Hightail says it will address issues and shows it cares about its users

Hightail says it will address issues and shows it cares about its users 4.33/5 (86.67%) 6 votes

Hightail says it will address issues and shows it cares about its users

By Ray Hanania

HightailSubscriptionPageOne of the big problems with large software companies is that it’s impossible to “communicate” with them.

They usually have a autocratic bureaucracy that keeps the bosses way above the normal people who work for them and who buy their products.

I worked at a company like that a few years ago called BP-Amoco. It was like working for a dictatorship. There were two levels of bosses, the cool ones you worked for and the corporate “Gods” who worked at Mt. Olympus. The cool ones always responded to need. The Gods of Olympus only responded to their own vanity.

Facebook is a lot like that. So is AOL. And so is Apple. They tend to respond to the public that uses their products when critical mass reaches such a major point that they have to respond.

A few days ago, I thought Hightail was in that ugly category sitting on Mt. Olympus counting their Gold shekels. I wrote about the problems I was having just being a normal person trying to use their software. I received an immediate courteous response from one of their public relations representatives, that was sent in plain English. It wasn’t mean. It was concerned about the issues I raised in the column. It was a tough and very critical column, too. Click here to read it.

After a few emails back and forth, she had a technician contact me and in less than a day the technician not only acknowledged the issue but even said that Hightail was going to make a change so that the experience for their users would be even better.

Wow! A software company that wanted to actually make the experience good for their users? How often do you run into those kinds of people? Rarely.

Hightail could have attacked me. As a columnist with a big mouth, who spends a lot of money on computer crap, they could have just beat me up back. That’s what Q-See Cameras has been doing since I ripped the guts out of their crappy security camera system that falsely boasts that as a consumer, when you buy their products, you can “easily” access the security cameras remotely from an iPhone or an iPad or even an Android.

As it turns out, you can’t access crap without first getting a degree in Computer Information Technology and learn how to program in C+, or Fortran. Or, at least understand how to reprogram your home Internet network to “forward” a “port.” That’s what I hate the most. Technology companies that make so much money they forget how they got to where they are at the top of the money heap. Q-See basically said I was “stupid” because I couldn’t follow their “simple” instructions on how to port forward and program my home Internet system to access their cameras. Blah. Blah. Blah. Blah. Blah.

I ended up replacing the Q-See VCR system with one I purchased from Swann and the problem has been solved. The column on Q-See has been one of the highest read columns I’ve written in years, which shows people care about the honesty of computer and technology companies.

Hightail at Hightail.com was originally called YouSendit, which I used a lot. They changed their name to Hightail because they wanted to evolve into something more than just a website service where you could “send” large files. What’s really remarkable about Hightail is that the technician actually acknowledged the problem I was having and said he and his staff plan to address it. Plus, they actually listened to me and said they would consider making the screen more user friendly so that the things you need to do are more clearly identified.

And, you don’t have to have a Hightail.com account in order to receive photos and large files sent to you by other Hightail.com users. That’s a big deal and a good one for consumers.

Too many software companies and computer companies want to develop services that don’t just charge a fee but also generate more revenue. They want to be a narcotic and turn you into a drug-user, hooked on their service to the point where your credit card is constantly being charged to stuff their pockets.

There are several Apple Apps that do that like the stupid waste-of-time game called Candy Crush, which is basically a sinkhole of charges. They literally put an Intravenous injection into your credit card and suck the money out of you, 99 cents and $2.99 at a time.

Maybe I was too used to the crap that passes itself off as user friendly software or online services and was cynical when I criticized Hightail. Well, I probably was, to the point where I just assumed (making an ASS out of U and ME) that Hightail is like those creepy companies that only care about profits. I am clearly wrong.

Hightail.com cares about you. Not only do they CARE about you, they respond to your needs. They responded to my concerns. And, I will be they would respond to your concerns, too.

Maybe more companies should be like Hightail.com. And opinion writers me need to help identify these good guys (and gals) so that consumers know where the ethical, caring companies are located.

I’m actually going to upgrade my relationship with Hightail and subscribe to their premium plan today, if only on the basis of the fact that they showed me that they care about their users.

And even if I continue to have a few more problems, I at least am confident they are doing their best to improve their system So here’s a toast to Hightail.com. I revoke my past criticism. They deserve a lot of kudos, and your support.

What do people want in a file sharing service?

1 - Ease of use

2 - The ability to upload files form their computer, or other computer source, and send the link to their friends or colleagues so the friends or colleagues can easily download all those files without any effort. One Click.

3 - Save, Download, should be menu options that actually allow you to Save anywhere (on the file sharing system, or on your own computer). I’d pay for that.

(Ray Hanania is an award winning former Chicago City Hall reporter and managing editor of The Illinois News Network Online at www.IllinoisNewsNetwork.com.)

Ray Hanania

Blogger, Columnist at Illinois News Network Online
Ray Hanania is senior blogger for the Illinois News Network online news site. He is an award winning former Chicago City Hall political reporter and columnist who covered the beat from 1976 through 1992 (From Mayor Daley to Mayor Daley).

In 1976, he was hired by the Chicago community newspaper The Southtown Economist (Daily Southtown) and in 1985 was hired by the Chicago Sun-Times and covered Chicago City Hall for both. In 1993, he launched the “The Villager” Newspapers which covered 12 Southwest Chicagoland suburban regions. He hosted a live weekend Radio Show on WLS AM radio from 1980 through 1991, and also on WBBM FM, WLUP FM and shows on WSBC AM in Chicago and WNZK AM in Detroit.

Hanania is the recipient of four (4) Chicago Headline Club “Peter Lisagor Awards” for Column writing. In November 2006, he was named “Best Ethnic American Columnist” by the New American Media;In 2009, he received the prestigious Sigma Delta Chi Award for Writing from the Society of Professional Journalists. Hanania has also received two (2) Chicago Stick-o-Type awards from the Chicago Newspaper Guild, and in 1990 was nominated by the Chicago Sun-Times for a Pulitzer Prize for his four-part series on the Palestinian Intifada.

Hanania’s writings have been published in newspapers around the world. He currently is syndicated through Creators Syndicate and his column is feature every Sunday in the Saudi Gazette in Saudi Arabia. He has written for the Jerusalem Post, YNetNews.com, Newsday in New York, the Orlando Sentinel, the Houston Chronicle, The Daily Star, the News of the World, the Daily Yomimuri in Tokyo, Chicago Magazine, the Arlington Heights Daily Herald, and Aramco Magazine. His Chicagoland political columns are published in the Southwest News-Herald and Des Plaines Valley News on several Chicagoland blogs including the OrlandParker.com and SuburbanChicagoland.com.

Hanania is the President/CEO of Urban Strategies Group media and public affairs consulting which has clients in Illinois, Florida, Michigan and Washington D.C.

His personal website is www.TheMediaOasis.com. Email him at: [email protected]