spiritchrysalis: (pebkac! (help desk / IT))
As of a couple hours ago, this post was going to be very different. Now, it's a summary of my Better Business Bureau complaint, and public.




Primary Nature of your Complaint: Failure to honor a repair estimate or agreement

Tell Us About Your Problem:
When All Seasons Home Remodeling came to repair our closet, I outlined the repairs I wished to have made in clear, simple detail. The repairs were as follows: 1) reflooring the closet floor with new, finished/varnished/smooth floorboards, 2) removing the broken wood closet pole supports, 3) adding a sturdy metal pole with supporting metal flanges, and 4) sealing and covering the hole in the ceiling with something waterproofed and professional looking as it looked up into the house insulation. I reviewed these repairs with Gary Mercer, their lead contractor, at the time and had them confirmed.

When one of his supporting contractors, Barry, came to perform the repair, his impression of the work required was quite different. It was confirmed that he received this list of repairs directly from Gary. He believed the repairs were as follows: 1) covering or "patching" the loose and broken floorboards with half inch unfinished plywood, 2) adding a wooden dowel as a closet pole, supported by metal flanges and brackets, and 3) covering the hole in the ceiling with more plywood without any waterproofing. The removal of the broken wood closet pole supports was not addressed.

Over the course of approximately an hour, as each of these discrepancies were made clear, phone calls were made by Barry (the on-site contractor) to Gary (the lead contractor), and by myself to Joannie (the receptionist/admin/dispatcher -- unsure of her formal title) and my landlord. Before I continue, I would like to make it clear that Barry and Joannie themselves acted with the utmost professionalism; Barry started showing me the provided materials and waited to perform work until he would hear from his boss, and Joannie stayed in contact with me throughout and assisted with much of the communication to Gary, offering her profuse apologies. As of the last set of phone calls, Gary was on his way back with a metal closet pole and finished floorboards, and wanted to talk to me briefly before commencing work to make sure we were all on the same page. Barry left to perform work at another site nearby, indicating that he would likely be back once Gary and I had spoken, indicating that the floorboard and closet pole work was "an easy job" and would only take a few hours.

After waiting an hour for Gary to arrive, I called Joannie to find out his estimated time of arrival. She called him to find out and called me back, stating that Gary had declined the job without informing her or me, effectively stating that it was too much hassle and that he didn't think I would be satisfied with the work "with all the changes I wanted," placing the blame for the difference in work expectations solidly on my shoulders. He also added that he had to pay Barry for an hour of work despite him not doing anything, necessitated by him having to wait to receive clear orders from Gary. Joannie was incredibly apologetic and said that she thought Gary -- who she now confided was her brother -- was not behaving appropriately, stating, "Oh, there are things I want to tell him too, believe me." She offered to make one more phone call to persuade him, which I accepted, but called me back to inform me that his decision was, sadly, final.
spiritchrysalis: (RigelThessaly)
As of a handful of days ago -- oddly enough, since about when my Google+ account was suspended, but I don't think the two events are related -- I've been experiencing an odd GChat bug.

No matter what I do, my GChat status lists me as Busy to other people, with absolutely no status message. I can try to change it to any number of statuses in the Available or Busy category, either custom or provided, and it doesn't change what other users see. The only time I'm now listed as available is when my iPhone app IM+ overrides my status and lists me as Available on my phone.

This happens regardless of what machine I'm on, what OS I'm using (as far as I can tell), or what browser I'm using.

The closest thing I've found to a comparable bug is this:

http://www.google.com/support/forum/p/Talk/thread?tid=4f2c52fc3f08b397&hl=en

That has more to do with being stuck in Available mode, however. A few days ago I found a thread about being stuck in Busy mode which I can no longer find (and didn't save, sadly) which seemed to indicate that updating one's version of Java would help, leading a Mac user to say that they couldn't use that fix as Apple has its own version of Java. Even so, I've cleared the cache from my browsers and made sure I'm not logged in elsewhere, and it doesn't seem to help.

Anyone have any ideas?
spiritchrysalis: (LainCurled)
This morning, I bopped on over to my Google+ account to add some folks and post something. In trying to do so -- add people or post -- I found I couldn't. I couldn't even get to my Circles page.

And then I tabbed over to my Profile page, and found out why. It was suspended for violating their Community Standards.

If one goes to said page, one will see the list of Community Standards. They include:
- Nudity and Sexually Explicit Material
- Hate Speech
- Impersonation
- (unauthorized publishing of) Private and Confidential Information
- Copyright (infringement)
- Illegal Activities
- Spam, Malware and Phishing
- Display Name (aka not using your birth name)
- Profile Picture (including mature of offensive content)

Supposedly, this is to stop people from creating fake accounts and spamming. And I get that. Even so, this is effectively indicating that using something other than your identified name is as bad as copyright infringement, spamming, hate speech, and promoting illegal activities.

There's also the Google+ Project page on one's name and Google profile. It mentions "three different types of use" for Google products: identified, unidentified, and pseudonymous, but it doesn't really get into how those types of use function. (It does mention that you can't use Buzz or +1s without an identified name, though.) Google's public policy page on personal identification also touches on this, but not extensively; all it mentions is that you can use YouTube or Blogger with a pseudonym. (Because, you see, Blogger and YouTube are a form of self-expression that deserves anonymity for reasons of safety and/or privacy. Google+, it appears, is not. At least Twitter got this right, allowing you to call yourself what you like and lock your tweets.)

I've given in and used my real name on my Google+ account. But I'm not happy about it. I've turned off my search visibility in my profile, but that's not really what I was looking for. I just wanted to identify in the way I felt fit me best. And now I can't add people to Circles, or post, or pretty much do anything but read, until they re-review me and deem me appropriate. All I have is this:

"Your profile was flagged for violating our Community Standards and is currently under review. During this time, you will not be able to fully use Google services that require an active profile and your profile will not be visible to others. Check back soon for the review results."
spiritchrysalis: (RigelFedora)
I should make it clear that the houseguest logic puzzle that was endemic to the apartment this year has not been an issue in prior years. It was due to a combination of a longstanding and unresolved difficulty between myself and a frequent visitor of the house, and living with an ex. If you or someone you know would be interested but is otherwise hesitant due to this, come talk with me about it!

Thanks!
spiritchrysalis: (HardShell)
I'm considering initiating radio silence on most social media. If I do, I may still post the rare question or update if I think this is the right medium for it. But all personal posts would be made privately, at least for a while.
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
Hello, all!

As most of you (may) know by now, I'll be out of the country from the evening of Wednesday, July 7 through most of Tuesday, July 20. What you might not know is that I will be almost completely out of phone contact during that time. (I'll be trying out what this blog suggests regarding using your iPhone as an iPod Touch with the reasonable number of free WiFi spots in London.) While contacting me over e-mail (or possibly direct message over Twitter, provided I see it) is much more reliable, I will have a system in place for phone calls if need be.

Inbound: Google Voice
If you need to get in touch with me during that time, call my Google Voice number. If you don't already have this number, call my cellphone and my extended absence greeting will tell you it. Do not leave a message on my cellphone during this time as I will not listen to it. Let me reiterate this. I will not be listening to my cellphone voicemail while I am out of the country. I will, however, be using my WiFi access to read the transcriptions of my Google voicemail messages, and listen to them when I can. Please expect a 24 hour turnaround on voicemail at best.

Outbound: Google Voice or Skype
If you need me to call you (family emergency, complicated personal thing that just can't wait, etc.) I will be trying out Skype or Google Voice for this purpose, depending on whichever is cheaper. I still need to look in to that. If at all possible, though, e-mail/IM/DM is best for contact while overseas.

Finally . . . I have a spotty and very expensive text plan that automatically charges me when I receive one, if I get it at all. I'm not sure it won't count it as an international call off-plan if you send me one. Please don't do it.

So! To reiterate:

1. While overseas, please expect online contact rather than phone. E-mail, IM, direct message, Facebook . . . all ok.
2. If you need to call me, call my Google Voice number.
3. If I need to call you, I will call through Google Voice or Skype.
4. For the love of all that is holy, PLEASE don't send me texts. Seriously. Send e-mails or DMs instead.

Thanks!
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
This was brought to my attention through [livejournal.com profile] jadasc. Thank you.

A recent LJ exploit, described here, may have changed the security of your topmost LJ post and released the e-mail address associated with this account to the attacker. LiveJournal seems to think it's pretty mild, all things considered, but you should check your post anyway.

It happened to me. Whee!
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
I went through and made another LiveJournal add and purge tonight. Most of my purges come from people who have unfriended me; I don't tend to have people friended who don't have me friended in return. Most of my adds were from people who I know well enough to recognize friending me.

If you still have me friended and I haven't friended you back, here are some possible reasons why:
1) We don't know each other at all. I don't tend to add complete strangers unless given a good reason to.
2) I haven't figured out who you are. Hello! It might be best to post here or on some other public post indicating how you know me. (Please remember that these comments will be on public posts and, as such, please do not post anything using my real name or information that conservative employers might balk at.)
3) I'm lame and have somehow missed your add. This happens on occasion. You may need to poke me.
4) Drama. I can't think of a situation where that's happened, but I suppose it's possible that I could be forgetting something. Maybe.

If you're wondering why you need to friend me to have me friend you back, well . . . I just prefer that kind of parity. I've made rare exceptions for certain people I've known a long while like [livejournal.com profile] anu3bis and [livejournal.com profile] laurion, but I'd still prefer they have me friended.

If you'd like to change something about our friended / unfriended status, let me know.

Thanks!
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
Shamelessly stolen from [livejournal.com profile] thirdson. I burst out laughing when I clicked on this.

Clickie!

Addendum: Sadly, they seem to have fixed whatever was causing that. Oh well. ;)

Snippet

Oct. 22nd, 2006 01:45 am
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
The older I get,
the more I keep
to myself.
spiritchrysalis: (RigelBunny)
I didn't believe this until I saw it myself, even when [livejournal.com profile] tikva mentioned something similar on her LJ.

I'm losing posts on my friends page.

I've heard the rumor that if you go above a certain number or so LJ just isn't as good at registering all the posts. Is this true? Is there anything I can do other than cutting down on my friends list? I can go through all my social circles and try to put a filter on them so that if I decide to read by filters I get everything, but that seems like a royal pain.

I noticed it for certain today when I went to someone's LJ page and saw a post made last night that simply isn't showing up on my friends page between now and then.

Help?
spiritchrysalis: (Default)
ZephyrIRC, or my ability to use it, appears to be down for the moment. This seems to have happened over the course of last night. If you want to get in touch with me about something, Zephyr is not the way to do it for now. Please try e-mail, AIM, or phone.

Reminder to Self: Write post about various methods of contact for you, and what is more or less successful in different circumstances.

Addendum: Zephyr's back.

Profile

spiritchrysalis: (Default)
Rigel

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