Confused reporting systems


A few days ago, Amazon notified me that my recurring order had been “cancelled successfully”. However, I never asked them to cancel the order. What they were really trying to say was quite different: they stopped carrying the product. In an unrelated incident, my credit card company notified me that the extra card on my account had been deactivated “at my request”. However, I never had such a card, let alone asked for it to be turned off.

Where did these strange explanations come from? I believe a default text message was programmed to appear whenever the real cause of the transaction didn’t make sense to the computer. In these situations, saying nothing at all, or just admitting the cause is unknown, would have led to much less confusion. This makes me wonder how many other programs have bizarre, overly specific messages programmed in — and how much it costs the companies in added customer service inquiries.