into the call, or would, if they exhibited an ounce of common sense.
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  27. #27
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    I would be appalled if they said "go elsewhere if your uncomfortable."

    I would still give it to them, but I would still like them to give me a solid reason as to why they want it.
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  28. #28
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    I would still give it to them, but I would still like them to give me a solid reason as to why they want it.
    And I'd like a million dollars, but that doesn't mean I'm going to get it.

    Realistically, you're just fishing now. Like I said, it's not like they're after sensitive information, they're merely after your birthday. Give it to 'em and move along. There is NO need to cause such a fuss about such a small thing.
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  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by linux-tech View Post
    The point of suggesting someone take their business elsewhere is to pawn off burdensome customers
    If asking a simple question is "burdensome" to a company, then it's not a company I would want to do business with.

    That'd be like calling up a company and saying "Why are you providing XX processor and not YY processor"
    Then you tell the customers why you use XX processors. Only after an excessive amount of "annoying" questioning would I even consider suggesting a customer should go somewhere else, and in that rare situation, I would find the most polite/professional way to say that I can think of.

    There is NO need to cause such a fuss about such a small thing.
    There's no fuss here. The guy asked a simple question.

    If you can't handle a few inquisitive customers, you shouldn't be handling the customer service. Pay someone with manners to do that.
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  30. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by tiger0516 View Post
    I was thinking to order a server from serverbeach. When I was about to pay, I noticed that I was required to provide my date of birth. I wonder why date of birth is required, as neither credit card verification nor age verification needs it. So I made a call to inquiry why date of birth is required. A salesperson, I think his name is Roger, after listing to my inquiry, simply replied that why not go to another company if you feel uncomfortable with that (telling us your date of birth).

    I feel very lucky to call serverbeach before I buy. I believe server beach has a good network thanks to peer1. but i really suspect what kind of support i can get given the rude attitude from their employees like the Roger.
    I apologize if you feel you were treated in an unprofessional manner. Requiring your date of birth is to let us know that you are legally able to enter a contract with ServerBeach just as others have stated. I've worked with Roger, the Sales Manager, for many years now, long enough to know most of his 'responses' by heart. While I'm not defending him in any manner, I can believe that he informed you that you'll have to take your business elsewhere if you're not comfortable providing your date of birth. Generally, after informing someone of this he follows up with the reason why. This is to protect ServerBeach as a business, and those running your own business know how important this can be should a legal matter ever arise.

    Every business has the right to refuse service, it's very common now in the real world. Again, I apologize if the way the message was delivered to you came across as rude and if you'd like to discuss this further, please feel free to contact me directly as I certainly don't want this issue to remain as a bad taste in your mouth. You can contact me at any of the following:

    cpugsley(at)peer1(dot)com
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    Last edited by CLucich; 12-25-2007 at 07:14 PM. Reason: added contact information.
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  31. #31
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    Unless I'm buying alcohol, and you really honest-to-God think I am half my age I consider asking for my DOB to be inappropriate. I do classify my DOB as sensitive information.

    Personally, I am glad for this thread. There are people out there who consider their DOBs to be off-limits. And there is no reason for the sales person to handle it as they did ......... there are other much more tactful ways to decline someone's business than the way it was reported to have happened.

    Just my 2’.

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  32. #32
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    FWIW: We require a birth date for WHT registration.

    And there is no reason for the sales person to handle it as they did
    We have no way of knowing if the OP's terse description is accurate.
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  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by webair-gene View Post
    Have you ever went to GameStop or EBgames and purchased a M rated game and get asked for your ID,if you don't have it they tell you they can't sell it to you. Same thing here.
    However, if I ask the person "why do you need to see my ID?" They will respond with "It is an M-Rated game and I need to verify your age." Not "well go buy elsewhere."

    As a sales rep, or as an everyday person, either way you are expected to show a level of respect to another person. Making excuses for this shows your own underlying inability to interact and communicate proficiently. Something more and more people in society are loosing these days.

    Regards,

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  34. #34
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    If you can't handle a few inquisitive customers, you shouldn't be handling the customer service. Pay someone with manners to do that.
    And if the individual doesn't want to fill out the form without asking questions that are fluff and irrelevant then they can find someone else to do business with, pretty simple.

    let's see here:
    does the question warrant an inquiry?
    Absolutely not

    Does the question demand an explanation?
    Absolutely not

    Is the question private in nature?
    Absolutely not

    So, in a nutshell:
    Potential customer calls up and queries why this is in place. Rather than go into a long, in depth explanation of which will only lead to an argument, the individual on the phone states :
    If you aren't confortable giving that out, you can always go elsewhere
    then hangs up the phone.

    Rude? No. Here's why:

    The representative just saved the company money two ways:

    #1 Toll free lines aren't cheap
    Customers quite frankly don't see this , or care about this, but toll free line costs add up quite quickly, especially if the customer is using a 'click to call' method, which will charge twice with most providers (it's a bit confusing to explain)

    #2: Employee time isn't 'free'
    Every second that employee isn't working on a real problem, that employee is wasting company time. Thusly, they are wasting company $$$, all on a potential, argumentative customer.

    Manners? No, it's not about 'manners', it's about consideration. This isn't an 'urgent' issue, and it shouldn't be an 'issue' at all. If it is, then the individual needs to reassess why they are doing what they're doing.

    If someone is going to go to all the trouble to call up and complain over some simple form value, hey, just imagine what hell they'll be as a customer. It's common, basic stuff. Fill it out, send it in, read the fine print (make sure you read it ), and be done with it. Don't raise a fuss about the small stuff.
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  35. #35
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    You have got to be kidding me.

    does the question warrant an inquiry?
    YES.

    Does the question demand an explanation?
    YES, if the customer is uncomfortable with it -- and he was.

    Is the question private in nature?
    YES.
    linux-tech, fine, so you do not think it is private information. Good for you. Other people do think it is private information... and it is certainly a legitimate concern, seeing as a date of birth is not required by law to be verified for a dedicated server purchase, like it is required to buy an M-rated game or to buy alcohol.

    The server company is requesting that information, it is not required by any law, anywhere. This is a choice the server company is making, by requesting it. They could choose not to require it.

    We encourage consumers to be smart, to ask questions, to stand up for their rights, to not provide any more information than is absolutely necessary. For a non-regulated item like a server, a date of birth is NOT required by law. By all means, yes, the company has the right to request that information as a course of doing business, but the customer also has the right to refuse to provide it (and not do business with that company).

    Consumers do have a right and the responsibility to be choosy about what information they give out to people and companies.

    Considering the yahoos that I have come across in my years working online, if I'm not buying booze or an M-rated game, do not expect to be provided with my DOB. Ain't gonna happen. "Your data is safe with us" means NOTHING, I learned that long ago. You do not know if the brilliant young man who's doing maintenance on the database is struggling with moral (or financial) issues (as that's not the kind of thing the pups talk about at work), nor do you have any idea what curious eyes or sticky fingers are picking up faxes off the fax machine when the boss is in the restroom (or on the phone with her wife).

    There are no guarantees here. Consumers are being very smart if they are exercising caution in giving out their personal data -- including their date of birth.

    $0.02


    Bailey
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  36. #36
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
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    There is a month to month contract with terms on both sides of the equation to protect the company and the individual. The fact that many companies don't ask for age is in my opinion, surprising given that someone underage cannot be bound in the same way as someone over 18.

    I have to admit, I thought this thread would be dead after a few answers. My belief and I know this because I have done this is that the salesperson is merely saying "hey I understand if you are uncomfortable with this but it is our policy so it may be better to try somewhere else". This happens all the time and I consider it good service particularly when a recommendation is made about where to try.

    I went to buy a particular brand of watch for my wife this Christmas and the store that I went to didn't have the model she wanted. They at first tried to push me to buy another one, fine choice but wasn't what I wanted. They said, hey we probably can't help you but try ... they may have it. That to me is GOOD customer service.

    When I read the original post I thought that is the way it was meant and the OP got overly sensitive.

    I do agree with Bailey that DOB can be viewed as private data but any company that asks for a copy of your drivers license has it anyway. If you enter into an agreement with someone they generally ask you to confirm identity in some way and sometimes it includes DOB or includes some information on the entity entering into the contract. For a company the entity just happens to be a separate legal entity (corp, LLC... ) and no one really balks at providing basic information on their company for a large contract.
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  37. #37
    Quote Originally Posted by Joel Theodore View Post
    However, if I ask the person "why do you need to see my ID?" They will respond with "It is an M-Rated game and I need to verify your age." Not "well go buy elsewhere."

    As a sales rep, or as an everyday person, either way you are expected to show a level of respect to another person. Making excuses for this shows your own underlying inability to interact and communicate proficiently. Something more and more people in society are losing these days.

    Regards,

    Joel
    I agree and I am really surprised at the people who are posting they would have done the same thing ("why not go to another company if you feel uncomfortable with that"), when, if it transpired as the op described, saying "To verify your age" would have been sufficient.
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  38. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    31
    Hi all,

    I had thought this thread would die soon and I did not think it will be bumped up, up, and up, and now in its 3rd page.

    I have requested the moderator to delete this thread (if possible). Anyway, it is Christmas today.

    For those who participated this topic, I think it's my responsibility to let you know the salesperson did tell me its purpose is to verify age (after I ask why DOB is required). He told me to go somewhere else after I asked him again that why DOB is needed since CC verification can do the job. I must say it is not what I expected. It is not rare for salespersons to ask for DOB. I always ask them why DOB is needed as I consider DOB as sensitive & private as SIN. I never, never, got a reply like that.

    My wife said she think it is inappropriate to name the person online. I think she is right and I am sorry to do that.

    Anyway, please close this thread, please do not reply it.Let it be.
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  39. #39
    Join Date
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    saying "To verify your age" would have been sufficient.
    9/10 times this wouldn't have actually been sufficient. Anyone calling up 'live support' asking about this simplistic, non private information being submitted really has issues, is doing nothing but calling to complain, and will continue to complain until the operator says 'move along'.

    Stating "to verify your age" would only lead to something like:
    Why do you need to verify my age
    What right do you have to verify my age
    What does my age matter?
    Which will only lead to a slew of other questions and arguments.

    IF this had been "What is your SSN", or "What is your DL #", then this would be a different story, as either of those are easily used to get personal and private information that hosts should never have access to. However, this isn't, and wasn't. With your 'birthday', nothing of real importance can be obtained, it's not 'private' information (unless you consider sharingg the same day with some 10-25k individuals worldwide is 'private').

    Like I said, typically, someone like this that calls to be this petty about something is a trouble customer. I mean they haven't even placed and order yet, and they're already calling up support about something that is so minimalistic that it's not even funny? Just imagine what kind of garbage they'd throw at support AFTER they signed up!
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  40. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by tiger0516 View Post
    Hi all,

    For those who participated this topic, I think it's my responsibility to let you know the salesperson did tell me its purpose is to verify age (after I ask why DOB is required). He told me to go somewhere else after I asked him again that why DOB is needed since CC verification can do the job. I must say it is not what I expected. It is not rare for salespersons to ask for DOB. I always ask them why DOB is needed as I consider DOB as sensitive & private as SIN. I never, never, got a reply like that.
    That changes everything. That information should have gone into the first post of the thread.
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