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PLDT Scandal – Hell day for Customer Service

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I admit I’m a bit late in publishing this scandal involving the PLDT call center agent who was caught cursing a customer on tape. It has spawned into a viral case which prompted the blogosphere and other related social-networking services to capitalize on the heat of the scandal. It was uploaded in 2006 and made more than 200,000 hits and almost two hundred ratings, but nevertheless still important for those considering a service from PLDT. I certainly feel the weight of this being a customer of PLDT myself. Take note that I am dissatisfied myself and I feel betrayed by this ISP giant if I may say. You can read here my past tech rant on PLDT myDSL. PLDT certainly employs a lousy customer service and ill-equipped agents at worst.

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customer service

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I do not condone how the customer bullied, cursed and belittled the agent. It was wrong and downright unprofessional. It is a social and moral decay of sorts for any person to treat anybody like that. As we say, “Your right as a person stops when the rights of others begin.” The person over the phone is not a machine nor a dog – whom you can lash with shame and be stripped of dignity. However, the agent involved made the worst out of that scenario. I was a call center employee before and I knew the task and the weight of the load it carries to satisfy the needs of an irate customer. Had the agent taken control of the situation and not let her emotions cloud her judgment, it couldn’t have gone the way it went. Muting your microphone while you curse back the customer is never an option.

It is what we call “Customer Service”, not customer disservice. We must bring not our emotions over the very job which we took an oath to provide with utmost responsibility. It is a moral obligation of a CSR to assure the customer how the company is doing its best to provide quality service and meet the very needs they pay for. The bad thing here in our country, bureaucracy and personal upliftment is higher in priority than selfless customer service. It is a social norm like a lingering cancer that must be eradicated so that we as a nation can progress.

The CSR or agent could have made steps to avoid the unnecessary heated altercation with an irate and disappointed client or customer. One’s effectivity in communication is crucial in not only assuring a satisfied customer but also avoiding substancial loss of a number of dissatisfied customers for your company: Continue reading

Top Browsers of 2008 Showdown

2008 is the resurgence of the Internet Browser wars. I have here listed the Browsers I try frequently myself. I suggest that you try to check all these stuff first before installing your browser of choice.

brwse

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Continue reading

Demonoid.com back online – popular torrent site lives!

I received a message in my E-mail today from Gate_keeper, a staff from popular Demonoid torrent website and it read:

Hello THE11thROCK,
We are pleased to inform you that Demonoid.com is finally back online

The rest of the message I have no intentions presently to post online, but what a relief for all the waiting fans and general public to finally confirm that the popular torrent tracker has finally landed home. It appears that Umlauf has replaced his friend Deimos indefinitely as site admin. I personally checked out the site and without a doubt, the site is definitely back, hopefully for good.

deimos

For the uninitiated, a BitTorrent tracker is a server which assists in the communication between peers using the BitTorrent protocol . And Demonoid (again, the name itself is not in anyway related to any of the site activity or of the supernatural realms) is one favorite site tracker for file-sharers alike. Note: In most countries, it is illegal to distribute copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright holder. So be sure to share only legitimate files.

Continue reading

The Top 10 Golden Rules of safe Internet surfing

Are you a World Wide Web lurker? Ok, no offense meant. You are a light-saber wielding Internet wanderer. Better? Here are my personal guidelines so that you’ll be in a much safer zone when browsing the net.

  • Lose IE (Internet Explorer) and use Firefox, K-Meleon or Opera instead
    • Forget about unfixed bugs, worms, and unpatched holes. I prefer Firefox and it’s better equipped due to the tons of plug-ins. It also lets you handle phishing and harmful javascript with ease.
  • Use a Firewall
    • Ever used ICS Firewall for Windows? Whew. Trash it and use Comodo or Sygate firewall. Keeps hackers and unauthorized intruders at bay.
  • Use an Antivirus, Antispyware, AntiAdware, AntiMalware, AntiKeylogger, Trojan and Worm remover
    • Its a cruel world out there. Without the necessary security measures, you are left defenseless. Like a lamb led to slaughter. Use AVG for real-time defense, and install Avast and NOD32 (but don’t activate them automatically) handy for manual scanning. AVG antispyware and Spybot Search and Destroy for those bots. Ad-aware cleans-up your PC from those pesky adwares. Threatfire is great for security threats and malwares. For CWS worms use CWS shredder. Continue reading

Google Notebook in your Firefox sidebar: Cool!

From Wikipedia: Google Notebook is a free service offered by Google that provides a simple way to save and organize clips of information when conducting research online. This personal browser tool permits a user to write notes, and to clip text, images, and links from pages during browsing. These are saved to an online “notebook” with sharing and collaboration features.

Gnotes

Google Notebook is an interactive scratch pad for any visited web pages, offering to collect web findings within the browser window.”

I really like Google Notebook. It’s like a scrapbook, bookmarker, GTD-lister, clipper and organizer all-in-one. The main problem with it is that it consumes too much browser space. The notebook extension for Firefox is pretty pale for minimalistic purposes. Solution? Try this:

googlenotebook

All you do is bookmark this link, then open the Properties for the new bookmark and check the box labeled “Load this bookmark in the sidebar.” Now, when you open the sidebar and click the bookmark, voila: your favorite scratch paper and post-it will now be lurking in your Firefox sidebar.

via [Mitchelaneous]

Darkhorse Firefox add-ons for 2008

ff

Last year I named the top Firefox add-ons for 2007. This time around, I have accumulated several add-ons which I believe should have been included in that list but which I had not bumped into last year. Why darkhorse? Well most of them I did not notice at first glance, but whew! What a blunder. Check this list, these extensions simply rocks!

Fission: Fission combines address bar and progress bar (Safari style). Very nice eye candy indeed.

Fancy Numbered Tabs: Replaces the close tab graphic with numbers to help with quick tab navigation via CTRL + [1-8] or Alt + [1-8]. Easy swapping by using the ctrl key. Looks great too.

Googlepedia: Shows you a relevant Wikipedia article along with your search results. Clicking links in the article will trigger new Google searches, making it a very useful research tool… When you start using it, browsing google will entirely be in a new level.

Disable XPI delay: Disables default delay when installing… Yeah, those delays suck big time!

QuickRestart: Ever needed to restart Firefox after enabling or disabling an extension, switching to a new theme, or modifying configuration files (such as userChrome.css or user.js)? Finally the best way to restart.

Split Panel: Open panel to left, bottom or right (left,middle or right click) with current URL from Split on context menu (right click on page) of the tab’s page. It lets you focus on one page and still gives you the reason to check on other tabs. Continue reading

Best Torrent Clients of 2008

Here is an overview of the most popular file downloading software for torrent file sharing of 2008. I’ve included some of their features and what makes each client rock or suck. Personal experience may vary for each user, so my take on this maybe different from yours. However, my review of these clients may be of help to you in choosing a better torrent client.

µTorrent
Popular as both “u-torrent” and “micro torrent”, this is the most popular torrent tool today for newbies and geeks alike. µTorrent has all the functions a torrent downloader will ever need, and it only requires 1 MB of hard drive space and memory. µTorrent has all the downloading and seeding performance of its competitors, but with minimal impact to the rest of your computer’s speed. What makes me use this is that it has a portable version, pretty nifty for immediate use in any PC. Beware, however, if not properly configured, µtorrent can suck away all your bandwidth thereby rendering other net-activities paralyzed.

  • Multiple simultaneous downloads
  • Smart bandwidth usage
  • File level priorities
  • Configurable bandwidth scheduling
  • Global and per-torrent speed limiting
  • Quickly resumes interrupted transfers
  • UPnP support (WinXP only)
  • Supports popular protocol extensions
  • Trackerless support (Mainline DHT)
  • Localized to different languages
  • Typical memory use less than 6 MB
  • Incredibly small: 105 KB

BitLord
This is my favorite client. A popular tool that has a built-in torrent search engine…you may never need to use a torrent search web site ever again with this software. Never had any problems or headaches with Bitlord, though if you check at times, some trackers might try to block Bitlord for some reasons.

  • Automatic optimization for different connections.
  • Automatic optimization of uploads to achieve the max download
  • Reduces fragmentation on the drive.
  • Eliminates the time-consuming hashing when seeding / resume.
  • Allows some firewalled or “NAT’d” users to connect to each other.
  • Compliant with XP‘s restrictions on the TCP stack by SP2.
  • Block IP’s temporarily or permanently.
  • All downloads are received through a single port.
  • No manual ICS or ICF configuration required.
  • Automatically configures UPnP compatible routers
  • Can find peers from more than one source.
  • Supports the UTF-8 character set.
  • Automatically checks for new versions.
  • Over 19 languages supported.
  • Support for eDonkey (Beta version only)

Azureus
A Java language client; was considered “king” of the torrent programs until uTorrent software came along and took that crown away. Azureus is a memory and performance hog. Users are scared away because of the performance hit. If you have less than 512mb RAM and you’re a gamer like me, skip this.

  • Manual peer upload blocking (when seeding) and kick-banning
  • Control added to not cache small files
  • Advanced network settings: MTU, SO_RCVBUF, SO_SNDBUF, IPTOS
  • Plugin support for installing and uninstaling plugins
  • Client identification plugin interface
  • Separate protocol payload and overhead stats
  • Network selection support (public, i2p, tor) Continue reading

Torrent tracker Demonoid out for good?

The popular BitTorrent tracker Demonoid has been taken offline again and this time it looks like the site is gone for good – hopefully not. A notice on the Demonoid homepage reads: “The CRIA threatened the company renting the servers to us, and because of this it is not possible to keep the site online. Sorry for the inconvenience and thanks for your understanding.”

On December 30, 2007, the placeholder in the site stated: “The site is currently down. If you wish to visit the forum created to keep the community together, click here to continue. Please note that the forum is NOT FILE SHARING RELATED IN ANY WAY. Please read the rules before posting.

Last May 2007, I posted here that Demonoid (though the name sounds evil, it’s not actually about the dark side – probably just hyped up too much for a torrent tracking site) is the best torrent site in the planet. How saddening that we see most of these tracker sites go down lately.

Top 5 Torrent Sites of 2007

BitTorrent (BT) is a peer-to-peer (P2P) communications protocol for file sharing. A BitTorrent client is any program which implements the BitTorrent protocol. Each client is capable of preparing, requesting, and transmitting any type of computer file over a network, using the protocol. A peer is any computer running an instance of a client.

To share a file or group of files, a peer first creates a “torrent.” This is a small file which contains metadata about the files to be shared, and about the tracker, the computer that coordinates the file distribution. Peers that want to download the file first obtain a torrent file for it, and connect to the specified tracker which tells them from which other peers to download the pieces of the file.

This is a list of the Five most popular torrent sites as listed:

Warning: While P2P file sharing technology is completely legal, many of the files traded through P2P are copyrighted. Unless you live in a country where users are shielded from P2P lawsuits, then downloading P2P files may put you at risk for a civil lawsuit in any other nation. These lawsuits are usually class-action suits, filed against groups of users who blatantly copy and distribute copyrighted materials. Please know this risk before you use any of the following Torrent search engines below.

Demonoid The best torrent site in the planet. Nice community. You’ll have to wait though for you to be able to get a membership. The membership registration is tightly scheduled so be sure to check in time.

Torrentspy.com offers over 420,000 torrents in its database, the largest torrent index that is readily available to the public. Very good user feedback to verify if any file is infected by Virii or not. Enjoy it while you can.

The Pirate Bay (Pirate Bay, by readership size, is the most popular torrent search site today. Pirate Bay has an immense database of 360,000 torrents, the third largest database after Isohunt and Torrentspy.)

Mininova.org has 150,000 torrents indexed as of December, 2006. Mininova is the successor to Suprnova, one of the original big torrent databases of the Web. Smooth interface and chart displays for seeders and peers.

Isohunt.com Very good in searching for files otherwise not available in most torrent sites. Isohunt has nearly 400,000 torrents in their database. Any Isohunt torrent listed as “ISOhunt release” means that it is an authentic file as verified by the administrators. Sadly, Isohunt is being sued by the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) for copyright infringement.

h33t.com Not in the Top 5 but is worth special mention. However, it seems that H33t was taken down lately for it had been down for several days. Checked: Nevermind, just checked it, h33t’s up and back in business again.

Top 15 Mozilla Firefox Add-ons

Not using Firefox? Go back to the ancient times! Firefox is the trend-setter and industry standard in today’s internet browsers. It is user-friendly, a thousand times safer than IE, free, open-source, multi-platform, highly-customizable and a webmaster’s partner. Use it and be empowered over the web.

The full potential of Firefox is actually released through the numerous add-ons available for free use. These are the ones compatible with FF 2.0 and I highly recommend all of them. Here are my top 15 add-on favorites in random order:

Adblock Plus: Block those casino, porn and Spyware ads. At last!

Better Gmail: After using this, gmail experience will never be the same again. Promise!

DownThemAll!: A nifty and handy Firefox download manager. Never disappoints.

ErrorZilla: Eliminate that “try again” button. Here’s the next generation of error handling.

Public Fox: Tired of cleaning stuff people download? Use this to limit file downloading. Prevent browser changes. Public Fox blocks users from downloading unwanted files. Locks down Add-ons, Preferences, ‘about:config’, and Bookmarks. You can also block websites. All these you can do with a centralized password.

FoxyTunes: Very solid. Switch immediately for one player to another without the need of opening or clicking their launch icons. Foxytunes does it all for you inside Firefox. Continue reading