I had a question about some tickets I had bought online with Ticketmaster. I was trying to reach a real person but this was seemingly impossible. I was talking to a computer who was supposedly working with voice recognition software. I was meant to say the number of my order into the phone, and it would repeat it back at me. I said each number slowly and clearly into the receiver. And, contrary to the usual background of screaming/crying/yelling kids, it was surprisingly quiet at the time. That was because I was alone in the house. Which almost never, ever happens. It was a miracle, in fact. However, that's another post.
Anyway, the computer said, "This is the number I heard," and said a number. Of course it was wrong. It asked, "Is this correct?" to which I answered, "No!"
"My mistake," it continued pleasantly (for a computer), "please repeat the number."
So I did, this time enunciating even clearer and stating it very loudly and slowly.
Wrong again. This time when it asked if it was right, my "No!" was a little testy. But the time I'd repeated the very long number for the third time, I was starting to curse the automated voice in my head, and my tone was downright irritable. I finally hung up on it, which didn't make me feel better at all, because it was a COMPUTER! I didn't even have the satisfaction of annoying someone else the way they were annoying me. Although I guess you can say things to a computer that you wouldn't dare to a human, like, "You are stupid! Did you recognize that?!"
I mean, what about people who don't have English as their first language? What about people who have a speech issue? I haven't had a lisp since the fourth grade and I still have trouble. How do other people deal with these voice un-recognition software things? This isn't the first time this has happened to me. I have tried them when I'm trying to find out the extension of a person working in an agency. I'll say, "Jane Doe" and it will say, "I am connecting you to 'Frank Logan'."
"No!" I will yell, "No, no NO!"
"I am connecting you to Jane Doe now..."!