Trying to order pictures online

I tried to order some pictures online this evening. The idea is great - order from Europe with an American company and save the transatlantic postage. I've been using Kodak, although I was a little pissed at them changing their rules. Must order one thing a year to keep your photos around. I want stuff to stay where it is!

But I'm lazy and they have all my address data, so I scraped the pics off the camera, dove into Photoshop to fix them up (crop, lighten, darken) and then uploaded a nice dozen. My aunt had wanted the pictures, and I decided to send some to Mom & Dad and my brother as well.

I wanted to send double pics to Mom & Dad, as she is in a nursing home, but there was no way to set up a multiple order with double pics here and single pics there. No problem, I'll send off the double pics, then start a new order.

Got that all set up, banged in my credit card number again.

There seems to be a problem with the credit card information you entered. Please verify that the information is correct and submit again.
Um, I just ordered from the SAME credit card a few minutes ago. It was fine. 5$ was okay, 6.50$ is not? What is the problem?

I tried it 4 times, then tried out the cute little "live help" button. I'm a sucker for trying out new, improved, online things. I got a countdown, and then Gisela came online. Gisela had me describe the problem. She asked me what browser I was using (um, this is not a browser problem, dear). It has to be secure, she said. Wow. She suggested I clear the cookies. Doing so also killed the chat (nice one there, Kodak!). So I started again (and now all the sites speak Swedish to me again, as they don't know me 'cause no cookies are stored and my computer is on a Swedish IP so I must speak Swedish.... thank goodness I'm not in China).

Called up the chat again, waited, now I got Monica. Explained how far I got in Gisela's script, and that clearing the cookies was a bad idea. Okay, Monica felt that I needed to try another browser. Sweetheart, I'm a professor for computer science, this is not a browser problem! But I fired up Safari, placed the order again, got the same result.

Hmm. Monica suggested that I try placing the order by phone.

Okay, I've got SkypeOut. So I called and fought my way through some bizarre voice mail "press 1 for whatever". Screaming nastiness at it got me a human being. The human being went through the same thing online as I put in, and guess what: same error message.

Her suggestion: wait 24 hours and try again. My suggestion: Kodak get itself sorted out and have operators that can override the holy web page. I believe there are other companies out there that print pictures.

The problem is probably the credit card company. I live in Germany, and used the credit card last Saturday in France, a few days later in Germany, then today online from Sweden on a US site. This probably caused some "Semantic Web" application to go hog-wild, thinking it had detected credit card misuse. Sigh. There has to be a better way.

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