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“Update on the Email Conundrum”

From: Seth Dillingham In Response To: 5359  An Odd Situation, an Email Conundrum
Date Posted: Friday, February 10, 2006 4:58:50 PM Replies: 2
   
Enclosures: None.

The email conundrum gets weirderer and weirderer.

First, a little more background. I should have pointed out from the beginning that this contractor (XXX) has been working with the client for awhile. More than a year. Initially, he took over the management of their Conversant sites. We spoke a number of times on the Conversant support site and in private email. Personable guy (though he sees the world through Windows-colored glasses).

Now, here's the additional weirdness, the 'further evidence' I mentioned a little while ago.

The client had asked me for some additional services before shutting down their site. XXX was cc'ed on that request. I responded in the affirmative, and also cc'ed XXX.

On February 7th, after the work was done, I sent a message to the client to let him know the work was done and what I was charging. I have the original email in front of me right now: it was sent ONLY and SOLELY to the client. There's only one 'To:' address, and there are no CC or BCC addresses.

The client didn't respond. The charges were only a couple hundred dollars, which I knew wasn't a problem. 28 hours later, I resent the same email, again only to him.

On the 9th (yesterday), when I still hadn't received a response, I wrote to XXX. Here's what I said (note that BBBB is my replacement for the client's name, just like XXX for the contractor):

	>XXX,
	>
	>I have been completely unable to contact BBBB. All of my email to him
	>just seems to vanish into the ether. I never get any bounces, but he
	>doesn't seem to receive my messages, either. (I've actually wondered
	>if they're being intercepted.)
	>
	>Could you please have him call me tomorrow, towards the end of his
	>work day? I just want to put the charges through for [SNIPped for privacy]
	>
	>I'm in the US (guess you knew that), at 860-572-0244.

He wrote back and said that he would call the client to have them call or email me. They didn't. So, I wrote to him again to see if he knew why.

His response is where things turn weird again:

	>Sorry, Seth it's not a conspiracy - just me.  Today was hell and I
	>forgot they take Friday afternoons off (lucky folk).
	>
	>I HAVE sent them an email and am sure they will contact you Monday.
	>
	>I had already told BBBB what your charges were and he accepted them.

OK, so he didn't call them, and it was too late by the time I reminded him. What about that last sentence, though?

This is ridiculous.

I wrote to ask him how he knows what my charges are, but have not received any response.

If the contractor was a talented individual who (I believed) really wanted what's best for the client, there would be no issue here. Instead (warning: assumption alert) this looks more and more like a more-technically-knowledgeable-than-the-client HACK who has taken the client hostage and they don't even know it.

Maybe I'm wrong and nothing shady is happening. I haven't yet come up with any realistic alternatives, but I guess it's possible.

Mystified in Mystic


Discussion Thread:
  • Re: Update on the Email Conundrum (by Philippe Martin at 2/10/2006)

    At 16:04 -0500 10/02/06, Seth Dillingham wrote: >Maybe I'm wrong and nothing shady is happening. I haven't

  • Re: Update on the Email Conundrum (by Brian Carnell at 2/14/2006)

    Just out of curiosity, is the client here aware of your concerns over this weirdness? This sort of stuff

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