Little Help Here

Is it just me, or are all the customer support sites pretty much useless? Maybe it’s because I speak English, or maybe it’s my Okie accent, but for some reason I am unable to communicate with these people. Okay, I’m hearing impaired, there’s that. It’s the primary reason I use the phone only as a last resort. If I’m lucky and catch a deep-voiced male from Texas who says things like, “I can hep you with that, partner”, I’m home free. What I usually get is a whispering female with a voice so high she can talk to birds and lives in New Delhi.

Sometimes, you get a support site where a little window pops up that says chat. I love that. Instant answers to your questions. Well, maybe not instant. There’s the wait time after you click the chat button, but if you hang in there, words will appear, something akin to “Thank you for contacting us. My name is Paul. How can I help you today?”

Now we all know his name isn’t really Paul. More likely it’s Aniruddha or Mahatma, but Paul makes us Okies more comfortable so we go with it. I had reason to chat with Paul recently. Paul represented a company that made security surveillance cameras. Due to an uptick of crime in the vicinity, I thought it prudent to add another layer of home protection with the ever-vigilant, always watching, video cams.

I wanted something simple, set it and forget it. I settled on a system that claimed to be just that. And it was…almost. I plugged it in, the cameras synced up, the picture was clear. All I needed to do was set the recording schedules.

There are two types of recording, the manual explained, continuous recording and motion recording. I set up the continuous recording for the following night and all went well. Lots of video, no intruders. So then I’m thinking, I don’t really want ten or more hours of video every night, what I need is to record only when motion is detected and then only in the dark of night. I didn’t need a video of the Missus every time she circles the house looking for her cats. (This happens waaay more often than you might think…unless you know the Missus.)

However, the manual was quite vague on how to set up a scheduled motion recording. Plainly, it could be done as it was explained in the instructions that motion recording will show up as a yellow line on the weekly calendar screen. I had no yellow line. Enter Mahatma, I mean Paul, into the picture.

I type my problem in the chat box as clearly and concisely as I can.

Paul replies: One moment while I find a solution to your question.

The moment was more like five minutes, but there it was; a link to a You Tube video titled, Step by Step Instructions on Motion Recording.

I give my thanks to Paul and call up the video. I watch it once, I watch it again. Am I missing something? The video is nothing more than a power point presentation of a page in the user manual titled…wait for it…Motion Recording.

I go to plan B, look up the Support email address, and once again outline my problem.

Thank you for your question. We will get back to you in one business day.

Three days later, I get this reply: Please click on the link for a video on Step by Step Instructions on Motion Recording. In addition, here’s a link to the page in the Manual for further help. Feel free to contact us again if this does not answer your question.


I decided this called for a spooker. Poured myself about two fingers and swirled it around a few ice cubes, waiting for the amber glow and the blood pressure to drop before once again composing my message…in detail, lots of detail with underlining, all caps, bold letters, and enough repetition to cause the eyes to glaze.

The next day:

Dear William, (They didn’t even get my name right.)

Thank you for bringing this to our attention. The manual is in error and is being rewritten. This system does not have motion record scheduling. You can, however, press a button to turn that feature on and off manually.

The Support Group


Drive a man to drink.






Published in: on July 18, 2017 at 3:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

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