atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#5065: Malapropism and data babies

At work, the grunts down in the trenches (such as yr obt srvnt) do not have e-mail. When someone has to broadcast a message to the grunts, they use what is called an "e-pop". It's a kind of instant messaging.

Yesterday, someone announced that some function was moving to a different place on the production floor, and he ended his e-mail with a signature line:

"If you fail to plan, you mind as well plan to fail."

Me: "Might!" "MIGHT as well!" Are you illiterate or something? *sigh*

...I'm unable to reply to these things, fortunately, and even if I could reply I wouldn't, owing to the fact that I like getting a paycheck every other week. Even so, that drove me nuts, as does any evidence of the creeping illiteracy that has overcome our society since Carter instituted the Department of Education. (Before then, actually, but federal control has accelerated it.)

Yesterday was a rather nice day, for a workday. It was #Major_Telecom Launch Day--they have recently changed the theme of their advertising--and so each agent was getting an hour to wander around the center and visit with vendors, and lunch was provided by #Major_Telecom. I was told when my hour was scheduled approximately seventeen minutes after it started, but I took the whole hour.

It took perhaps ten minutes to visit the vendor tables; I spent the rest of the time at my desk, banging out some preliminary text for the Sloot Enoch story and wondering about lunch.

Here's how smart I am: I saw my supervisor being handed a stack of tickets, and I realized that because lunch was Subway lunch boxes they would be rationed somehow. I reasoned that the tickets given to my supervisor were meal tickets, and one had to redeem a ticket to get a lunch. This did indeed turn out to be the case, and once my boss got out of his meeting (which ended about half an hour after my allotted wander time) I went back into "meeting", got my ticket from him, and secured my lunch. The Subway lunch box contained a 6" sub (BMT or ham, your choice), a bag of chips, and a cookie. Oh, and a can of soda. Better than a kick in the face, anyway.

Then we came to the unlimited data call.

#Major_Telecom hasn't offered the feature for years and raised the price of it from $30 to $50 this past November. Periodically we get calls from people who are unhappy about this. Usually they see reason after an explanation, but sometimes there's a particularly entitled and dense person who utterly refuses to accept that #Major_Telecom is a utility and can raise the price for its services. I call this kind of person a "data baby"; that's my term for someone who has a grandfathered unlimited data plan and who kicks about the price increase. But 4G LTE cellular data is expensive and it's not getting any cheaper.

The usual tactic employed by the data baby has two or three stages. The first is that "I wasn't notified of a rate increase." #Major_Telecom informed everyone via their bill; here is another place where I can remind folks YOU SHOULD ALWAYS READ EVERY BILL EVERY MONTH and that IF YOU PAY THE BILL YOU ARE ACKNOWLEDGING THAT IT IS CORRECT. #Major_Telecom employs an army of phone reps specifically to help you understand your bill if you do not. We're always willing to give you a credit for the difference (about $20) in lieu of the notice printed on the bill you couldn't be fucked to read--just to be nice--but that happens one time only and from then on you're paying the $50 for the unlimited data.

Next, "I didn't agree to this." Terms and conditions, dude. It's in there. All rate plans are subject to change without notice. When you accepted the T&C, you agreed to it.

Third, if they're particularly stupid: "I have a contract!" That's a good one. The contract you have is for your phone, not the plan. The plan is (as noted above) subject to change at any time. (The price change, by the way, only occurs after your phone goes out of contract, so that doesn't even hold water.)

This guy would not listen to reason, and I followed all the steps we're supposed to follow when someone complains about the price increase. He wanted to talk to my boss, and--I heard around subsequent calls--he then wanted to talk to our operations manager.

None of whom can give him the $30 price back. It's just not going to happen. The price for unlimited data is now $50 a month, so he has three choices: 1) pay the $50 a month; 2) move to a data tier which suits his needs; 3) go to a different carrier with unlimited data but who will throttle him to 3g (and even 2g!) after he's exceeded his 4G allotment for the month.

Here's the thing: #Major_Telecom charges a lot of money for cellular data. An 18 GB data plan costs $100 a month. The smallest data tier you can get as a new subscriber costs $30 for 1 GB of data; that's for a plan with unlimited talk and text. Data is what costs. (I recently realized that Tracfone charges $0.01 per text message from a smartphone; I doubt they lose money on it.)

Data is what costs, and an allotment of 18 GB costs $100--yet these cretins are kicking over paying $50 a month for unlimited data.

If #Major_Telecom wasn't able to average the heavy unlimited data users with the much more common moderate-to-light unlimited data users, the price increase would've been higher than $20, let me tell you. Fortunately the law of averages means that a $20 increase for all unlimited users keeps the feature from being a money-losing propisition.

Anyway, this bitch (male) whined and cavailed and insisted that he's not going to pay it, and whenever anyone tells me that I just shrug and tell them that they do have that option...but it will lead to late fees and possible discontinuation of service. Hell, you don't have to pay anything if you don't want to, but #Major_Telecom isn't obligated to leave your phone on, either, if you're not paying your bills. The simple fact is that if you don't want to pay for the feature, you don't have to; but if you want the feature, you have to pay for it. There is no option "C" where you get the feature at the price you set.

So it goes without saying that I have absolutely no sympathy for you, if you're crying over having to pay more for truly unlimited 4G LTE data. Hence the term "data baby". "Entitled" just doesn't seem to cover it.

* * *

Yes! Holy shit, yes!
In the contemporary West, those people constitute a comfortable class whose wealth and connections allow them to live in insulation from the very social arrangements that they promote. Tucker Carlson describes that caste in his January 28, 2016 article "Donald Trump Is Shocking, Vulgar and Right" in Politico magazine:
If you live in an affluent ZIP code, it’s hard to see a downside to mass low-wage immigration. Your kids don’t go to public school. You don’t take the bus or use the emergency room for health care. No immigrant is competing for your job. (The day Hondurans start getting hired as green energy lobbyists is the day my neighbors become nativists.) Plus, you get cheap servants, and get to feel welcoming and virtuous while paying them less per hour than your kids make at a summer job on Nantucket. It’s all good.
Those people are pig-ignorant about the things that women like West or Sims know well, yet they are the loudest in denouncing them for crying out about their circumstances. Women from pricey ZIP codes do not leave their homes in the morning to barbaric noise thumping from car speakers or pre-human shrieks from their underclass neighbors. Tucker Carlson’s neighbor does not take her child outside to have a creature named De’Marquise hassle her for money and then shoot her stroller-strapped baby in the face.
(Links removed, and edited a bit to conform to the Fungus style sheet, but otherwise entirely intact.)

Especially the part about "barbaric noise thumping from car speakers or pre-human shrieks"--holy crap if that isn't a fantastic description of reality, I don't know what is.

* * *

Francis Porretto points out something that's been obvious for a while, but we do need to be reminded:
The media are lavishing disproportionate attention on Marco Rubio for finishing third, just behind Trump. This might be their Plan B for the collapse of Jeb Bush’s campaign. Remember that the media are wholly aligned with the Democrat Party. Thus, when they favor one Republican over another, it’s because they believe their chosen Republican is the one the ultimate Democrat nominee will find easiest to defeat. Rubio, whose Senate career started with much fanfare, since then has demonstrated a willingness to waffle, to fudge on the facts, and to trim his sails for votes and favorable coverage. These are not general-election assets for a Republican candidate.
The media loves Rubio because he's an easily defeatable candidate. That's why the lefties are collectively shitting their pants over Trump; he's going to be really difficult for Clinton and/or Sanders to beat, and--worse!--if he were actually to win he might make good on at least some of his promises, which would be disastrous for their long-term goals.

Meanwhile, Trump's second place finish in Iowa means he has one less delegate than the first place winner, Cruz. As I said yesterday, anything less than a total defeat is a win for Trump, given his outsider status in the GOP and his complete unwillingness to toe the line set by the GOP elites. (Eschewing the Fox debate was as much a middle finger in their face as Fox's. Think about it.) Regardless, both Cruz and Trump are anathema to the Establishment; their preferred candidate was Jeb Bush, who has almost completely imploded--thank God!--which is why all their hopes are being pinned on Rubio.

Hillary is supposed to be the Democrat nominee this time around, yet she and Sanders are quite literally neck-and-neck. This, despite the "black lives matter" nonsense that marked his early campaign stops and which were suspiciously absent from hers. I don't know which of them will be the Democrat nominee but as Porretto points out the GOP must take him seriously, regardless.

* * *

I agree wholeheartedly with Karl Denninger, here. There are very, very few web sites I will bother looking at if they insist on showing me ads, because most web sites that host ads do so in highly annoying fashion. Nine times out of ten I do not need to read what's posted on a site; if you refuse to let me see anything useful there because you want me to subscribe or because I use an ad blocker, I guess I don't really need to read anything on your site.

I run an ad blocker because ads do nothing for me but cause trouble. (Recall please that a malicious ad on infected my machine with a rootkit that took me a week to remove.) And I'm not going to subscribe to your site for the sake of reading one article, once; it's not worth my time or effort. I am especially not going to pay you for it.

If this means I can't read your site, so be it. I don't care.

* * *

Oil prices are the lowest they've been in years and now people are wishing they were higher. Gas is now hovering near $1.61 in the Fungal Vale, the lowest it's been for more than a decade. I'm not complaining.

The low price of oil means cash-strapped people (self included) have more money for other things, which is good considering how deep and crushing the depression has been thus far. Anyone who wishes oil prices were higher probably has a reason for it, but that article makes it sound as if those wishing for higher oil prices merely are blaming the recession on low oil prices. That's putting the cart before the horse; the depression has caused weaker energy demand, and that is what's causing oil prices to drop.

The economy has to get worse before it will get better, and so far the banksters and politicians have done everything they can to keep it from getting worse, because then they'll lose money and elections. And to hell with what's good for everyone else.

* * *

Anyway, it's my Saturday, and I can relax. Why not do so?

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