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Overstock's customer service line hangs up on consumers

Call centers go dead for the holidays

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A week after Overstock.com blamed a bad software rollout for its swelling third quarter loss, the company continues to suffer from massive technology problems.

Overstock's customer service line hangs up on consumers who try to navigate their way through the painful menus. Once customers press a button to reach a service representative, the line goes dead. It's a charming way to deal with complaints.

"IT is looking into that," one representative told us after our fifth attempt to get through worked. "There is something wrong with the phones."

We'll say. This problem has been going on for more than a week. It's symptomatic of the huge IT failings that have crippled the online seller, including its inability to track orders or packages. Rivals such as Amazon.com and eBay would likely tremble in horror if they provided such bad service.

Overstock's President, however, has simply chalked the gaffes up to being "his bad."

And spokesman Scott Blevins had this to say.

"We have had some minor technical issues with the phone system."

That's if you count not being able to place a call minor, although many people consider connecting with the other party a basic feature of the telephone system.

The complaints against Overstock have started to pile up en masse on chat boards. A poor reputation is hardly something the company needs during the holiday season as it tries to make up for $14.2m loss last quarter. ®

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