I’m very much of the mind that technology is simply a human enabler.  That is, technology does what people could do, but faster, more accurately, and in novel ways.

Twitter is very much one of these technologies – another way for humans to communicate, something they would do otherwise.  In fact, there are ways that things can get done outside of Twitter, but sometimes Twitter is just the best mode to complete the task at hand.

I recently complained about a negative user experience on Twitter.  Much to my surprise, I was contacted by someone at that organization in an attempt to rectify my situation.

Someone from (supposedly) from AT&T contacted me – and told me that they would try to help.  I responded to Chris with a way to contact me outside of Twitter, and waited.

One week later, I was still waiting.

It turns out that Chris may likely be a Twitter Bot,  a program that simply searches for “AT&T” and responds with the automated script:

Hi, I’m with AT&T. I’m sorry you’re having trouble. Follow me and DM your contact information and I will try to help.

Unfortunately for Chris, and for me, he didn’t try very hard to help.  So, what did I do?  I tweeted again, but this time I made sure to include @ATTCustomerCare, an account run by Molly, AT&T’s Customer Care Team Lead.

Here’s what my tweet said:

@ATTChrisL Still waiting for your response re: 1/19 tweet. What would be most helpful is my final bill amount and due date. @ATTCustomerCare

By including @ATTCustomerCare, I made sure that it would be seen by Molly.  And it was.  Within an hour, Molly had tweeted back:

@shaycolson Saw you tweets to @attchrisl. Pls DM your acct/wireless number and I can get the info you requested.

I sent Molly my information, and by lunch, she had what I needed: my final bill and due date.  She even told me that she was working on it when she didn’t have an answer in an hour.  I really appreciated this, mostly because it allowed me to leave my needs in a message and continue to work while Molly helped solve my problem.  No need to wait on hold, no need to explain my situation to a rep on the phone.  Just someone helping me get what I need.  Wonderful.

Molly at AT&T is not the only one who is making customers happy through Twitter.  Check out this recent article from The Consumerist: JetBlue Responds to Tweet, Goes Looking for Passenger’s Sunglasses.

JFK -> MCO I left my sunglasses in the JetBlue x-ray bin. If anyone finds them, I’m at gate 22. Thanks.
The employee didn’t find the sunglasses, but did look, and found the passenger!
Wow. Someone from JetBlue actually saw my tweet, went looking for my sunglasses at xray, and found me at the gate. That’s service!
The point here, like the title, is that it’s not about the tweets, it’s about the tweeters.  The people behind the technology make all the difference – both good, and bad.  Chris wasn’t much help – and not because of Twitter, just because of Chris.  Molly, on the other hand, would be a great representative on the phone, online, or (I suspect) in person.  Congrats to both Molly and the JetBlue representative on going above and beyond.  Your efforts were noted and appreciated!