The new nightmare: Products, services
May I offer another reason that "consumer confidence" is often down? It's because services and or/products have become a nightmare.
Bought a new cellphone. The dumb version. Now I can neither access my contact list, nor change the ring tone. I doubt buying a smartphone would have helped.
Borrowed a DVD but after half an hour behind the TV plugging and unplugging coaxial, can't get the DVD player to work. I did, however, find a spot to end it all if so inclined. That corner of the room would be perfect to strangle myself with cords, or bury myself alive in the dust.
Discovered that although I pay for it, was not getting caller ID/call waiting from our "bundled" service. Five phone calls, yes five, talking to customer service who apparently cannot answer "Hello" without asking the last four digits of my Social Security number prompted their dispatching a tech who said I need to call the office because this was the type of problem a tech cannot handle. What?
Went to the cable office myself for another issue (set freezes up when attempting to order a pay-for-view movie). Had been told I could solve that by switching my analog box for the HD version (not that we have an HDTV). Personnel there recognized a dinosaur and told me even though they could give me a new remote, they doubted I could program it myself. That's the only intelligent, insightful, helpful comment the cable company has made in our 10-year relationship.
And, my watch with its solar battery stopped ticking; probably depressed as it's not seen the sun since October. I may need to buy it a sun box because the manual was not helpful in any of the four languages it was written in.