My Most Awesome Post (Yay!)

This post is going to be awesome. Yay!

I recently ordered some iPhone camera lenses from an online company called Photojojo. The lenses weren’t quite what I expected, so I e-mailed Photojojo to find out how to return them.

“I’m so sorry you weren’t into your order!” responded Christina, the “Smile Distribution Coordinator.” She advised me how to return the package, concluding: “Once we receive and inspect it, if it’s in okay shape and it’s got all its packaging, we can give you a refund for the cost of the item, if it’s totally used we’ll getcha store credit.”

“Into your order”? “Getcha store credit”? Phrases like that never would have made it past my red pen when I was the head of news and communications at Duke.

Screen Shot 2016-05-09 at 7.36.33 PMBut Christina was just getting started. After she received my package, she wrote back:

“Hey Hey,

“We have received your returned goodies! (Yay!)  I’ve just refunded $54 buck-a-roos to your credit card.  The moola should be racing your way as we speak (erm… type?) and should show up in a day or two.

“Let me know if you have any questions, I’m only a keyboard away!”

I wrote Christina to thank her and asked whether she was trained to use this kind of language, which is abundant on Photojojo’s website. Her response: “I’m native in Photojojo speak 🙂 Have a sweet day!”

“Hey hey”? “Returned goodies”? “Buck-a-roos”? Yikes! I felt like Lou Grant when he said to Mary Tyler Moore: “You know what? You’ve got spunk. {pause} I hate spunk!”

Then I stopped to ponder that my cultural reference was from a TV show that aired 46 years ago. Perhaps I’m just ancient. After all, I was impressed with Photojojo’s products and service, and with Christina’s helpfulness.

Sure enough, I found this review from another Photojojo customer: “I just wanted to hug the person who responded. They talked to me like I was their best friend in the world. They were nice, personal, helpful, and still professional. They also said that I can refund it, and the way they used very personal language like ‘snazzy’ and ‘easy peasy’ just made me know that I was an appreciated customer. This is customer service.”

Wow. Now there’s an alternative viewpoint.

I’m also mindful that Champa and I will soon be serving alongside Peace Corps colleagues who are, for the most part, much younger than us. One of the best parts of my job at Duke was interacting with bright, talented younger people. I’m really looking forward to doing that every day.

I’m not sure what to make of all this. Am I clinging to outdated language and editorial standards? Does the future lie with Photojojo’s approach? Help me out! Please write a comment and share your opinion.

I might even say “yay!”













4 thoughts on “My Most Awesome Post (Yay!)”

  1. it’s evidently a new language. when i teach i like to give my students five exclamation points and tell them that’s their lifetime supply. i guess we’d better leave email out of the exclamtion point economy, yes? hey hey!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for the laugh! As a late 30 something person, I find myself caught between the older professional person I strive to be and the need to stay young and hip! Photojojo seems to have a good sense of customer service, which is great, but their language is a bit too hip even for me. I do have to admit that in business I do find myself being a bit more casual with my language when I know I am working with a younger person so they are not visualizing me behind the computer with my cane.

    Photojojo’s emails to you give me flashbacks to what I experienced when I worked in Higher Education. Students rarely identified themselves in their emails, never addressed me as Mrs. Arrington or Professor Arrington and often emailed me as if they were texting a friend. I DO NOT miss that. At least Photojojo is friendly and upbeat!?!

    I’ll admit I have an issue with exclamation marks!!!!!!! GUILTY!!!!!! Can I change my job title from Vice President to Smile Distribution Coordinator? Sounds much more friendly and personable.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi hi! Laurel here (Editor of Photojojo). I think there’s still a place for serious grammar and business jargon. I guess, I never really thought of our website as one of those places. We like to conduct ourselves like a serious business, without taking ourselves too seriously.

    For what it’s worth, if you ever meet Christina in real life, you’ll find her personality just as cheery as her writing and her smiles as persistent as her use of exclamation marks.

    Anyhoo, (sorry, I can’t help it) thanks for your insight. I really like the tone of this piece – more thoughtful than straight critical and full of really good points.


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