PayPal Virtual Agent Fail

I’m sitting there conversing with Sarah about an important financial transaction and just as things start to get heated, I realize she is a “Virtual Agent.”

PayPal Virtual Agent Chat Transcript

Emory Rowland

I'm editor and keeper of the flame at Clickfire. I consider myself a fanatical blogger, entrepreneur and builder of Internet things from way back. My love for social media and success with organic search led me to start a SEO consulting venture. Apart from the Internet, I could be considered pretty worthless. More...

11 comments

  1. Devon

    Dude, I had that same problem a couple weeks ago. I got the same message in response to a very simple worded question. I instantly realized she’s a dumb bot. That was pretty annoying.

  2. John

    Sarah Palin?

  3. George E Fischer

    I would have liked to believe those “virtual agents” were real people. It’s sad companies have gotten so cheap…

  4. ruslan

    i have got messege from paypal also a long time later.

  5. Dave

    Here is my experience:

    Sarah – PayPal :
    Hello, I’m Sarah and I’m here to answer your questions about PayPal. Even though I’d like to be a real person, I’m not. I’m programmed to answer your questions. How can I help you?
    You :

    Hi, I have a web developer that is setting up a web site for me to use paypal. He is telling me that he needs access to login to my paypal account to set up to receive payments at my web site. Is this true? Is there another way to do this? Thank you, Dave

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m afraid I didn’t understand your question. Can you ask it more simply?

    You :
    Are you an automated artifical human?

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m a virtual person. My software allows me to speak with you. Let me know if there is anything else I can do for you.

    You :
    How about answering my question?

    Sarah – PayPal :
    Okay. How exactly can I help you?

    You :
    have a web developer that is setting up a web site for me to use paypal. He is telling me that he needs access to login to my paypal account to set up to receive payments at my web site. Is this true? Is there another way to do this?

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m afraid I didn’t understand your question. Can you ask it more simply?

    You :
    web developer needs access to login to my paypal account Is this true?

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I found the following information. You can click to learn more.
    I can’t log in to my account.
    My PayPal account is limited or restricted.

    You :
    Not what I asked.

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I found the following information. Click and I’ll tell you more.
    I can’t log in to my account.
    My PayPal account is limited or restricted.

    You :
    This would be funny if I had time to waste….

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I love to be in good mood but I also don’t play around when I am talking about business! Let me know if there is anything else I can do for you.

    You :
    You don’t help either.

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m sorry you’ve had a frustrating experience. Perhaps I can help you if you ask me a short, clear question.

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m opening a page which will allow you to send a copy of our conversation.

    Sarah – PayPal :
    I’m opening our user survey for you now.

  6. Video Avatar

    LOL!!!! A real failure. I think it is better if such questions are sent to real customer service people. Virtual Agents must be used for simple queries.

  7. Yet more utter insanity – everyone likes talking to fake people about delicate financial transactions!

    I can’t believe PayPal is so short of cash they would resort to such idiocy. I realize everyone is on this tangent of “best way to be competitive is to keep labor costs down,” but I know that’s a fad pure and simple. The more important something is, the more you want to pay for labor, for good service.

  8. Kris

    just as things start to get heated, I realize she is a “Virtual Agent.”

    –hm…well…she did say she’s not a real person…second sentence…so am not sure how you thought it could solve any problem for you

    • Emory Rowland

      My deserved punishment for skimming.

  9. Jimmy

    I’ve got a lot of time to waste, and apparently Sara has no kids, she’s not married, she doesn’t want u to know her age, and she was born in California.

  10. Victor H

    SO I ASKED SARAH TO MARRY ME AND SHE SAID:
    Your Very kind, but falling in Love with a virtual person is very impractical. I’m right here if you need me.
    So I thought about the choices of women I have here on Earth, being Sarahs friend would be an Honor. I Love Her.

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