May 5, 2023•290 words
We tried to book a live streaming of a theatre show. One of the available dates was "fully booked" already. We raised eyebrows - how can a live stream be fully booked? - but we paid for a ticket for the other date.
When the day arrived, we sat in front of the screen to be met with a series of glitches, then a frozen screen, and then a "technical difficulties" message. So far, so underwhelming. We went downstairs to get something to eat. In the meantime, emails started arriving.
There was an email that said the company had paused the performance, and that they'd let us know when the problems are resolved and the show restarts.
There was the "back online" message - it reached us halfway through our dinner, and a little while after the show actually restarted on our laptop upstairs.
And then, later, there was an email from the theatre to say that they're sorry for the glitchy experience (it still wasn't 100% smooth even after the restart) and that they'd be providing a recording link - and another email a few days later with said link.
Our assumption that "the net is vast and infinite" - which led to us raising eyebrows at the fully booked live stream news - is coming to an end. There's no such thing as free and infinite bandwidth any more. Technical mess-ups will keep happening, and at first, they'll feel bad for everyone, each time they come around.
Whether you can work and communicate your way out of the feel-bad moment is the defining factor. Fixing things, making them right, and telling things plainly - that's what worked this time around.
(Go watch "Drive Your Plow..." if you can.)