Even Dilbert’s friend knows when he’s getting poor customer service.

Over on the Dilbert blog, Scott Adams is mentoring a new (to the public) comic artist named Scott Meyer.

The goal is to help Meyer’s comic strip become a commercial success by getting Meyer’s comic syndicated in newspapers. Needless to say, Scott Meyer is one really lucky dude to have the author of Dilbert helping him out.

But that’s not the real lesson that happened back on Aug 9 (yeah, I get around to reading blogs late just like you do).

After Scott Adams noted in his Dilbert blog that he would be helping Meyer, web traffic to Meyer’s site went through the roof, just as you’d expect.

Result: Meyer’s site was brought to its knees, which is geek speak for “so overwhelmed with traffic that it basically died”.

The next day, Meyer asked Adams to mention in the Dilbert blog that he was sorry that the sudden surge of web traffic had overwhelmed his web host thus giving his web host the opportunity of a lifetime to either:

a) look like an incompetent putz, and have your rep legitimately destroyed on a blog with an amazing amount of traffic in a marketplace that is chock full of people who buy web hosting, or

b) look like a hero by handling the situation the right way even if your systems didn’t, probably getting praised in public on a blog with an amazing amount of traffic in a marketplace that is chock full of people who …. you got it… buy web hosting.

Hmmm. Tough choice.

Here’s what Meyer had to say about his web host on Aug 9th, posted by Dilbert author Scott Adams on his blog:

My web host was, as you’re aware, brought to its knees, but don’t waste time feeling sorry for them. Having spent a great deal of time on the phone with them yesterday I can tell you they deserve all the punishment you doled out. (The tech support guy informed me that my strips took up 89k, which is “almost a meg.”)

Just in case you aren’t the geeky technical type, 89k is about 1/11th of a meg, not “almost a meg” (ie: 1,000,000).

The lesson: Don’t be a putz. Golden opportunities can come to anyone. You just never know.