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Every so often, one encounters a very puzzling situation. Just such an incident occurred about 5 weeks ago and continued at a confusing, if not bizarre pace.  The normal procedure for obtaining product for review and evaluation is to submit a request to the media relations or PR departments of the company manufacturing or distributing the product.  Be it hardware or software.  

When it comes to product reviews and cameo spotlights for big shows (ie, Fall/Comdex) most manufacturers and publishers jump at the opportunity to have their products reviewed or shown in the company of other well known products. We contacted this above company to do so.  What follows is an interesting story but more importantly, it soon becomes a study in what NOT to do if a company is to prosper and survive.

Yoohoo.... Is anybody in there?

A call was placed, during the last week in July, to Tripp-Lite's Rosa Haraf... as directed by their Website.  Three maybe four days went by... A second call was placed... three more days went by... Then a call was placed to Tripp-Lite and a different person was asked about of the receptionist... she clearly and emphatically stated that... "if you do not have a name for me we cannot connect you and I cannot give you any information about anyone.  We thought we were calling a Business called Tripp-Lite... not the CIA!!  As a result, we then left a fourth message to Rosa Haraf.  Admittedly, it was a rather stern message which (in so many words) asked why... it was so difficult to get a return call... a little cooperation... information.  Success!!  Rosa Haraf finally returned our call.... miffed, but none the less she had returned our call.

The fog rolls in.   

We explained about our special Fall/Comdex issue and the regular review process... and that we were interested in doing the review on their 2200 model.  Ms. Haraf was very interested and indicated that the unit would ship within seven days. Or, so we thought.  This has to be the very first time we have EVER had smoke blown at us.  Twenty one days have passed and we have seen nothing from Haraf or Tripp-Lite!!  Yes, <sigh> we are back to Haraf not returning our calls.

Who cares? We're the greatest!

As a result of her egotistical, negligent arrogance this item is here for all to see.  Its sad to see happening.. for I remember this company from years ago... they've been around for what seems like forever... Of course, that can be a detriment too.  They.. its entire executive corps., seem to have fallen into the "I'm holier than thou" crack and wish to remain "untouchable".  Here, at STReport we have seen many types like this throughout the industry in the last decade.  Most are now gone.  In all honesty, we have to give Tripp-Lite a resounding "F" for cooperation and accessibility.  Their products might be good ..but who knows?  Their people may be among the best ..but who knows?  You can't get through to any of them except the worker ants and they have strict instructions to insulate the management from the consumers.  After all, that's what we are ..consumers  ...are we not?

Showing the signs of the inevitable.

Bottom Line; Until this matter is resolved... and we will keep you posted  Rosa Haraf has single handedly SUNK Tripp-Lite as far as we are concerned.  Her actions have, in our eyes, given the Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) Marketplace to everyone but Tripp-Lite.  At this time; it is impossible to recommend either company or its products, at any level, to our readers because of the manner in which Haraf acted toward our staff.  She NEVER answers the phone .. its always the same boring message and she rarely, if ever, returns calls. If they have the brass to do it to the press... God only knows what they'll do to a customer. 

Sound like sour grapes?  You bet!!  Again, if they find it so easy to jerk the press around... God help the ordinary consumer if they have a need other than spending money at a retailer for a Tripp-Lite Product.  We say don't bother!  Go for anyone else's but certainly NOT Tripp-Lite.  At least not until they become more "people responsive". 

UPDATE 09/14/00

Surprise, surprise.... A DHL package arrived and in it was a press kit and a note from Rosa Haraf....  in so many words, "here is a media kit, thank for your interest in Tripp-Lite products".  Rosa has out done herself. <g>  

Ok, here's the review; the press kit was magnanimous... the multi-color brochures were very entertaining..  Too bad we can't tell anyone about the product, the performance of the product or, the sturdiness of the case and the software interface.  Oh well..


To our readers; please stay tuned... we have six other UPS suppliers who did not suffer from the sometimes fatal "canary disease".* ready to participate.  We will be presenting coverage of those products and the companies who manufacture them.  At least they are confident of  their products performing as advertised if not better.


* a malady causing one to jump up chirping "cheap, cheap, cheap" like a Canary.  Another company did that in the past... Atari Computers... they're gone now.



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