three photos of a woman taking a call at a call center and just barely tolerating the call

@mevscustomers/Tiktok Remix by Max Fleishman

‘You do not need to be rushing me’: Call center Karen complains about long wait times in viral TikTok

'I held for 30 minutes to reach you and you are going to give me all the time that I need.'


Rebekah Harding


Posted on Jan 26, 2022   Updated on Feb 2, 2022, 1:45 pm CST

In a viral video, TikToker @mevscustomers reenacted an interaction they had with an impatient call center customer they called a “Karen,” sparking discussion in the comments.

In the video, @mevscustomers pretends to answer the phone and reenacts how they were immediately berated about the 30-minute wait to get in touch with a call center representative. The text in the video says that the caller proceeded to rant for 15 minutes.

After briefly explaining that the company was short-staffed and currently working on training new representatives, the TikToker tries to redirect the unhappy caller back to addressing the reason for their call. 

“Are you serious right now? You do not need to be rushing me,” @mevscustomers says in a voiceover as the caller. “I held for 30 minutes to reach you and you are going to give me all the time that I need.”

The video was posted on Jan. 11 and amassed over 25,000 views, with many call center representatives sharing their similar experiences in the comments. 

“I know the feeling,” user @lady_guru_ said. “I’ve been more direct and stern lately. Get to it or get off my line.”

“I had a customer who wanted a free month of service for being on hold for 20 minutes,” another user wrote. 

Others shared how they would have acted differently in the caller’s position, even with abnormally long wait times.

“I’ve been trying to get a hold of state benefits for 4 months,” user @melymoon_ said. “Finally got through today and the wait time was 2 hours. I made sure she knew I didn’t mind!”

“I sat on hold for 2.5 hours in October because there was an issue with my airline tickets,” another user wrote. “When a call center representative answered, I said ‘hi’ and told her what I needed.”

With the nationwide labor shortage, many companies are understaffed, which could contribute to longer-than-usual wait times for call centers. An article from CustomerServ reports that call center training class attendance rates are down to 40 to 50% of their usual volume. In extreme cases, some call center outsourcing vendors report attendance rates have decreased to 20%.

“Everyone knows understaffing is happening, but doesn’t think it should affect them,” user @78magnum400 wrote in a comment that @mevscustomers liked.

The Daily Dot reached out to @mevscustomers via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Jan 26, 2022, 7:48 pm CST