10 things you say during family tech support

Mom, I promise, you do not need to read every single pop-up window before you close it.

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If you’re reading this, you’re probably the person your family members—everyone from your significant other to your semi-estranged second cousin—hits up for tech support.

You probably get emails, phone calls, and Facebook messages every day from long lost relatives who want to know why their phone isn’t turned on (because they took the battery out), or whether they should upgrade their Gateway 2000 from Windows 98 to Windows 10.

And you’ve probably said all of the following phrases at least 23 times throughout each and every Android -related tech support call you’ve fielded from a family member:

Is it turned on?

“Sarah, why is my screen blank? I think my screen is broken, it’s just black. Oh, wait a second. I pressed the power button like you said and now it works!”

What have you done to try to fix the problem?

“I banged it against my desk a few times. For some reason, that didn’t work. Oh, and I tried blowing in the microUSB port.”

Did you try turning it off…and turning it back on again?

“I can’t turn it off, the screen is frozen! I pushed the power button and nothing happened. I held it down for five whole seconds! Well, I held it down for two seconds. I tried it again, it didn’t work. Wait, by five seconds, do you mean five seconds? Oh, by the way, I’m calling you on the phone I need help wi...”

Did you try Googling it?

tech support cheat sheet xkcd XKCD

“Why would I use Google when I can just call you? What do you mean, all you do is Google the questions that I ask?”

Can you get on Skype?

“I don’t know how to get on Skype. Why should I get on Skype when I can just call you? Hold on, I can’t look at my phone and talk at the same time. Oh, is that why you wanted me to get on Skype?”

Is the battery charged?

“No, I took the battery out because I saw a news report about how batteries can explode. What do you mean the battery needs to be in the phone for it to work?”

Is your software up to date?

“I keep getting a message asking me if I want to update my apps but I always say no. I hate change! I’m running Android 2.2, that’s fine, right?”

What’s the last app you downloaded?

“A free game that promised me free money, I think. The summary was all in a different language, and I downloaded it from a link I found in a different free game. Why, do you think that could be the problem?”

You don’t know your unlock code?

“I wrote it down somewhere…oh, right, I taped it to the back of my phone!”

Maybe you should just get a new phone.

I give up. You’re right. This phone is clearly beyond repair. Just buy a new one.

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