Ticket Inbox Zero

Blackboard implemented a ranking system to determine the priority of support tickets. This effort uses criteria like the age and recency of updates to ensure the attention of Technical Support Managers. Certainly this initiative is due to continuing customer complaints about languishing tickets. Last spring we saw a similar push to fix support.

We have a weekly call with our Blackboard TSM where we discuss the status and priority of the issues. As GeorgiaVIEW is a consortium, these calls allow us to track the progress of the couple dozen of active tickets. From our vantage point, the tickets get verified as a bug in relatively short order and escalated to Development in rather short order.

Once there, the tickets languish for months to years. Most tickets impact a single section so once grades are posted, a fix is pointless. Even one ticket who passes this point to me proves a failure in the system. As fixing the issue after this point solves nothing. It cannot help anyone as the class is inactive. Yet, we hold on in hope someone might look at the issue and provide a fix for the next time this happens. Maybe that will be another customer or ourselves soon?

Unless a fix is provided immediately, we start losing the confidence of the instructors or students. Within only two weeks, we have irrevocably lost the confidence of these users. At that point we are incompetent to this person and may never be able to regain trust.

Our TSM seems effective in the realm in which she operates (confirming bugs, providing known solutions, and pestering Development for updates). We hawkishly ensure no tickets are dropped through the cracks.

If the goal really is to make the customers happy, then providing us timely updates that nothing is being done will not cut it. Provide the resources to Development to get our tickets resolved. Only then will our users be happy.

FBI Investigates Legal Activity Also

One of the reasons my photos sets are more full of flowers than buildings is people don’t call the FBI over pictures of flowers. While it is perfectly legal to take pictures of buildings from public spaces, it makes “victims” nervous. No one cares about flowers. I can take all the pictures I want without uncomfortable encounters.

Of course, unless my airline ticket is purchased by a government, I consistently get extra screening. It is a fact of life of neither looking African American, Native American, Caucasian, Asian, or Hispanic. Because look like an other, people put me in the extra screening list just in case.

A local student had to sit down with an FBI agent to “prove” he did not look Middle Eastern after photographing chicken rendering plants. Security of the plants called the local police who called the FBI. What would have happened to Jim if he had looked Middle Eastern? Would he have been arrested for doing something perfectly legal?

This is choice from the article:

Filson told Diffly that this is America and he should do what he wants, but when someone looks different in a post-Sept. 11, 2001 world, police may be called.

By the way, police officers arrest photographers who take pictures of them in the middle of an arrest.

Abuse?

EDIT: I almost forgot. A Georgia Tech student from Pakistan was detained for taking video of a building. This student also visited Pakistan and made statements which could easily sound threatening.

Wrong Number

A ticket our Blackboard technical support manager marked as really urgent was picked up by another technical support person who left a note about calling me. Except, the familiar phone number called wasn’t my office number or even my cell number. Nope, it is the office number at my previous job. Yup. I have not worked there in over two years. Yet, no one at WebCT or Blackboard has updated my contact information so Blackboard employees can find me. Isn’t the whole point of having my phone number to be able to call me? It is okay. As it is the end of the work day I was headed home anyway.
🙂

Sorry, Andy, if they left a message….

Not Black Enough

Because of racial profiling, I get false positive screened for extra security screening in airports. So, I need to look more African American. Some suggestions so far:

  • Grow out my hair and wear it in an afro / dreadlocks / cornrows.
  • Clothing improvements: baggy jeans, Jordans, tall teeshirt or sports jersey, one stud earing, chain, gold watch, diamond cut grill.

Any other suggestions?

When my ticket is purchased by my employer, I don’t have any problems. So, I only need to worry about this for personal trips. 🙂

Rock Eagle Wrap-Up

Index of posts:

  1. RE 2007: GeorgiaVIEW Meeting (Pre-Conference)
  2. RE 2007: Birds of Feather: GeorgiaVIEW Vista
  3. RE 2007: Top Ten Disruptive Trends
  4. RE 2007: Birds of a Feather: Luminis
  5. RE 2007: Administering Sakai
  6. RE 2007: GeorgiaVIEW Vista File and Content Sharing
  7. RE 2007: USG Digital Content Repositories: Resources to Share

After this point, I got wrapped up in other things, moderating, fireworks, a Texas Hold ‘Em tournament, and dealing with tickets. The above are all sessions which affect my area even tangentially. Hope you enjoy.

Cancelled

You’d think a city would make life hell on venue owners and fine advertisers for making them spend thousands of employee man hours cleaning up advertisements pasted onto walls of buildings, benches, etc. Punishment is only effective with the subject notices and can tie back to the cause-effect relationship. Tracking down, fining, and hearing appeals of “who is responsible” takes time as well. This… This is so simple its elegant!

Glasgow’s clean-up squads are tackling illegal bill posters with a little creative vandalism of their own…. the city’s litter wardens are cancelling illegal ad sites by pasting up stickers over unlicensed ads.

A few seconds with a paintbrush is enough to render the ad useless until a clean-up team arrives to tackle the site. They have already had an impact on some rogue promoters who have been inundated with complaints from music fans. People who have bought tickets to some of this summers big gigs have complained, thinking that an event, rather than the advert, had been cancelled.

The source said: “If people start phoning concert promoters complaining that they thought the gig had been cancelled, then the promoters have no-one but themselves to blame for having the posters put up in the first place.”

Criminal Scholarships

The BBC article doesn’t say whether this is a UK only thing, but this is just scary. If it is a US phenomenon as well, then I wonder how many college students are being paid to go to school? On the one hand, the students are getting an education. On the other, the students will be committing crimes when they finish the degree.

“As the number of criminal gangs looking to move into cyber crime expanded, it got harder to recruit skilled hackers, said Mr Day. This has led criminals to target university students all around the world. “Some students are being sponsored through their IT degree,” said Mr Day. Once qualified, the graduates go to work for the criminal gangs.” Criminals ‘target tech students’

How many college students truly know and understand the source of money funding their education. Mine? The poor of my state wasted an unhealthy percentage of their wages on the lottery some of which went to funding my education. The kicker? Many of my college friends who didn’t get good grades funded their education through loans spent $10-$50 a month on lottery tickets. Thankfully perhaps only a few cents of the money I get actually came from them.

[UPDATE:] Apparently, college students will even get married to get money.