Stories, thoughts, observations, rants and dribble. Just another of my attempts to keep the interested people informed ...

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Biggest fall from grace

I was going to include this in the last post but it mutated into a huge complaint and I decided it needed it's own rant ...
The winner is: Yahoo! UKIE Customer Care (and partially US customer services)
Yahoo! UKIE Customer Care have been absolutely useless in helping me with my crusade to access my old account which I lost in 2002 (during the  suspected hacking/stealing of my online identity crisis). 
I sent a physical letter to US customer services from London, since back then there was no email address available to query password loss.  With no response from them, I slowly forgot about it and began using a new Yahoo! ID, though it wasn't really me for a long time.  Recently I logged into Yahoo! for something else (I rarely do this anymore as I have all my email centrally located in GoogleLand).  I remembered my old ID and I thought I'd try customer services again (couldn't hurt). 
They wrote back to tell me I needed to give them the information that the password verification page asked for.  Obviously I didn't have that information or I would have used the password verification page (well I can't say every person in the world would do this, but ...). 
So I attached the original 2002 letter and wrote a new email explaining everything again and to ask for their understanding. 
They wrote back to tell me that without the information that the password verification page asked for, they couldn't give me anything, for security reasons. 
WHY is it even an option to email them about this then?  Why don't they say, can't do it, too bad? 
So I gave them every single country and postcode I lived at before I lost my account (ten different locations!).  I asked them to provide me my security question and I would give them the answer (they ask for you to give them both - who remembers what security question they provide to every online thing they sign up for?!). 
They replied again today with a form letter that told me:

Thanks for writing to Yahoo! UKIE Customer Care.

Your account has been closed due to inactivity. Dormant accounts are
de-activated at the end of four months. A dormant account is one which
has not been logged in to over a four-month period, regardless of
whether or not email has been received in the account during that time.
You can re-enable your account by returning to the Yahoo! Mail Sign In
page and logging in with your ID and password at:

Once you log in, please click on the "reactivate without account
protection." link at the bottom of the page.

Note:  Once an account has been de-activated, we cannot retrieve any of
the information that was formerly stored in it.

Yahoo! Premium Mail accounts do not require access to protect from
dormancy or possible de-activation. To learn more and subscribe to
Yahoo! Mail Plus, please visit:

Should you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact us.

[name removed]
Customer Care - Yahoo! UK & Ireland
I replied again, possibly a little more terse and a little less polite than before (although I refrained from writing "I don't have a bloody password, that was the frickin' problem in the first place, you useless *^#$%!") and then filled in a very unhappy feedback form that they'd sent me the other day.  I was going to leave it until the matter was resolved, but apparently it's not going to happen any time soon.
Why is it that even in the day and age where everything is answered by FAQs and computer intelligence, a well written email about a valid issue cannot be treated as individual and dealt with by a competent, actual person?  Even though I know that my question can't be answered by their help pages, I patiently go through them, just in case.  Can the monkeys on the other end not take the extra few minutes and actually read what the problem is?
On the plus side, at least it was a form letter response so I don't have spelling and grammar issues to complain about as well...
[Asides from this little issue, I have been extremely happy with the services provided by this global internet giant.  Even though I have switched over to Team Google, I still use some pages from Yahoo!.  I have many times in the past publicly lauded Yahoo!'s email service, especially as I have had a long-term extreme dislike for H**mail.  I even like their Outlook-esque new layout.  I think they just need to employ slightly less robotic people.  Ooh, maybe they are androids.  Or actual robots.  In which case, they're doing pretty well.  Good work, Yahoo!, way to keep ahead of the game!]

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