UPDATED ON FEBRUARY 21ST
Major Nelson emailed me to let me know that nothing can currently be done. When I asked about some form of compensation, he chose instead to ignore the email. This, coupled with the emails and XBL messages I have received from various people, have convinced me to set up Xbox Strife
, a site to catalog and report problems people are having with their Xbox Live accounts and their interactions with Xbox Customer Support.
The site has just launched, but I will be adding more information shortly.
I moved from the UK to the US back at the end of June, and made the rather idiotic assumption that I would be able to use my Xbox Live account in the US without any problems. I was, of course, Horribly Wrong.
Firstly, I can't pay for my account using my US bank account details. Inconvenient, I thought, but I can buy membership cards instead. it turns out that each region uses a different algorithm, or whatever, to generate their Membership Card numbers, meaning I bought a card I couldn't use. So I called the Xbox Live Customer Support line to see if I could perhaps get my account migrated over so I could enter my new US bank details.
This was a mistake.
They told me that they couldn't migrate my account, but they did offer these three solid gold
- Import membership cards from Amazon.co.uk, ignoring the fact that the price of a Gold Membership in the UK is approximately $80, plus shipping.
- Ask a friend or relative in the UK to pay for my membership for me. Again, this still works out more expensive, and if nothing else is pretty bloody cheeky.
- Go back to England.
I've been told by two
advisers to go back to England. Offensive? Maybe. Hilarious? Definitely. I expressed my anger - politely, of course, as I used to work in a call center myself - and for my troubles I was hung up on. Three times. This does not a happy Squirminator make.
So I started to email Customer Support instead. I explained my problem carefully and politely, and I also expressed the problems I'd had with the Customer Support phone line. They quite obviously read every word in my emails carefully and with due consideration before sending me the following advice:
Please call our Xbox Customer Support at 1-800-4MYXBOX (1-800-469-9269) at your earliest convenience, and weâ€™ll be happy to help you. We are open everyday from 8am to 12mn US Central Time
Was this their grand scheme? To keep me in some kind of circle-jerk going back and forth between email and phone, getting angrier and angrier until my head explodes
and they don't have to speak to me anymore? No, it turns out, because after I sent this
People of the Xbox Customer Support email-reading team, please attend carefully. The message that follows is vital to the future of you all.
You seem to be somewhat missing the point of these emails - I have called and spoken to Xbox Customer Support concerning this issue numerous times. Lots of times. Lots and lots of times. If I had $1 for every minute I had spent on the phone with Xbox Customer Support I would have a good few hundred dollars. You do seem to be rather missing the point, I feel. Calling Customer Support has so far got me no further on this issue, but has resulted in me being told to "Go back to England" twice. I didn't find this statement offensive before, but I could find it very offensive for the media.
You may notice I've CC'd a couple of people in on this email. Just drawing this to your attention.
Now, please do me a favour: Read this email. Read it from the very bottom right the way to the top. All the way. Every word. Please do this before you rush to click the "Reply" button to send me the very useful advice of "Please call our Xbox Customer Support at 1-800-4MYXBOX (1-800-469-9269) at your earliest convenience" because I've been told to do this before, I've done it, and I've been verbally abused, hung up on, and so on. I hate to tow the Discrimination line here, but this is discriminatory against me as an immigrant and I want something done about it.
Seasons greetings and the like,
...I was sent this
his is an automatically generated Delivery Status Notification
Delivery to the following recipient failed permanently:
Technical details of permanent failure:
PERM_FAILURE: SMTP Error (state 16): 550 5.7.1 <Your e-mail was rejected by an anti-spam content filter on gateway (220.127.116.11). Reasons for rejection may be: obscene language, graphics, or spam-like characteristics. Removing these may let the e-mail through the filter.>
So either they find the word "discriminatory" offensive, or they've had enough of me and blacklisted my email address. Either way, this doesn't bode well. I've forwarded my correspondence to a couple of gaming media websites, but where can I go from here? What, if anything, can I do?