Dan From Optus, Destroyer of Bigots, Might Be the World’s Best Customer-Service Guy

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An Australian customer-service bloke earned praise from around the world after he delivered some extremely sick — yet also extremely polite — burns to bigoted Facebook commenters who had a problem with his company’s policy of communicating with customers in their native languages.  

Optus, Australia’s second-largest telecom company, recently started using multilingual signs to let customers know they could ask to speak to a representative in their own languages. It’s a nice idea, but Australia is right up there with the U.S. in terms of virulent racism. Seeing signs in Arabic triggered a spree of bigoted, “English-only” yelling on the company’s Facebook page.

Into the breach stepped Optus Dan, the hero customer service deserves. He gently disarmed the complainers with his words, explaining in the clearest terms that Australia is a multicultural country with no official language, and that the signs were placed in neighborhoods with many Arabic speakers who would find them helpful. Optus did the same for other languages.

Witness Dan bravely winning hearts and minds in a situation that would cause many of us to quit in frustration:

Many re-blogs and offers of marriage followed, but the man known only as “Dan” remained a mystery. Optus told reporters they wouldn’t let Dan do any interviews, but news.com.au skipped the middleman. They found the Facebook page of one Dan de Sousa, whose friends were publicly praising him for being great at his job.

Although they weren’t able to speak to him, news.com.au concluded that “Dan is not just well mannered and well educated, he runs his own film production company and is heavily involved in the Australian hip hop scene.”

No matter that he’s not doing interviews; Dan’s work speaks for itself. Good on you, mate.

Customer-Service Guy Politely Shuts Down Bigots