Tuesday, September 11, 2007

21st Century Annoyance

Maybe this is just something that happens to me. (And if so, I will become even MORE paranoid!)

I am frustrated at the lack of follow through for messages. In the past couple of weeks, I have left phone messages and e-mail messages for various people and have not heard anything back. Now these are not just some "Joe/Jane Schmo" but people in positions of "power."

One person is from the diocesan office. Now this is not the first time that I have had difficulty with people in the office. I have found that it is pretty useless to leave a message because people will never return a call. Even if the person is busy, at least leave a message that you have received my message. Just to do nothing is annoying.

Another situation is leaving an e-mail for a person who is on a national LGBT help site. There are people designated to be contact people for the various regions of the country. But when I have contacted the person with questions, I have not received any response.

In both of these situations, if you are going to put yourself in the place of publicly saying you will help people, then it is rude to not answer your messages. People are counting on you! I am asking questions because I need information, you are the people either designated or self-designated to, if not answer the question, be able to guide me to people who can. To just ignore the messages is, as I said, rude.

Has anyone else encountered this? Is this just another social kindness that has gone by the wayside due to our "in-touch" society?


Anonymous said...

I find your experiences to be the norm rather than the exception.

Old Pastor said...

It's partly a result of the technology age and partly the "I'm too busy" mindset. Either that or it's just plain bad manners. Shame on them!

Steve said...

In gentle defense of SOME cases, I'm finding that (especially in the case of service providers) their service-level agreements are often set by a descendant of Genghis Khan, and the expectations are somewhat brutal.

But it irks the piss out of me when people in church (especially in church administration) don't return calls.

Sadly, however, I made about 20 phone calls when I was in Kansas last weekend, and got two of them returned. One from my pastor, and one from my best friend. Another one called back four days later. So yeah, even in the age of cell phones and Blackberrys, there are days when I feel "just above pond scum" in the call-return food chain....

Of course, there is also the other extreme - where people are returning calls on their e-devices in the men's restroom. I don't care how important you are, it's not that damn important. Wipe, flush, wash, leave, and THEN call them back.