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Off Brand

Technology might enable you to swat away ‘Karens’ — but new research reveals that you probably don’t want to

An illustration of a computer with arms trying to swat away flies, who represent annoying customers.
An illustration of a computer with arms trying to swat away flies, who represent annoying customers.

Some customers are better than others. And some, perhaps, are so bad you might rue the day you ever sold them anything in the first place: They complain, they want their money back, and if you don’t cave they will slam your company online. We all know the type.

A new paper published in the Vanderbilt Law Review calls such customers “nudniks,” and argues that, thanks to Big Data and increasingly sophisticated predictive algorithms, businesses may be able to identify potential nudniks and head off trouble — perhaps by avoiding having them as customers in the first place.

But don’t…

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