Having been in a community manager role for a Fortune 50 insurer for a few years, I've seen some really angry people. The "Hurricane Katrina, annihilated my home and all my worldly possessions and you refuse to pay my claims" kind of angry. Trust me - That's really angry. In managing these communities, I told myself I wouldn't be the person who "likes" an organization's Facebook page simply to complain and troll. Then along came Ventra. You have been "liked." And this is for you.
Cubic Transportation Systems, the CTA's contractor for Ventra, boasts the line "Intelligent Travel Made Real." What a lofty selling proposition from our good friends in San Diego. What's "real" in San Diego?
- Does the City In Motion take advantage of mass transit? Or can your bustling metropolis even comprehend a 729,500 people per day ridership and the ensuing turnstile chaos when malfunctioning cards leave paying customers to fail at multiple attempts to board the platforms, causing confusion, congestion and delays up to an hour?
- Are underserved communities "real" in America's Finest City? Or do you have any idea whatsoever that your distribution system inhibits the ability of Chicago NPOs to provide transportation services to the needy?
- Do people sitting on Silicon Beach know that winter is real in some places? Or does the sun blind you entirely from the record low Chicago temperatures in which your poor systems are stranding the aforementioned commuters and underserved population?
- Is siesta time a real thing in SoCal? Or do people in your communities have to take real time off of work to travel to the single physical location that can handle customer service issues because your call centers are so incompetent?
- Does your organization understand that monetary transactions, even of the electronic variety, are real? Or do you think the $1.2 million you lost by the CTA and the multiple charges and hidden fees incurred by customers is just play money?
What is real is that you really need to address all of these issues and more. Really quickly.
Meanwhile, in Ventraland, I liked the Facebook page to find the angriest people I've ever seen. Louder, believe it or not, than "lost all worldly possessions" angry. Irate paying customers voice their service issues or, in many cases, outright rage on deaf ears (eyes?). Ventra used to occasionally respond, but they've since given up, posting happy updates and refusing to acknowledge the pervasive issues:
There is also an app and several Facebook pages and Twitter accounts dedicated to the Ventra failure. And let's not forget the many, many halloween costumes last fall. Do you know what it takes for skanky ladies traipsing around Wrigleyville to dress up in a cardboard box with stiletto heals instead of slutty Little Miss Muppet? Blind anger. That's what.
|That is not me. I was a slutty American Gladiator, |
who had happily not yet transferred to Ventra.