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How Is Scribophile's Customer Support?
How is the customer support or service of Scribophile for its members and those thinking about joining or creating an account on this site? Should you join this website or not?
If you send the site admin an email, contact message or tweet, will they respond or will they just ignore you or send you some automated reply that doesn't answer your question?
What is Scribophile?
It's one of many different kinds of online writing critique groups. It's free to join these groups though they offer some premium services. How they work is also pretty similar.
Pros of joining critique groups:
Other people can look at your work and tell you if you missed something (typographical errors, grammatical mistakes, plot holes etc) and give you suggestions and ideas on how you can improve your story.
You can post your work (short story, poem, etc) and fellow members of the site will critique your work and provide constructive criticism.
But, in return, you will have to to do the same thing for the works of others.
This means that you cannot just keep posting your work and expect it to be critiqued without also critiquing the works of the other members of that site.
I thought that the site seemed pretty interesting so I checked it out. Having read its terms of service, rules, FAQ, etc, I found that I had some questions and wanted some clarification regarding some of their rules so I sent them an email message.
Cons of critique groups:
It's important to remember that the value of the critique or constructive criticism that you will get depends on the person who is giving it.
Some may not be as experienced when it comes to critiquing while some may not be as detailed when it comes to providing feedback for your work, etc so be sure to take the critiques that you get with a grain of salt.
I was surprised to get a response (since Scribophile didn't reply when I used their contact us page or when I sent them a tweet on Twitter) so does that mean that they have good customer support?
Did Scribophile read the email message?
I had to wonder if they read the message that I sent because they replied so quickly and their response didn't really answer any of my questions.
According to Gmail, the email was sent on December 30, 2014 at 1:50 AM while their reply was received on December 30, 2014 3:52 AM.
Clarification on the rules of Scribophile
Think twice before you decide to contact Scribophile because you might not get a response or they might not really answer your questions
Part of their message said:
"... not a lawyer so I can't interpret those kinds of documents for you..."
One of my questions was:
"... ask about ... the Getting Started Guide... The screenshot that can be seen here includes a print button. Does this mean that the site users or members are allowed or are able to print the stories posted by others? May I ask why that is the case? Won’t allowing people to print stories that don’t belong to them increase the possibility of these works being plagiarized?..."
So, why would they need to be a lawyer to tell me why their site has a print button?
Asking about the Scribophile Terms of Service
Now, I did mention their TOS since I also wanted some clarification on their terms but I wasn't asking them to explain the legal jargon. I merely wanted to ask about the interpretation of their rules and policies.
Are you planning to join Scribophile?
To give an example, here's one of the other questions that I asked: Do you own the copyright of stories or content that you post to Scribophile? (it's too long to be included here so it's in another post).
These questions had to be directed to Scribophile because it's their site and it's their rules so you can't just ask someone else or try to interpret it yourself because you might end up interpreting a rule differently.
Scribophile customer support versus other sites
For example, I wanted to know about the tagging rules on Daily Two Cents so I asked the site admins about it. You shouldn't be asking other people or other websites because these rules and terms vary between sites and some have their own interpretation.
Customer service is very important, right?
For example, on Persona Paper, I remember asking about their rules for linking our posts to other sites and how many links we were allowed to have.
HubPages (and other writing sites) has linking rules too and it's different from Persona Paper's.
For matters like this, you need to ask the site directly to make sure that you're abiding by their rules.
You might think that it's okay to do this or that but what if it turns out the site doesn't think so? This is why I wanted to ask Scribophile for clarifications regarding their rules.
Importance of friendly, helpful customer support
Other sites, like the ones I mentioned, readily answered my questions. However, while Scribophile finally replied to my email, their response didn't really answer any of my questions.
Do you think that companies should provide good customer service or support?
Why would either of us need a lawyer just so they can tell me how they interpret their own rules, terms and policies?
So, it seems that their customer service is rather lacking and they didn't seem all that friendly either based on my experience with them.
Maybe your experience will vary but, for me, I wouldn't want to join a site that doesn't answer the questions of their members.
Besides, they're not the only online critique group out there.
Plus, aren't you sick of sites with terrible communication and support?
I've already had a few bad experiences with sites/companies that have horrible customer support so I really don't want a repeat of it though I know it's likely going to happen again.
It's unfortunate, but, for every site or company with awesome and excellent service, you get many more that have horrible and terrible support.
© 2015 Freya Yuki