Monthly Archives: August 2013

Nothing like good customer service.

There’s nothing like good customer service and this is nothing like good customer service.Paulusthebrit

You the customer are under suspicion. Your actions require utmost control and under no circumstances can you enter our business with that item. We consider all people who enter our business as criminals intent on stealing our stuff. We do not care about you or your own care or safety.

This is the message I was given by the owner of a business today after I raised a concern about a policy the store has and the manner in which it was enforced.

What was the offense? My wife had a small hand bag with her.

The policy of the store was that no-one was able to enter the store with a bag (of any sort). We had the option of leaving the bag with a complete stranger at the counter in an insecure area or not go into the store.

Our greeting was not a friendly smile or even a simple “Hello” it was just “Bag please!” no option, no explanation.

We left.

After calling the store to question the policy and manner which we were treated, the owner phoned me back to explain that under no circumstances was anyone allowed in the store with a bag of any kind and that Prime Minister John Key and even the Queen would be asked to leave their bags at the counter.

When explaining that my wife has a health condition and the bag contains important contents, it was explained that we could take contents out of the bag and carry them with us. I suggested that it would be difficult to shop or browse while carrying things in our hands he said that was our problem.

I can accept the importance of store security and issues around shop theft, but the tone and treatment of the staff member and the arrogant attitude of the owner has left us never wanting to visit that shop again. We had the intention of making purchases on todays visit but we will not be going back to that establishment.

I will not name the store as I do not wish to advertise or promote its existence in any way. If anyone ever asks me for a recommendation about these types of shops I will not mention them at all and if questioned directly will explain our dissatisfaction.

One question I have about this “leave bag at counter” policy. If something goes missing or is damaged in the bag whose liability is it? For example if I leave my camera bag at the counter and someone drops a heavy item on it will the store pay the cost to repair or replace damaged items? What say someone gets given the wrong bag and it goes missing, who is liable?

The experience today has left us feeling angry and disappointed especially after the owner said it was our loss for not doing business with him. Actually it is his loss, we were going to spend money today at his shop and didn’t.

We will not be going back to that store again.

Paul S Allen

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GCSB Dunedin Protest 16 August 2013

GCSB Dunedin Protest

GCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin Protest
GCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin Protest
GCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestGCSB Dunedin ProtestKatharticusGCSB Dunedin ProtestKatharticus
KatharticusGCSB Dunedin Protest

Dunedin protest against the Government Communications Security Bureau and Telecommunications (Interception Capability and Security) bills being pushed through parliament by Prime Minister John Key. Photos by Paul S Allen – TheWaterside

Who said it’s wrong or right?

There is so much debate about privacy and security especially in New Zealand with the highly controversial Government Communications Security Bureau getting the ability to spy on New Zealand citizens in our own country. It is absolutely right to be concerned about it. The “nothing to hide , nothing to fear” argument is flawed at best. Privacy is a right that needs to be protected.

An important questions is this…

Who determines what is right or wrong?

Yes there are bad people in the world, yes there are criminal elements that want to harm and destroy others for personal gain. There are misguided groups and ideologies that are also set on the destruction of others. Not many would disagree that these need to be stopped. We may not want outlawed gang members to be able to freely associate together, but what about far right (or left) extremists or religious fanatics?

  • How far should the rule of law go?
  • Who determines what level of “extremes” or “fanaticism” are?
  • What about those who just simply disagree with you?
  • Where is the boundary between that which acceptable and that which is not?
  • Who legislates that?
  • Who enforces it?
  • Who determines that an ideology or belief should be banned or promoted?
  • What are the values and agenda of the law makers?
  • Who is to say they are right in their judgement?
  • Who will hold them to account?
  • Freedom of association is important but to what level? Who determines that?

No answers here just questions.

Paul S Allen

Dunedin protest against the GCSB + TICS bills

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