Robots have their uses, but it’s not conversation

Having real trouble thinking of a birthday present for a fellow VFC member, I thought I’d turn to Amazon. He’s not the type to have a wish list, so I thought I’d be clever. I set-up a new user account on my PC – so no cookies – went into Amazon found a few films he likes, rated them and hit recommendations. Hey presto, up came a list of VFC films – clever Amazon robot – and a couple we hadn’t seen. So I took flyer and went with one we hadn’t seen.

Still pleased I thought I’d e-mail Amazon and suggest they create this as a proper new feature. You know; tell us what your friend likes and we’ll recommend something.

You’d think they’d thank me for taking the time, but no. Instead I got a standard response on how to set-up a wish list to tell people what I want. The thing is, they’ve no scripted responses for when people suggest new features – how could they? – so if you do suggest something they can only reply in gobbledygook.

For more recent comment on the horrors of call centres see Space Hardware, but don’t forget they’re not all robots.

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