December 7, 2010 1 Comment
To Whom It May Concern,
When I first learned of SMS and e-mail alerts, I thought to myself, “What a helpful service! Kudos, MTA/LIRR!” Now, three years hence, I’ve unsubscribed from all alerts. When I initially signed up I made sure to select only the hours in which this service would make a difference for me: The hours preceding my departure from home and work. Maddeningly, I could only select six-hour blocks, but c’est la vie; we all must make sacrifices when dealing with otherwise useful opportunities.
Up until 6 months ago I’d had nothing to complain about, but now I have a bone to pick. Messages are coming at all hours and at an irksome frequency (I’ve just received 6 text messages in 36 minutes). This is not a problem that exists between the seat and the keyboard, to use an industry phrase, as my settings have not changed and I clearly have my work hours blacked out and my colleagues and acquaintances are all receiving the unwanted “alerts.”
A note on these “Alerts”: An alert is not helpful if it comes while I’m already standing in Penn Station or packed on a train struck in the East River Tunnel. It would be helpful when a disruption first occurs so I know to stay at work as I have no reason to run for a train. Like so many people in Manhattan, I have stuff to do. With that said, I’ve taken note over the past two months and have noticed that in the past 4 major delays or significant incidents, alerts have not been sent at all, but the “all clear” is given some time later. I’d like to point out that Wins don’t count if you’re not accepting of the accompanying losses. Just putting that out there.
This is a system-wide issue that needs to be dealt with. And while I appreciate that this is a free service, you surely have staff devoted to it that is tasked with its oversight and care. The effectiveness of this staff needs to be evaluated because to quote Bruce Willis, “[They’ve] done a piss-poor job.” I look forward to any announcements about changes in the alert system and will re-subscribe at that time. For now, I must bid you adieu.
Just because we don’t have choices doesn’t mean you can treat your customers like idiots. You will also be able to find this letter on my blog: Aright, Doom!
All The Best,
[Ed Note: Join me in my fight against the LIRR. Comment below to show our strength.] #yesImserious