July 25, 2008
Lyza Gardner, a vice president at a Web development company in Portland, Ore., used Twitter to vent about a $183 cable bill last month. (The bill was prorated for almost two months of service.) Her comment — “very angry at Comcast” — set off Mr. Eliason’s search tool, prompting him to type out his typical reply: “Can I help?” The response caught Ms. Gardner off guard.
“It’s one thing to spit vitriol about a company when they can’t hear you,” she said in an interview. It’s another, she said, when the company replies. “I immediately backed down and softened my tone when I knew I was talking to a real person.”
I have effectively waited all my life to be called Ms. Gardner by the New York Times.