FedEx.com Says “Not You” to Linux Users?

While getting a new PC ready to ship today I ran into a popup message at www.fedex.com when trying to use our Ship Manager account to make and print labels:

FedEx Ship Manager - No Linux

Looks to me like yet another large corporate site checking for the operating system under the browser. As if that matters at all if they would only develop to accepted, non-proprietary standards.

I also ran into some problems trying to create and print two shipping labels for drop-off shipment at our local FedEx International Shipping Center. I tried for a very long time to get around the problem using Firefox, Opera and even IE 6 running under WINE. I just could not get my shipment to be accepted to print labels. Finally I gave in and called the help number for FedEx Ship Manager customers and got a nice young fellow that told me what to do to get around the problem. (The problem is that today is a holiday for FedEx Ground and our account is set for pickup. Even though I changed the shipment to drop-off the browser cache was defeating the change. Closing the browser, starting over then changing the date FIRST to tomorrow “solved” the problem. I could have saved a few hours of frustration if the site developers would handle that better.)

In the course of our conversation I mentioned the pop-up message to the fellow and told him I was running Firefox 2.0.0.13 on Linux and that the popup should not appear for that. He agreed with me and stated that they should recognize Linux. I said I should write a web log article about it and tell folks to contact FedEx asking for Linux to be recognized. So, I ask you folks to contact FedEx and ask that they fix their site to ignore the operating system or to recognize Linux.

In the USA one can e-mail FedEx using the e-mail forms on their USA Customer Support page. Or one may call them using 1.800.463.3339 in the USA. Outside the USA go to the FedEx International Home Page, choose your country then click the Customer Service URL for your country to find the contact information.

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Gene A.

Gene is a "Unix Guy", network technologist, system trouble-shooter and IT generalist with over 20 years experience in the SOHO and SMB markets. He is familiar with and conversant in eComStation (a.k.a. OS/2), DOS (PC, MS and Free), Unix, Linux and those GUI based systems from Microsoft. Gene is also a follower of Jesus (forgiven, not perfect), and this does inform his world view.

3 thoughts on “FedEx.com Says “Not You” to Linux Users?”

  1. A kind USENET denizen calling itself “Down With Blogs” (catchy nickname!) points out that FedEx does work with Linux asking “Why?” (we should care about this issue) and stating “They’re not blocking Linux users.” as a reason to not care. Basically, if a large corporate site is checking for the operating system underneath the browser looking only for Apple and Microsoft operating systems it is unlikely to be Linux aware and/or unlikely to be Linux friendly. I expect this from Microsoft, Apple and SCO not from companies like FedEx. I believe we in the Linux community should care and try to change that by contacting a company’s customer support department and nicely pointing out we want to be recognized.

    See the full text from Mr. “Down With Blogs” here: http://preview.tinyurl.com/6xg4km

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