Friday, 31 January 2014

Reply from a Robot

As regular HPANWO-readers will know, I've been involved in a minor issue regarding an unpaid mobile phone bill about which I recently posted an update, see: I've received a reply from both O2 and also Lowell Portfolio I; strangely enough, even though there has been a delay of almost a month since I wrote to them, both letters arrived in the same post. This also happened last time they replied to me.
Here's O2's (with my comments in brackets):

Hello Benjamin, (Benjamin!? Nobody has called me that for years! My mother used to when she was angry with me.)
Telefonica O2 UK Ltd are registered under the FSA (Financial Services authority) and the deed of assignment will be in the terms and conditions that the customer agreed to where the contract was taken out. They were hold of personal copy of this themselves (sic) which was posted when the account was opened. If you'd like to review your copy please visit the O2 website.
02 are not bound by the CCA (Consumer Credit Association) like a bank or credit agreement and therefore do not have to issue a default notice or deed of assignment. This account has now been sold on to Lowell and we are unable to deal with your query.  Please contact Lowell directly in relation to this account.
O2 Debt Management Team.

So they're refusing to address the points I made in my original letter; they're simply hiding behind some clause of the FSA handbook which allows them to breach basic contract law and the fundamental rules of economics.
Let's have a look at the letter from Lowell:

Dear Mr Emlyn-Jones,
Thank you for taking time to contact us recently.
I confirm that your complaint has now been passed to the Customer Relations Department who will carry out a thorough investigation. We will investigate this as quickly as we can and we may need to contact you for further information to provide you with an update. If we can contact you by telephone, we will be able to discuss your concerns directly with you and hopefully agree a resolution with you verbally; this is the quickest and easiest way for us to resolve this for you. I would like to assure you that your account will be placed on hold, and we will stop all collections activity whilst dealing with your complaint. We enclose a copy of our internal complaints procedure for your information. Please take time to read this, as it explains following the steps we will follow in responding to your complaint.
In the meantime if you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact my team by calling the free telephone number which brings you directly through to the Customer Relations Department.
Yours sincerely,
Head of Compliance. Lowell Portfolio I Ltd
(The signature attached the name is printed)

Head of Compliance? Goodness, that sounds scary! Does he carry a whip and electric baton? This is quite clearly just a template letter with my name inserted. They send them off to anybody who initiates any kind of grievance against them. Clearly they're not going to answer my questions at this time.
What strikes me about both these letters is that I don't feel I'm dealing with a living person. The tone makes me feel I'm addressing a soulless machine. I wouldn't be surprised if I am, especially with the second letter. Of course I could always phone their helpline as they advise me to, but even then, how do I know I'm dealing with a human being? This chilling YouTube video demonstrates that I cannot know, see: You can bet the programmers are right at this moment updating the software to make the voice able to say the words: "I am not a robot". 

One of my favourite films is Terry Gilliam's Brazil, see here for more details: Our real world is becoming more and more like the setting of that film. The machine is run by humans, but those humans are being encouraged to behave like machines; until such time as machines are sophisticated enough that they no longer need us. I don't believe there'll ever be a matrix-like situation in which machines willingly take over by themselves. There will always be people... or Reptilians... at the top of the heap and those machines will be merely the tools of those people. However, the control structure at the moment is still dependent on human acquiescence. Apart from David Icke, the thinker I most often like to site in my own literature is George Orwell. His novel Animal Farm was written as a fictional allegory of his viewpoint on the Marxist revolution in Russia, but it contains many more general themes that foresee his later work 1984. The setting is a farm in which the animals rebel against the farmer and his human staff; and they take it over and run it themselves, trying to make it a plentiful and just society. However their efforts fail because of corruption within the new regime. The pigs slowly but surely become the new controllers of the farm until they reach the point where they are indistinguishable from the pre-revolutionary human tyrants. One of the most interesting and poignant scenes is when an elderly cart horse, and the hardest working animal on the farm, falls ill. Instead of recognizing his dedication, arranging veterinary treatment for him, and looking after him for the rest of his life, the pigs sell him to a butcher and he is taken away to the abattoir. In the scene where the horse is driven out of the farm, the vehicle the butcher uses is a horse-drawn one. I found this curious because the book was written in the early-1940's when lorries were in common use. However there's a distinct reason why Orwell chose to make the horse's death-wagon a horse-drawn van. The other animals realize what's happening and call after the vehicle warning the horse and urging him to escape. But they also appeal to the two horses pulling the vehicle: "Comrades, comrades! Don't take your own brother to his death!" But the two horses pulling the van just keep on trotting along, obediently doing their jobs. And isn't that just like humans? That was Orwell's entire point. Imagine if those two horses had realized what they were doing and refused to pull the van. That is what we must all do if we're going to cast off the yoke of the New World Order and have our own "Animal Farm".


HIGHLAND said...

I am not a robot...that was pretty Scary.

good article ben :)

Yes we need our own "animal farm" ie country that savee our humanity, to live in peace and be humans and ot controlled by international-Capitalism.

God bless!

Ben Emlyn-Jones said...

Thanks, Highland :-)

God bless