Home Featured 10 Things Your IT Guy Wants You To Know [PSA]

10 Things Your IT Guy Wants You To Know [PSA]

10 Things Your IT Guy Wants You To Know [PSA]

A great list of some things we all wished our users knew.

1. Don’t argue with me.

If you come to me to ask technical questions, please don’t argue when you don’t like my answer. If you think you know more about what you’re asking than I do, then why even ask? On that same note, if I am arguing with you, it’s because I’m certain that I am correct; otherwise I’d just tell you “I don’t know” or perhaps point you somewhere that you could look it up. We don’t argue just for the sake of arguing.

2. If you say you’re an idiot for doing something, I’ll likely agree.

When you start a conversation by insulting yourself (e.g. “I’m such an idiot”), you will not make me laugh or feel sorry for you; all you will succeed in doing is reminding me that yes, you are, indeed, an idiot, and that I’m going to hate having to talk to you. Trust me, you don’t want to start out this way.

3. Don’t lie about what you did, we’ll find out anyway.

We’re okay with you making mistakes; fixing them is part of our job. We are NOT, however, okay with you lying to us about a mistake that you made. It just makes it that much harder to resolve and thus makes our job more difficult. Be honest and we’ll get the problem fixed and both of us can continue on with our business. Lying to us and, therefore, costing us twice as much of our time will not win you any brownie points with IT.

4. IT might be awesome and powerful, but even we have limitations.

There is no magic “Fix it” button. Everything takes some amount of work to fix, and not everything is worth fixing or — gasp! — even possible to fix. If I tell you that you’re going to have to re-do a document that you accidentally deleted two months ago, please don’t get mad at ME. I’m not ignoring your problem and it’s not that I don’t like you, we just can’t always fix everything.

5. Don’t cry wolf.

Not everything you ask us to do is “urgent”. In fact, by marking things as “urgent” every time, you’ll almost certainly ensure that we treat none of it as a priority.

6. It’s pretty likely you don’t have the most important job.

You are not the only one who needs help, and you usually don’t have the most urgent issue. Give us some time to get to your problem; it will get fixed.

7. Like an elevator button, we won’t come to you faster if you keep pushing ours.

E-mailing us several times about the same issue is not only unnecessary, it’s highly annoying as well. We record issues in a database so that we don’t lose track of them (remember how we ask that you create a ticket? That’s why.) We will typically respond as soon as we have a useful update to make. If your problem is urgent, please do let us know (but see number five).

8. Email me, we’ve got 5 devices that tell us when we get a new email.  However, many of us still only have one that tells us when you left a voicemail.

Yes, we prefer e-mail over phone calls. It has nothing to do with being friendly or anti-social, it’s about efficiency. It is much faster and easier for us to list out a set of questions that we need answers to than it is for us to call and ask you them one by one. You can find the answers at your leisure and, while we’re waiting, we can work on other problems.

9. Don’t cry.

We may, at times, seem blunt and rude. It’s not that we mean to, we just don’t have the time to sugar coat things for you. We assume that we are both adults and can handle the reality of a problem. If you did something wrong, don’t be surprised when we tell you. We don’t care that it was a mistake because, honestly, it makes no difference to us. Please don’t take it personal, we just don’t want it to happen again.

10. We can do most, if not more than the things you think we can do, but we don’t because we don’t really care.

Finally, yes, I can read your e-mail, yes, I can see what web pages you look at while you’re at work, yes, I can access every file on your work computer, and yes, I can tell if you are chatting with people on instant messenger (and can read what you’re typing, as well). But no, we don’t do it. It’s highly unethical and, perhaps more importantly, you really aren’t that interesting. Unless I am instructed to specifically monitor or investigate your actions, I don’t do it. There really are much more interesting things on the Internet than you.

Granted, I gave this list a more satirical edge with a short summary of each point, but hey, we were ALL thinking it, right? – Rob

Republished with permission from: [EvilRouters]

[Picture Source: stringbot (CC)]


  1. Also, remember, you are the one who broke it, not us. It’s not our fault that your six month old peed on your company laptop, and no, I don’t want to hear the excuse’s, it’s your fault, and my job to fix it, now shut up and move out of my way. -I so want to say this to someone.

      • And smell better too quite often… might just be my experience but it seems that the people who argue with me most also have the poorer hygeine.

    • You are one of those morons. We are tech elitists, we get paid to be. We are condescending because idiots like you can read a goddamned web page or pop up box, or don’t follow procedure or wont stop cruising the internet for malicious downloads. You don’t get it. Were are the grown ups in this situation, you are the precocious children who all to often cry about upgrades you do not need, why this or that happens when you implicitly tell the computer to do it. You complain out of ignorance because it gives you an excuse to be incompetent, cry and treat every simple problem as if it were the end of the world. You are not important, you are not unique, every other moron who can’t read directly what is on the screen in front of him or cant be bothered to take two fucking minutes to use google with proper search terms, or for fucks sake the the fucking manual are the same. Adults acting like children. 1 out of every 20 problems is actual hardware or software, the rest: user error

  2. And if I’ve told you that you need to reboot before contacting me, then DO IT.  If I send you an email outlining some steps you need to follow, then READ and FOLLOW THEM.  I don’t send out email for my health. 

  3. Here’s a few other things

    If I’m considerate enough to come to your house because you want your personal computer fixed (outside of my work hours at that), remember that I don’t have to do this and also keep the  following in mind:

    1. Future problems are not my fault. This computer is yours. You know exactly who has used it. It is in its
    current condition without any outside interference, especially from me.
    I, on the other hand, am about to spend several hours of my own time
    trying to get it back into the condition it was in before you or someone
    you allowed on your machine screwed it up. So, two months down the line if I get a call
    from you, saying, “That program you installed messed up my computer.” I
    will beat you until it causes hydrogen fusion. (Or at least I will
    imagine myself doing it)

    What one must understand that the vast majority of the computers I fix are broken because of
    some bullshit the owner has installed (like some program
    that changes their cursor into an amusing animated kitten). Maybe, they’ve
    been playing some online flash game that just funnels in malware as fast
    as their connection and processor will allow. While fixing your
    computer I will explain all of this, and talk about how an entire
    industry of malicious free downloads thrives purely because so many
    Internet users are trusting souls. As a result, no amount of antivirus warning
    popups will convince you that the people distributing “Wild Bill’s
    Poker Roundup” for free want anything but the best for you.

    So, I
    go through and strip out the malware, toolbars and Trojans, then
    install protection like Malwarebytes or something like it to help block
    this type of deceptive shit in the future. Then, two months later, I get
    that call: “I don’t know what you did to my computer when you were here but
    it’s so slow now that I can mow the lawn waiting for it to check my
    email. I need you to undo whatever you did.” This usually results in me driving down (usually with various thoughts of violence lingering) Where this exchange occurs:
    “Wait, where’s Spybot? The program I told you to leave on there?”

    “I uninstalled that. It was messing up my computer. It wouldn’t let me play any of my games.”

    Sure, it was Spybot, not the software I told you about you vacuous dipsh- “Wait! What happened to the antivirus?””Oh, I got rid of that, too. I was downloading music, and it
    wasn’t letting me open the files, so I had to get rid of it.”I don’t think I need to tell people how annoying this gets.

    2. Set a place at the dinner table for me. Different problems demand different solutions, something that looks like it may take an hour may have a cause that takes 6 hours to fix. Since this is a house call and you’re asking a favor of me, odds are, this will not be like fixing your machine at work which means I may also have to undo 8 months worth of bullshit just to get everything working decently. In fact this is where gratitude is much appreciated because if this is a house call, odds are I’ve canceled all of my plans for the day. No I can’t tell you how long this will take and no I cannot magic myself a solution in less than an hour, so plan on fixing me dinner because it’s the least you can do at this point.Keep in mind, the only reason I haven’t knocked you out is because I know that most of your “computer knowledge” comes from Hollywood and Hollywood doesn’t know a damn thing about what they are talking about. It isn’t something that can be done with a few keystrokes, a GUI interface and 2 minutes of my time.It may surprise you, but one symptom can have several different causes (and if it’s malware, it’s supposed to be hard to remove, otherwise it’s not effective now is it?). That means I may be looking all over forums for people with the same time of issue and that means a lot of reading. Sure it could be malware, but if it’s because of a registry error then that means pursuing one solution can take a while and then another and then another until I can pin down the problem (no two problems are necessarily alike)3. Don’t ask me how to make your 10 year old computer faster. If I hear anything along the lines of: “I just bought new software and my computer won’t run it.” The only thing I’m going to tell you is to buy a new one. Wal-mart sold it to you cheap and you get what you paid for, integrated components and a mother board with no expandability. No I can’t “put more memory in it” because there’s no room and even if there was, it’s not the only thing I would have to upgrade. No you can’t sell it on E-bay for a couple bucks, because no one has a use for your obsolete machine.

    4. Wipe means everything. Okay this is what we in the IT field consider to be a nuclear option (or at least close to it, short of zeroing out the hard drive). All options have been weighed and considered; trial and error has forced us to this last resort. This prompts me to brief you on everything that has been tried and any other options that may sit on the table (I believe in bringing clients/bosses options, not problems). This is where I tell you that I may need to wipe your hard drive and ask you if you are sure you want me to do this. If I get the go ahead, that means EVERYTHING is gone. If I hear, “Where’s my email? And all of my music?! And my pictures?!” I will facepalm and then exit the premise before I act on my now violent imagination. This isn’t “wipe” as in cleaning a countertop, this is wipe as in everything is gone, you won’t get it back and you’re starting all over. Think of it as a second chance to start all over and start treating your computer like the delicate information tool that it is…and on that note. See you again in a couple months.

  4. 11) Lack of proper planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine. You leave shit until the last second, don’t get pissed when I don’t have time to drop everything and fix it for you.

    • When you are an executive of my compnay, then lack of proper planning on your part DOES constitute an emergency for me — so if you want to show me that you actually care about the people who keep you in your high paying job, crack open your $500 book about Project Management from your $100,000 Wharton School education and read about planning better!

      • “Lack of proper planning” is not the same as “does stupid things that our company policy says not to do to our company’s assets.”

        Yes, the IT person will still have to fix a bonehead mistake as an emergency but it’s not invalid to say.

  5. My favorite of the week was “The printer won’t print.” So I ask “does it say anything on the screen?”  User “Ya, it says F user error”  Me” That would be a fuser error.  I’l  call for a repair”

  6. I’m a 20+ year veteran in IT and I sympathize with your frustrations. But you’re coming across like a pompous ass. We make good money doing what we do, and every job has it’s downsides. Dealing with the people you speak of in this article is one of them. If you don’t this side of IT, you are more than welcome to find a new career path. I believe you can avoid this type of frustration flipping burgers at McDonalds. So by all means, get the hell out of my profession. Actually, what I find more frustrating in this line of work than dealing with the users, is dealing with my pompous, know it all, peers. People who work in this industry are just too overly critical of others.

    • Oh you’re right, we should just roll over and get walked on…no problem. Just because you’re more than likely someone who never says no and probably has no backbone doesn’t mean we are like you. The gripes listed here are legit. I don’t care if it’s my job and if these people are my “customers”, there is no excuse for stupidity. Being computer illiterate is one thing and understandable, but being a complete moron with the inability to comprehend simple instructions all the while holding an executive level position is mind boggling. IT is the read headed stepchild of most every organization in existence and you wonder why we develop attitudes? Look, I treat every one of my people with respect even if they don’t return the favor. I don’t roll my eyes or huff and puff when they call. I don’t hang up and call them idiots after solving a problem. They expect me to be available 24×7 and get angry when I tell them I am in the middle of dinner with my family. So, Mr. Self Righteous, why don’t you get the hell out of this conversation and let us vent?

      • IT people are hated and “Walked on” because overall they’re arrogant jerks. They’re the source and the solution to the problem. I know this because I’ve been right there with the same attitude as the author, and then turned the corner over the years and realized how much that attitude sucks. People respond better and treat you better when you’re not a know-it-all jerk in the first place.

    • If IT being the most clever in that building, is not capable of overcoming these communication issues with a good and leading dialog, training and patience, perhaps IT is not clever as much as they think of themselves..! Stop overlooking and insulting nice people around you, accept that not everybody is as much technical as you, and build up a friendly and respectful environment, things will be solved on it’s own.. Or go work in an other field..

      • You think customers who can’t handle their own computers are annoying? Work in the food industry for ten years, since you were a teen and into your younger adult years, deal with the customers on a regular basis, and you will either a) snap or b) learn patients. Trust me I know what I’m talking about. One minute thing wrong with someone’s meal and they come at you like a shark after the scent of blood. Now it’s frustrating to deal with stupid people, and angry people. Some people cannot be pleased, and others will never learn. But you know what? They put food on MY table, and pay my rent, and feed my cat, and pay for my phone, and etc etc etc. It may not always be the best of jobs, but once you pull your wedgy out of your rear it aint so bad when you learn to shrug it off and ignore the idiots and move on with your day.

    • Sorry mate, but this is total bollocks.  Specifically paying attention to issue #5.  This has happened to me multiple times, on multiple occasions from the same [group of] users who happen to have a relatively incompetent manager.  Numerous times I’m putting off projects I have had in my pipeline in order to bang out their “urgent” needs.

      So I spend all this time coding and developing this solution based on the description and information that they gave me about what they wanted and how they wanted it to work.  Staying late nights, missing out on MY time at home with my gf and whatever else I choose to partake in on my off time… only to have them 1) NOT use the solution, at all, and fail to tell you that “the client no longer needed it.” and 2) decide after it is all completed and the final product delivered that “this is not what they wanted…. when the fact of the matter is, it is EXACTLY what they wanted and there is documentation to prove it.

      This like this make people angry.  I do not have the time nor the inclination to be rushed into something that is deemed “urgent”, when it is clear that they are only trying to pacify their customer at the expense of my personal time.  If you as me for a solution and I provide you with such solution, do not spit it back in my face.  Either it wasn’t urgent, or you don’t know what it is you want.

      Your post is bang out of order, mate..

    • Maybe you are making good money, but I’m the senior IT person in my company, I manage the tickets, Act as a back up tech cos the others are always too busy, keep the layer 2 network routing independent Internet connections to each company in our bulding up, Keep our own office running, Setting up specialised machines for a project we have (Part of which somehow includes having been made the contact person for problem with the software they run cos the developers dont want to get “bothered” by the users, but wont give me access to their systems so I take hours of back door hacks to keep people running and most the time I have to guess what I’m doing ??), do favours for my directors friends/family/random person they just met and I’m really here to develop our internal systems.

      I work 12Hours a day even though I’m contracted to 8 for no overtime just to keep up with the load and I’m scraping by each month, to the point I where I only eat every other day and hand wash my laundry in cold water,

      Ok I had a real bitch session there, but most the time I’ll plod on through all this without complaining too often.

      I do agree you need to be polite to people, and I always try to be when dealing with people. I’ll have no problem telling people I dont know everything and need to do a bit of reserch/consulting when a more complex problem faces me (once this resulted me being called into the bosses office and being crapped on for not making up something, because the client went bitching to him that he is hiring idiots who dont know anything. I was told in the future if i’m in that situation I should just make up something that sounds technical)

  7. I feel every employee without a degree in IT should do a mandatory day course on How to use a computer, so they can learn basic terminology like task bar, desktop and start button

    • and those of use who DO know computers but choose not to be in IT are paid for a day of sleeping…..not the best use of company resources.  Perhaps an evaluation for proficiency…

      • Sorry Chris, I’ve found you out. Knowing “computers” makes you sound like a tool. That’s something a user would say.   SHUNNNNNNN.

    • Or, like most businesses already do, requirements for a job should state proficiency with a particular system and set of software. Just because someone is completely comfortable in windows doesn’t mean they know what to do when their video card goes on the fritz.

  8. As a manager, 1 and 9 will get you fired.  No person is always correct and nobody should act that way, and being a callous jerk creates a horrible workplace environment.  I realize this is satire, but I don’t want a young fresh IT person just starting out to think they needn’t have people skills.  However, I might actually send 2-8 and 10 to my people tomorrow.  Kudos overall.

    • Really?  So, as a manager, rather than getting the non-IT people in the company to respect the word of your people (who are representing you, by the way), you will allow the time for arguing to be wasted?  And, you’d prefer your people to sugar-coat an important issue, rather than impressing on the user that the mistake that they made was actually a serious one?

      The most important role for a manager is to protect his employees from other departments.  In return, his employees are there to make him look good to the company.If you’re going to fire people for these “crimes”, you better find a different career, because your management career is not going to last very long.  And you probably won’t have any employees, either.

      Remember also, that this is satire.  It’s what people are thinking, not how they are acting. It’s pointing out everyday situations that seem to plague IT professions.  And, trying to reach out to those who commit these faux pas to get them to think about what they are doing when they commit them.  I for one agree with all the points made here, and although would never act on any of them, am going to forward this link on, because it’s appropriate.

    • Can you please post your name and company so I can tell all my young fresh IT person cohorts to avoid you and your company like the plague. Thanks! (see, the ! is people skills at work)

    • I think there are a lot of people who will fail at these instructions.  And spend 15 minutes pretending that they followed these directions, when instead, they have no clue how to follow these instructions.  Of course, twenty minutes later, you will tell them that this was a joke.  And, they’ll pretend that they knew that, all along.

      Back in the 1990s, I created a simple Windows application that did absolutely nothing. It was a “bit bucket cleaner” tool.  It had a fancy GUI.  It pretended to rearrange dirty bits and then remove truant bytes *in the proverbial bit bucket*.  It popped up status messages.  All of the prompts, messages, progress bars were clearly gimmicks and the whole app was satire.  A good 99.9 percent of those who downloaded the comical little application seemed to have no problem figuring out that this was nothing but a joke, a utility to “make those pesky bits in the bit bucket behave.”

      One day, after a very long day in IT, I was walking home, when I received a cell phone call.  From a co-worker from IT.  He was exasperated and at the end of his wits.  An executive’s computer was not working well.  So my co-worker went on the Internet to find cleaning tools.  He found my spoof, recognized my name, and, without reading carefully, assumed that this tool would do the trick.  After five attempts of using my “tool”, he called me telling me that he was stuck, and asked what he ought to do next.

      I asked him if he paid any attention to what the application presented in prompts and modal windows.  He said he did not have time to look that closely; the executive was very distracting.  I calmly told my co-worker that this was a spoof, and that he needed to pay closer attention to what he was doing…

  9. You people hating on the author needs to chill.. this is satirical.  You KNOW you can relate to this.  You know its’ funny.  Stop taking it so literally, grow a sense of humor, and take comfort in knowing there are other IT Folk out there dealing with the exact same shit you’re dealing with.  Just because this is a bit edgy doesn’t mean any one of us would say any of this verbatim to a client/coworker — it’s put this way for our amusement.  So enjoy the joke, relax a bit and share with your friends!

  10. Funny how these ITs don’t follow the same list when they ask us
    electronics technicians to fix their $h1t. They lie, argue, cry, they
    think they have the most important jobs, they always say it’s “urgent”
    and bug us with non-stop phone calls. And yes, they think they’re
    “awesome and powerful” until we expose how STUPID they really are! 

    • if youre fixing an it guys electronic things and they resort to the above, then they are low quality it. i dont need electronics repair help. thats why im a computer technician.

    • And neither would you if your computer didn’t work. Think about that before you start hating on IT. What could you do in your job if you had absolutely NO access to corporate files? Programs? Phones? Because all of that is managed by IT.

      So, how about, if nothing is wrong, email your IT people thanking them for the job they do. THAT will get you brownie points for damn sure.

      Most IT people don’t give a flying fuck how the company makes money, their sole job is to make sure the company doesn’t come to a screeching halt when things go wrong where the ‘mission-critical’ data is. Which happens more than you would like to know.

        • Oh you !    You see sysadmins don’t generally hate you guys.  You see its more the user that somehow got our number. The user is generally the problem, not the software, and when it is, how is that my problem?

      • IT can be outsourced. The people running the business generally cannot. This is not a chicken/egg problem. Businesses can, and do, exist without dedicated IT departments.

    • Just saying, yes we would. It would be dealing with your competencies in some other profession as subject matter experts.

  11. Hob82 – so you think that crying to get a result is an appropriate way to behave in the office? Nice. Your connection to reality seems a little off too – if I say there’s no way to run Dreamweaver 5.5 on an old P2 that was probably used to clock in and out of the Ark then please believe me. The installer alone probably takes more space than the pc’s hard drive has.

  12. Amen, brother. And as an addendum to #3 – if you report your keyboard has suddenly ‘started actiing funny, not typing the letter I press, etc” and you tell me you didn’t just spill something on it, the first thing I am going to do when I come out to your desk with a new keyboard under my arm is tip yours over on your desk “just to see”. Then I will give you a few minutes while you  desperately try to keep that half cup of vanilla latte from getting on everything you own before replacing. Keyboards are cheap and we consider them disposable. We don’t want you to abuse them, but if you spill a drink on it, just say that. It happens and we don’t care. We spill stuff on ours, too, sometimes. 

    • Keyboards are funny things. Had a laptop keyboard that wouldn`t respond to a keypress, levered it up and removed a pubic hair, worked fine afterwards, owner kept it under their bed so when they changed it was getting all the debris. Explained all the crud in the fans too. So not used to seeing dirt in a fan cavity.

  13. 11. Please don’t call and tell me “the Internet is down” because you can’t get to a web site. Rest assured the Internet isn’t down. Your ability to get to it might not be working, but the Internet certainly is.

    12. Please don’t call me and tell me the entire network is down or “everybody” is down when in fact *you* are down thinking it will get me moving faster. I have 5 different things monitoring the health of the network and I know when it’s down before the phone rings. If you’re experiencing a problem, I’ll be able to figure it out faster if you’re specific with what you’re experiencing. If I have to troubleshoot things that aren’t broken that means I’m not troubleshooting the one thing that is and that’s usually what you’re wanting me to fix.

  14. -Let us have a break during a lunch or coffee break, don’t ask the questions that you didn’t take your time to ask during your own working our.
    -Technology is not the only field that we can talk about, try other things when you decide to have a chat or a friendly conversation: Music, Art, Sports, History, Literature..
    -When things are fixed, don’t ask the question “Why it happened” as if you would understood.
    -Read The F*** screen before telling that it gave an error and you hit OK, it mostly tells what the problem was and what to do.
    -Don’t put all IT people into same category, not all of them are perverts or jerks..! There still some of them might be nice even decent..!! 

  15. These are so true. I’ve been yelled at, cussed at, and have grown ass adults act like two year old just short of falling on the floor kicking and screaming. IT are trained to basically sit there and take it. So anyone who knows what its really like to work IT knows that this is just for fun but also very true. Its things customer would take into consideration even though we know it still won’t stop them from being jerks to us when we’re trying to just do our jobs. However, just because they see this and may think about it for two seconds, we IT people know its still going to happen where we get yelled at, cussed at, and blamed for everything.

    Side note: My favorite of the week is we have an older user that says her icons and everything is too small so we make everything a little bigger and she says its too big now so we drop it to where it was and she says “Oh that’s perfect, thank you.”

  16. When you get the call that asks the question, “What would happen if I put spare change in those little holes in the top of my monitor?” don’t event bother asking “why would you want to do that” — instead just shake your head, get in your car with the replacement, and drive over hoping that they left you enough “spare change” to buy a soda — sad but true.

  17. Don’t assume I have people skills. Chances are better than average that I
    ‘m a borderline Aspberger’s case – that’s how I ended up in IT. Don’t get offended when I refuse eye contact and say innappropriate things. I simply can’t help it. My value to the world is fixing machines – not human interaction.

    • I don’t agree with his first
      point… it’s pompous and arrogant to assume your client doesn’t have
      any IT knowledge themselves. Sometimes we [As customers] know exactly
      what is wrong, but just not how to fix it and we call you to fix it, not
      to tell us that our diagnosis is wrong. If you think we’re wrong, at
      least acknowledge that our theory is still possible.In fact, on more than one occasion, my diagnosis [Again, as the customer] was different than my technicians and I turned out to be right a couple times. However, my technician is a very nice lady who at least acknowledges that my diagnosis can be just as plausible as hers. I’m no Technician, but I do know a thing or two about computers/software/security that some technicians might not… again, I might know what the problem is, I just don’t always know how to go about fixing it. That being said, I am perfectly justified if I were to end up arguing with a technician about his diagnosis of my computer. The first technician I ever called up told me to “stop looking up porn and I wouldn’t such viruses”. Funny, I got that virus because I was looking for full-length episodes of Inuyasha and a site that appeared to be legit had them, when I clicked on the video, I quickly found out it wasn’t and got a nasty virus and this asswipe has the nerve to accuse me of looking up porn.

      • umm, you do know that when we say porn we mean anything not work related right?  Also, if you can’t fix it then you don’t know what’s wrong, you simply know symptoms.

        • Well for being smart, to the point type of people, calling it porn when it’s something other then work related isn’t going to register that way in the minds of the customer. Derp. HERP DERP. If someone accused me of looking up porn I’m going to take it literally, and probably chew their head off, for I don’t look up porn. Ever.

          • Way to miss the entire point.  Yes, if I was dealing with a jackwagon like yourself, I would refrain from using the term porn.  Luckly I have a generally great userbase that understands chiding when they hear it.

          • Way to back track on what you said to make yourself look better. Also, way to call people names, like a ten year old looking to get a reaction. Don’t say what you don’t mean, and get over it when you’re caught in the act.

          • oookay, obviously low-brow to call people names yet I’m a ten year old? I would love to say what I mean but unfortunately that would often not be comprehensible to my audience. Instead I try to use analogies and hyperbole to convey a technical message to non-technical people like yourself.  I’m in no way saying these people are dim-witted or unintelligent.  I understand their forte is elsewhere which is why they have their positions.  The above is simply asking for others to recognize us IT folks are also in our positions because it’s what we are talented at. You might want to loosen the middle management tie, think it’s cutting off your circulation to unimportant parts of your body.

          • I am not apart of any office job. I never will be. I once thought about IT, I’ve been playing with computers since Dos. However there are a lot of mathematical, and technical courses to take, as far as I know. Technical I can do, math I’m… well mathematically challenged. But to assume one doesnt understand tech is the point some people are trying to get across, and acting like everyone aside from anyone in IT is technologically challenged is a bit frustrating to the rest of us. Yes there are some idiotic people out, and some shouldn’t be allowed to even use a cell phone, but it happens. They help you keep a job non the less and you should be grateful for it, instead of ridiculing them behind their backs, joking or not.

        • Let’s use my “Inuyasha video virus” situation as an example. I clicked a video online, and less than 5 minutes later a virus infected my computer. Therefor, I knew EXACTLY what the issue was, I just didn’t know how to solve it.

          I tried Malwarebytes, even with the “FixNCR” file. I tried Spybot, Hitmanpro, Superantispyware, Combofix, and loads of other things to remove this infection and it was unusually resilient to all of my attempts.

          …then the asses still had the nerve to try to charge me 40 bucks for a diagnosis [They said “To find out what the problem was”]  when I KNEW what the problem was, I just needed a fix. I instead took it to the tech I use today who understood and simply charged me for the fix alone.

          That’s an example of the client knowing wtf they’re dealing with and the tech being a pompous greedy pos. The king of tech that, by my interpretation of his article, the poster likely comes off to me as.

      • “a site that appeared to be legit”

        And you can tell this how, exactly?

        Besides, P2P downloading of TV shows or movies is ILLEGAL, especially if you’re doing it on company time and equipment so get off your cross, we need the wood.

    • Using your Asperger’s Syndrome is going to solve all your awkwardness with a customer either. I am also a borderline Asperger’s case, and I work with people on a daily basis. Some tips, stare at their nose, they never know the difference, think long and hard on the conversations that may happen during your encounter, especially with an idiot. If you’re borderline it is a mild case, and you can’t fall back and cry autism everytime something goes wrong and they start getting angry with you. Asperger’s syndrome isn’t going to render you completely slow in the head, and it is a syndrome that gets better with time, IF you try.

  18. this is quite the self entitled drivel isn’t it?

    you’re IT…its not that important, relax. you are not performing brain surgery that you need to be rude. you don’t actually have that much work, unless you’re maintaining a network and im sure not everyone in IT is doing it. Most IT solve Outlook issue, plug in your monitor and every once in a while google how to solve an obscure software/windows issue. Most of the time you’re just lazy to come and help out, anything you need me to do can be told to me directly. Now i will admit there are some people out there that truly need IT’s help and are truly computer illiterate, but this article doesn’t really make a disclaimer about that.

    I should write an article as a software engineer about why i hate dealing with IT.

    1. I’ve already done everything you think you’re going to do before you even get to my desk.
    2. Don’t force me to do things that I know are not going to work, you’re just wasting my time.
    3. I know how long it takes to install a printer driver…
    4. I am not sure why you have 6 black berries, you can synchronize multiple email accounts on one phone, but you sure do look important.
    5. The only reason I am even talking to you is because i am forced to file a ticket with IT, which I know won’t be resolved in the next 48 hours, which I could probably resolve myself in 10 seconds but don’t have the permissions to because your group policy sucks.


    • 1. That’s fine, we’d just like to see the results ourself
      2. We call it troubleshooting. Trial and error, rings a bell?
      3. It depends if your server has x86/x64 drivers installed, your network speed, how it should be installed: universal driver/dedicated driver/mapped printer in citrix/terminal server mapped printer, and your type of client. I never tell people installing a printer driver only takes 5 minutes.
      4. Actually, some providers/phones limit the # of exchange accounts on a blackberry. Which is necessary to sync your contacts/agenda
      5. Our GPO prevents people like you trying to fix something in 10 seconds, which will set us, and the rest of the company back hours! 1 person not working is OK, an entire office not working is costing a lot of money!

      About the article: I’m glad I’m not the only IT guy feeling like this. Brilliant sarcasm!

      • Rings a bell? Yes. I already trial and errored it, you’re only here to pretend to be smart with your technical mumbo jumbo…you don’t impress me, believe me and your GPO isn’t the smartest guy in the world, im sure you agree. 

        Chances are you work for one company and only have 1 exchange email account, stop pretending smarter than you really are. x86/x64? really do you even know the difference?

        • Actually, I work for a company where me and my 9 collegues support about 100 other companies. We have some multinationals, who are located in 7different countries, with 1000+ users. I know what it takes to manage it.

          I do know the difference between x86/x64, that’s exactly why I posted it in the first place.

          But I acknowledge we’re both trying to win this discussion. I had issues with my ISP, logged a call, and got someone from 1st line support, although I told them I am a system engineer, they made me take the same steps as you are complaining about.
          But when they tried switching wireless channels while I’m on a cabled network, I went nuts!

          • haha honestly im just busting your balls.

            the truth is, this list could be made about anyone in any profession, even the people that the IT guys are helping. 

            the other truth is, in every profession there are people who are cocky and people who are kind and graceful.

            we’ve all dealt with morons and assholes, not just IT guys. i take client requests sometimes that make me want to jump out the wind, but at the end of the day they are my clients and its my job to do…and venting is just part of life.

            so kudos to all the IT guys that deal with jerks on a daily basis, but don’t forget that the people you are helping are also just people and they have emotion and they might be frustrated, angry and annoyed, when you get to them. so be kind to them and they’ll be kind to you.

      • ps. i m just trolling, but i really do hate the pompous attitude of this article, not everyone is as dumb as IT would to believe.

        • Working at a customer helpdesk at an ADSL provider, I can tell you the following: I had to readjust my view on the intelligence of normal, average people. People who think a wireless modem works out of the box, without power because it is wireless. Or people who reply with the phrase “I’m not a technician” when the only thing you ask is to follow a cable, or if the power light is on or off. Or people who ask if the numbers they are entering must be capitals.

          The worst thing I heard, after changing the resolution of a desktop, is: “the letters are smaller. You can’t do that, because my physician adjusted my glasses to lettertype (font) 10.

          Oh, and don’t forget the magic button. the magic button every IT person possesses to instantly make every problem disappear like magic.
          Still havent found that, but customer’s keep referring to it.

          I used to think people have an innate ability for logic. With emphasis on ‘used to’

  19. Please, take your porn off of the machine. I don’t care if you have a naked picture of some celebrity, I me YOUR porn. Those pics you don’t want anyone to see. We don’t want to see them either and we are all over the directories. We know the usual directory structure and will look when you try to hide things. Virus’ do that too.

  20. Thanks.  You’ve made me oh so grateful for my wonderful IT guys.   Based on past experience, here are nine things I wish my former IT guy knew:


    First, know that when you’re nice while you
    help me, it means the world.  Technology
    can be this weird, mysterious place that most of us only understand as much we
    understand how our cars work because we drive them. Remember, we’ve had little or no instruction in most of what we’re expected to use.


    Resist the temptation to wallow in the
    power of knowing that I can’t go to anyone else for help but you.  The cocky tech thing really doesn’t work.


    If you tell me what to do to fix the issue,
    wait to see if it worked before you consider the issue resolved.


    Don’t pretend that my problem is unique
    when you’ve had three dozen calls about the same issue in the past hour and you
    have no idea what’s wrong.


    Don’t say, “I sent you an email about that
    six months ago.  Did you not get it?”  This assumes I have a file of information sent
    just in case I might need it one day. 
    Who does that?  


    If you know there’s a problem, tell all
    users before I waste two hours trying to resolve an  issue before bothering you.


    Acknowledge my call, even if it’s just to
    say you can’t come right away.  Then I
    don’t have to keep pushing the button to see if you’re actually there.


    If you have a running problem with people
    starting any conversation with you with “I’m such an idiot…” you might think
    about how you are perceived by the people who are supposed to count on you for


    Don’t assume I’ve memorized
    everything.  You do this every day.  Besides, if I could do everything you can, we
    wouldn’t need you, would we?    

    • “This assumes I have a file of information sent just in case I might need it one day. 
      Who does that?”

      IT Guys do that, hence we know everything

    • It’s great to see someone with constructive comments about our work. However, please know that not all techs or IT organizations work this way. We track every call, email and “Hey you” so we don’t lose track.

      If we don’t respond to you immediately, we’re busy working on someone else’s call. Our priorities are constantly shifting.

      We normally keep email that might be useful in the future. I have an email folder named “Tips and Tricks” and refer to it often.

      If you find a “cocky” tech, report them. This is not how we work.

      The issues affecting many users may result in a general email/contact to supervisors. It’s their responsibility then to contact their teams. We’ll do almost anything to limit the impact and incoming calls when we need to work on a large fix. It will likely go to another IT group when it’s a network or specific application problem. It can be very difficult to identify every individual person affected by some issues, resulting in no updates to all users. We try to avoid spamming hundreds or thousands of customers if at all possible.

      ANY tech who starts a conversation with negative comments should be reported. They don’t belong in the job.


    • If you have a running problem with people

      starting any conversation with you with “I’m such an idiot…” you might think
      about how you are perceived by the people who are supposed to count on you for help.”
      That is true. Thanks for the reminder. I tend to forget and just be silently annoyed.

  21. Wow, all the comments are just as entertaining as the article.  The wide variety of comments shows that people are people.  You will always have the smart-alecks, the know-it-alls, the whiners, the power-tripping, the rude, the kind, those with ethics, those without.  This is in any profession.  I like the venting in the article.  It reminds me that all those support fields where the workers are typically (not always by everyone) looked over as people. Try learning your IT help desk folks names.  Try learning your maintenance staffs names.  Remember them at Christmas when you are delivering treat plates to the departments or the like.  It is amazing what happens when you respect those folks as people and treat them with dignity,  Remember that pretty much anyone that talks to them in their work day is asking them to fix something  messed up.  Yes, they chose this profession…probably because they are good at it.

    • I wish someone would send me a treat plate for Christmas…. I deal with jerks and a-holes all the time in the food industry and no one ever appreciates me in such a way =(

  22. I love my IT person … I do not take him for granted … I never will know as much as he does and yes I do listen to him and now I can even fix some things because I watched and LISTENED …. I even fixed a virus problem without having to bug him …. But it sure is comforting to know all of you IT people are there when we need you.  Please don’t put us all non IT people in the same bucket as the morons out there as some of us really do appreciate all you do for us and we do listen. Wishing all of you a verry Happy New Year.

    • Hi MoM, while I appreciate your comment, I would hesitate to advise you to forge ahead with fixes, unless you document exactly what you do. If something is changed and we end up with a ticket, we’ll need to know everything you did before you called. Just as we do, please document everything so if you do make a mistake (not that we don’t) we can make decisions about how to address the overall problem. Please be cautious, since the original issue was much probably easier to fix before anything was done. Thanks! 🙂

  23. I work in IT and my basic response is thank goodness for every mistake the users make. I wouldn’t get paid or have a job if they did not exist.  My job is a customer service job, and I am going to act like it is.

    • If my users didn’t make stupid mistakes, I would have more time for project work which benefits the company. Also I wish I hadn’t taken a job that’s so public facing – this is a consideration that people don’t have when they get into the industry: Sometimes I feel that
      if I wanted to deal with these sorts of people, I would have joined the police

  24. lol I used to get customers and they’d say “I just want you to know before we start troubleshooting… I’m a Network Engineer” so.. why are they calling me, then? lol.But the author of this sounds rather mean-spirited. I actually WANTED to help my customers. I wouldn’t call them “stupid” under my breath, or ridicule them.They were my job! Why would I ridicule someone asking me for help? I was paid very well for sitting on my bottom staring at a glowing rectangle. 

    • Now here’s a gal who can fully appreciate her job (I assume you’re female by the name, sorry if I’m wrong..). Not only does she know that people just need help from time to time but she isn’t about to talk badly to them or about them. She WANTS to help. I say kudos to you. Not everyone can think that positively these days.

  25. If you did something to your computer and I ask you why, the answer should NEVER be “I don’t know” or “I thought that was the right thing to do”.  If you don’t know what you’re doing, ASK!  Installing software or hardware that you have no clue what it does doesn’t help anyone resolve the situation any faster.

  26. you obviously are anti-social. did you pass your A+ certification exam? because i’m pretty sure customer support was a big deal on it.

  27. Bah. Having worked in IT for over a decade, I’ve found you get a lot further with your clients if you show them a bit of patience and kindness. Being kind and patient does not mean you don’t know your stuff. Frankly the clients take you more seriously and respect you more if you’re patient and kind.

    The reason everyone hates IT guys/gals is specifically because of the attitude that prompted this write-up. It’s arrogant, and perpetuates the problem, not fixes it.

    This reminds me of the guy who worked as a manager at gamestop who wrote an article detailing instructions for how to shop at gamestop and deal with their employees business practices. The problem wasn’t that people didn’t know how to deal with the employees…it was that the employees were jerks practicing a broken business model.

  28. From the “customer” end i’d settle for an IT guy that speaks rnglish clearly enough for me to understand what the heck I need to do to fix a problem – gotta love outsourcing

  29. 11. Please, everyone, right now find out what your username is remember it. Write it on your screen, on your forehead if necessary. We can reset your password easy enough, but if you don’t know who you are and we are troubleshooting remotely this can and does literally take hours to resolve (probably more applicable in a small-business situation). 

  30. This goes with #3, but could also be a #12 or whatever. Your work PC is not yours. Don’t load it down with mp3’s and pictures of your kids. It’s company property and the company is liable for everything that’s on it. If the company gets fined by the BSA, RIAA, or SIIA for illegal software on your PC, you can bet your lucky stars we’ll take it out on you. CEO or IT Nobody, there is no corporate reason to have HALO3 on your work PC.

  31. 11. When speaking to an IT person, it is highly likely they are an arrogant prick. 90% of your issues can be solved by a trained monkey, but IT seem to think they are above everyone else.

    12. Remember that most IT people were bullied at school and have a very limited social life. Now they are in a position where people rely on them, they get some kind of ‘power trip’ which goes to their head a they think they can treat people like shit. Truth is, there are probably 100 other people in the IT team that can fix your issue for you.

    It appears money has been mentioned a number of times in here and IT people like you to think that they get paid the ‘big bucks’. Sure there are a number of jobs where the money is good, but most of the muppets on here, probably just work on an IT service help desk and get paid minimum wage, but are still as arrogant as all the other pricks in IT.

    • We’ll remember that and make sure to send an actual monkey to your desk. Hopefully this will solve two problems 1. It will address your issue, and 2. I don’t have to deal with you anymore 😀

  32. People get so mad when I tell them to reboot their computer. And then are so astonished when it resolves their issue. I just go its the “Magic of Tech Support” as the resolution. – Amazing how that fixes most problems people have.

  33. To chime in on #1 as well: make sure you listen to everything the caller has to say *before* you diagnose the problem and start arguing. Case in point, I had to call tech support last month and the tech told me to restart my router seven times, each time interrupting the sentence “this location only has a single workstation, so it is plugged directly into the modem and there is no router.”

  34. Totally Totally DIS-agree…
    98% of the clients/users I service are GREAT!
    Bottom line is that I am the face of IT and its MY job to help my clients NOT PATRONIZE them because without them I would have no job, If ya’ll don’t like your clients/customers/users either get new ones or get the hell out of this field!
    And YES a-lot of the “IT guy’s” are women, and they are good at what they do too!

  35. Some more to add to the list:

    – You catch more flies with honey. We didn’t cause your frustration so please don’t take it out on us. I don’t care who you THINK you are, I do not have to listen to foul language, threats, or insults. If you’d like to continue down that path, just remember, most help desks record their phone calls. If that doesn’t detour your, I’d be happy to let you speak to my supervisor, who will then get in touch with your supervisor, which will most likely end on a bad note for you.

    – When I ask you questions, stop, take a breath, and answer them accordingly. For example, if I ask you your first and last name, your answer should NOT be, “My computer is doing ______ or I’m trying to do _____. Your ability or lack thereof, to provide me the most basic information tells me a lot about the kind of person I am dealing with.

    – As an extension to the previous rule, please don’t interrupt me or jump to conclusions about what I am going to say. I’m sure you hate it when people do that so why are you doing it to me?

    – If your name is spelled differently then the norm, for God sakes please tell me that. Also, if your name is uncommon spell it.

    – Please don’t rattle off information so quickly my hair blows back. This goes back to you hate it when someone does that to you so why are you doing it to me?

    – Lack of planning on your part does not constitute an emergency on mine.

    – I don’t care about your personal drama. I am not your psychiatrist. I am here to fix your computer not your life. And despite what you think, this has nothing to do with me being “anti-social.” Please remember this is a business setting and some things should not be discussed.

    – If you are worried about someone potentially seeing what’s on your machine, then chances are it should not be there in the first place so get it off! Remember this is company property. Your mp3s, pictures, and other personal documentation should not be stored on it ever. If it crashes and you lose all that stuff then it’s not our problem.

    – If there is a contact procedure put in place by the company to get a hold of IT, then use it. Do not just randomly shoot us e-mails and expect us to fix your issue. We have a ticketing system for a reason.

    – READ READ READ READ OMG READ! I’ll let you in on a little secret, “being good with computers” has very little to do with anything. Most people would be able to solve their own issues if they just took a minute and read through it.

  36. IT people…
    When we do follow your instructions such as emailing problems, perhaps a return email with estimated time of maintenance/completion is in order?
    Also, when doing support over the phone, please be extremely specific. Not ‘I assume you have some working knowledge of this issue-specific.’ But rather step-by-single-step specific. That way when we get to step 4 you did not assume I did necessary step 2 which was, in fact, not completed. I can appreciate your social incompetence and preference for nonhuman interaction, but effective communication skills are essential no matter your role.

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