COLUMN: Complaining should not be necessary to get proper service


Luke Taylor

Rob Le Cates is a sophomore journalism major and can be reached at 217-581-2812.

Rob Le Cates, Photo Editor

Last summer, I dropped my laptop, which shattered the screen. Before you say “you need to take better care of it,” trust me, I know.

I tried my insurance to fix the issue but was kicked back because it apparently didn’t cover a cracked screen. Fine. Whatever. 

I tried Double Hammer and they recommended I try the Union Bookstore on campus because there are Apple-certified employees there who can offer cheaper repair fees.

Shout out to Double-Hammer; that was very thoughtful. Little did I know the several-week repair would turn into a prolonged seven-month process.

I brought the laptop in late July and I was aware of a few things: the Union’s Apple system was down and the part needed to be back-ordered.

I was fine with the timeframe because it wasn’t like I was going to try and find another nearby location to repair my laptop that could be cheaper than the Bookstore.

I called back a few weeks later to check in on the status of my laptop not realizing I would soon develop a sense of deja vu with the Bookstore’s customer service. 

Over the next six months, I would constantly hear a variety of things about how the Apple system was down and how the repair was or wasn’t done, with mentions of how the ITS department could submit the repair into the Apple system so I could get my laptop back.

Finally, I was sick of hearing the same blend of stories regurgitated and did something I should’ve done way sooner. I complained.

It is astounding how a strongly worded email, talking about how difficult it has been to complete school work for an entire semester without a computer and insisting appropriate compensation be paid can solve a problem.

I sent the email on Wednesday and received a call saying my laptop would be ready the next day. 

For those who know me, I am not one to make workers’ jobs and lives more difficult than they already are. To those I made contact with: I don’t hold any sort of negative feelings towards you.

I think it is completely unacceptable to hold a laptop for more than half a year and then turn around and say it can be picked up the next day, especially after saying it could take another week or so before I could pick it up less than a week prior. 

At the end of the day, I am very happy that I have my laptop back, and that I got it done for free and a complimentary $25 gift card, but this seriously influences how I see the Bookstore’s tech repair system. 

I don’t want to call anyone in specific out or drag anyone in the mud. I understand that there have been some difficulties and changes within the department, I am just agitated that this happened.

I hope that it will never, ever take someone complaining to get the proper service they are owed from our University.

Rob Le Cates is a sophomore journalism major and can be reached at 581-2912 or at [email protected].