On Corporate Doublespeak

I just received a letter from our internet provider that irritated the crap out of me.

Here are the pertinent parts:

“We hope you’ve been enjoying your special monthly promotional rate {note: in other words, the normal rate we signed up with and have had for one full year}.

Currently, you pay a total of $65.98 per month, which includes your promotion . . . As this promotion is set to end soon, your next bill would reflect the current standard rate of $90.98 per month.

As a thank you for your continued business, we’d like to extend you another special offer on your services.

When your promotional rate comes to an end . . . you’ll keep enjoying the services you love for a total of $75.98 per month — that’s still a savings of $15.00 per month off the standard rate . . .

No action is required — this great new rate will begin automatically with your next bill.”

Ok. There are several things here that are just incredibly irritating:

1. The way corporations now say things like, “Well, the real rate for this is x, but for now we’re going to give you a lower rate” is ridiculous. In reality, everyone is getting the lower rate. But when they start off with this gambit, they think somehow you are fooled into thinking that a rate hike is not a rate hike, but rather a “discount” off the “real rate.”

2. Can’t people just use simple verbs? Instead of saying, “your service will continue” they have to say stuff like, “you’ll keep enjoying the services you love.” Really? I enjoy this service? I love this service? You mean, like, love love?

3. They think that if they call something “bad” by the name “good” enough times, you will believe them. “This great new rate” — really? Sounds like a “higher” rate to me. You’re not fooling anyone with the whole, “Mmmm, rate increases are wonderful! Actually, if you look at this rate increase from a completely asinine point of view, it’s actually a rate decrease!

It’s insulting, not only to a customer’s sensibilities, but also to a customer’s ability to perform basic math. Grumble.

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