How do you get me upset? There aren't many ways, but one is to provide me with awful customer service and then respond to my complaint in a childish manner. So here begins my tale of an attempt to get a camera repaired by Darn Toothy Sam.
Back in October I was out with a friend and dropped her point and shoot while taking a picture. Unfortunately, the lens was out and it ended up getting bent. After attempting to repair it ourselves and deliberating between buying a new camera or getting the broken one fixed we decided to get it repaired. I checked a few different repair services and finally settled on Darn Toothy Sam due to it's price and the fact that it is based in the Minneapolis metro area.
So I shipped the camera off on 11/18 to be repaired. According to their website they take 7-10 days once they receive the camera to repair it and send it back. Taking business days as the 7-10 days I expected to receive it sometime in the first week of December. Well that week came and not only did I not receive the camera, but I hadn't heard anything at all about the camera yet.
On December 3rd I sent a status request using the company's online form. I didn't hear anything back for four days so on December 7th I sent an email to their listed email address for inquires. Still no response so I called. One number did not provide a voice mail box and the other number was never answered though I was able to leave a voice mail. They also have an online chat function that for the first 2-3 days of perusing this never appeared active when I checked it. I emailed once again, and finally resorted to hunting for them on Twitter and Facebook to attempt to solicit some sort of response.
Finally on day five of attempting contact I checked the website and lo and behold the chat function was working. I logged on and chatted with someone named Eric who was sort of helpful. He told me the part for the repair had come damaged so they had to order another part. I requested an email when the part arrived and a response from management both of which were promised.
Two days later the camera shipped. It required a signature confirmation and it took me until Friday to pick up the camera. It works like new and I am satisfied with the quality of the repair. I received one written apology for the delay in the repair from the owner, but that wasn't until I had to work my butt off to speak to someone. At no point did anyone offer to do anything for me other than mail the camera once it was repaired and let me know when it was shipped.
I should note that I paid for this using Paypal, I filed a dispute after the initial four day wait for a response as it was becoming my only recourse. This is the final message I received before I closed the complaint on Friday.
Thanks for the nice messages on Twitter. It's interesting how we stole your camera and yet shipped it back the day after we got in the part and fixed it.
We attempted to deliver your item at 4:40 PM on December 12, 2009 in MINNEAPOLIS, MN 55405 and a notice was left. You may pick up the item at the Post Office indicated on the notice, go to www.usps.com/redelivery, or call 800-ASK-USPS to arrange for redelivery.
I responded to this final message
The problem was your lack of communication. You took longer than the promised time and did not give any indication of why this was. Once I attempted to contact you it took THREE days to get any sort of response from you despite multiple calls and emails. I appreciate the fact that it was delivered and repaired as promised but your overall lack of responsiveness leaves me unable to recommend your services to anyone. Additionally your response to this dispute has done nothing to help solve your glaring customer service problems.
The three days is actually incorrect, it actually took over 5 days and took me logging onto the website and finding the chat function working. I wrote the dispute response before I checked my email logs.
The whole reason I'm writing this is to either encourage Darn Toothy Sam to reach out to me and prove that they actually give a damn about customer service or to discourage anyone from using their service. It's quite disheartening to send someone money and a camera and not be certain if they even received it or are planning on repairing it.
Do you think I overreacted to their delayed response or was I right to be upset? Have you ever had a camera repaired, and if you had where did you get it repaired?