Thursday, September 25, 2008

Poll Etiquette: A bit of a rant

I spend much of my long days working on the phone, I spend hours and hours dealing with people who seem to think that common etiquette is not required when you are talking to a "pollster" or who believe that, even if they are not speaking to a recorded voice, they are not speaking to a human.

  • When you hang up before we even say a word, we will call you back.
  • If you say you are to busy to answer even one question (most of the time your excuse is longer than the response we request of you) we will call back later.
  • Weren't you raised with manners? Do you interrupt everyone like that?
  • When you provide us with stupid fake answers, no matter how polite we sound, we know you are trying to throw off our poll and we aren't taking your answers down.
  • When you fuck with us, don't be surprised if we fuck with you and call you back.
  • If you politely decline our poll, we will remove you from the list, if you decline our poll in a less than a polite way, whether we remove you or call you back is at our whim.
  • When you interrupt us, you have to account for the fact that stopping mid word may have our voices still carrying even after you finish your rude interjection, no need to repeat yourself.
  • Our ears work just fine, there is no need to yell.
  • Your verbal assaults on the party or candidate we represent will not get back to anyone of importance, don't waste your breath.
  • There is no need to use four letter words.
  • No, there is no rule that says we need to state that it is a survey, we are asking questions, isn't it obvious?
  • No, there is no rule that says we need to stop calling at 8pm. We wish there were such a rule more than you do, guaranteed.
  • No, the constitution does not say anywhere that we cannot ask you who you support, you have the right to decline, but do so politely.
  • Oh hey, we don't know what your job is, so if you are obligated to remain nonpartisan, just say so, don't yell at us for asking.
  • If you hang up without saying a word, we are certain that we just got disconnected, we'll surely get back to you.
  • If you list your candidates of choice as Mickey Mouse or Donald Duck, we will probably call you back when you get back from disneyland.
  • Dog commands are insulting, not effective.
  • Just because we have a shitty job doesn't mean we are stupid, chances are we are at least as well educated as many of you if not better educated. We all have shitty jobs because we all have four year degrees in things like politics or international studies or history...
  • Believe it or not, in a year like this, there is more than one organization asking you about politics. Doing one doesn't help the rest of us. We'll probably call back.
  • Personally, we don't care who you are and who you are voting for unless you want to volunteer to do these calls with us.
  • When you get upset and you yell and your voice cracks, you sound like an ass.
  • When you get upset about the number of times you've been asked, you should think of the number of times we have to ask... And we will do it again.
  • Don't try to be witty in your refusal or answer, you'll be the only one to appreciate it, or maybe your buddies that you brag to while watching NASCAR.
  • We want this to go quickly more than you do, don't draw it out. Please.
  • Save you sob story for someone who can do something about it, as much sympathy as I may feel for you, there is nothing I can do.
  • When you waste your breath trying to insult me over the phone, that's all you're doing: wasting your breath.
  • I don't get paid well enough to be polite, you are just lucky that I have better manners than you do.
  • Why the hurry to hang up? If you say you don't want to take the poll we aren't going to try again, and usually we're wishing you a good evening and not trying to curse you.
  • We don't care how much you like or dislike either candidate, don't elaborate.
  • If you don't want to talk to us after 9pm, try not answering your phone. Doesn't everyone have caller ID these days?
  • Quit being a little bitch, nobody likes this. It's just part of life. During the campaign season. It'll be over November 5th.
It's not all bad though, some people are delightful and we love our supporters and volunteers and even the people who at least decline politely. Simple pleasures.