These are actual tech support call transcripts
Caller: So, I’m having a problem with my mouse? It’s, like, squeaking?
Agent: I’m sorry, did you say squeaking?
Caller: That’s right. The faster I move it across the screen, the louder it squeaks.
Agent: I’m sorry—are you pressing your mouse up against the screen?
Caller: Well, sure! There’s a message that says, “Click here to continue!”
Caller: Hey, can you help me? My computer has locked up, and no matter how many times I type eleven, it won’t unfreeze.
Agent: What do you mean, “type eleven?”
Caller: The message on my screen says, “Error Type 11!”
On one call, the caller seemed to be taking an inordinately long time to complete each instruction she was given.
Agent: Ma’am, I can’t help noticing that every time I give you an instruction, it takes a really long time before you get back to me. Is your computer that slow?
Caller: Oh, no, it’s just the stupid, stupid design of this computer. Every time I want to click something, I have to unplug the keyboard to plug in the mouse. And then every time I want to use the keyboard again, I have to unplug the mouse. Because there’s only one jack.
Agent: Ma’am, you do realize that there’s a jack on the keyboard itself? You’re supposed to plug the mouse into the keyboard, and the keyboard into the computer.
Caller: Are YOU KIDDING ME!? Oh, wait a minute—yes, I see it now! Oh, holy cow. That’s going to be so much easier!
Agent: Just out of curiosity, how long have you been using your computer that way?
Caller: Six weeks!
A Canadian customer was calling to find out if there was a faster way to trigger menu commands than mousing up to the menus.
Agent: Certainly, sir. There are keyboard shortcuts for many of those commands. For example, suppose you want to trigger the Select All command…
Caller: Yes, I use that one all the time! How do I do it?
Agent: Well, you just press Control-A.
Caller (after a pause): Well, that’s not working for me.
Agent: Do you have a text document open in front of you?
Caller: Yes, I sure do.
Agent: OK, now press Control-A.
Caller: I am, but nothing happens.
Agent: The text isn’t highlighted?
Caller: No, there’s no change at all.
Agent: That’s odd. If you press Control-A, the whole document should be highlighted. Try it again. Press Control-A. Tell me exactly what’s happening.
Caller (nearing his Canadian breaking point): Listen. I’m pressing Control, eh? And nothing’s happening, eh?