For the USA

What was one of the biggest reasons I got rid of my Verizon phone? Aside from the sucky service and terrible battery life, it was because of poor customer service. Not only didn’t they care when I called customer service with my issues, but they were unwilling (or unable) to solve a basic problem for me: my phone couldn’t display dates in UK (dd-mm-yyyy) or ISO (yyyy-mm-dd) formats, and it couldn’t display times in 24 hour. I think it would take a programmer less than 15 minutes to add those as options for future phones. It still wouldn’t work outside the country, though.

I’ve noticed this kind of thing a few times. Today I had to enter some security answers for online credit card access, and a hell of a lot of the pre-defined questions that I have to pick from are solely geared around the USA.

“What high school did so-and-so attend?” – they don’t call it high school in England, but I’ll let it slide as it’s a translation issue.

“When is so-and-so’s birthday (MM/DD)?” – I am not sure why they even need to know the format, since it accepts any string input.

“What is the last name of your 1st grade teacher?” – I can’t remember that far back. Even so, they are not called grades in a lot of other countries, including the UK. Translation issue again, but who remembers that far back? For me, that was 1985!

“What was your favourite college year?” – Questions like these are really problematic to me. Not only are college and university two separate things in England (we have two years of college before we go to university), but asking me what my favourite year was may result in a different answer depending on my mood.

“What’s the name of your elementary school?” – I am still not certain what elementary school is.

“In which city did so-and-so get married?” – City? Many times I am asked what city I am from in England. Addresses don’t work that way in Europe; we don’t all live in or near a city.

“Who did you go to prom with?” – We don’t have prom in England. Oops.

“What state did you first visit (other than the one you were born in)?” – That’s a big assumption! I guess I can still answer this one…

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