For The Front-line Workers

For The Front-line Workers
Photo by CDC / Unsplash

I wanted to take some time and bring to light the plight a great many of us deal with on an almost constant day to day basis. This is for those front-line workers that deal with the general public. Many of us have had experience in this field of trench warfare. The balance in trying to appease the most vile of customers while trying to not be fired from an unsupportive management. You’ve seen plenty of videos on TikTok and elsewhere of customers resorting to the most vile, dehumanizing acts of animalism (that’s being insulting to animals by the way) we’re slowly becoming numb to this. 

This isn’t a piece to draw shame to those people who act in this manner but to the actual humans who have to deal with them. The positions have different names and most times are behind the phones or screens but still have to deal with this mess. For them, solving problems is a mix of solving problems from many directions. From incoming emails or chat messages, there can be up to hundreds if not thousands of issues that would have to be taken care of each day. A lot of the issues that the general public brings up are password or account log in problems. For many people, having to learn and keep track of passwords is something that we haven’t really had to deal with thirty years ago. Lately you have to make sure you have a completely different password for each account you have and the complexity of those passwords are becoming more and more complex each year. So as this problem persists, many are resorting to using the same password for just about everything. This brings up yet another problem, account security. 

Making sure your accounts have enough roadblocks in the way of potential bad actors from getting into it a job in itself. For us creators we must keep our personal and business lives separate not only for our own personal security but, for the security of our family as well. We can fall prey to becoming these Karens who scream and yell when things don’t go our way. It’s hard to remain calm and collected when our livelihood is on the line and your account is informing you that the password you’ve used for months is no longer valid. Instantly you fire off that Tweet to the company, demanding you be let back in or else. And most times you would be right. With the complexities of security, systems are prone to fail more and more with no fault of your own. 

We’ve seen very large creators have their accounts hacked and taken over by those continuing the scam of some crypto-wallet or something to that effect. Linus Tech Tips was one of those accounts who you would think would be on the front of keeping their things secured. Simple human error was all it took for a bad actor to gain access and the channels associated with their main account were taken over. Luckily for them they had the backing of being a multi-million subscriber YouTube channel with the back of being a quite large company. They were able to get their channel back rather quickly. But this is not to say you or I would have the same result as we would be met with silence or canned responses from YouTube since their customer service or support teams are simply not there for us smaller creators. 

This falls on the other side of the coin. Companies are continuing to streamline or even remove entire departments to cut costs and please their shareholders chasing that ever elusive dragon of rising profits every quarter. Their focus recently is using more large language models or AI to take on the burden of support tickets. It’s easier for them to go this route as you could essentially go through more trouble tickets per hour without really providing that actual support an actual human could provide. Sending replies back with links to some FAQ page or having the customer go through unnecessary steps to make the support process a bit more painful in which the customer essentially gives up and either goes away or deals with the problem without a solution. This has been ongoing for many years and is partly the reason why companies are resorting to these methods. It’s cheaper and easier to rely on AI or bots to do the work, than having to deal with these pesky humans who demand health benefits, ever increasing wages and oh so much more. There will come a time where we have to ask ourselves if it was important for me to have screamed at the employee in order to get my refund or be angry at the company instead. That front line worker isn’t the one who is making the decisions that are affecting you or your accounts. Direct your anger albeit in a not so disgusting manner, towards the company. It’s easy to say vote with your wallet but, in this environment it’s truly hard to do that these days. No, the moral is try to put yourself in the shoes of the front line workers and treat them with respect that you would want to be treated with. 

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