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Support Call ID: 100156-03

Estimated reading time — 4 minutes


ID: 100156-03 Supp User: Jim_D
Call Date/Time: 08-16-201X Cust Acc: 212254674

Supervisor Notes: Customer account identified at intro – passed thru to support. FLSH case No. 83447



JIM: Hi. I’m Jim, your mobile phone support contact. This conversation may be recorded for training purposes. How can I help you today?

CUSTOMER: Hiya. Having some trouble with the speech recognition. It doesn’t seem to understand what I’m asking.

JIM: Okay. I just need to get a few additional details first before we go any further. Are the contact and billing details on your account up to date?


JIM: And I see here your contract began a month ago.


CUSTOMER: Yes. I connected to the 3G network last week and it flashed up something about a software upgrade and that’s when the problems started.

JIM: Thanks, but I just need to confirm a few more things before we can start trying to identify the issue and resolve it for you. Your mobile is a Samsung Galaxy S2 and you have 3G internet access, is that correct?

CUSTOMER: Yes. I mentioned the 3G already…

JIM: I just needed to confirm the facts before going any further. So, what appears to be the problem.

CUSTOMER: As I mentioned BEFORE, the speech recognition is playing up.

JIM: In what way, and with as much detail as possible please.

CUSTOMER: When I try to search using Google, it keeps mishearing what I’m saying and brings back what I don’t want.

JIM: Well Sir, no voice recognition software is 100% accurate. Have you tried speaking slower and/or louder, preferably somewhere with little or no background noise?

CUSTOMER: Why didn’t I think of that! I’m being sarcastic by the way.

JIM: I have to cover all the suggested options, even the obvious ones Sir. Could you give me an example?

CUSTOMER: Yeah, sorry. Yesterday I tried a search for ‘Restaurants near where I live’, and the results were local graveyards and mortuaries! I’m not planning on booking a table for one at a location like that for another 50 years or so.

JIM: Understandable. Anything else?

CUSTOMER: A couple of days before that I tried a search for some family pictures so I could change my background, and it returned, well, a whole lot of sick images I can tell you!

JIM: What do you mean by ‘sick’?

CUSTOMER: Dead bodies. Some mutilated. Lots of blood and gore. What looked like cannibalistic rituals or something. Really sick shit. What if my kids had been using the phone!?

JIM: Could you refrain from swearing please Sir.

CUSTOMER: Sorry. What about the pictures though?

JIM: You can put parental controls on what your phone can access on the internet, which I can take you through next if you have the time, but this sounds like something we may have to escalate if these pictures break certain decency criteria.


JIM: I believe you mentioned these problems only started occurring following a recent update to your phone?

CUSTOMER: Yeah. No idea what it was. The window just popped up and I clicked ‘Install Now’. Took about 5 minutes including the reboot.

JIM: Do you know what version of Android your phone is running?

CUSTOMER: What, you mean one of those funny food related names? Gingerbread, Ice Cream Sandwich. That kind of thing?

JIM: There are specific numeric versions, but the codename should do as a starting point.

CUSTOMER: OK. I wrote it down somewhere, hold on.




CUSTOMER: Back. It says ‘Android 2.2.3 Flesh’

JIM: So that’s version 2.2.3 Froyo, short for Frozen Yogurt by the way.

CUSTOMER: No, no…it definitely says ‘Flesh’ here.

JIM: …

JIM: Could you hold on whilst I speak to my supervisor please.

JIM: …

JIM: …

JIM: Sorry for the wait Sir. Having spoken to my supervisor and reviewed your firmware download history, there does appear to be a problem with your recent installation. Please open the Settings on your phone and select Software Update to download the most recent version. That should resolve all your problems.

CUSTOMER: OK. Thanks for that. I’ll give it a go.

JIM: Could you try it now Sir and let me know when it’s done.

CUSTOMER: I can’t right now but I’ll contact the support desk again if it doesn’t work. Thanks for the help.

JIM: Please try it now whilst you’re on the line Sir.

CUSTOMER: As I said, I can’t. I’m calling on the land line. My daughter’s using the mobile right now, talking to her sister. The credit ran out on hers. She might be a while – you know how these teenagers are…

JIM: Please ask your daughter to end the call NOW Sir. With your recent update there is a known issue in the firmware that can also affect both incoming and outgoing calls. Some users have complained of headaches, nausea, and other unexplained side effects.

CUSTOMER: What? I thought that scare about mobiles giving you brain tumours or whatever was just that…a scare?


JIM: I am neither confirming nor denying anything Sir, and our Terms and Conditions plus liabilities are available on our web site. However, due to a recent bypass of our firewalls, an unknown update to the Android operating system was released without our knowledge over our network. We claim no liability for this software upgrade and are investigating the breach in our security. In line with the requirements of your contract and for your own safety and that of your family, please upgrade your software NOW and refrain from using your mobile for any and all calls.

CUSTOMER: Is this a joke?

JIM: Sir, please take the mobile off your daughter and end any current calls. Our company will not accept responsibility for any harm that may come to your family following this warning.

CUSTOMER: You’ve got to be kidding me! Damn small-print assholes. Hold on….Lauren….finish talking to your sister Hannah and give me the phone. I said, give me the goddamn phone! What the…….shit, are your eyes bleeding honey!?

JIM: Exit the house now please Sir.

CUSTOMER: Lauren….wha…speak to me. Put the phone down and speak to me.

JIM: Lock all doors behind you and vacate the premises.

CUSTOMER: Just…just come over here and let me take a look at…at your eyes… There’s….there’s blood coming from your ear as well. Here, let me take the phone off you….

JIM: Please refrain from interacting with your daughter and exit the building now Sir.

CUSTOMER: [yelling]….Goddamn it Lauren, you bit me! What the hell is wrong with you! Back off now! I mean it. [screaming] Jesus! My fingers….my fucking fingers! No, no, no, no……stay….stay back. [sobbing] Lauren please…..

[sounds of physical struggle and furniture damage]

JIM: Sir? Sir?

[sounds of wet coughing and of a pet, possibly a large dog, feeding]

JIM: ……..If you can still hear me Sir, thank you for calling your mobile phone help support. A specialist contractor and clean up crew has been dispatched to your address to deal with your ongoing issue. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.

[call terminated]

Credit To – Charmingly Shallow

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Copyright Statement: Unless explicitly stated, all stories published on are the property of (and under copyright to) their respective authors, and may not be narrated or performed under any circumstance.

31 thoughts on “Support Call ID: 100156-03”

  1. my only objection to this story is that no call center rep sticks to the script that well. like i’ve worked in a few and even if you were well trained and coached you wouldn’t stick to the script as well as Jim does.

  2. the pulse through the phone to turn people into zombies is very close to the stephen king story cell – even if the pulse is upgrade rather than a pulse while on the phone call. however wasn’t bad

  3. CharminglyShallow

    Thanks for all the comments! I wasn’t going to reply, but I thought it would be useful to explain a few things:

    1. The support call has been written up as a ‘transcript’, in the style of someone listening to the recording afterwards and writing up what they heard, hence the inclusion of the [square bracketed] descriptions. They may have written it sounded like a ‘large dog feeding’ for legal reasons, although they may have thought otherwise in real life. ;)

    2. In regards the dialogue, I have to hold my hand up and admit the inclusion of the name ‘Hannah’ is superfluous, but necessary. I couldn’t include one of my daughter’s names and not the other (although saying that, I did make one of them into a zombie I guess).

    3. I was aware of a Stephen King book called ‘Cell’, but I haven’t read it, so I don’t know if my short story covers the same ground. I’ll have to pick it up sometime and check. :)

    Anyway, thanks for all the comments and useful criticism.


  4. It’s a nice concept but the dialogue at the end was a little odd. I know you needed to convey certain information but people don’t narrate every single thing that happens, so it felt a little stilted for the customer to be like “there’s blood coming from your ear as well” “you bit me” “stop talking to your sister Hannah” (because she wouldn’t need to be told her sister’s name, and her sister had nothing to do with the story so I’m not even sure why it’s included tbh?)… That’s my only complaint really.

  5. That was actually pretty intense! Especially for a story in this format… it’s been a few months since I’ve read a story that has made me lean forward in anticipation! This was truly unique and I enjoyed it very much!

  6. I’d like to shake your hand, sir-or-madam, for that brilliant little story. It’s a surprisingly good balance of funny and terrifying.

  7. Never, in 27 inglorious years, have read a found footage style short. Absolutely brilliant. I remained captivated the first time, and every other time I have read it.

  8. I liked this story a lot! I did find it a little funny how the author put in the “sounds of large dog eating” and “sounds of large crash”. I don’t know another way to convey that in a text based story, but it was still a little funny to me.

  9. Zombie apocalypse via cell phone waves…
    Love it! The worlds population problem solved in a single click.

  10. In the way this was written I could really hear the attitude of both characters. And the way Jim reacts after hearing the customer get killed by his daughter makes me think he’s either a sociopath, or that his company told him these things were happening and they told him not to worry. It would be cool to see what other people can do with stories of this format, maybe even have more that two people talking IRL, as opposed to on the phone. Chat room stories aren’t exactly my thing, but even if this story is told almost the exact same way as Funnymouth, the author still was able to use it successfully. Good job!

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