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EA and the hotline…

So there we have it. The new SimCity didn’t have a lucky start. Time for EA to act
and give all loyal buyers a free game for the initial problems, SimCity was prone
to. Okay, the mail from EA tells it is very easy to claim the free game. Just log in
to origin, launch the “Featured tab” and grab the desired free game.

Pretty easy and convenient as the date for the release in EMEA was scheduled for March 22nd, 2013. Today, 3 days AFTER the release date, there’s no such free game for me to pick from unlike the statement EA has released for all those who have purchased and activated SimCity before March 26th, 2013.

Following the instructions of EA just yields the following picture…

While writing this blog entry, I am already waiting 45 minutes in the phone loop line listening to the looped music… *sigh* – Thank god, my battery has a long stamina so I could put up the handsfree mode of the handset! Holding a phone for this long can be painful and when listen ing to the same music makes you sort of… um… aggressive?

I wonder what’s so hard keeping a good service line. The games are online-distributed and still very expensive. One should think that providing a good service hotline should be no problem then.

WRONG! It seems as if stock shareholders are once again more valuable to a company than it’s customers who ACTUALLY pay LOTS of money so that the shareholder moneypig is filled once more. So keeping up a good service line iss essential if you want to have satisfied customers in the future. A company having 5.29billion US$ in the back (according to Yahoo stock news) should be able to easily set up a working and reliable hotline.

Though I am not mad about the free goodie not appearing in my library it’s the principle behind! When someone is promising something and even writes a long e-mail about this, then a company should stick to it and try to serve that promise as best as possible. In this case waiting almost 1 hour in the phone loop is just not acceptable. If the past days have shown that there’s a HUGE request line from SEVERAL customers, then first thing should be to stock up the hotline in order to provide good service.

I am wondering what will happen to EA if many customers weren’t able to claim their free goodie due to this horrible customer service line. The shitstorm is incoming and EA doesn’t seem to do anything against it. But one thing is for sure: The bad reputation after such a shitstorm isn’t contributing well to the stockl value. One more look at the Yahoo financial site has shown that EA is steadily loosing value. A big drop was on March 19th, 2013. But I guess, it didn’t have much to do with the SimCity debacle. However the common tendency is reflecting what I am actually writing about: Bad service and customer care is not doing well on stock sales as one can see.

Keeping an eye on Activision Blizzard with it’s good support (see World of Warcraft and other online-related games) shows that the stock value has risen from 10 US$ to 15 US$ in the past 6 months. EA however was raising from 14 US$ to 19 US$ but in the last week they’re falling back to 17 US$. Should even worry the CEO then.

Dear EA managers: Service and reputation relate to each other. If either one fails, then the whole company will suffer! And in times where social media, websites, blogs and other electronical media is present for sharing experiences, this could mean a HUGE loss of repuation within days!

Setting narrow claiming times for goodies isn’t helping either. If you already knew that there were hundres of thousands of people who are eligible of that free goodie, then a time window isn’t helping much and clogging thin-staffed helplines. Maybe you should hire a consultant who shows you how to satisfy customers who are already annoyed…

Usage of a “client” to distribute online games should be well-considered and before setting time windows for goodies, you’d better check if all works well. Anything else is just ridiculous and also annoying

My blog article is now finished, my waiting time has hit the hour-spot (71 minutes to be exact!) and according to the EA website, the hotline is operated from 10am to 7pm – Let’s see if they kick me out of the line in 20 minutes as the supporters don’t work then anymore. You’ll read about my experience tomorrow or even today at this blog entry. Stay tuned…

Update March 25th, 2013 – 7.15pm:

After my 90-minutes-oddysey in the phone loop, I hooked up and fund an information that swiss customers haven’t received their free game yet due to technical reasons. They’re applying a fix and tomorrow the free claim should also be available to swiss customers. Gheez. Why can’t they combine and update all the information on ONE single site so that one doesn’t have to google for it for hours…

Okay, back to some relaxing and then let’s see what’s arriving tomorrow… *YAWN*

Just my 2 cents. Enjoy the start of the week!

March 25, 2013 Netspark - 1594 posts - Member since: May 9th, 2011 No Comments »

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