Moustache

How (and how not) to handle a customer service snafu

I had two separate technical issues this week with web hosts. The first was with Dreamhost, who hosts this blog. They accidentally billed their customers for almost $10 million in extra hosting fees this week. The people who weren't successfully charged had their accounts and websites disabled. It was a pretty big deal. How did they notify people that they totally screwed up? With this joking blog post. That is their normal tone, and it's ok when they do something simple like erase your server accidentally (which has happened to me with them) or oversell their hosting capacity, causing awful performance (constantly happens). But when they try and charge their entire customer base for a whole year's worth of hosting at once? Not really the time for jokes.

Compare that to technical issue number two this week: Intermittent down time this weekend for Tumblr, the awesome blogging service I'm totally in love with. They had trouble because their big hosting provider went down. Even though it wasn't Tumblr's fault at all, they (and by they I mean he, it's basically a one man show) issued this straightforward, sincere apology and even released a new feature as compensation.

I guess it isn't too hard to tell who I am happier with right now.

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