How to send your customers screaming...

Let me round up all the tech-biz idiots...

From (2003-08-14), "Silicon Samurai: TurboTax - Is TurboTax fixed? Well ..."

This column is a follow-up report about a very important product, TurboTax. Late last fall the ill-advised inclusion of incredibly poorly designed digital rights management features turned loading the popular tax software into a real roll of the dice for users (see the News coverage). Horror stories abound of people who innocently loaded this program in their computer and had their system crash. Apparently if you have pure vanilla installation it may (MAY) work properly, but if you have a multi-boot system or do anything with your computer that would qualify you as a power user or geek, TurboTax is a time bomb with a very short fuse.

The company immediately started apologizing and backpedaling in public, promising to do better in the future. This column is a report on how well Intuit's done in keeping that promise.

I, for one, did not buy Intuit's tax product after I heard about this. I was actually not pleased with their earlier versions. They had three separate and non-coordinated help files- you never knew which one to search, and they never worked well together. If I remember correctly, there was even instructions in one help file for how to search another!

I did my taxes by hand (including a Schedule K or something - not terribly intuitive, but I figured it out), and the cost was reasonable - my time. I had full control of the process (meaning I was the only one reading the directions - not that I could choose how much tax I wanted to pay!). And I will keep it that way from now on.

Written by Andrew Ittner in misc on Thu 21 August 2003. Tags: business, complaint, technology