Great customer service from Emigre

We all know how much I love to bellyache about bad customer service here on Speedbird. The less-often-acknowledged flipside, though, is the still-greater pleasure I take in giving maximum props whenever and wherever such props are due. This next account, in its simplicity and cheer, struck me as one of my best CS experiences of a year thickly strewn with same, and I want to publicly call it out as such in the hope that it’s able to serve as object lesson in some wise.

Long, long ago (mid-2001, to be precise) I bought a full Eidetic Neo font package from Emigre, simply on the strength of its considerable beauty, and from my desire to support its designer.

I’m not much of a graphic designer, though, and when I have cause to set something in type I all but invariably resort to Helvetica or Akzidenz, with maybe the very occasional excursion as far afield as Transport or DIN. So Eidetic sat in my font folder, appreciated but unused from that moment to this, across four laptops and five OS upgrades.

Well, comes a day that I have the perfect application for it. And guess what? I find now that I am utterly unable to actually set text in Eidetic Neo. All of a sudden, for whatever reason – perhaps the resource files got corrupted somehow, perhaps some eldritch underlying requirement of OS X shifted between versions – the font lacked that fundamental requirement called “spacing.” WhatevertextIsetinEideticgotmungedtogetherjustlikethis; I could futz around with kerning to approximate spaces, but it looked just as awful as you’d expect. It was basically a total no-go.

So hoping against hope, rather, and considering in some corner of my mind whether I should just bite the bullet and repurchase the package entire, I wrote to Emigre on Wodinsday, at 13.50 EST.

By six o’clock my time, I had in hand a direct response from a named human being, Tim Starback. Tim not merely offered me immediate access to replacement downloads, but stayed with me through some hiccups I experienced when one of those proved to be unusable. By ten minutes after I opened up my machine this morning, the problem was completely resolved.

I have my Eidetic, and something else besides: the knowledge that Emigre stands behind its products, however long ago they were purchased and however trivially small the transaction involved. What’s more, Tim offered this support rapidly, unconditionally, patiently and cheerfully. Hearty thanks to him, and my congratulations to Emigre. With service this exceptional – and sadly, it is quite literally exceptional – I only wish I had more opportunity to support you.

One response to “Great customer service from Emigre”

  1. Derek says :

    Mr Starback has been with Emigre as long as I can remember (and I started subscribing in, oh, 92, I think). He’s always been helpful, dealing with licensing, tech support, etc. Go Tim.

    > I only wish I had more opportunity to support you.

    You can always use more fonts.

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