Can You Blame Them?

Can You Blame Them?

Submitted by: dunno source via Oddly Specific

The help desk at my university had this same sign posted. As such, I was always extra polite to the techs, just in case they were serious.

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50 Responses to Can You Blame Them?

  1. This is how I felt when I worked in retail. We should just be allowed to tell the general public they’re idiots.

  2. K72 says:

    This needs to be enforced more often. I somehow think we will benefit in the end.

  3. Sparrow says:

    I need a sign like that…

  4. rach says:

    I wish I had this sign when I worked in retail….

  5. Your Lord And Master Foamy says:

    Now, if that can be turned into a license you could get from the government, we could kill all idiots and get away with murder!

  6. risu says:

    So much win here. Is he sitting at a desk that has legs?

  7. QD says:

    Actually, a sign like that would make me try to formulate the stupidest question in the world just to tweak them. And then I’d set the sign on fire.

    Seriously, anyone posting that sign deserves all the intentional and focused misery they get.

  8. shego219 says:

    Firecrotch! …Literally.

  9. Ebilcat says:

    This sign is pure awesome for anyone who’s worked customer service/retail…people need to remember the person behind guest service are people too, not just drones for you to bitch at.

  10. Kurt says:

    He’s not sitting at a desk with legs. He had to stand up to set the guy on fire.

  11. the cat says:

    …and it looks like he lifted the desk up with him. Else why can we see his legs below it?

  12. Jami says:

    Wish my boss would let me put that one up at the library.

  13. Seibee says:

    Agreed. There should be one in all stores.

  14. ultrakewt says:

    He’s actually standing in front of the desk. They really should use an outline or a different color or something, though…

  15. ultrakewt says:

    And I agree that every retail store should have one of these posted. And every inbound call center should have this message play while the caller is on hold to get through to you.

  16. TJ Downes says:

    Does the picture imply that they will set your crotch on fire?

  17. eddy_h says:

    I’m SO giving this link to the tech guys at work…

  18. I met a person whose father used to say to him, “that’s a stupid question”. He said his father and he were estranged as soon as he could get out of his house. Customer service that uses negatives, even pseudo-humourously, as setting themselves up to be estranged from those who think there might be such a thing as a stupid question. Don’t show passive-aggressive hostility to those you serve, its not the right tone to set.

  19. oregonbird says:

    In two weeks, there won’t be a fringy conservative left in the country. Then, we export the sign.

  20. Jami says:

    @Oregonbird – you mean fringy liberal.

  21. Lyone says:

    QD and George W. Obama have obviously never worked at a public contact job. So much of the time at these jobs, clients don’t even bother to formulate a question, they just bark a couple of words at you and assume you know to add the appropriate question words before and/or after the bark. Question askers can be so rude and self-centered so often, it is infuriating. In fact, anytime someone has the attitude that a person behind a desk or counter is there “to serve” him, I would say that there is already hostility and estrangement, not to mention downright objectification — and that’s all coming from the *customer* and being directed at the information specialist.

  22. Eileen says:

    People – it’s a JOKE! Get a sense of humor! Geez! Political correctness!

  23. Mr Helpdesk says:

    It’s a two-way street. I could have happily fixed the caller’s problem in ten seconds, but have to listen to ten minutes of complaining about how cheap the computers are, and how stupid the support people are. When they finally are spent, I ask nicely (even though they’ve earned a beating by then) how I can help them. While a small percentage of callers like that are just plain evil, most do it because that’s the crappy environment where they work, and they spread their “joy” to anyone less powerful than them who can’t fight back.

  24. Siirenias says:

    Georgia Obalma is definitely correct. The sign should read “Ask a question, and we will set you on fire.”

    That way, the public won’t have to worry about being set on fire; they’ll know for certain!

  25. Madge says:

    So the customer isn’t always right anymore? I don’t think anyone under the age of 30 actually understands that statement.

    Retail employees stink. They’re rude to customers. You think the public is stupid? And you have a PH.D. but sells jeans instead? Whatever. You treat the consumer with contempt. No wonder most of my friends would rather pay shipping online than deal with this nastiness.

  26. ellroon says:

    At first glance I thought the sign was showing a flight attendant trying to serve drinks to the Underpants Bomber…

  27. Dr. Mike says:

    Actually, this is a new sign that you see when you now enter the airplane – It means “Please throw this wet blanket on the crotch of your neighbor if his underwear begins to burn”…

  28. I need to laugh more says:

    ellroon and Dr. Mike, you people made me laugh even more than the sign. Thank you!!

  29. Wulfenbach says:

    @madge: You’ve obviously never worked IT. No, the customer is not always right, and is actually always wrong. 9 times out of 10 they’re the ones who broke something through idiocy, boredom, or what have you. Like our boss says, users are only good at two things: lying and tinkering.

  30. Iggy says:

    It seems the help desk has invested in Dr. Forrester’s Cellular Desks.

  31. Jay says:

    I think it’s important to remember that a good number of people are rude, unhelpful and downright mean to other people.

    And I’m sure people have had experiences from sides of both being the retail employee, trying to do their job, or having a surly teenager serve them.
    I remember when I worked in a cafeteria/restaurant at a department store. The lunch rush would always come in with the most aggravated people. Luckily most realised it’s not our fault towns are crowded or whatever issues are pissing them off. But every now and then you get people who just want to scream at someone.

    At the end of the day. That’s life. The sign is funny. ^^ (Because, possibly, it highlights that desire all of us who worked in the hospitality sector have had at least once ^^ )

  32. dminus says:

    If we killed all the idiots, who would be left on the planet?

  33. Woody says:

    @Madge: People like you are precisely the reason people want this sign. And no, the customer is not always right. In fact, the customer is frequently wrong. However, those of us who’ve worked retail (and help desks!) will do our best to help you, but when you berate us, insult us personally, and generally behave like an a$$, we tend to be disinclined, for example, to accept a return on an item that was obviously abused. We also won’t be encouraged to answer you questions quickly on the phone, instead putting you on hold while we recover from your invective. Note that this recovery takes a long time.

    Getting back to the sign: Is the guy on the ground roasting a wiener?

  34. ThetaSigma says:

    Always be polite to the techs, we know how to hurt you in new and inventive ways! Of course, I say that as a theatre tech who therefore has access to power tools and electrical components.

  35. william says:

    Does any one else think that should be at Aperture science labs help desk?

  36. d~ says:

    One of my helpdesk employees responded thusly:

    I guess the ticket would read-
    RFI*: Stupid Inquiry
    EU asked stupid question. Set on fire. Closing call.

    *Request for Information

  37. IT/Customer Service. says:

    @Madge: No, the customer isn’t always right anymore. The customer has never been right; this idiom and the people who spout it when trying to abuse the retail employees are the bane of all intelligent people working in customer service. No, I don’t have my PH.D, but I’m using the meager amount they pay me to put myself through grad school to get it, which is more than I can say about the high school dropouts who feel they have the right to verbally abuse me. If you would like perspective on this, try actually working in customer service (unless you already do, then you MUST be with management) and dealing with these idiots.

    Ha! That sign’s hilarious!! I’m thinking of printing it up SUPER HUGE and pasting on the wall behind our own desk

  38. Becca says:

    Retail would be so much easier with a sign like that.
    Heck any help desk job would be. Lol!

  39. Shauna says:

    @Madge- YOU are a prime example of the customer being WRONG. I have worked food, retail, adn I currently work for a hotel. And guess what? The EMPLOYEES in the service industry are the ones who get abused, not the customer. I am so tired of people walking around with a sense of entitlement, thinking that they are so much better than the “little peole.” But guess what, jerk-face? And tis goes for everyone who thinks that the service industry has no right to complain- THIS COUNTRY RUNS ON THE LITTLE PEOPLE!!!! WHat do you really think would happen if the ENIRETY of the service industry went on strike for a week? A month? Who is gonna make your lattes? Who’s gonna ring up your groceries? Who’s gonna sell you the clothes your 6 year old needs? NO ONE. You will be arsed out and on your own. We are TIRED of being abused by the consumer! I have had things thrown at me, I have been yelled at, I have been physically threatened. And not in ONE instance was I at fault. The consumer is an idiot, and I think that this sign and others liek it need to be in every service establishment. When parents abuse their kids the state steps in to save them. Who’s gonna save us?

  40. Lola says:

    Stupid questions are fine with me as long as they are polite. I’d rather have them ask a stupid question then assume something and get mad at me, or someone else, or fuck up the situation even more. Obviously the person who made that sign has never had to deal with NASTY customers, because I’ll take 20 dumb asses over some of the rude, callous, thoughtless jerk-wads I deal with at work.

  41. Chris says:

    @Lola, I see your point, actually, I see both sides. While it’s much better to give them an understanding rather than let their assumptions fuck something up, I still want to set people on fire when they ask, “Can I use my computer when the power’s out?”

    And that has happened. Not often, but it happens.

  42. Sen says:

    Wait, what’s their idea of stupid?

  43. D-JP says:

    this is sooo funny…… I just wish that the MOD and the DOD had signs like this…. i could also use one at home….. hmmmmmm

  44. nerder says:

    That would be a tech support/info. desk person’s dream!
    I used The Google and it sent me to a Twitter acct. based in Melbourne AUS, where in it is stated that someone put up sign saying this. Not sure if it this exact sign or not.
    Captain Unecessairly Verbose away!

  45. William Frost says:

    One of my friends was wearing a shirt with this on it a while back…

  46. Sam says:

    I’d be irritable too if i had to carry my desk all day.

  47. ENGINEER says:


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