From the Tumblr staff blog:
Marc gets email. A lot of email.
As Community Director, Marc manages Tumblr’s entire support infrastructure. From tackling general community issues to solving technical support requests, he’s personally read and responded to thousands upon thousands of email messages regarding browser cookies, forgotten passwords, and more.
Marc is special. And I don’t mean that as a euphemism for any sort of handicap or personality flaw. I mean that he possesses admirable and rare qualities.
Marc’s job is to deal with hundreds of support emails every day.
To most people in our industry, that sounds like hell. I can’t blame anyone for assuming that someone who handles support email as gracefully as Marc does couldn’t possibly exist in reality:
Yet, Marc wants to emphasize that he is, in fact, an actual human being. You see, a common misconception he encounters is that he’s a fake persona we created to make Support more personable. Emails addressed to “Whoever Really Reads This” and “Marc, Yeah Right” are a surprisingly regular occurrence.
He actually asked for this job, because he truly enjoys doing it. In person, he’s just as pleasant as you’d expect from his email responses. It’s not an act. He’s genuine.
Support is behind the scenes and underappreciated by most, but it’s a necessity, and there can be serious repercussions if it’s not done properly. And support for free web services is rarely done well.
In addition to the polite inquiries, Marc gets many emails every day from people who are angry about something, none of which is likely to be his fault. Often, he needs to deal with problems for which there’s no good solution, such as personal disputes or copyright issues, and he needs to be the bearer of bad news to at least one party.
His actions and demeanor help disarm people’s frustrations — with their passwords, their themes, their browsers, their phone company, their workplace’s IT staff, their content, other people’s content, politics1, religion2, or society as a whole3 — and make everyone’s day a little bit nicer. And as Tumblr’s support needs have grown past his (rather impressive) capacity, Marc has instilled the same positive attitude and guidelines in the other members of Tumblr’s support staff.
Tumblr is truly lucky to have such a pleasant, resilient, and talented person running our support and community management department4.