PHOTO: Dell Breaks Your Laptop, Sends Replacement Full Of Pubes

Reader K’s call to Dell tech support for his laptop resulted in the tech helping him break a different computer, then sending him a replacement laptop full of human pubic hair. After diagnosing a faulty power adapter with K’s laptop, the Dell technician asked him to plug the malfunctioning adapter into his other, out-of-warranty Dell to confirm the problem. K was reluctant, but complied, and fried his old laptop in the process. To their credit, Dell offered a replacement; unfortunately, it had a full bush. Full email, with picture, below (photo is NSFL: Not Safe For Lunch).

So I rarely resort to complaints as I think I am an easygoing consumer, but this time Dell went over the line. Maybe I just needed to write this email to vent, but I think it may be worth a post on your site…

Recently my 1 year old Dell laptop stopped charging the battery, so I called technical support (still under 3 year warranty) to try to resolve the issue. The technician recommended trying to plug another Dell power adapter into the laptop to see if this was the problem, and surprisingly it worked – problem solved…send me a new power adapter and I’ll be on my way.

Unfortunately here things took bad turn. The technician thought that it would be a good idea to try the faulty power adapter in my other Dell laptop just to confirm that this was the problem. I told him that this laptop was no longer under warranty and that I didn’t really want to mess with anything else since we had already resolved the issue. He said that we had to confirm this before he could authorize a new adapter being sent to me. So I plug it in and ZAP! Burning smell, and my old laptop was fried – nothing could revive it. At this point I was worried the technician would hang up, but to their credit they stayed on the line and after about an hour finally agreed to replace my old laptop. At this point, I was rather satisfied despite all of the problems – I was getting a new replacement for my old laptop.

About a week later, I get my “new” Dell laptop. I open the case, and the instruction manual is bent out of shape, and I start to worry. I reach the bottom of the box, pull out the laptop, and first thing I see is the top is covered in scratches. Some people may say that I should be happy since I was getting a newer model laptop to replace an old laptop with no warranty. My old laptop, however, was in great condition. When I opened up the new laptop, I saw the screen was scratched and dirty, and the keyboard was covered in debris. Wait, not debris….what is that? HAIRS!? Not just any hairs – these could only be described as pubes. I hate to be so crude, but pubes are pubes. Not the incidental curly hair, but rather mini-tufts between the keys. My only guess is that Ron Jeremy was the previous owner. At this point, I called Dell back, and I have written this email in between talking to 3 different people and over an hour of hold time. Nobody wants to help, and I’m reached the limits of my tolerance for poor service.

At this point, I’m considering 3 options:

1. Vacuum it, douse it in alcohol, and just try to use it and forget about “the hedgehog”

2. Sell it and buy a new laptop

3. Go to the gym, run 3 miles, trim body hair directly over the keyboard, send laptop back to dell (this is the cleaned up version)

Any other ideas?

Well, although Dell may not be listening to Executive Email Carpet Bombs anymore, it doesn’t hurt to try. Here is a bunch of Dell email addresses, here are some more, and here is one more. Include pictures of the fuzz factory in your email, hopefully it will gross someone out enough to get you a replacement.

thetuft.jpg
(“Free Human Hair” Photo: Kevin Dean)

Comments

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  1. not_kosher says:

    Eww…
    Pubic hair is mispelled in the intro

  2. Youthier says:

    human public hair

    Even with the italicized typo, ick! That’s just wrong. Try the EECB and if not, small claims court maybe?

  3. fluiddruid says:

    I think you mean “pubic”, not “public”.

  4. hills says:

    human public hair?

    like hair you can get in a public place? might want to fix that typo:)

  5. pda_tech_guy says:

    That could be arm hair. I mean, it doesnt necessarily have to be pubic hair. Still though, pretty gross.

  6. cookmefud says:

    oh sweet!

  7. Okaasan says:

    [sigh] . . . we really need a spell checker in this joint. But, then again, even spell checker wouldn’t have caught that one. I always try to read aloud what I just typed. I catch most of my typos that way.

  8. Wormfather says:

    Wow, just wow.

  9. Blackneto says:

    really odd.

    tip one though for anyone dealing with techs: DON’T do anything you feel uncomfortable doing.
    no matter how much they try to coerce you.

    that dell tech needs to have his system board blown for even suggesting that he plug a suspect power adapter it into another laptop. Probably didn’t have the same voltage requirements that the new one did.

    as much as I’m against regulation of my industry, there are times like these that I wish there were some kind of way weeding out idiots like this tech.

    As for the replacement unit. ugh.
    but thats the only thing i hate about dell. their replacement policy on laptops. It usually ends bad.

  10. nutrigm says:

    Maybe it’s beard hair?

  11. newlywed says:

    NOT blaming the victim, but i’ve been told to do crap from phone techs before and i just pretend to. how would they know the diff? “Oh, you’re right, it totally doesn’t power up my old laptop, I’m glad we tested to make sure” would have been sufficient.

    That replacement is just gross,though, and I feel for the guy.

  12. Dobernala says:

    Wow. Tech support is pretty pathetic these days.

  13. EDogII says:

    I just threw up a little.

  14. mgy says:

    I’m glad I ate lunch well over an hour ago.

    As a computer tech, you come to expect this stuff from customers. I’ve had roaches, hair, dust, the normal stuff. But whenever I release a machine to a customer, the thing is spotless. Literally spotless. This is disgusting.

  15. Tristan Smith says:

    Could it be dog hair? I know my keyboard is constantly covered in short hairs like that from my dog.

  16. Mrs. Stephen Fry says:

    That is nasty.

  17. KyleOrton says:

    Isn’t this grounds for pressing some sort of criminal charges?

  18. am84 says:

    Oh my god, GROSS.

  19. zentex says:

    @Okaasan: I thought we were the spelling/grammar checker… /sarcasm

  20. mariospants says:

    short and curlies also come from some people’s heads, you know.

  21. Nighthawke says:

    Do not pass go, go directly to EECB with all due speed. Cook that chicken until it’s got a black covering!

  22. airhed13 says:

    To be fair, they could be beard hairs. But yeah, still not cool.

  23. ThunderRoad says:

    Apparently it is indeed PUBLIC hair.

    Way to go Dell. Your actions eliminated my appetite, which will help with my spring weight loss.

  24. startertan says:

    Nasty. This was the wrong post to read during my lunch break.

  25. Alex Chasick says:

    @typo: Yeah, I don’t know what my problem is with Moveable Type lately. I swear that in real life, I can spell words and form complete sentences.
    @anyone saying this isn’t pubic hair: I’d be happy to send you the higher res pictures that K included, but I didn’t want this post to join the pantheon of Goatse.cx, Tub Girl, et al.

  26. mduser says:

    Ewwwww, isn’t there some kind of health regulation that was violated by Dell for this?

  27. Darkwish says:

    Did it at least come with porn pre-installed?

  28. baristabrawl says:

    This was so done on purpose, and I’d bet the farm it’s real pubic hair. I’d also threaten some DNA tests and then tell Dell that the attorney you’re talking to has said it wouldn’t be hard to get a court order that required all of their employees to provide a “public” hair sample for testing. If they lose, they also have to pay for the DNA testing.

    Seriously? I’ve heard of computer viruses, but that thing could have crabs.

  29. gqcarrick says:

    absolutely disgusting.

  30. Tripamsta says:

    Hey, I work for Dell tech support here in the states (and am an avid consumerist reader). I’ll give you a hand w/ this if you want – no promises but I’ll see what I can do for you – I handle the XPS systems (can help with those types – can’t tell what your system is. Also I know people in Lat/Opti dept)… How do I get in touch with you? BTW – I’ve never heard of a PC coming with pubes from our replacement dept. – we normally charge extra for that =)

  31. unklegwar says:

    So, all curly dark hair is pubic hair? That’s an assumption that can’t be verified here. But it sure do make for sensational media, huh!

  32. deedrit says:

    I wonder if the hair was outsourced as well. Perhaps it is Indian pubes.

  33. Mr_Burmie says:

    Oh ewwwwww! I need to take a shower after reading that complaint.

    Consider buying your next laptop from a different manufacturer.

  34. boss_lady says:

    @rndmideas: Your dog has a coat of short ‘n curlies?

  35. MrEvil says:

    Dell may not monitor the consumerist, but they do have guys that watch http://www.notebookforums.com now and then. It might be helpful to post your story there. The “DellCA” has helped alot of folks there in the past. Sounds like they had a laptop another customer returned and said “Good ’nuff”. Generally speaking, refurbished machines are free from cosmetic damage as well as human hair.

    Stories like these make me wish I worked directly for Dell and not just for a third party service contractor.

    Also, if you have a Dell technician asking you to do something that may potentially damage a system that isn’t under their warranty. I suggest you either lie about that step, or hang up immediately then call back and get someone else.

  36. Pro-Pain says:

    Mortifying. I would sue. Sue, sue, sue.

  37. milk says:

    mmm sexy

  38. Tripamsta says:

    @MrEvil: I know plenty of Dell tech’s that read consumerist for fun on a regular basis, in between speaking with customers. I’m one of them.

  39. trujunglist says:

    Um… what the hell? This has got to be some kind of interception prank. As much as I hate Dell (voted for them just now, go fighting Public Hairs! (yes, I know it’s spelled pubic)) due to my lifelong attraction to Apples, I don’t think that they’d be stupid enough to do that. I think someone got ahold of the box in between and gave it a good dose of pubes to make Dell look really, really bad. If not, here’s the obligatory “dude, you’re getting a crabs infestation.”

  40. econobiker says:

    Gives new meaning to “RE-FUR-BUSHED” computers from Dell…

  41. morganlh85 says:

    No matter WHAT kind of hair it is, that is totally disgusting. I can’t believe they even had the gall to send that to a person to RESOLVE a customer service problem!

  42. yetiwisdom says:

    My only guess is that Ron Jeremy was the previous owner.

    Awesome. Just awesome.

  43. Pubic vs. Public: Down the street from me is the “Mesa Public Schools Administration” building where the sign is right there at pedestrian level, right along the sidewalk on a major road where ne’er-do-wells and ruffians are always walking by. The L in the word “Public” on that sign is constantly being stolen, and they are constantly replacing it. It’s so juvenile, but I giggle every time I see that it has gone “pubic” again. Mesa Pubic Schools, I love it.

  44. OP – You gotta be glad though, that the thing wasn’t stuck shut like the pages in an old issue of Hustler get stuck together, right? Know what I mean? wink wink nudge nudge…

  45. jeff303 says:

    In an unrelated matter, the court subpoenaed the employment records of one Eric Cartman.

  46. John-at-Dell says:

    Actually, Dell does monitor the consumerist, and yes, one of those people monitoring the consumerist (me) is grossed out enough to do something about this.

    I’m sending a contact through the website linked to Kevin’s photo, but if that doesn’t get through, you can contact me at our public mailbox:

    customer_advocate@dell.com
    ‘ATTN:John’

    We’ll get this taken care of immediately.

    John
    Dell Customer Advocate

  47. kbarrett says:

    Did they send the laptop to Frank Chen?

  48. Wow, the previous owner of that laptop must have had an unpleasant dell service experience, and left his revenge for the wrong people…

  49. Imaginary_Friend says:

    @econobiker: You win! Awesome.

    Those pubes look embedded into the keys, not sprinkled. I vote inside job.

  50. faust1200 says:

    @John-at-Dell: You can tell he really reads it too because he knew enough not to say he was “taking it seriously.”

  51. Tristan Smith says:

    @boss_lady: not really, I just wanted to embrace that theory so I’d be able to keep down my lunch. I have a refurbished dell laptop.

  52. Instigator says:

    I can’t believe nobody’s made an Eric Cartman reference yet. Scott Tinnerman must work for Dell.

  53. Rode2008 says:

    I would never buy nor settle for anything refurbished that one puts one hands or fingers on.

    To me, using any refurbished item is about the same as buying a used mattress.

    When I go to hotels, I always bring with me a 4 x ( fooy sheet of marine plywood, place it atop the bedspread and sleep on the plywood. I refuse to use toilet seats and, instead, use the bathroom sinks.

  54. consummate says:
  55. NoStyle says:

    So Robin Williams repairs computers now.

  56. richcreamerybutter says:

    Perhaps Dell has acquired Anus Laptops?

  57. dizzydj says:

    I am pretty sure Dell is the worst company ever when dealing with Laptops.

    They “fixed” by LCD screen problem by creating new cracks in it.

    Uugh. F*ck dell.

  58. vietkangta says:

    Have you tried picking at it to make sure it really is pubes? Could be animal hair =D

  59. Matt Sussman says:

    Technically the laptop would be kinkier without any pubic hair.

  60. lolan64 says:

    How could the technician have said he wouldn’t authorize a new power adaptor being sent to you unless you tested the faulty one on your other laptop? What if you didn’t happen to have another Dell laptop?? That is so ridiculous…

  61. FuckYouGawkerMedia says:

    “What if you didn’t happen to have another Dell laptop??”

    Then you do what millions of other users do every day. Do nothing and claim it still doesn’t work. Is the tech watching you plug in and remove things? How does he know if you even tried it or not?

  62. eakolb says:

    Okay, so there’s some room for doubt that it’s pubic hair. True that it could be some other kind of hair.

    Why are so many people missing the point that the individual received a laptop that was covered in some kind of hair? Regardless of what KIND it is, it’s just unsanitary.

    If this guy received a bowl of soup somewhere that had hair floating on the top, would you folks be as inclined to debate just what kind of hair it could be?

  63. Gev says:

    @eakolb: True, but if the headline just said that the laptop had “some kind of hair” in it, it wouldn’t generate nearly as many clicks as calling them pubes.

  64. ShaggyTDawg says:

    I haven’t read all of the comments to see if someone else thought of this… But it’s likely they used an air compressor to try and “clean it up”.

    The funny thing is, a lot of times when you try and blow out a keyboard, you only make it worse by revealing all the nasties that are hidden under the keys.

    It will blow all of the crap out from under the keys and get it stuck in the cracks where it’s plainly visible (just like what you have pictured).

    They obviously sent you a refurbished laptop (dell doesn’t replace anything with new parts… every replacement part is refurbished), and at some point they blew it off to try and make it look clean, but it was probably on some sort of assembly line, so the person with the air compressor probably only had 5 seconds with it, not enough time to really clean it.

    Not defending dell, I’m just guessing that’s probably what happened. The whole replacement with refurbished parts is why I don’t buy dells anymore.

  65. kitkat1 says:

    JUST returned the second dell laptop I have owned. The first one crashed on me, so I decided to give it a second shot. A WEEK after having the second one, it crashed as well. They tried to send me a new hard drive and have me install it myself. I did, and guess what? Yep, that didn’t work either! Only took about 5 cumulative hours on the phone with customer service in another country for them to authorize a return. DELL…NEVER AGAIN!!!!!! WORST COMPUTERS EVER.

  66. AHammer says:

    Really? You got a replacement laptop with pubes in the keys? The only problem is verifying that this actually happened.

  67. schlottj says:

    he NEEDS to confirm its the power cord?
    what if you didnt have another laptop, how would he confirm it? sounds like hes a money retention specialist and wasnt going to get a bonus if he sent out a new cord.

  68. aeaheepman says:

    I just could not pass this up I just had to post a comment regarding the poor service customers are getting these days. Maybe this is why Dell is closeing down here in the States and moving over seas where there are no controls. All those people who will be losing their jobs in the name of money and not service. Who really cares about the spelling or what type of hair. The point is Poor service. I have been a Dell Certified Technician for a long time. And I would never and that is NEVER let a computer, or laptop go back to one of my Customers in such condition. Just goes to show on where service has gone. Anyone who would do this is the cause of some the problems in the world.
    Poor judgement and lack of training is showing up everwhere.
    Now I feel better!

  69. Nouf says:

    At the risk of sounding too defensive, there’s a good chance that those aren’t pubes. Look at your knuckles.

    Your knuckles spend a lot more time near the keyboard than your genitals, no matter how much you love the internet porn.

    Still a dirty computer. You have a right to be upset. But pubes? Probably not.

  70. BugMeNot2 says:

    Get a Mac dude! How much does it take for people to put up with (crappy customer support and a sh!tty OS to boot)! No sympathy for you people who use Smell’s and Borg-ware.

  71. kingoftheroad40 says:

    A month ago i purchased a dell XPS M 1530 no problems what so ever except time warner’s road runner .
    As far as hair can we say the media if the eecb does not work and mention that as next step if they ignore you.
    And the o.s. debate get Ubuntu / Linux
    free and better than vista

  72. loden_greeneyes says:

    Those hairs look like African-American head and/or arm hairs. Not, pubic hairs per se.

    Also, I have a very curly haired cat. She is a Cornish Rex. Her hair is short, lush and curly. They are a very unusual breed of cat. My keyboard sometimes resembles that, but with her gray hair.

  73. Well, the only solution to this problem is to find the guy who left the pubes, kill his parents, make chili out of them, and trick him into eating it while Radiohead makes fun of him. Problem solved!